Tamar Adler, accomplished chef and author of culinary memoir The Everlasting Meal as well as many published articles, is generous and passionate about fresh homemade food. Her Brooklyn kitchen is roomy, practical and functional—a place where wild tomato canning parties for 20 unfold and quiet solitary cups of tea are sipped. It's a delightful place, where I wanted to stay and chat and pick the brain some more of one of my favorite authors.
Earlier this autumn, I was invited by Rainier Fruit Company to spend a day in their orchards, seeing how apples are harvested and brought to market. It's an astonishing mix of old-school and modern — all the apples are picked by hand in orchards that don't look much different than they did decades ago, but then they get scanned back at the sorting facility by computers that can spot that one sneaky bruised apple in a group of thousands. Ever wonder how that perfect, shiny apple wound up at your grocery store? It probably looked something like this.
When Glenn and Paula Foore decided to start a small community garden in their East Austin back yard, little did they know that within one short year it would manifest itself fully as Springdale Farm, a small yet vibrant urban farm taking up less than 5 acres just 3 miles east from the state Capitol in Austin, Texas. Just as unexpectedly, their kitchen became a place for passionate chefs — to whom the farm now supplied farm-to-table offerings — to transform fresh ingredients into healthy meals. At Apartment Therapy last week we toured this couple's beautiful pier-and-beam style farmhouse, and today we'll get a closer look at the very heart and soul of their home: the cozy kitchen.
While I've always considered myself a chocolate cake over fruit pie person (I'm a diehard chocoholic, what can I say!), a slice of Sarah's apple sour cream streusel just about converted me. The flaky, buttery crust paired with local gala apples and crunchy topping bowled me over with its delicate balance of flavor, texture and natural sweetness. Just in time for Thanksgiving (prime pie season!) join us for a tour of this Portland-based pie shop.
Francis and his wife Jane rent a formerly raw loft in an overlooked but very well located neighborhood in Manhattan. Despite the bare bones of the space, they've managed to make it their own. Francis (an architect) built a full bathroom, a number of bedrooms for the couple's growing family, and a whole new kitchen, which is bright and welcoming and one of the first things one encounters after the long hallway entrance to their apartment.
If you follow Deb Perelman on her enormously popular blog, Smitten Kitchen, you are already familiar with one part of her East Village, NYC home kitchen very well. There is a 36-inch span of black speckled countertop where she preps, plates and shoots just about anything that ends up on the pages of the site. It's the same little nook, perched high above a busy avenue, blessed with perfect afternoon light, that serves as the set for most of the more than 300 photos in her new book, The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook.
So when Deb invited me over to cook with her, I jumped at the chance to see the teeny-tiny rental kitchen for myself.
Have you ever wondered where baby carrots come from? These bite-sized crunchers have experienced a pretty incredible journey by the time they wind up in our lunch boxes and snack trays. I recently got the carrot's-eye view of this whole process during Grimmway Farms' fall carrot harvest. It all starts with a big field, rows upon rows of green-topped carrots, and the hot California sun.
Willi Galloway is a garden educator and author who recently published Grow Cook Eat, a lovely book that combines gardening instruction with recipes. In addition to her writing, she hosts a radio show about seasonal cooking and growing. Willi and her husband rent a small bungalow in SE Portland, Oregon. When she's not juggling one of her many projects, she can be found brewing another pot of green tea in her adorable green kitchen. Yes, this space is a rental, but Willi has made it her own.
Who: Antonio Ramos and Caroline Mak What: Founders and head juice makers of Brooklyn Soda Works Where: Brooklyn, New York
It all started on a whim. Back in early 2010, Antonio, a chemist, and his partner Caroline, an artist, just wanted to make a good ginger beer at home, but what followed was the basis for a new business: intensely flavored carbonated fruit sodas made not from syrups (as is the norm) but rather fresh-pressed juice, with over 40 unusual spicy/sour/sweet flavor combinations, like Grapefruit Jalapeno and Blueberry Lavender. But what's interesting about Brooklyn Soda Works is how very unlike a soda company they are: they don't use syrup and they don't bottle. Instead, they sell their soda in 5 gallon kegs so they can be on-tap at local restaurants and bars. They're really more like beer brewers, but for non-alcoholic soda.
Who: Jeff Stuffings and Michael Steffing What: Founders of Jester King Where: Austin, Texas
Craft beer might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Texas, but a few new upstart breweries near Austin are trying to change that. One of those breweries is Jester King, an authentic farmhouse brewery nestled along the open landscape of Texas Hill Country. By incorporating wild yeast and interesting techniques (barrel aging, natural carbonation) Jester King is elevating beer into something truly special. Join me for a behind-the-scenes Maker Tour of the facilities where all the magic happens.