The Edible Seattle magazine has been celebrating local food and small farms since it began publication in 2008. Now, Edible Communities--the company behind the series of regional magazines--and magazine editor Jill Lightner have released Edible Seattle: The Cookbook, a collection of over 100 recipes, cooking tips, and stories about food grown in the Pacific Northwest and the people who grow it.
This cookbook isn't your garden variety Northwest-centric cookbook. It's your heirloom garden, pesticide-free, p-patch variety cookbook. There are hyper-seasonal dishes such as clam linguine made with razor clams. Roasted potatoes aren't made with just any potato you can find at the supermarket, but rather with Ozette potatoes, an heirloom variety that was brought to the region by Spanish missionaries in the 1700s. And there are various foraged ingredients used in recipes throughout the book, like sea beans, elderflower, mushrooms, and shellfish.
Recipes were created by local food writers and chefs such as Mark Bodinet of Copperleaf Restaurant, Jess Thomson, Holly Smith of Café Juanita, and Bruce and Sara Naftaly of Le Gourmand. There are many familiar dishes, but most have a fresh spin or perhaps introduce a new-to-you local ingredient. The recipe for crab cakes includes shredded apples; a slow roasted lamb shoulder is served with preserved huckleberries; the minestrone soup includes einkorn, an ancient grain with a nutty flavor similar to emmer; and a savory crostini is made with lightly pickled rhubarb. There are also many recipes for ethnic-inspired dishes like a South Indian chana masala soup made with locally grown chickpeas, pork banh mi, saag paneer, and boeuf bourguinon.
Many recipes include suggested wine pairings and all include valuable cooking tips. In the recipe for Tavern Law's fried chicken, it's recommended to use rice bean oil or expeller-pressed safflower oil, both of which have a high smoke point. The brown sugar rhubarb bread recipe includes tips for freezing rhubarb, and the recipe for Douglas fir syrup and spritzer includes tips on foraging for Douglas fir tips.
The end of the book has several recipes for sweet endings to meals. There are recipes for salted caramel tart, apple pie, pear cobbler, streusel bars, and chocolate macarons. The appendix includes sources for products found throughout the book and in a clever nod to the "reduce, reuce, recycle" mantra, the book's jacket unfolds to reveal a frame-worthy illustrated map of the city.
Meet author and Edible Seattle editor Jill Lightner at two upcoming book signing events. On Wednesday, May 16 Lightner will be at Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park at 7 p.m. And on Monday, May 14 you'll find her at Book Larder in Fremont from 6 to 8:30 p.m.