Sitka Mermaid Festival and Sitka Seafood Festival combine to host big weekend events

The Sitka Mermaid Festival and the Sitka Seafood Festival are joining forces this year to host several events this weekend. The Sitka Mermaid Festival started last year as a way to celebrate seaweed and other sea veggies, while the Sitka Seafood Festival has been around for about a decade and celebrates the fish in our area.

The Sitka Seafood Festival launched some events as early as July, but for the next week or so the events will be co-hosted by both organizations.

Things kick off from 1-3 p.m. on Saturday afternoon, Aug. 24, with a youth Paint and Snack event featuring Tsimshian artist Mark Sixbey at the Alaska Longline Fishermen’s Association office at 304 Baranof Street (the former Island Institute office). The cost for this event is $10.

Meet from 11 a.m. to noon on Sunday, Aug. 25, at Halibut Point Recreation Area for a beach clean-up. Participants are encouraged to bring gloves. (The Sitka Kitch class about cooking with seaweed originally scheduled for Monday, Aug. 26, has been canceled.)

At 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 27, at Rio’s Wine Bar (above Ludvig’s Bistro), there is an adult Paint and Sip led by Sarah Dart. This event costs $40 and includes one class of wine.

From 6-8 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 28, at Evergreen Natural Foods is a Mermaids Love Seaweed! seaweed cosmetics and bath make-and-take event.

At 6 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 29, at the Sitka Sound Science Center is a Food For Thought: Where Art and Science Connect panel discussion on drawing creative inspiration from science.

The Umami Banquet: A Tasting Event Sourced From The Sea takes place at 6 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 30, at Harrigan Centennial Hall. This event features guest chef Cassandra Victoria Kelly from California. Tickets are $65 for the full tasting menu and $40 for standing-room only, and are available at Old Harbor Books. This event features performances by the Sitka Cirque aerial silks team, live music and a silent auction.

The big day is Saturday, Aug. 31, with the Marketplace open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Harrigan Centennial Hall. There is a Mermaid Promenade costume parade down the Sitka Sea Walk from the Sitka Sound Science Center to Crescent Harbor Shelter that starts at 11:30 a.m. (meet at 11 a.m. at the science center). There are food booths, kids’ games and other activities from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Crescent Harbor Shelter, followed by fish tote races from 4-6 p.m. at Crescent Harbor Shelter. The day closes with the free Rock the Dock concert/dance event from 5-11 p.m. at Crescent Harbor Shelter (this event, which includes a beer garden for adults, is co-hosted by the Sitka Conservation Society).

Don’t forget the Sitka Local Foods Network also has a Sitka Farmers Market scheduled for 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 31, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Founders Hall (235 Katlian Street).

The Marketplace continues for a second day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 1, at Harrigan Centennial Hall.

The Sitka Seafood Festival also includes Wet Feet: Sitka Tells Tales from 6-7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 17, at Beak Restaurant (co-hosted with ArtChange, Inc.), with a suggested donation of $5. The Sitka Seafood Festival schedule concludes with a marine safety inspector course taught by the Alaska Marine Safety Education Association (AMSEA) from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday through Friday, Sept. 23-27, and 8-10 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 28, at the Public Safety Training Academy (this event is free for qualified commercial fishermen and $995 for all others, register at the link above).

For more information, contact Amelia Mosher at sitkamermaidfestival@gmail.com or Tara Racine at director.asft@gmail.com.

 

CANCELED: Sitka Kitch to host ‘Cooking With Seaweed With Kayla Caprice’ class on Aug. 26

Learn about Cooking With Seaweed With Kayla Caprice. This class takes place from6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 26, at the new location of the Sitka Kitch community rental commercial kitchen at the Sitka Lutheran Church (224 Lincoln Street, please use the back entrance through the alley by the former location Bev’s Flowers & Gifts, off Harbor Drive). This class is part of a new Cooking With Kayla Caprice class series this summer, and our classes are fundraisers for the Sitka Kitch. This class also is being held in conjunction with the Sitka Mermaid Festival. (SORRY, THIS CLASS HAS BEEN CANCELED)

The classes in the Cooking With Kayla Caprice class series are open to all residents, and cost $40 per person. The registration deadline for this class is 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 24.

Kayla currently works as a line cook at Ludvig’s Bistro in Sitka. In this class, Kayla said he will teach people about aquaculture, seaweed health benefits, and the availability of seaweed here in Sitka. She is still putting together her menu for the class, but she promised some easy recipes involving seaweed from local and non-local sources.

Kayla, hails from the Southeast coast, more specifically, Florida. She grew up around the ocean and fishing. Her mother was a chef and Food Network was her favorite channel growing up. She has a background in early childhood development and school-age instruction, with an emphasis on cooking and nutrition. She moved to Seattle three years ago to pursue her love of cooking, learning, teaching, and community involvement.

She has been helping educate adults and youth on cooking, nutrition and the food system with The Beechers Foundation in Seattle for more than two years. There she runs before- and after-school programs with cooking and baking clubs, as well as the school garden. She also assists in classes at Culinary Essentials in Ballard under Chef Nora Dummer, cooked at the Artist Home for the Doe Bay Music Festival on Orcas Island, worked at Firefly Kitchens (a fermentation company in Ballard), and taught the culinary summer camp at The Stroum Jewish Community Center on Mercer Island in Washington. She is currently a line cook at Ludvig’s Bistro in Sitka.

“Cooking for yourself is very important to me, as is loving good food,” Kayla wrote. “I believe everyone and anyone should have access to good food and be able to feed themselves, and the tools they need in order to do so.”

Other classes in the Cooking With Kayla Caprice series include (more details and registration information about these classes will be posted later):

In addition, the Sitka Kitch has other classes coming up. They include (more details and registration information about these classes will be posted later):

  • Cooking A Balanced Meal Featuring Alaska Seafood — 6-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 13, taught by SEARHC Registered Dietitian Katie Carroll ((class canceled due to low registration)
  • Cooking With Wild Mushrooms — Time and date TBA in early September, taught by UAS Sitka Campus Biology Assistant Professor Kitty LaBounty and Beak Restaurant Owner/Chef Renée Jakaitis Trafton

The registration deadline for the first Cooking With Kayla Caprice cooking class is 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 24, so register now since space is limited. We need at least eight students to register and pre-pay to make this class happen. The class costs $40, which is part of our new all-inclusive fee system (you no longer have to pay a class fee to register, then a separate food/supply fee). You can register and pre-pay using credit/debit cards or PayPal on our EventSmart page, http://sitkakitch.eventsmart.com(click on class title). For those wanting to pre-pay with cash or check, please call Chandler O’Connell or Clarice Johnson at Sitka Conservation Society (747-7509) to arrange a payment. For more information about the class, contact Jasmine Shaw at 747-9440. We do offer one potential scholarship spot per class for people with limited incomes, so long as we have enough students registered to make the class happen. Contact Chandler at SCS for more details about the scholarship. This class is a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch.

Students should enter the Sitka Lutheran Church through the back entrance (through the alley off Harbor Drive by the old Bev’s Flowers and Gifts location). The door on the right should be open for students to enter. Please do not park in the church’s back parking lot. Please use the public parking lots off Harbor Drive.

The Sitka Kitch also has a new class cancelation policy. If you register for a class, then find out you can’t attend, please email us at sitkakitch@sitkawild.org and we may be able to help fill your slot through our waiting list. If you cancel from the class at least five days in advance (eg, by Wednesday the week before for a Monday class), you are eligible for a partial refund of your class fee, minus $5 for processing (in this case, $35). If you need to cancel with less than five days advance notice, there is no refund.

Sitka Kitch to host free ‘Cooking For One/Small-Space Cooking With Kayla Caprice’ class for ages 13-25

Learn about Cooking For One/Small-Space Cooking With Kayla Caprice. This class takes place from 10 a.m. to noon on Wednesday, Aug. 14, at the new location of the Sitka Kitch community rental commercial kitchen at the Sitka Lutheran Church (224 Lincoln Street, please use the back entrance through the alley by the former location Bev’s Flowers & Gifts, off Harbor Drive). This class is part of a new Cooking With Kayla Caprice class series this summer, and our classes are fundraisers for the Sitka Kitch.

This is a special class open to ages 13-25 years old only, and this class is free thanks to a sponsorship from SEARHC. We do ask that you pre-register for the class, so we know how many students to expect. The other classes in the Cooking With Kayla Caprice class series are open to all residents ages 13-older, and cost $40.

“In this session, we will be talking about:

  • cooking in a small space — what that could look like, ways to utilize small space cooking, ways to still eat healthfully and deliciously.
  • cooking for one — how to break down ingredients  to make them single-serve friendly, tips for turning large production meals into easy and accessible ones.
  • meal prep — there’s more then one way to skin a catfish, I think is what they say. Everyone does it a little different, tips from my home kitchen.
  • grocery store tips and tricks.
  • single-pan sheet meals and one-pot wonders,” Kayla wrote in her class description. Kayla currently works as a line cook at Ludvig’s Bistro in Sitka.

Kayla, hails from the Southeast coast, more specifically, Florida. She grew up around the ocean and fishing. Her mother was a chef and Food Network was her favorite channel growing up. She has a background in early childhood development and school-age instruction, with an emphasis on cooking and nutrition. She moved to Seattle three years ago to pursue her love of cooking, learning, teaching, and community involvement.

She has been helping educate adults and youth on cooking, nutrition and the food system with The Beechers Foundation in Seattle for more than two years. There she runs before- and after-school programs with cooking and baking clubs, as well as the school garden. She also assists in classes at Culinary Essentials in Ballard under Chef Nora Dummer, cooked at the Artist Home for the Doe Bay Music Festival on Orcas Island, worked at Firefly Kitchens (a fermentation company in Ballard), and taught the culinary summer camp at The Stroum Jewish Community Center on Mercer Island in Washington. She is currently a line cook at Ludvig’s Bistro in Sitka.

“Cooking for yourself is very important to me, as is loving good food,” Kayla wrote. “I believe everyone and anyone should have access to good food and be able to feed themselves, and the tools they need in order to do so.”

Other classes in the Cooking With Kayla Caprice series include (more details and registration information about these classes will be posted later):

In addition, the Sitka Kitch has other classes coming up. They include (more details and registration information about these classes will be posted later):

  • Cooking A Balanced Meal Featuring Alaska Seafood — 6-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 13, taught by SEARHC Registered Dietitian Katie Carroll
  • Cooking With Wild Mushrooms — Time and date TBA in early September, taught by UAS Sitka Campus Biology Assistant Professor Kitty LaBounty and Beak Restaurant Owner/Chef Renée Jakaitis Trafton

The registration deadline for the first Cooking With Kayla Caprice cooking class is 11:30 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 12, so register now since space is limited. We need at least eight students to register and pre-pay to make this class happen. The class costs $40, which is part of our new all-inclusive fee system (you no longer have to pay a class fee to register, then a separate food/supply fee). You can register and pre-pay using credit/debit cards or PayPal on our EventSmart page, http://sitkakitch.eventsmart.com (click on class title). For those wanting to pre-pay with cash or check, please call Chandler O’Connell or Clarice Johnson at Sitka Conservation Society (747-7509) to arrange a payment. For more information about the class, contact Jasmine Shaw at 747-9440. We do offer one potential scholarship spot per class for people with limited incomes, so long as we have enough students registered to make the class happen. Contact Chandler at SCS for more details about the scholarship. This class is a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch.

Students should enter the Sitka Lutheran Church through the back entrance (through the alley off Harbor Drive by the old Bev’s Flowers and Gifts location). The door on the right should be open for students to enter. Please do not park in the church’s back parking lot. Please use the public parking lots off Harbor Drive.

The Sitka Kitch also has a new class cancelation policy. If you register for a class, then find out you can’t attend, please email us at sitkakitch@sitkawild.org and we may be able to help fill your slot through our waiting list. If you cancel from the class at least five days in advance (eg, by Wednesday the week before for a Monday class), you are eligible for a partial refund of your class fee, minus $5 for processing (in this case, $35). If you need to cancel with less than five days advance notice, there is no refund.

Sitka Kitch to host ‘Cooking A Balanced Meal Featuring Alaska Seafood’ class with dietitian Katie Carroll

Learn how to create a balanced meal using Alaska’s abundant seafood resources with SEARHC registered dietitian Katie Carroll. This class takes place from 6-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 13, at the Sitka Kitch community rental commercial kitchen, now located at the Sitka Lutheran Church (224 Lincoln Street, enter through the alley off Harbor Drive by the old Bev’s Flowers & Gifts location).

This class costs $40, and serves as a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch. The class registration deadline is 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 10.

Katie plans to teach students how to cook a pesto spaghetti squash “pasta” with crispy salmon as a main course, with an artichoke, tomato, spinach flatbread appetizer. She said few people have used spaghetti squash, so she hopes the dish will be new and interesting.

“Living in Southeast Alaska, we have an abundance of seafood and most of us are familiar with how to cook it,” Katie said. “As a dietitian, however, I find many people struggle to create a balanced meal with the right amount of produce, fat, and healthy carbohydrates that are the foundation of a well rounded meal. This class will discuss building balanced plates using seafood and cook a produce packed seafood dish full of flavor.”

Katie grew up in Nashville, Tenn., and lived there until she moved to Knoxville to complete her undergraduate degree at the University of Tennessee with a B.S. in Nutrition. She then worked for two years for East Tennessee (Women, Infant, Children) WIC as a nutrition educator and Certified Lactation Counselor. She completed her Dietetic Internship through Priority Nutrition Care out of Boston, Mass., where she focused on clinical dietetics and after completion became a registered dietitian.

“I believe in a lifestyle approach to health where no one size fits all,” Katie said. “Outside of work I enjoy hiking, dancing, reading and cooking.”

The registration deadline for this class is 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 10, so register now since space is limited. We need at least eight students to register and pre-pay to make this class happen. The class costs $40, which is part of our new all-inclusive fee system (you no longer have to pay a class fee to register, then a separate food/supply fee). You can register and pre-pay using credit/debit cards or PayPal on our EventSmart page, http://sitkakitch.eventsmart.com(click on class title). For those wanting to pre-pay with cash or check, please call Chandler O’Connell or Clarice Johnson at Sitka Conservation Society (747-7509) to arrange a payment. For more information about the class, contact Jasmine Shaw at 747-9440. We do offer one potential scholarship spot per class for people with limited incomes, so long as we have enough students registered to make the class happen. Contact Chandler at SCS for more details about the scholarship. This class is a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch.

Students should enter the Sitka Lutheran Church through the back entrance (through the alley off Harbor Drive by the old Bev’s Flowers and Gifts location). The door on the right should be open for students to enter. Please do not park in the church’s back parking lot. Please use the public parking lots off Harbor Drive.

The Sitka Kitch also has a new class cancelation policy. If you register for a class, then find out you can’t attend, please email us at sitkakitch@sitkawild.org and we may be able to help fill your slot through our waiting list. If you cancel from the class at least five days in advance (eg, by Wednesday for a Monday class), you are eligible for a partial refund of your class fee, minus $5 for processing (in this case, $35). If you need to cancel with less than five days advance notice, there is no refund.

Scenes from the ‘Preservation/Fermentation 101 With Kayla Caprice’ class July 22 at the Sitka Kitch

Students learned how to make a basic sauerkraut, a mixed-veggie ferment, and kimchi during the Sitka Kitch’s Preservation/Fermentation 101 With Kayla Caprice class on Monday, July 22, at the new Sitka Kitch location in the Sitka Lutheran Church. This class was a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch community rental commercial kitchen.

There is a Preservation/Fermentation 102 With Kayla Caprice class from 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 29, and we still need students to register before Saturday night so we can make the class happen. While the upcoming class will build on some of the skills learned in Monday’s class, students who missed the first class can still take the second one (and handouts from the first class will be available). This classes are part of a new Cooking With Kayla Caprice class series this summer.

“We will go back over the information from Preservation/Fermentation 101, about the science of fermentation and bacteria, and gut health. We will talk about local ingredients, foraging, and preserves. We will preserve lemons, and one preserved seafood,” Kayla wrote in her class description. Kayla currently works as a line cook at Ludvig’s Bistro in Sitka.

Other classes in the Cooking With Kayla Caprice series include (more details and registration information about these classes will be posted later):

  • ‘S’Lightly Southern Cooking — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 8 (this class was postponed and will be rescheduled for later this summer or fall; more details TBA)
  • Preservation/Fermentation 101 — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 22
  • Preservation/Fermentation 102 — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 29
  • Cooking For One/Small-Space Cooking — 10 a.m. to noon on Wednesday, Aug. 14 (class targeted to teens and adults)
  • Cooking With Seaweed (in conjunction with Sitka Mermaid Festival) — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 26

In addition, the Sitka Kitch has other classes coming up. They include (more details and registration information about these classes will be posted later):

  • Seafood Cooking — 6-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 13, taught by SEARHC Registered Dietitian Katie Carroll
  • Cooking With Wild Mushrooms — Time and date TBA in early September, taught by UAS Sitka Campus Biology Assistant Professor Kitty LaBounty and Beak Restaurant Owner/Chef Renée Jakaitis Trafton

The registration deadline for the Preservation/Fermentation 102 With Kayla Caprice cooking class is 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 27, so register now since space is limited. We need at least eight students to register and pre-pay to make this class happen. The class costs $40, which is part of our new all-inclusive fee system (you no longer have to pay a class fee to register, then a separate food/supply fee). You can register and pre-pay using credit/debit cards or PayPal on our EventSmart page, http://sitkakitch.eventsmart.com (click on class title). For those wanting to pre-pay with cash or check, please call Claire Sanchez, Chandler O’Connell or Clarice Johnson at Sitka Conservation Society (747-7509) to arrange a payment. For more information about the class, contact Jasmine Shaw at 747-9440. We do offer one potential scholarship spot per class for people with limited incomes, so long as we have enough students registered to make the class happen. Contact Claire or Chandler at SCS for more details about the scholarship. This class is a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch.

Students should enter the Sitka Lutheran Church through the back entrance (through the alley off Harbor Drive by the old Bev’s Flowers and Gifts location). The door on the right should be open for students to enter. Please do not park in the church’s back parking lot. Please use the public parking lots off Harbor Drive.

The Sitka Kitch also has a new class cancelation policy. If you register for a class, then find out you can’t attend, please email us at sitkakitch@sitkawild.org and we may be able to help fill your slot through our waiting list. If you cancel from the class at least five days in advance (eg, by Wednesday for a Monday class), you are eligible for a partial refund of your class fee, minus $5 for processing (in this case, $35). If you need to cancel with less than five days advance notice, there is no refund.

A photo slideshow of scenes from the first Preservation/Fermentation 101 With Kayla Caprice class is posted below.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Sitka Kitch to host ‘Preservation/Fermentation 102 With Kayla Caprice’ class on July 29

Learn about the science behind fermentation and its benefits to your body during the upcoming Sitka Kitch class, Preservation/Fermentation 102 With Kayla Caprice. This class takes place from 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 29, at the new location of the Sitka Kitch community rental commercial kitchen at the Sitka Lutheran Church (224 Lincoln Street, please use the back entrance through the alley by the former location Bev’s Flowers & Gifts, off Harbor Drive). This class is part of a new Cooking With Kayla Caprice class series this summer, and is a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch.

“We will go back over the information from Preservation/Fermentation 101, about the science of fermentation and bacteria, and gut health. We will talk about local ingredients, foraging, and preserves. We will preserve lemons, and one preserved seafood,” Kayla wrote in her class description. Kayla currently works as a line cook at Ludvig’s Bistro in Sitka.

Kayla, hails from the Southeast coast, more specifically, Florida. She grew up around the ocean and fishing. Her mother was a chef and Food Network was her favorite channel growing up. She has a background in early childhood development and school-age instruction, with an emphasis on cooking and nutrition. She moved to Seattle three years ago to pursue her love of cooking, learning, teaching, and community involvement.

She has been helping educate adults and youth on cooking, nutrition and the food system with The Beechers Foundation in Seattle for more than two years. There she runs before- and after-school programs with cooking and baking clubs, as well as the school garden. She also assists in classes at Culinary Essentials in Ballard under Chef Nora Dummer, cooked at the Artist Home for the Doe Bay Music Festival on Orcas Island, worked at Firefly Kitchens (a fermentation company in Ballard), and taught the culinary summer camp at The Stroum Jewish Community Center on Mercer Island in Washington. She is currently a line cook at Ludvig’s Bistro in Sitka.

“Cooking for yourself is very important to me, as is loving good food,” Kayla wrote. “I believe everyone and anyone should have access to good food and be able to feed themselves, and the tools they need in order to do so.”

Other classes in the Cooking With Kayla Caprice series include (more details and registration information about these classes will be posted later):

  • ‘S’Lightly Southern Cooking — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 8 (this class was postponed and will be rescheduled for later this summer or fall; more details TBA)
  • Preservation/Fermentation 101 — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 22
  • Preservation/Fermentation 102 — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 29
  • Cooking For One/Small-Space Cooking — 10 a.m. to noon on Wednesday, Aug. 14 (class targeted to teens and adults)
  • Cooking With Seaweed (in conjunction with Sitka Mermaid Festival) — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 26

In addition, the Sitka Kitch has other classes coming up. They include (more details and registration information about these classes will be posted later):

  • Seafood Cooking — 6-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 13, taught by SEARHC Registered Dietitian Katie Carroll
  • Cooking With Wild Mushrooms — Time and date TBA in early September, taught by UAS Sitka Campus Biology Assistant Professor Kitty LaBounty and Beak Restaurant Owner/Chef Renée Jakaitis Trafton

The registration deadline for the Preservation/Fermentation 102 With Kayla Caprice cooking class is 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 27, so register now since space is limited. We need at least eight students to register and pre-pay to make this class happen. The class costs $40, which is part of our new all-inclusive fee system (you no longer have to pay a class fee to register, then a separate food/supply fee). You can register and pre-pay using credit/debit cards or PayPal on our EventSmart page, http://sitkakitch.eventsmart.com (click on class title). For those wanting to pre-pay with cash or check, please call Claire Sanchez, Chandler O’Connell or Clarice Johnson at Sitka Conservation Society (747-7509) to arrange a payment. For more information about the class, contact Jasmine Shaw at 747-9440. We do offer one potential scholarship spot per class for people with limited incomes, so long as we have enough students registered to make the class happen. Contact Claire or Chandler at SCS for more details about the scholarship. This class is a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch.

Students should enter the Sitka Lutheran Church through the back entrance (through the alley off Harbor Drive by the old Bev’s Flowers and Gifts location). The door on the right should be open for students to enter. Please do not park in the church’s back parking lot. Please use the public parking lots off Harbor Drive.

The Sitka Kitch also has a new class cancelation policy. If you register for a class, then find out you can’t attend, please email us at sitkakitch@sitkawild.org and we may be able to help fill your slot through our waiting list. If you cancel from the class at least five days in advance (eg, by Wednesday for a Monday class), you are eligible for a partial refund of your class fee, minus $5 for processing (in this case, $35). If you need to cancel with less than five days advance notice, there is no refund.

Sitka Kitch to host ‘Preservation/Fermentation 101 With Kayla Caprice’ class on July 22

Learn about the science behind fermentation and its benefits to your body during the upcoming Sitka Kitch class, Preservation/Fermentation 101 With Kayla Caprice. This class takes place from 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 22, at the new location of the Sitka Kitch community rental commercial kitchen at the Sitka Lutheran Church (224 Lincoln Street, please use the back entrance through the alley by the former location Bev’s Flowers & Gifts, off Harbor Drive). This class is part of a new Cooking With Kayla Caprice class series this summer, and is a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch.

“We will be talking about the science behind fermentation and the benefits it has on your body. We will make a classic cabbage ferment to be taken home and ferment and bubble away. We will make a vegan version of kimchi, and some other fermented veggies. We will also go over ways to incorporate these foods into your everyday life,” Kayla wrote in her class description. Kayla currently works as a line cook at Ludvig’s Bistro in Sitka.

Kayla, hails from the Southeast coast, more specifically, Florida. She grew up around the ocean and fishing. Her mother was a chef and Food Network was her favorite channel growing up. She has a background in early childhood development and school-age instruction, with an emphasis on cooking and nutrition. She moved to Seattle three years ago to pursue her love of cooking, learning, teaching, and community involvement.

She has been helping educate adults and youth on cooking, nutrition and the food system with The Beechers Foundation in Seattle for more than two years. There she runs before- and after-school programs with cooking and baking clubs, as well as the school garden. She also assists in classes at Culinary Essentials in Ballard under Chef Nora Dummer, cooked at the Artist Home for the Doe Bay Music Festival on Orcas Island, worked at Firefly Kitchens (a fermentation company in Ballard), and taught the culinary summer camp at The Stroum Jewish Community Center on Mercer Island in Washington. She is currently a line cook at Ludvig’s Bistro in Sitka.

“Cooking for yourself is very important to me, as is loving good food,” Kayla wrote. “I believe everyone and anyone should have access to good food and be able to feed themselves, and the tools they need in order to do so.”

Other classes in the Cooking With Kayla Caprice series include (more details and registration information about these classes will be posted later):

  • ‘S’Lightly Southern Cooking — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 8 (this class was postponed and will be rescheduled for later this summer or fall; more details TBA)
  • Preservation/Fermentation 101 — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 22
  • Preservation/Fermentation 102 — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 29
  • Cooking For One/Small-Space Cooking — 10 a.m. to noon on Wednesday, Aug. 14 (class targeted to teens and adults)
  • Cooking With Seaweed (in conjunction with Sitka Mermaid Festival) — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 26

In addition, the Sitka Kitch has other classes coming up. They include (more details and registration information about these classes will be posted later):

  • Seafood Cooking — 6-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 13, taught by SEARHC Registered Dietitian Katie Carroll
  • Cooking With Wild Mushrooms — Time and date TBA in early September, taught by UAS Sitka Campus Assistant Professor of Biology Kitty LaBounty and Beak Restaurant Owner/Chef Renée Jakaitis Trafton

The registration deadline for the first Cooking With Kayla Caprice cooking class is 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 20, so register now since space is limited. We need at least eight students to register and pre-pay to make this class happen. The class costs $40, which is part of our new all-inclusive fee system (you no longer have to pay a class fee to register, then a separate food/supply fee). You can register and pre-pay using credit/debit cards or PayPal on our EventSmart page, http://sitkakitch.eventsmart.com (click on class title). For those wanting to pre-pay with cash or check, please call Claire Sanchez, Chandler O’Connell or Clarice Johnson at Sitka Conservation Society (747-7509) to arrange a payment. For more information about the class, contact Jasmine Shaw at 747-9440. We do offer one potential scholarship spot per class for people with limited incomes, so long as we have enough students registered to make the class happen. Contact Claire or Chandler at SCS for more details about the scholarship. This class is a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch.

Students should enter the Sitka Lutheran Church through the back entrance (through the alley off Harbor Drive by the old Bev’s Flowers and Gifts location). The door on the right should be open for students to enter. Please do not park in the church’s back parking lot. Please use the public parking lots off Harbor Drive.

The Sitka Kitch also has a new class cancelation policy. If you register for a class, then find out you can’t attend, please email us at sitkakitch@sitkawild.org and we may be able to help fill your slot through our waiting list. If you cancel from the class at least five days in advance (eg, by Wednesday for a Monday class), you are eligible for a partial refund of your class fee, minus $5 for processing (in this case, $35). If you need to cancel with less than five days advance notice, there is no refund.

Sitka Kitch to host ‘S’lightly Southern’ Cooking with Kayla Caprice class on July 8

Learn how to make healthier versions of classic Southern dishes during the upcoming Sitka Kitch class, ‘S’lightly Southern’ Cooking with Kayla Caprice. This class takes place from 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 8, at the new location of the Sitka Kitch community rental commercial kitchen at the Sitka Lutheran Church (224 Lincoln Street, please use the back entrance through the alley by Bev’s Flowers & Gifts, off Harbor Drive). This class is part of a new Cooking With Kayla Caprice class series this summer, and is a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch.

“In this class we will be going over some classic southern fare, and ways to make it a little healthier, and easier to do. We will learn other ways to ‘fry’ chicken, classic southern biscuits two different ways, talk (and eat) fritters, and make a dark molasses Ginger Cake. So come on, y’all, let’s get cookin’!” Kayla wrote in her class description. Kayla currently works as a line cook at Ludvig’s Bistro in Sitka.

Kayla, hails from the Southeast coast, more specifically, Florida. She grew up around the ocean and fishing. Her mother was a chef and Food Network was her favorite channel growing up. She has a background in early childhood development and school-age instruction, with an emphasis on cooking and nutrition. She moved to Seattle three years ago to pursue her love of cooking, learning, teaching, and community involvement.

She has been helping educate adults and youth on cooking, nutrition and the food system with The Beechers Foundation in Seattle for more than two years. There she runs before- and after-school programs with cooking and baking clubs, as well as the school garden. She also assists in classes at Culinary Essentials in Ballard under Chef Nora Dummer, cooked at the Artist Home for the Doe Bay Music Festival on Orcas Island, worked at Firefly Kitchens (a fermentation company in Ballard), and taught the culinary summer camp at The Stroum Jewish Community Center on Mercer Island in Washington. She is currently a line cook at Ludvig’s Bistro in Sitka.

“Cooking for yourself is very important to me, as is loving good food,” Kayla wrote. “I believe everyone and anyone should have access to good food and be able to feed themselves, and the tools they need in order to do so.”

Other classes in the Cooking With Kayla Caprice series include (more details and registration information about these classes will be posted later):

  • Preservation/Fermentation 101 — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 22
  • Preservation/Fermentation 102 — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, July 29
  • Cooking For One/Small-Space Cooking — 10 a.m. to noon on Wednesday, Aug. 14 (class targeted to teens and adults)
  • Cooking With Seaweed (in conjunction with Sitka Mermaid Fest) — 6-8:30 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 26

The registration deadline for the first Cooking With Kayla Caprice cooking class is 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 6, so register now since space is limited. We need at least eight students to register and pre-pay to make this class happen. The class costs $40, which is part of our new all-inclusive fee system (you no longer have to pay a class fee to register, then a separate food/supply fee). You can register and pre-pay using credit/debit cards or PayPal on our EventSmart page, http://sitkakitch.eventsmart.com (click on class title). For those wanting to pre-pay with cash or check, please call Claire Sanchez or Clarice Johnson at Sitka Conservation Society (747-7509) to arrange a payment. For more information about the class, contact Jasmine Shaw at 747-9440. We do offer one potential scholarship spot per class for people with limited incomes, so long as we have enough students registered to make the class happen. Contact Claire at SCS for more details about the scholarship. This class is a fundraiser for the Sitka Kitch.

Students should enter the Sitka Lutheran Church through the back entrance (through the alley off Harbor Drive by the old Bev’s Flowers and Gifts location). The door on the right should be open for students to enter. Please do not park in the church’s back parking lot. Please use the public parking lots off Harbor Drive.

The Sitka Kitch also has a new class cancelation policy. If you register for a class, then find out you can’t attend, please email us at sitkakitch@sitkawild.org and we may be able to help fill your slot through our waiting list. If you cancel from the class at least five days in advance (eg, by Wednesday for a Monday class), you are eligible for a partial refund of your class fee, minus $5 for processing (in this case, $35). If you need to cancel with less than five days advance notice, there is no refund.

Sitka chef Colette Nelson to represent Alaska in Great American Seafood Cook-Off

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Ludvig’s Bistro owner and executive chef Colette Nelson garnishes rabbit thighs with beach asparagus for a special local foods dinner she prepared as a February 2015 fundraiser for The Sawmill Farm.

Next week, Sitka chef Colette Nelson will carry a special cargo in a violin case when she heads to New Orleans to represent Alaska in the Great American Seafood Cook-Off.

Nelson, the owner and executive chef of Ludvig’s Bistro, will be carrying a frozen white king salmon in her violin case, the fish she plans to cook for the annual contest. The white king salmon was caught July 4 by troller Lou Barr of Auke Bay (who Nelson used to commercial fish with) and flash-frozen earlier this month. Nelson doesn’t plan to let the fish out of her control as she travels to New Orleans.

“I’m going to hold that fish with me. I’m not going to let somebody put it under the plane because that’s our gold,” Nelson told the Juneau Empire in a July 25 article.

On Aug. 6, Nelson will compete against chefs from Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Oregon, South Carolina, Texas and Utah. The Great American Seafood Cook-Off is sponsored by the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board, and focuses on domestic, sustainable seafood and local ingredients.

Nelson, who will compete with her sous chef Josh Miller, hopes to become the second straight Alaska chef to win the Best Seafood Chef title, joining Beau Schooler and Travis Hotch of The Rookery Café in Juneau who won last year with a sockeye salmon dish. Nelson was nominated for this year’s contest by Gov. Bill Walker.

Nelson hasn’t said exactly how she plans to cook her white king salmon, but did hint that it will have a Spanish theme in keeping with her restaurant’s use of Mediterranean flavors.

“For me this experience is not only about representing Alaska, but it’s about what Alaska has given to me,” Nelson told the Empire. “I came here to fish in college so that I could study abroad in Spain. I did that and had a great time fishing. I fished for three seasons, then went to Spain and fell in love with the cuisine and with Mediterranean food as a whole. So to go to this competition 25 years later — after being in both the seafood industry and the restaurant business — it feels complete to go there with Spanish ideas.”

The dish will feature a pan-seared fillet of the fish that includes the belly meat.

“For anybody that knows king salmon, the belly meat is where the best flavor is,” Nelson said. “We like it just perfectly cooked so it just starts to separate, when the flakes come off. You can feel the oil, get it on your lips and really taste it.”

Nelson opened Ludvig’s Bistro in 2002, and has been a big supporter of local foods in Sitka (including using her restaurant to host fundraisers for the Sitka Local Foods Network and developing recipes and lesson plans for Sitka’s Fish To Schools lunch program coordinated by the Sitka Conservation Society). She grew up in Oregon and attended the University of Washington, where she trained under Seattle restauranteur Susan Kaufman, who also had a food cart and restaurants in Juneau. She moved to Alaska in 1998, working as chef for Kingfisher Charters & Lodge in Sitka before opening her restaurant.

During the competition, Nelson and sous chef Josh Miller will have an hour to prepare six plates for the judges and one for photos. Nelson and Miller have been practicing, and now feel they’re ready.

“We do this all the time. We cook under pressure,” Nelson said. “When we were practicing (Sunday) I said, ‘Look, we’re just having a dinner party for seven guests and let’s just make it in an hour. We got this.’”

• Help the Sitka Local Foods Network ‘Fill the Bistro’ on Thursday, March 26

2015SLFNLudvigsBistroEvent The Sitka Local Foods Network will benefit from a “Fill the Bistro” fundraiser on Thursday, March 26, at Ludvig’s Bistro (256 Katlian St.). Fill the Bistro is a series of community fundraisers held on Thursdays this spring for local organizations working in Sitka (in previous years they were on Wednesdays). Ludvig’s Bistro is open from 5-9 p.m. serving traditional Mediterranean fare and seafood. The beneficiary organization for each Thursday’s Fill the Bistro event receives 10 percent of the night’s sales. Due to the small size of Ludvig’s Bistro, it is recommended that diners call 966-FOOD (966-3663) to make reservations. If the restaurant is closed, there is an answering machine to take reservations (please call in and don’t email the restaurant). The Sitka Local Foods Network thanks Ludvig’s Bistro owner/chef Colette Nelson for including us in this year’s series of Fill the Bistro fundraisers.