Finnriver Black Currant Cider

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This new cider is a bit expensive and is an artisan beverage worth savoring. The label says “farmcrafted & fermented” and “back to our roots”. That speaks well to the balance of this nicely dry-tart cider. It tastes like someone spent a lot of time thinking about what they were doing and probably considered the character of every apple and currant that went I. To this special cider.

Another step along my culturing education

I have 3 containers of raw milk getting to know my viili culture. I was pretty delighted that the viili mother actually turned into viili. I think last time I tried it I was not patient enough.

Viili yogurt on the way

Viili yogurt on the way

This is the yogurt that cultures at 70 – 77 degrees, just right for room temperature in my store this time of year. I cultured the mother (is that the right term?) atop my refrigerator, next to Honey’s radio. Out of drafts and pretty steady warmth.

At home, I found I can get Honey’s toaster-oven to hold the 110 degrees for the Greek yogurt I’m making. That’s where I cultured the Greek mother.

Souring Milk

Souring Milk

Plus, I have 3 bowls of milk that are souring – this will be curds & whey in another day or so. I have become very fond of curds with maple syrup.

And that’s what I’m doing with surplus milk this week…

Mushrooms on 4 June

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Maitake, shiitake, portobella, crimini, and blue oyster

Any of these organically grown mushrooms will go with the pasture raised and finished meats as a lovely side, or seasoned with some of the green garlic we have, or sauteed and braised with the spinach, kale or beet greens. The portobella is large enough to be a small meal on its own.

We have more ideas and recipe cards to go with the mushrooms and be sure to ask when you stop in.

Beautiful Pig featured in VBJ

Our favorite Washington charcutier was featured in the May 31, 2013 issue of the Vancouver Business Journal, “Beautifully Artisan” article.

Christopher Leach

VBJUSA photo

The Beautiful Pig

Beautiful Pig

We’re very pleased that Christopher Leach of The Beautiful Pig partnered with Neighbors Market as his first Vancouver, USA location. He understands how to craft the locally raised pork into amazing salamis and coppas and he has a great beef jerky as well. You can find a broad selection of his meats every day of the week, right here at Neighbors.

And, of course, I had queried Christopher at length and knew he was sourcing the meats he uses from Painted Hills . These are respected farms and co-ops, and the next best thing to buying the meat directly from the small farm grower.

Check in this week with us to sample one or more of the salamis in the store. We’ll partner the salami with some Partners Crackers .

Viili in the store

If you have time, join me for my first foray into viili yogurt making at the store. A casual workshop starting around 1 p.m. It ought to be short for just getting started, and then I’ll do an update tomorrow and the next day as the culture finishes. I’ll update this post as we go, so go ahead and bookmark it to watch my progress.

viili starti g

Viili culture in milk


Took a short cut and added culture directly to raw milk. Will the viili culture be able to fend off the milk’s bacteria long enough to turn this into yogurt? Stay tuned…

22 May Deliveries

Ah! It’s like my birthday or something. We’ve received our long awaited orders of Stirs The Soul chocolates, Partners Crackers, more eggs, Odin Beers, spinach, mixed salad greens, kefir & yogurt cultures, the biggest portobella mushrooms I’ve ever seen, and it’s a milk day so we’ll have fresh Dungeness and Pride & Joy.

Oh, and come into talk to Derek and Jan from Destination Downtown and they’ll ply you with fudge and coffee and give you incentives to bike or walk or bus your way to work.