May 2011June 2011 July 2011

06/24 - Lake Crescent Flowers

The flowers are out on the Spruce Railroad Trail. We particularly noticed the roses. Their rich scent carries. There are also lots of sedums, growing in the friable rock along the trail. Since there are plans to turn the trail into a paved road, they'll probably be getting rid of a lot of the broken rock and the sedums with them, so enjoy them while you can.

The roses

Some sedums by the side of the trail


Keywords: flowers, spruce railroad

06/18 - The Farmers' Market - Almost Summer

It is hard to believe, but summer starts in just a few days. That also means that the Wednesday afternoon market will be starting as well. We gather it starts at 3:30 on the 22nd with a special fund raising opening. We aren't too sure of the regular Wednesday hours, but we'll find out soon enough.

Summer and the Wednesday market

Today the leaves, tomorrow whole heads


The Family Farm

Pane d'Amore

Keywords: summer, farmers' market

06/14 - Second Beach Driftwood Report

We were out at Second Beach around low tide on a gray day. We could smell the salt air as we descended to the beach from the rain forest. The driftwood pile at the beach was there, but it had changed since last autumn. The two big logs that formed the waterfront rampart were gone, presumably washed out to sea. The structure had changed in other ways as well. Our familiar clamber to the sea was gone. We had to figure out a new series of ups, downs, overs and alongs.

The payoff was as wonderful as ever. The beach was broad, flat and firm. There was a bit of mist in the distance, but otherwise we had good clear views. We made our way south, avoiding the puddles of left over ocean and admiring the huddled star fish and anemones as we explored. It was pretty easy going. The beach had lots of sand, so it was easy getting to the little cave. We lacked the energy to go much farther, not really wanting to deal with the barnicle and seaweed encrusted rocks.

We saved our strength for the climb out, a clamber back over the driftwood and then a brutal 200 foot or so climb out. If we're sounding pathetic here, we apologize. We often go to Second Beach when we are tired. It's a great place to recover with some sea air and spectacular scenery. This was no exception. We came back much invigorated by the sea.

Keywords: second beach

06/12 - A Rumor of Snow

No, we didn't get all the way up to Lake Angeles. We still aren't in proper shape, though we did get up 1870 feet from the trailhead parking lot. That's about 500 feet shy. We did manage to talk to a few people who had made it, and they report snow starting perhaps a quarter of a mile below the lake and getting about one to three feet deep. For them, with their heavy hiking shoes and ability to balance themselves while standing up, it was no big deal just tromping through the snow or following in the footsteps of others. We're sort of hoping all the snow will have melted by the time it becomes an issue for us. We'll keep trying.

The misty forest near where we gave up in exhaustion

The stream in full

This is right near the trailhead, some pretty ferns and trilliums. (Did we mention that this has been a great year for trilliums?)

Keywords: lake angeles, trillium

06/11 - Dungeness Dike and the Roses

When we are feeling lazy and want a flat walk on a soft surface, we head over to the Dungeness Dike with access off Towne Road in Sequim. The river was in full spring flood, but it is hard to capture flowing water with a camera, so instead we took pictures of roses and the lush greenery that is taking over the dike path.

Mount Baker, our own fata morgana


A trail to the river

The fields

The trail

Keywords: dungeness, mount baker, spring

06/09 - Port Angeles Farmers' Market Update

The Port Angeles Farmers' Market gets greener by the week. Everyone has salad greens and the baby turnips are tiny, but tasty.

Preston, of Wild West Seafood, has been selling gathered foods: morels, bear claw shoots and wild ginger. We tried the wild ginger, which has no relation to the ginger root one buys at the supermarket, and it did indeed have a gingery taste, but it did not go down well. As with a lot of gathered foods, a lot can depend on preparation. Next time, we'll do a bit more research.

We also dropped by the Good To Go stand and tried some of their croissants. They definitely went down well. The baking at Good To Go just seems to get better and better.

Wild ginger - one of the asarums

Baby turnips at Westwind Farm

Salad greens and eggs

Greens and garlic at Johnston Farm

A high speed photograph of a Good To Go croissant 50 milliseconds before it was eaten. This was a true photographer's challenge.

Keywords: farmers' market, good to go, johnston farm, port angeles, westwind farm

06/06 - Moroccan Meatballs

Yes, those are eggs. This dish may look a bit primordial, but it is absolutely delicious, especially when made with Clark Family beef. It's a Moroccan dish and easy to make if you have a food processor or start with already ground beef. It's from our favorite Moroccan cookbook, Couscous and Other Good Food From Morocco. You can buy the cookbook, or try our recipe below. Think of it as the best meatball dish ever from the dawn of time.

INGREDIENTS For the meatballs
  • 2 lbs of ground beef, grind it finely if you grind it yourself
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1/4 cup chopped coriander
  • 1 medium sized onion or 2 small ones, finely chopped
  • 2 pinches of cayenne pepper
  • salt
  • olive oil for cooking the meatballs
For the sauce
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • one large can of tomatoes
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 6 or 8 eggs
  1. Combine all the meatball ingredients (except the oil) and mix them well. Form them into one inch meatballs and pan fry them in the oil.
  2. Combine all the sauce ingredients (except for the eggs) in a large pot or pan. Pour in any juices from the meatballs. Cook uncovered for about 30 minutes until it is reduced to a rich gravy.
  3. Toss the meatballs in the sauce and continue cooking for another 10 minutes.
  4. Break the eggs and gently pour their contents into the sauce between meatballs so they poach. When the eggs are cooked to your taste, the dish is ready to serve. (It took our eggs about 20 minutes to cook through.)

Keywords: clark family, recipe

06/04 - Trilliums Rising

We waited a long time for our trilliums this year, but they finally seem to be coming out in force. The ones at Lake Crescent are already passing, but it has been a wet year, so there are an awful lot of them still coming out along the Lake Angeles Trail. Not only are there more than usual, they are coming out at higher elevations where it is unusual to see them.

Keywords: lake crescent, trillium, lake angeles

06/02 - Salmon BLT

We first had this sandwich in San Francisco at the old Park Hyatt, now a Le Meridien. It was on their room service menu, available 24 hours a day, and it was perfect for our departure day. We'd order a few of them with a pot of coffee for breakfast, eat one in the room before starting out, another at the airport and finish up on the plane home. They were really good, though they were probably made with farmed salmon.

Now, of course, we can get wonderful wild salmon, and Pane d'Amore has great local bread, so when we started craving a salmon BLT, we didn't try to figure out how to get back to San Francisco; we just made a couple. That's a simply roasted salmon filet in the middle, with just salt and pepper, but there is also some good Hempler's bacon from Sunny Farms, slices of tomato, a handful of lettuce and store bought mayonaise.

They were better than ever, thanks to our local salmon. Now we don't have to go to San Francisco.

Even better than the one at the Park Hyatt.

Keywords: food, salmon

May 2011June 2011 July 2011