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Too Many Cooks

Archive for April 2012

Camelina oil an alternative to olive oil

The Greenwalt family of Ritzville is growing little-known camelina.

They planted the oil seed and first pressed it in May 2011 and are now selling oil from the crop as Camelina Gold. My story about them will be in Wednesday's Food section, including details on the health benefits of the oil and where it is sold.

Here is the recipe I promised from Lynn Greenwalt.

Camelina Pumpkin Bread

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon vital wheat gluten

2 cups organic sugar cane

2 teaspoons baking soda

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground cloves

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1 cup camelina oil

4 eggs, slightly beaten

2 cups solid pack pumpkin puree

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 bread pans. Sift together flours, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves nutmeg and salt into a large bowl. Make well in center; pour in eggs and oil. Beat on low speed until well blended. Add pumpkin; continue beating until well blended. Turn batter into prepared pans.

Bake at 350 degrees in oven for 1 hour or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Cool in pans on wire rack for 15 minutes. Turn out onto wire rack; invert. Cool.

Yield: 2 loves pumpkin bread

Making senbei

The members of Highland Park United Methodist church worked hard for two days last week on traditional Japanese senbei crackers for an upcoming fundraiser as part of Japan Week festivities.

Church members, many of them Japanese-Americans, make the crunchy, salty and sweet rice crackers for the bake sale held each year during the Sukiyaki Dinner during Japan Week. This year marks the 63rd annual dinner.

Making the crackers is a time consuming process that takes the help of many congregation members. The church uses a recipe for the crackers was first made by the issei, or first generation Japanese-Americans.

Many of the people working to make the crackers are in their 60s, 70s, and 80s. Even a few 90-year-old members join the volunteers. They worked from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday last week.

Church member Margie Myoshi invited me to come see the process.

After the wheat and rice flour dough mixed, it is cut into small pieces and then rolled out into thin sheets using a pasta roller. Keiji Shimizu was one of the rollers flattening the dough into sheets.

Then, he passed the dough to other church members who cut it into bite-sized pieces.

Then the dough pieces were tossed with a bit more rice flour to keep them from sticking together. From there baskets of crackers were passed to the frying station.

Chris Newton was among those tending the the frying crackers on Thursday.

The fried rice crackers were piled into bins while they waited for a dunk into a soy, sugar and ginger sauce. Church members tossed the crackers in the coating.

After the senbei are coated, the crackers must be dried in one of large ovens at the church.

The crew passed the crackers to Dorothy Hashimoto who turned and tending them while they dried on Thursday.

Once dry, the finished crackers were passed to a “quality control” crew, including Hisako Akiyama, 89, Emi Suemori, 90, and Charlotte Tetsuka, 86. (They are pictured at the top of this post.) They checked the final product and packaged the crackers into 4-ounce bags.

Senbei are sold for $5 per bag during the Sukiyaki Dinner.

The 63rd Annual Sukiyaki Dinner will be held noon to 6 p.m. Highland Park United Methodist Church at 611 S. Garfield St. on April 28.  Tickets are $12.50 and may be reserved by calling 928-9459, 624-6892, 534-7994 or the church at 535-2687. 

Also on sale are baked goods, (including senbei), inarizushi, crafts, church cookbook.

The senbei can also be pre-ordered by calling the church.

Dysphagia cookbook

Dysphagia is a disorder that makes it difficult for people chew and swallow.

Students in the joint Washington State University and Eastern Washington University  communications disorders program held a special potluck as part of a class assignment to share recipes for easy-to-swallow foods for fictional patients. The project was part of assistant professor Amy Meredith's class and the recipes were later compiled into an online cookbook.

The cookbook was published on the school's website here. There are photos and a story from the potluck here.

Meredith said dysphagia is often caused by neurological problems resulting from stroke, traumatic brain injury, Parkinson's Disease, Lou Gehrig's disease, multiple sclerosis and other problems.

If you, or someone you know, could use more recipes or ideas for an easy-to-swallow diet, click on the links above.

Here's a recipe that sounds delicious for anyone (and it looks beautiful). The recipe was voted “best liquid,” “most appealing to the senses” and “most creative.”

Samoan Sunset Smoothie

From Terri Runquist
For the first layer:
2 ripe bananas
1 ½ cups of yogurt (vanilla)
½ cup milk
6 ice cubes
Blend well and pour into decorative goblet.
For the second layer:
1 cup of cubed mango
½ cup cubed fresh pineapple
1 1/2 cups yogurt (vanilla)
½ cup milk
6 ice cubes
Blend well and pour over banana mixture.
For the third layer:
2 cups slided fresh strawberries
1 ½ cups of yogurt (vanilla)
½ cup milk
6 ice cubes
Blend well and pour over layers – almost to top of glass.
Optional: Garnish with whipped cream and fresh fruit.

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We never really believed that old cliché anyway. We're collaborating to share our cooking inspirations, favorite recipes, restaurant finds and other musings from the local food world and beyond.

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Adriana Janovich writes for and edits the Wednesday food section.

Carolyn Lamberson Features Editor for The Spokesman-Review. She's a foodie who has no time to cook. Still, a girl can dream ...

Ruth Reynolds is a copy editor at the SR. "I would bake and cook more than I do if I didn't have to keep cleaning off my kitchen counters. My favorite kitchen appliance is my rice cooker. No. My immersion blender."

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