A new cookbook from Kurt Timmermeister

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Farm Food cover.jpgThis handsome volume, words & pictures by Kurt Timmermeister, is the sort of thing that will restore your faith in humanity, in the planet's potential for personal goodness, It is impossible to hold it without admiring the character of its author and photographer, and of the fog-shrouded island (Vashon) where he makes his home.

Timmermeister, as many of us know, was a well-known Seattle restaurateur who became a dairy farmer, a writer (an award-winning cheese maker, and ice cream maker.

His first two books detailed the story of how he became a farmer. Growing a Farmer is the story of his journey from Belltown to Capitol Hill to Vashon; Growing a Feast tells story of food itself. "Food is from the earth. It provides us with nutrition to live. It is the source of all life, it has the power to make us healthy."

For a time, Timmermeister cooked monthly dinners at his farm for friends. Then he had a better idea: he opened a shop on Capitol Hill. They another: a series of seasonal cookbooks, somewhere between a traditional book and an elegant magazine.

He found a collaborator who understood his vision, designer Dan D. Shafer, whose studio is a short walk from the ice cream store,

"Kurt approached me about self-publishing a book of stories, recipes and photographs showing not just the idealized moments of living on the farm, but the honest side of it too -- the muddy, pothole-ridden driveway in March, the endless thankless chores, the nature of life and death you have to face when keeping livestock."

The result, produced in under a year from initial meeting to product-in-hand, is Farm Food (Vol. 1), a 128-page perfect bound book, printed and bound in Seattle. It features full color printing throughout, and an embossed cover and dust jacket.

Side note / footnote regarding Timmermeister's landmark Kurt Farm Shop, the tiny space on Cap Hill where he sells home made ice cream. And I do mean home made. The milk comes from his own cows, milked at the farm on Vashon, So do the egg yolks, from his own chickens. He prepares the base, the custard, on the island, then packs it up, puts it into his little refrigerated truck, and brings it to the 300-square-foot storefront in Chophouse Row where it's churned with the flavorings. No vanilla, period (not local). Chocolate from Theo's. Other ingredients vary. The flavors also come from the farm: lemon verbena, Tri-star strawberries, rose geranium, Triple Crown blackberries, bay laurel, Sungold tomato jam among others. Expensive? You bet. A Yelper bestows two stars, apparently because a flavor called Flora's Cheese tastes like, um, cheese. ("I remembered too late that I hate raw cheese.")

Amy Ettinger's book, Sweet Spot : An Ice Cream Binge Across America, came out this summer and added Kurt Farm Shop's ice cream in the epilogue; the book had essentially been finished before Ettinger made it to Seattle. What she found, she writes, was "incomparable." The country's only farm-to-scoop ice cream. Not available in grocery stores. You want some, you go to Chophouse Row on Capitol Hill.

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This page contains a single entry by Cornichon published on November 18, 2017 3:00 PM.

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