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Squash and Cider Soup with Caramelized Farro & Apples
Recipe of the Month: Squash & Cider Soup with Carmalized Farro & Apples
This is a deliciously different winter squash soup, sweet and savory, with golden crispy farro and apples standing in for croutons. The apple pie flavor of the caramelized farro & apples also makes it a strange and wonderful topping for vanilla ice cream!
Read our Squash and Cider Soup with farro Recipe.
Customer Profile: Suekii Cornwall of
Winthrop Tipi Dinners
Suekii Cornwall’s relationship with cooking professionally has evolved over the past forty years, beginning with owning a small catering business in the Seattle area. When she moved to the Methow Valley she quit the catering business for a while and pursued other professional interests for a while.
But then Suekii and her husband Wayne began attending the Pacific Primitive Rendezvous—a re-enactment of mountain man fur trading life during the 1820s-1840s—and she found herself a new niche for cooking food for others. The Rendezvous gatherings recreate life from the fur trading era and participants strive for period authenticity, from the way they dress to the games they play to the tipis and wall tents they sleep in to the food they eat. Suekii began cooking authentic mountain man style meals at the Rendezvous—bison and other game—and discovered that this was something she could share at the Rendezvous.
A friend who knew of Suekii’s talent for producing fresh, nutritious, and hearty meals suggested that Suekii start a business serving meals in rustic settings, but for a while Suekii was content to offer novelty tipi dinners for fund raisers, setting up a banquet table in her tipi during the summer months and serving fresh, seasonal dinners. Winthrop Tipi Dinnerswas born when Suekii learned that she could build a commercial kitchen in her studio and use this kitchen to prepare hot meals, which she could then transport to her tipi and serve guests.
First-time visitors usually gasp when they enter Suekii’s 22-foot nomadic tipi. Custom birch tables circled around a central fire provide intimate seating for up to eight guests. In the winter, diners snuggle into soft sheepskins draped on their chairs and bury their toes in sheepskins at their feet. Because the tipi is lined, it gets quite toasty; guests usually dine in light shirts and bare feet. Lanterns provide a warm glow in winter and during the late evenings of summer the bone-colored tipi provides a beautiful natural light.
Suekii pulls her fur-lined wagon over from her kitchen, laden with the meal she serves family-style. Bison, salmon, and game hens feature prominently as main dishes, complemented by a series of creative and savory side dishes made from locally-grown ingredients, such as Bluebird’s Emmer Ferro pilafwith sun dried tomatoes, mixed wild mushrooms, nuts, golden raisins and black sweet rice and Bok Choy saute with red bell peppers, onions and ginger.
“I’ve been monkeying around with whole emmer for a long time,” says Suekii. “I just love the product.” Suekii needs foods that can be transported from her kitchen to the lodge without losing flavor, texture, or integrity and she finds that emmerin all forms does this perfectly. “It tastes wonderful,” she says, “and it just doesn’t break down no matter what you do to it. Now I’m thinking I’ll do some emmer stir fry dishes in the summer, as well as some emmer saladswith vinaigrette dressings.”
Suekii wants her guests to feel satisfied, but not stuffed, so she sticks to a low-wheat, low-sugar, low-sodium, low-fat menu. “Nothing fills people up faster than a basket of white bread,” says Suekii, “so that’s why I prefer to use the emmer flourin my 5-seed bread. It’s a hearty, dense bread, with almost a pumpernickel type consistency, but you don’t feel stuffed after eating it.”
After the seed bread, after the bison and the emmer pilaf, after the roasted yams and bok choy and sautéed mushrooms, come warm mixed fruit crisps, topped with a puff of whipped cream. Individual French presses for each diner provide Blue Star Coffeeor hot tea, with cream and sugar on the side. The setting may be rustic, but the details are nothing less than elegant.
It’s no surprise that guests typically spend four hours at a Tipi Dinners dining experience, lingering long after the last bit of fruit crisp has been scraped up from the side of the bowl. Some sip hibiscus elderberry tea or Lost Riverwine, others simply soak in the ambiance of the most unique dining experience they may ever have.
Find more information about Winthrop Tipi Dinnersor call 509-322-1751.