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10/25/17 - Sol Duc Fall Color

We heard that the salmon were making their way up the Sol Duc River. We haven't been getting out to Sol Duc all that much lately because they are doing some serious and much needed road work on route 101 along Lake Crescent. We made our way out over the weekend, and there were only a couple of relatively short one lane traffic lights to slow us down.

We stopped at the salmon cascade on the Sol Duc road and spent some time looking into the whirlpools and rushing waters of the river where it passes through a narrow gap. Then we saw the first flash of a salmon leaping. It was in the narrowest, wildest part of the wild waters. We concentrated our attention on that area for a while longer. There was another salmon, this one leaping high enough and long enough to sparkle in a rainbow of color.

We watched for a while longer and saw a few more salmon leaping, some barely more than a gray flash, others more dramatic. Then we headed up to the trailhead at the end of the road and walked through the forest to Sol Duc falls. There were waterfalls and fall color, and then there were the falls proper. There were no salmon leaping here. Instead there was the incessant roar of the river and its mist and spray.

We had come shortly after those torrential rains earlier this month, so the Sol Duc River was running in full spate. Even the little feeder streams roared. The fall leaf color too was in full spate, much more brilliant than in most years. The leaves have yet to fall, and the forest and roadside have been illuminated with leaves of bright yellow and some of orange and red. If you can, time your visit for the weekend and enjoy the Sol Duc River at its autumn peak.


Looking up the Sol Duc River

A little waterfall

The salmon cascade

Another view

Fall color

More fall color

Another waterfall

Sol Duc Falls

Looking downriver

A forest scene

Sol Duc Falls again

Keywords: salmon, sol duc, waterfall


08/30/17 - 1987 Muscadet

For a special treat we raided wine-searcher.com and chose a 1987 Muscadet. This is an old wine of a type not usually associated with aging. Usuallly, we drink young muscadet with raw oysters. Frederick Wildman & Sons is a big importer of Muscadet, so we trusted their judgement. We weren't sure what to expect when we opened the bottle. To be honest, we were ready for disappointment.

To our delight we found a surprisingly well structured white wine that tasted something like a cross between an aged Montrachet and a flinty chablis. It really was something special. We'll be grilling up some freshly caught coho salmon in a bit, so it is unlikely this bottle will last the night, but our memories of it will.


1987 Muscadet Frederick Wildman & Sons Moscato

Keywords: wine, salmon


01/05/15 - Port Angeles Farmers' Market

This is just a reminder that the Port Angeles Farmers' Market is still operating on Saturdays from 10-2, and there are vegetables. There have been potatoes, kale, scallions, squashes and even arugula. Dungeness Seaworks has been there selling salmon and sometimes halibut, and Clark Farms is selling beef and pork. It may be winter, but the market lives.

These photos are ...

... all from ...

... Johnston Farms.

Keywords: farmers' market, johnston farm, port angeles, salmon, winter


08/26/14 - Port Angeles Farmers' Market Update

We've been remiss in updating folks on the Port Angeles Farmers' Market. It is full summer now with tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, scallions, berries and just about everything else, except for winter squash. Wild West seafood has fresh salmon and Clark Farm has been selling beef and pork. There's no point in going into details, things change from week to week.

River Run Farm

Johnston Farm

More Johnston Farm

Nash Huber

Spring Rain Farm

Keywords: farmers' market, johnston farm, nash huber, port angeles, salmon, spring rain


06/14/14 - Port Angeles Farmers' Market Update

Fresh local strawberries are in. We've had a sunny spring, so there is a great crop this year. The season is moving along with snap peas, fava beans, garlic scapes, green onions, all sorts of lettuces and even swiss chard.

We bought some black cod from Wild West. We usually put it in a shallow pyrex baking dish with some sherry, soy sauce, Chinese fermented black beans and a tad of brown sugar. Preheat the oven to 350F, then pop in the fish. Raise the temperature to maybe 425F and bake, or roast if your oven has the option, for about 30 minutes (maybe 40 for thicker filets).

For a special treat, after 15 minutes or so, remove the skin and turn over the filets. Then put the skin on some kind of a rack (e.g. one of those cake cooling racks or a broiling rack) over a pan to catch the fat and let the heat of the oven crisp it. The crunchy, oily skin makes a great appetizer while waiting for the fish to finish cooking.


Nash had fava beans and strawberries


Spring Rain had a chicken sale, but no more asparagus.

Wild West had salmon and black cod.

It was so busy at Johnston Farms that we really couldn't get a good photo.

Keywords: farms, johnston farm, salmon, nash huber, farmers' market, spring rain


06/09/14 - Wild West Seafood Is Back At The Port Angeles Farmers' Market

The title basically says it all. We grabbed a few king salmon filets. We also noticed that the smoked salmon guys were also selling salmon filets. We'll have to check them out as well.

That's not Preston.

Keywords: salmon, farmers' market


03/22/14 - Farmers' Market Update

These are thin times at the Port Angeles Farmers' Market, so we've been buying what we can. Nash Huber, for example, had some spinach, so we assumed that the spinach season was starting. We were wrong. The young man at the stand filled us in. That was likely it for spinach for a while. Still, Nash Huber did have all sorts of raab, that is flowering young cabbages, arugulas and kales. They are sweet and delicious, and they are only available this time of year.

Spring Rain had their chickens, but they also have their greenhouse. That means salad greens, baby kale and all sorts of exotic things, mainly green vegetables. We have our hopes.

New at the market was Eric Pozgay, the Pasta Guy. He was selling freshly made pasta. Fresh pasta may be a hallmark of gentrification, but Port Angeles is a few miles down the road, so it was nice to see it on sale.

Dungeness Seaworks had some fine whole fish, good looking salmon, but we had to pass this week.




Keywords: dungeness, farmers' market, nash huber, port angeles, salmon, spring, kale, spring rain


10/15/13 - Salmon Homecoming on the Dungeness River

This is the season that the salmon come home to the rivers to spawn and die. It's great news for the fishermen, and for salmon in general, but not so much for the fish themselves. We noticed the scent near the Dungeness Dike parking area on Towne Road. The lot was full of fishermen, or rather, their trucks with their permits in the window. The fishermen themselves were out along the river.

One always hears of the great salmon homecoming adventure with heroic tales and desperate struggles upstream. Indeed, the river was full of fish fighting their way against the current. There were also the predators, mostly gulls, of course, and the above mentioned fishermen. It is most definitely autumn, with the leaves starting to turn and nature itself lush, but preparing for the frost.


A side channel full of fish

A silver salmon

A closeup of salmon fighting upstream

The silver river

An early autumn field

Keywords: autumn, dungeness, salmon


05/05/13 - Catalan Salmon

There was a dearth of good salmon a while back, but now that the good stuff is coming in we made one of our favorite salmon party dishes, Catalan stuffed salmon. The way we make it isn't really stuffed, we just have three layers in our baking dish. The bottom layer is just thinly sliced potatoes, chopped up tomatoes and thinly sliced onions. The middle layer is the stuffing with shrimp, cocktail olives, hard boiled eggs, garlic, bread, sherry, milk and a couple of raw eggs to bind it. The top layer is the salmon, and we pour a half cup each of white wine, lemon juice and olive oil over the dish before baking. It's a bit of a production, but it's always a real treat.

The finished dish

Potatoes, tomatoes and onions - We "parboil" the potatoes in the microwave.

The "stuffing" and the salmon

Keywords: salmon, food


02/25/13 - Port Angeles Farmers' Market Update

The Port Angeles Farmers' Market gets a bit quiet in the winter, but it doesn't quite close down. There are always a few regulars and even a few newcomers to keep things interesting. Nash Huber's stand has been anchoring the market by its lonesome, and even they have run out of carrots, though they still have some nice kale, turnips and potatoes.

The Chimacum chicken (and other stuff) stand is gone for the time being, but Dungeness Seaworks is back selling salmon, halibut and ling cod. It's good to see them. We also tried out Jose's Salsa, but not the salsa. We tried a bunch of tamales and some of the chiles rellenos, and we can honestly report that they are quite good. Our favorite tamale was the vegetarian one with spinach, but the pork and chorizo tamales were pretty good too. The chiles rellenos were plumply stuffed with cheese, coated with batter and deep fried. They reheated nicely in the oven, so we've been living on Jose's for a few days now.

We aren't sure who is going to be at the market next Saturday, though we're hoping to see Johnston Farm again, and possible a few other regulars. It's a long way to spring, let alone the growing season, but the farmers' market is still worth a trip downtown.


Nash Huber's stand - a stalwart anchor

A terrible picture of Dungeness Seaworks - It's that low winter light.

An even worse picture of Jose's Salsa - We'll try for a better one.

Chiles rellenos

Assorted tamales

Keywords: farmers' market, nash huber, port angeles, salmon, winter, kale


09/27/12 - Seattle Update

On our latest lightning trip to Seattle we went to one of our favorite places in the city, the Ballard Locks. We just love the early 20th century Army Corps of Engineers style, the botanical garden and the amazing fish ladder viewing area. There were plenty of salmon, and though there weren't a lot of boats, we still got to see the locks cycle. We definitely got our civil engineering fix this trip.

We also tried out the cupcakes and ice cream at Cupcake Royale and were pretty impressed. We aren't big ice cream people, but we did enjoy the mix of caramel cupcake chunks with partially crystallized caramel smooshed into sea salt ice cream. The whiskey bacon crack ice cream was pretty impressive too with a good clean whiskey flavor and good use of the salty bacon. If ice cream is just too sweet for you, this might just be close enough to savory to please. The chocolate cream cheese cupcake we tried, however, was the real treat. They are serious about their cake and crumb, and their icing expertise is excellent.

Ballard seems to have a number of pretty good bakeries. The Great Harvest Bread Company down the street smelled pretty good, and they had seriously sticky looking cinnamon rolls, but we were also booked for dinner, so it will have to wait until next time.

In fact, we went to two restaurants for dinner. First, we went back to The Walrus and The Carpenter for some oysters. They only had four types, including some lovely little Olympias, but we still had a nice tasting. Then, we went down the hall of the bicycle shop and checked in to Staple and Fancy Mercantile where we had a great charcuterie plate with some of the best speck we've ever had with some coppa to match. (The octopus salad was good, but not great.) For our main courses we had their wonderfully tender pork shank with an eggplant puree, grilled padron peppers, and oil cured dried tomatoes. As usual, some of the padron peppers were mild, while others were quite spicy. We also had some wonderful penna full of rich melted cheese. Staple and Fancy is definitely a restaurant we have to get back to.


Cupcakes royale

Sprinkles at Cupcakes Royale

A ship coming through the Ballard Locks

Serious civil engineering style

Botanical garden

A fishy friend at the fish ladder

A passion flower

We'll check out the cinnamon rolls on our next trip, if we're feeling thin.

Staple and Fancy Mercantile

Keywords: oysters, restaurants, salmon, seattle


07/15/12 - Pea Report - Spring Comes To Port Angeles

The Johnston Farm had the first garden peas of the season at the Port Angeles Farmers' Market this past weekend, and the Korean Garlic Lady had her first new potatoes, so we Kalebergs had one of our favorite spring dishes, and well before August at that. It's based on an Edna Lewis recipe and it's a simple dish to make.

Just boil the potatoes until they are almost cooked through, but not quite. Microwave the peas for a minute or two. Then drain the potatoes, add the peas, a half cup or so of chopped dill and a cup of milk. Bring the milk to a boil and finish cooking the potatoes. Season with salt and pepper, and you're done.


Peas!

Garden peas, new potatoes, dill and fresh whole milk

A market meal with salmon burgers, swiss chard and our favorite pea dish

Keywords: farmers' market, johnston farm, recipe, salmon, spring, garlic lady, kale


07/10/12 - First Salmon

Our friends who go fishing have been catching fish, and, even more impressive, getting to keep them. They recently had a bumper crop of fish, or whatever fishermen call it when they manage to catch their limit in the first 30 minutes on the water. Since our friends are generous with their bounty, that meant we had our first locally caught salmon of the year. Even better, we got the salmon roe.

An awful lot of fishermen simply discard the roe, but salmon roe, when cooked, tastes an awful lot like shad roe. We're originally from the east coast, so we always looked forward to spring and the shad runs. Now, we look forward to the salmon season. We cook the salmon roe just the way we'd cook shad roe, in a bit of butter, with capers, with onions, with eggs. It makes a great breakfast omelet, especially for the salmon season.


Representative fish and fish wrap - not one of the actual fish

This season's salmon

This season's roe

Keywords: salmon, food


06/13/12 - Port Angeles Farmers Market

This has been a cold spring, so the Port Angeles Farmers' Market is still a bit lean, but there have been signs of spring, and, with the solstice coming soon, we are hoping for signs of summer. We've been buying eggs, spinach, arugula, chards of various colors, salmon, halibut, salad greens, potatoes, garlic and asparagus. Yes, Westwind Farm still has asparagus in June. According to the farmers, things are looking up, but already we are buying more and more of our groceries at the market, and we're looking forward to more.

Nash Huber

Westwind Farm

The Korean garlic lady, with greens

Johnston Farm

Kol Simcha with lamb - The Clark family was also there selling their beef and pork.

The Family Farm is back.

Mystery Bay has steamed clams and oysters.

Keywords: clark family, farmers' market, johnston farm, nash huber, oysters, port angeles, salmon, spring, summer, westwind farm, garlic lady


11/13/11 - Port Angeles Farmers Market Report

The autumn market is here. There are potatoes, in red, brown and blue, squashes, pumpkins, celery, lacinato kale, garlic, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, baby turnips, bok choy, savoy cabbage and all of our fall favorites. The four stalwarts, Nash Huber, Westwind Farm, Johnston Farm and the Korean garlic lady are all there along with a number of other sellers.

It isn't just vegetables either. You can also buy beef, pork, lamb, cheese, salmon, halibut, steelhead, oysters, bread, and an array of seasonal mushrooms. If you search a bit, you can find a last few tomatoes, arugula, coriander and a few other hold outs, but the cold weather is coming.

Don't miss out on the prime of the harvest. Drop by the Port Angeles Farmers' Market this coming Saturday.








Keywords: autumn, farmers' market, johnston farm, nash huber, oysters, port angeles, salmon, weather, westwind farm, garlic lady, kale


08/22/11 - Some Notes on Morse Creek

When we are lazy, we take the trail west of Morse Creek down to the strait. It's an urban trail, but it is green and relaxing, and just a short drive. It changes with the seasons, and here we found the first sign of autumn, falling leaves from the old maples along the trail. The trail shoulders have been freshly trimmed to the ground; the peak growing season is over. That's probably another sign of the summer passing.

We also noticed a new fence in Morse Creek proper, visible from the old, lovingly restored railroad bridge. Our guess is that they are counting the fish, first funneling them through the gate and recording them on video. Somewhere, someone is watching the Salmon Channel, and mainly seeing water, but now and then a fish or two. (That is so much like life.) It doesn't sound like a cable option we'd be interested in, but we're hoping for good news on the fish population at Morse Creek.


Signs of fall

Freshly cut

Fish management

Keywords: autumn, morse creek, salmon, summer


06/02/11 - 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


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