Grateful.

SF Wholesale Produce donation made delicious salsa

Our first quarter is already done! Here are a few snippets of the ingredients in some of our newer projects this year.  What makes these projects extra special is that they are using produce donated by two great organizations: SF Wholesale Produce (.org) and Bi-Rite Market.

A student favorite: frittata with vegetables & herbs.

Rainbow Chard from Bi-Rite Market used in breakfast frittatas and our pilot “Harvest Tasting.”

Thanks to them, we’ve already served over 100 nourishing tastes!

As we start our 2nd quarter, we are thinking of all the farmers and families affected by the recent fires and are so grateful for what we have. Thank you Bi-Rite Market and SF Wholesale Produce!

Middle Ground

It has been awhile. A lot has happened with events, garden work, graduation, even childbirth (congratulations Debbie and Chris!!!).

This isn’t the first time I’ve posted the skills and values our students identify at the beginning of each quarter, this set being from our most recent class. But it is a place of beginnings (most of us love fresh starts) and these again remind me of a few things.

First and foremost: students know what they need. Second, when I read these again, I am struck with how much these are skills and values that I want too, which is pretty heartwarming. It may not immediately create a common bond, but is a reminder that we are not that different from each other after all.


The hard part as the weeks progress (and it is only 8-9 weeks that we have together) is to sustain our values while keeping sight of our progress when challenges pop up.You’re having problems with friends or another teacher and aren’t in the mood to work, or you get distracted with others in class and miss some vitals in a recipe.

Any teen may not realize that this happens to all of us and in the workplace all the time. We all make mistakes and have off days. Sometimes what happens next are the best times in class, when we show our human-ness, responding to mistakes without getting personal or reactive (which are learned skills achieved only through practice). What could get charged up becomes an “oh” moment instead, not so bad, and the new understanding brings in a glimmer of trust. We start making connections as a kind of middle ground forms. Then people get a little braver, a little more trusting – and then a “wow” moment happens – what we made is delicious!  Trust leads to accomplishment, leads to appreciation, leads to giving, leads to feeling great about giving, leads to creating even more.  It is the magic of cooking together.

Events Ahead!

Two Events are suddenly upon us!

Garden Workday Saturday, February 25th 10am-2pm

Although we considered postponing our garden time this Saturday, it is calling to us anyway. Please come by anytime between 10am and 2pm for more dirt moving, raised bed building and weeding- or to just say hello.  We’ll have some extra gloves and hats, along with tea and nibbles.

 

 

 

 

 

Then we will be turning right around and serving a full house at our next Long Table Dinner, Thursday March 2nd, 6-8pm.  Tickets have sold out for now, please contact us if you would like to be on our wait list – we do get cancellations.  We will let you know the morning of the event if space becomes available. Thank you to those for spreading the word to fill our table.  More soon, we’ll be in the weeds until then –  in more ways than one!

Springing into Action

pasta & winter salad plating

winter salad next to spinach lasagne

 

phyllo triangles, dolma, pickled red onion and more

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy February 2017 Everyone!   This quarter our new batch of students are keeping us busy, inspiring us to work harder (and better).  Lots of great teamwork and excitement is building as we head towards our next Long Table Dinner.

That’s right – Long Table Dinner 8  will be on Thursday March 2nd, 2017, 6-8pm.

Tickets will be available very soon – YAY!

The Great Dig In

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This is what shoveling 10 yards of beautiful, rich soil looks like.  What you can’t see is that this levee is almost as deep as it is wide- 10 yards is a lot! And it was a perfect day to do this. Warm sun in the morning turning into cooling fog at times as we started to shovel in earnest.  Then, just as we were starting to worry the pile was regenerating itself, the calvary came in and got it all down into the garden. We were even able to fill our three new raised beds.img_20161105_150744-2

Of course, now all we can think about is planting, even as we head into winter.  The garden has already become a great place to be again.

We are catching up and hope to share a few pictures from the Long Table Dinner, which was another success! We are so proud of our students and thankful to all of our friends who came out or helped.  In the meantime you might find us out here digging away- Happy Quarter 2!

Our Seventh Long Table Dinner! Thursday October 6th 2016

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This may be a sparse hallway, but in two weeks it will be filled with the magic burble and delicious aromas that many of us in the restaurant industry have come to know and love.

Please be a part of it by picking up a few tickets at this next Long Table Dinner!  Tickets can be purchased via our Brown Paper Ticket Event link:

http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2604746

We look forward to seeing you at the table!

Indeed, we are cooking.

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This is a working kitchen now.  I stayed late on this afternoon to finish canning the last batch of grape jelly, made from donated grapes (NaStar Farms) and Barbera grape juice (Muir Made) – no pectin, so it is a softer texture – good for glazing sweet or savory items, or even as a bit of a drizzle on some cheese.  There are more donations under the window – fresh quince which have such a welcoming fragrance – and soon will become another delicious preserve.

We’ve been incredibly lucky with the bounty coming into the classroom – thank you!  And our students are tackling the large quantities with gusto as we gear up for our first Long Table Dinner in two years.

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Jamaican Jerk Chicken, Spicy Black Bean Soup, Cabbage Salad with Beets

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Turon (Banana Lumpia), Chocolate Truffles, Pineapple Garnish

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Lumpia, Potstickers, Lemper Ayam, Green Onion Pancake, Bun Cha Gio

Here are a few shots of class over these past few weeks, a  Jamaican themed menu from last week, and an Asian dumpling inspiration on another week:

 

 

 

 

What impresses me most right now is the very determined nature of our students. It is compelling – and it will definitely come in handy in the weeks ahead!

As we turn our menu discussions towards the Long Table Dinner, (LTD 7!)  we hope you will set aside the evening of Thursday October 6th and join us for this fun event where we will turn our newly renovated main hallway into a pop-up dinner venue, for a delicious multi-course meal made and served by our students.

Menu details and a link to tickets to follow soon!