Delicious food starts with healthy soil, oceans, forests, and farms. The chefs, farmers, ranchers, and fishermen that have come together to develop a special culinary experience for our fall benefit embrace this idea with enthusiasm and innovation.
Our home is a special place, made unique by the people, landscapes, and stories within it. At Light Up the Redd, we hope to highlight not just chefs and producers, but stories of food. These narratives differ in history and subject, but come together with the central promise that together, we are changing the food system for the better. We are building up our community connections, pushing the limits on creative ingenuity, and taking a step forward to shed light on the question: What does a delicious, equitable, and restorative food system look like?
We’ve teamed up with producers like Cattail Creek and Iliamna Fish Co., Redd on Salmon Street tenants who are working hard to make their products accessible to all communities. We’ll be joined by Scott Dolich of Park Kitchen, and Jason Stoller Smith of Timberline Lodge, who are focusing in on restorative agriculture and sustainable meat production at their established restaurants. And, we are welcoming chefs like Khadro Abdi, who highlight the flavor magic happening in the lesser known but equally powerful culinary pockets of Portland.
Here’s a sneak peek of our food luminaries — meet them all and taste their collaborative creations on October 5th!
A taste of the Pacific with Zilla Sake + Iliamna Fish Co.
Since our founding, salmon has been an important part of Ecotrust’s work — from watershed restoration to supporting coastal communities. The restoration of this incredible natural resource has demanded innovative approaches to stewardship, bold new business models, and a new-found understanding among eaters about what’s at stake. Creative collaborations between fishermen and chefs are helping build a new language around the beauty of responsibly harvested seafood.
Iliamna Fish Company is committed to the simple idea that “fish come first.” Reid and Eike Ten Kley see their catch of wild Alaskan sockeye salmon as more than an economic resource. They are among the community fishermen who are pointing the way toward a new standard — one that encompasses the well-being of the fishermen and communities, and sheds light on the importance of a sustainable catch that keeps fish around for generations to come. Through their Community Supported Fishery, they provide Portland families with access to affordable, healthy food that they can feel good about eating. When their beautiful red fish gets in the hands of chefs it’s a treat for all involved.
Using Iliamna’s catch at Light Up the Redd is Zilla Sake. This sushi and sake gem of Portland’s Alberta neighborhood creates unique flavors with simple, quality ingredients that remind us what fresh food is all about. Master of sourcing, Chef Kate Koo makes it her mission to find local purveyors that offer dazzling ingredients, like Frog Eyes Wasabi, harvested on the Oregon Coast.
Alleamin Products presents flavors of home
Khadro Abdi arrived from Somalia as a refugee in 2005, and has since navigated the complexities of putting down roots and starting a business here in Portland. Through Alleamin Products, LLC., Khadro prepares Somalian comfort food out of an incubator kitchen in East Portland. She makes traditional spiced meat and rice dishes, homemade breads, fresh juices, and scratch-made sauces that are trickling into grocery stores around Portland.
In order for our food system to be restorative and economically viable, it must be equitable. Small businesses like Khadro’s infuse our community with culture and opportunities to gain a deeper understanding of diverse food traditions. Lately, she has been focused on catering large community gatherings, and we’re so thrilled to have her be a part of ours. On October 5, expect a hearty taste of Khadro’s fresh vegetarian Sambusas and special sauce.
Organically Grown Company + Tierra del Sol
In Oregon and throughout the Northwest, we’re heartened by agricultural producers who are committed to reimagining the food system while giving back to our communities, and making a difference for the generations to come.
Organically Grown Company is a bright spot in the agriculture industry. Preserving healthy soil, plant diversity and water resources are the foundational elements OGC looks for when buying and distributing from organic farms, and this commitment to environmental responsibility carries through to the restaurants, grocery stores and schools that receive their produce.
For Amalia and Juan Vasquez at Tierra del Sol, that means they can infuse the flavors of Oaxaca with ingredients from right here. Recipes for their enchiladas, tetelas, and agua fresca reach back many generations, and combine traditional methods of cooking with fresh flavors of the Northwest. They’re serving up the treasures of home from their food cart at the Portland Mercado. Tierra del Sol will team up with Organically Grown for a traditional tamale bursting with local, seasonal veggies at Light Up the Redd. Don’t miss it!