Archive | Summer 2014

Photo by Carole Topalian

Food for Thought

Once again, I am amazed by our local farmers. Yes, you know them as the cheerful people you meet when picking up your weekly community-supported agriculture program share and when you make your purchases at the many farmers’ markets. You smile when you see a local farm name next to the deliciousness listed on local restaurant menus. Each time, you quietly acknowledge their efforts and give a silent thank you that you know your farmer, know where your food comes from and how it is grown. After the severe and devastating storm that hit our community on June 3rd, I imagine that you, like me, feel the need to support them even more.

Many things about the life of a farmer inspire us, but when a storm rages through and wipes out months of work in the blink of an eye, one has to pause and admit the deep inspiration is one of awe. News reports, Facebook posts and Twitter tweets told us quickly about the widespread damage—from Missouri Valley and Crescent, Iowa, across to Omaha and Lincoln and onto York and Spaulding, Nebraska—which impacted so many of our farmers; those whom we depend upon to provide fresh, local produce … Read More

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Photo courtesy of the Doughnut Hole

Lincoln Brothers Bake Model Doughnuts

The Doughnut Hole

Photo courtesy of the Doughnut Hole

Comedian John Belushi once famously proclaimed, “I owe it all to chocolate donuts.” Lincoln brothers Lucas and Nate Gingery may soon be saying the same. They’re the brains and brawn behind the Doughnut Hole in Lincoln Haymarket’s Public Market at 350 Canopy Street.

The Doughnut Hole’s offerings are inspired, with fresh farmers’ market fruit glazes and fillings, and a few head-scratching combinations—like the widely popular maple bacon long john. On a Friday morning visit in May, a few of the available flavors included strawberry, blackberry, blueberry, Oreo, coconut cream pie, French toast sticks, salted caramel, vanilla bean and chocolate. Many flavors are available in both raised and cake doughnut variations.

Lucas and Nate know that the perfect doughnut needs the perfect coffee to accompany it. They’re the only place in Nebraska to offer fair trade and organic Stumptown coffee and espresso drinks.

Lucas and Nate began to rethink the humble doughnut while modeling in New York and trying the fresh flavors and creative glazes at the Doughnut Plant in Manhattan. After moving back to Lincoln in 2011, the brothers decided it was time to give the doughnut business a go.

They … Read More

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Borgata

Omaha’s Whiskey Distilling Reborn

Borgata Brewery & Distillery

Omaha whiskey lovers, unite! You can now drink locally made craft whiskey for the first time since pre-Prohibition days. At Borgata Brewery & Distillery, Zac Triemert and Holly Mulkins offer a relaxing tasting room to enjoy a cocktail or beer, thanks to an in-house full-production brewery and distillery. “Whether you come in after work or just left the golf course, Borgata’s comfortable space, craft beers and whiskey have something for everyone,” says Holly.

Borgata’s whiskey is a single-malt, white, American whiskey. The in-house distilled, un-aged whiskey “delivers a surprising sweetness along with a light and smooth texture. I like to call it, ‘fancy moonshine,’” Zac quips. The whiskey is distilled in two copper pot stills that adorn Borgata’s tasting room, adding to the vintage ambience. The two-pot stills also happen to be Nebraska’s biggest and tallest of their kind.

In addition to whiskey, Borgata offers two series of house-brewed craft beers. Their Session Series offers lighter, lower alcohol content beers including a flagship pilsner, oatmeal cream stout, IPA, hefeweizen and a seasonal pale ale. Borgata’s Bison Series serves up imperial stout, imperial IPA and barley wine beers with deeper, robust and flavorful notes.

Owning Omaha’s first … Read More

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The Grey Plume Experience at Home

Provisions, by the Grey Plume

Photo courtesy of the Grey Plume

Clayton Chapman, head chef and owner of the Grey Plume has received critical acclaim from around the country for his restaurant’s green practices and outstanding farm-to-table approach to cuisine. The good news is that fans can now enjoy the award-winning food in their own home. Clayton has opened Provisions, by the Grey Plume, across the street from his restaurant. “Going out to eat is a big commitment. Provisions gives us the opportunity to provide guests with the Grey Plume experience at home,” says Clayton.

Shoppers can purchase a wide-variety of Plume favorites at Provisions. The store stocks the restaurant’s house-cured meat, pickled vegetables, house-churned butter, handcrafted chocolates and roasted coffee beans, just to name a few. You can even buy the handcrafted service pieces used at the Grey Plume, such as the recycled wine glass plates. With the wide variety of products available, you can re-create the charcuterie board, or many of your favorites, at your next dinner party or night in.

Provisions isn’t just a store, though. “It’s really an extension of the restaurant,” Clayton says. The store features a full commercial kitchen and a dining room that … Read More

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Cherries

In Season

 

This season is made for trying new things, while enjoying the things that you grew up with. Go to art festivals. Visit old friends. Try that recipe for cucumber falafel, mess up, and try again. Whatever you do, savor the next couple of months, and make them memorable.

 

 

FRUITS
Apples
Apricots
Aronia Berries
Blackberries
Blueberries
Boysenberries
Cantaloupes/Muskmelon
Cherries
Gooseberries
Grapes
Nectarines
Peaches
Pears
Plums & Pluots
Raspberries
Strawberries
Watermelon
VEGETABLES
Beets
Bok Choy/Chinese Cabbage
Broccoli
Brussels sprouts
Cabbage
Carrots
Cauliflower
Celeriac/Celery Root
Celery
Cucumbers
Eggplant
Green Beans
Kohlrabi
Leeks
Onions
Peppers
Potatoes
Radishes
Shallots
Squash: Summer
HERBS & GREENS
Arugula
Chard
Collard Greens
Garlic
Herbs: Various
Kale
Lettuce: Various
Microgreens
Mustard Greens
Spinach
MEAT & DAIRY
Beef
Bison
Cheese: Artisan & Farmstead
Chicken
Eggs
Lamb
Milk
Pork 

 

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On the Plate

Garden Ribbon Salad with
Garlic-Herb Dressing

Yield: 4 servings

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1½ tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh basil, finely chopped
¼ teaspoon cracked black pepper
3 cloves roasted garlic, finely chopped
1 zucchini, rinsed and dried
1 yellow summer squash, rinsed and dried
1 large carrot, rinsed, dried and peeled

Pour oil and vinegar into a bottle or jar with a lid. Add basil, pepper and garlic; close tightly and shake to combine. Let sit at room temperature for an hour or make ahead of time and store in refrigerator up to 2 days.

Using a vegetable peeler, shave vegetables into uniformly sized ribbons. Place the shaved veggies on a shallow platter or bowl and drizzle the dressing on top. Gently combine and serve immediately.

—Recipe developed for Edible Omaha by Julie Kolpin and Mary Oswald

 

Roasted Beet Salad with Camembert

Yield: 4 servings

4 medium beets, assorted colors
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and cracked black pepper, to taste
1 wheel Camembert cheese, crumbled

Preheat oven to 400°. Slice off the tops and bottom of beets, then peel. Put prepared beets onto a large sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil. Drizzle with oil … Read More

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The first of five public workshops artist Mary Mattingly held focused on brainstorming about possible flock house designs. Here is an early prototype of what became the final design.

Where Art Meets Food

Sitting just outside the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, the Flock House expresses a myriad of topics tied to the local Omaha environment and was designed and built by artist Mary Mattingly and a group of engaged Omahans.

Get the Flock Out

By Dwayne Brown

Photography by Cynthia Gehrie

New York City–based Artist Mary Mattingly stands atop a Flock House during the construction process which required the sealing of joints with caulking to keep the units watertight.

Flock houses—fascinating to say the least and certainly a good conversation starter. To express a concept touching a myriad of topics tied to the local Omaha environment, artist Mary Mattingly goes beyond conventional. Part sculpture, part architecture, part documentary and part performance—all are summed up in this new project sponsored by the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts: Flock House Omaha.

A few years ago, Mary began exploring self-sufficiency and a simpler, more affordable lifestyle as a means to focus more on her art and photography. Combined with her goal to travel, the idea to build a barge on the river in New York City using construction-waste materials sprang forth.

With the assistance of the local Coast Guard, a 100- by 30-foot-wide barge was … Read More

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Nasturtiums thrive in the greenhouses of Blooms Organics. The flowers and leaves are edible and have a peppery flavor.

Flowers. Not Just Pretty Faces

The pink blooms on chive plants can be added to salads for a pungent-chive taste.

By Sandra Wendel

Photography by Ariel Fried

Rebecca Bloom shows off a variety of pansies. The flowers can garnish (and be safely eaten) with desserts or candied for decoration.

What is it about the culinary artistry of a flower on a plate that makes a meal look, well, positively beautiful? And now, new research is telling us that those edible flowers may be good for health, too. So take a bite.

A study in the Journal of Food Science found that common edible flowers in China (note to self: these are plants growing in China, not the peonies growing in your backyard) are rich in phenolics, the plant-based compounds inside the plant. And phenolics have excellent antioxidant capacity, meaning they may prevent inflammation that leads to chronic disease such as heart disease and cancer—much like the properties of certain supplements you can buy at Walgreens.

Folk medicine has tapped into the wisdom in flowers and herbs for centuries. White and red clover blossoms, for example, were said to cure what ails you, or at least gout and rheumatism. And dandelions, the scourge of manicured lawns, … Read More

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Matt and Terra Hall standing in Rhizosphere Farm’s annual vegetable fields

Edible Journey

One of the farm greenhouses abundant with growing seedlings.

A Place at the Table

Embracing Rhizosphere Farm

Story and Photography by Alison Bickel

Matt Hall and Nick Bonham greet customers at the Farmers Market in Downtown Omaha.

Very early each Saturday, May through October, you’ll find a familiar scene unfolding along 12th and Jackson streets in Downtown Omaha: farmers, food artisans and vendors setting up their stands and carefully unloading the goods of labor and love they’ve come to share with eager market shoppers at the Omaha Farmers Market. Looking down the rows of stands, one in particular catches the eye. Stacks of fresh herbs tied with string, baskets of salad greens, heads of romaine and French breakfast radishes are artfully styled in a manner reminiscent of European markets. The stand belongs to Matt and Terra Hall of Rhizosphere Farm, and for them, this Saturday morning scene is anything but routine. It marks their return to the market after a yearlong farming hiatus.

After years of working on an organic farm in Oregon, Matt and Terra returned to the Midwest to give their dreams of farming a chance. In 2009, on three acres of leased land in Waterloo, Nebraska, Rhizosphere … Read More

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Edible Profile

 

THE WOMEN BEHIND THE RECIPES

Meet Mary and Julie

By Emily Beck

Photography by Ariel Fried

Mary Oswald and Julie Kolpin are cousins, best friends and food lovers. But they share more than a grandmother and a good arugula pesto recipe. The Omaha and Waterloo natives bear the title of Edible Omaha recipe editors, balancing recipe development and testing with busy lives as mothers and multiple job-jugglers.

“We recipe-edit for free, because we love cooking. We love love it,” Mary said, who has two kids, a side job teaching, and takes photographs for her son’s baseball team in addition to working at First National Bank. Julie, whose life is equally full with two kids and jobs as a seamstress and caterer, as well as a career with Under Armour, added, “We have lots of stuff on our plate, but I will always make time for the magazine.”

Their journey with Edible Omaha began when a friendship sparked between Mary and Amy Brown, copublisher of the magazine. The two became acquainted through careers at First National Bank, connecting food-wise after Mary was drafted to help create an employee cookbook for a United Way fundraiser. “She was my boss for a … Read More

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