Thanksgiving will be here soon, and it’s time to start thinking turkey! Below are some farms and butcher shops where you can order a locally raised, heritage turkey. Enjoy your holidays!
On September 20th, a baker’s dozen of early birds showed up at Madison Sourdough for our latest Urban Market Forage. David Lohrentz, who is co-owner with baker Andrew Hutchinson, presented us with sweet treats as he discussed the history of MSD and his own personal history that led him to this business.
MSD’s philosophy is Craft. Nourish. Community. All that and more was evident at our visit. A wonderful selection of breads using top grade flours, including heritage wheat varieties being grown again in Wisconsin after a long absence; delightful pastries made by the aptly named Pierre; a bustling café filled with regulars enjoying a delicious breakfast.
Bakers rotate through the bakery from middle of the night to middle of the afternoon. Height and strong arms are important characteristics for successfully loading and unloading the enormous oven. Though the work is precise and demanding, there was a lot of good cheer on display, and it shows in the final product.
Do you have a garden bounty you can’t keep up with? Unable to use your CSA box some weeks? Know a farmer with surplus harvest? Whether you have extra produce or want to purchase some specifically to donate, this map details locations in the Madison area that would love to receive a gift of fresh vegetables. Many secondary or emergency food sources have trouble providing clients with fresh produce, and your donation can help provide healthy, fresh foods for people in need.
Click on the map below to see an interactive display of locations in Madison that will happily accept fresh produce. The pin for each site details donation instructions, preferred and unaccepted items (if any), and contact information.
On Saturday, June 22, UMF started its field trip at Underground Meats production
facility at 931 Main Street. Both Underground Meats and Underground Butcher are part
of a food collective which also includes a catering service and Forequarters Restaurant
on E. Johnson Street. We met Jerry, a mechanical engineer who learned of sausage-
making and now is a member of the collective. He gave us a butcher’s eye view of
salami and salumi (other cured meats). Jerry told us that the pork they use is from
heirloom hogs that are pastured-raised locally on small family farms. They also use local
lamb and goat as well.
Jerry explained the process of making salami from the pork– mixing it with fat, spice
blends, lactose and a nitrite/nitrate blend to inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria and
mold. The meat is extruded into casings and painted with an edible mold which further
prevents the growth of unwanted organisms. The mold gives the casings a white
Next the sausage is hung in a locker which is controlled for humidity and temperature.
The pH is monitored frequently to assure food safety. The meat is then transferred to
another locker where it is cured. This process can take 4-6 weeks for the salami and up
to 6-9 months for the prosciutto and other cuts.
Underground Meat offers classes on sausage-making, etc. and collaborates with other
aspiring butchers and meat producers. They provide meat to many of Madison’s
restaurants and to their affiliates, Underground Butcher and Forequarters Restaurant.
They are a regular presence at the DOT Farmers Market on Saturday AM’s and venture
down to Chicago to sell their products at a farmer’s markets there.
After sampling some delicious salami and chorizo, we walked to Underground Butcher
at 811 Williamson where we met Michael and Casey who told us about their part of the
collective. Here they offer cuts of locally raised grass-fed beef and other meats. Michael
explained that usually the meat from grass-fed animals looks different with the fat being
more yellow in color. Besides selling the dried and cured meat from Underground Meat,
they also make fresh sausage from rabbit, chicken, pork and beef. Both facilities
welcome special orders and are happy to share information on preparing their delicious
Underground Butcher also sells cheeses, wines, beer and other gourmet foods and
products. They offer a sandwich menu with a daily special.
We’d like to thank the people of Underground Meats and Underground Butcher for
sharing their knowledge and enthusiasm for their craft and their delicious products. We
enjoyed the tours and the wonderful sausage that we brought home with us! Night Train
Sausage made with smoked beer, anyone?
Our eleventh market tour took place on May 5th, a quiet Sunday morning, at The Kitchen Gallery (http://thekitchengallery.biz/) with new owner Katrina Kelly. Kelly recently bought the business with husband Matt Kelly, from former owners Stephanie Kessenich and Tom Christensen. Formerly located on Willy Street, The Kitchen Gallery moved downtown to King Street in 2012. Being near the Saturday morning Dane County Farmers’ Market on the Capitol Square has helped bring in walk-in traffic. A new Saturday lunchtime attraction features knife sharpening demonstrations by former chef and Siglinda (http://siglinda.com/) owner, Josh McEachen.
Emphasizing high-quality, durable goods that given proper care will last a lifetime and in turn become heirloom pieces, The Kitchen Gallery also tries to source regionally and offer items made with natural materials, such as wooden bowls made in Michigan, jute floor mats, and dish brushes with replaceable heads. Katrina considered enrolling in professional cooking school when she lived in Washington, D.C., but instead chose to focus on cooking for family and friends. She enjoys talking with customers about favorite cookware lines (Mauviel, for stainless steel and copper pans; Staub, for enameled cast iron pots; and Kuhn Rikon, for pressure cookers), or favorite foods (Rancho Gordo dried heirloom beans). Knife buyer Steven Weiss discussed the store’s selection of European and Japanese knives, and pointed out brands, features, and materials one might consider in choosing a knife.
Personable, knowledgeable staff and hand-picked, long-lasting kitchen goods: a perfect match for Madison food lovers.
The revolution is in our kitchens!
We have a famously great restaurant and farmland/markets culture in Madison, and Slow Food celebrates it! But we also want to help home cooks bring it up a notch (and down to earth a notch) in a series of peer-to-peer, DIY-celebrating classes that shares, inspires, and connects-the-dots in a way that only Slow Food can.
It’s all about tradition, celebration, simplicity, and how the simple awareness and responsibility of our food practices brings even more joy and pleasure to our tables. Can you cook? Teach? Organize? Blog? Take Pictures/Videos? Or want to cultivate these talents in yourself and others?
The best ideas come when we all put our ideas on the table, so… please join us for an informal brainstorming session on Tuesday, September 10th @ 6:30pm at Barriques, 961 S. Park Street. RSVP to email@example.com. (If you are interested in getting involved, but can’t attend this meeting, send a note and we will include you in future communiques.)
Slow Food Madison, a local chapter of the international Slow Food organization, is seeking a social media specialist. This is a volunteer position.
What You’ll Do
- Ensure local events are posted to the Slow Food Madison (SFM) calendar, FB, & Twitter
- Support event producers with tech support on above channels, Eventbrite, etc.
- Work with other SFM volunteers & board members to make sure SFM & SFUW events are well publicized on Twitter, FB, email newsletter, and the SFM website.
- Work with Philip on the weekly and monthly email newsletters
- Be able to provide SFM Board with monthly numbers on things such as likes, shares, followers, retweets, friends
Community Engagement Online
- The ideal candidate will learn the culture, values, and priorities of Slow Food Madison and will eventually be able to engage the community (along with the leadership and volunteers) on behalf of the organization:
- Engage (RT, replies, etc) with local artisanal food producers on both FB and Twitter
- Cultivate good follow-lists and network connections with same
- Engage with followers of FB and Twitter (replies)
- Consult the board on ways to further utilize social media to engage with the greater Madison community and broadcast the SFM message
- Interact with members and community for sharing of event photographs, event idea capture, etc.
How Great It Will Be
The social media intern position will offer the ideal candidate real-world experience in the nuts-n-bolts administration of social media presence and strategy for a small-scale not-for-profit organization with global brand appeal, and local credibility.
Several members of the current leadership team have extensive experience with social media strategy and web/internet culture, and the candidate would be able to learn/work-with them.
Interns will participate in leadership team meetings as desired, can attend Slow Food Madison events, and will have ample opportunity to meet food-related luminaries like farmers, chefs, artisans in and around Madison.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested.
On Sunday April 14th UMF visited Istanbul Supermarket, at 745 S. Gammon Road. It has been open almost exactly a year and is still in the process of expanding.
Hospitality was on view from the moment we arrived, as the owner, Yashar, plied us with mineral water, coffee soda, delicious cookies filled with hazelnut cream and dipped in chocolate. We even got samples size tubes of olive oil hand cream.
The shelves are full of Turkish items ranging from fantastic preserves, to tea and coffee (including a set sold with the traditional enameled pot), to tinned meats, pickled vegetables, and nut studded candy. There are also some Indian and Middle Eastern items mixed in, both on the shelves and in the coolers and freezers.
One of the biggest draws for many of the market’s customers is the halal meat. There is fresh meat, such as lamb and goat, as well as frozen, and items such as a spicy, precooked sausage similar to chorizo, but with a fragrant twist.
Our guide, Oktay, talked about the various ingredients we encountered as we went from aisle to aisle and spoke about all the wonderful dishes his mother would cook for him growing up. The UMF tours will always leave you hungry and ready to try some new ingredients in the kitchen!
Yasher is in the process of getting some new coolers installed and hopes to eventually expand to be able to have a deli area too, where he can serve food and Turkish coffee. That will be a happy day.
Saturday, March 10th we had an urban market forage to the Chocolaterian on Madison’s east side.
Chocolaterian is the newly established home base of Leanne Cordisco, the creator of Christine’s Toffee and Caramels. The café lives in the historic Schenk-Huegel building on 2004 Atwood Avenue, which was remodeled from its retail origins into a café and candy-making haven. Chocolaterian features decadent desserts like macaroons, crème puffs, ugly cookies (cocoa, pistachios, and toffee) and a rich Parisian hot chocolate, but the showcase pieces are the toffee and caramel. A large glass window gives visitors a view into the kitchen where they can see the shop’s treats being made. For most of the day, Leanne and co-owner Kimberly Vrubley are in there working on making their candy.
Leanne brought us behind the glass to give us a toffee-making demonstration, taking us from the initial heating of the large vat all the way to the cooling, cutting, and chocolate coating. Whether it was the infrared gun at her hip or a simple dangling stick above the pot, she kept a thermometer nearby throughout the process. Making the candy is all about precision—the main difference between toffee and caramel is temperature—and Leanne tells us that being off by even just a few degrees is the difference between candy and garbage. Leanne and Kimberly are comfortable with the science however: both spent most of their life at a company that worked with medical devices. The transition from corporate to chocolate has been a dream fulfilled for both women.
After snacking on bits of toffee and chocolate, many of us reached for the bacon toffee next. The famous concoction, which has starred in Emmy Awards goodie bags, has been a hit for Christine’s. The flavors trigger all five of your taste buds, producing an experience that is both overwhelming and immensely pleasing. It’s the secret, she tells us, to making an irresistible piece of candy.