Learning to trust baked goods again.
WRITTEN BY STEPHANIE STIKA
PHOTO BY JACI GOODMAN
Allow me to lick some sticky goodness off my fingers and tell you a story about a woman whose aim is to make life a little sweeter.
Ten years ago, Reno resident Aimee Eiguren was diagnosed with Celiac disease (an inability to tolerate wheat gluten that results in many dangerous complications). An abrupt change in her lifestyle ensued as she learned that most foods were poison to her body, and sadly, at that time, most of what she could eat was not tasty. As she learned to navigate the gluten-free food waters, she began to think about what she could make that would be a treat for her and others who are so limited in their food choices.
Two years ago, Eiguren started Glutenfreebowlofsoul.blogspot.com to help people with Celiac disease, hoping they could benefit from her experience and research. In it, she offers advice on everything from traveling and safe restaurants to recipes. Last fall, with the help of her mother, Paula Eiguren, she began experimenting with her grandmother’s macaroon recipe so that she could, “put a smile on the face of someone who can’t normally have a sweet treat.”
What came of the experimentation was a budding business: Tia’s Sweet Treats.
Using all organic ingredients and striving to have all products locally produced, Aimee and Paula are changing the food landscape for many people. During one delivery, Aimee met a woman and her children, all Celiacs, who embraced and thanked her for giving their family a treat they could enjoy. That, she says, is what it’s all about. You can find Tia’s Sweet Treats at The Hub in Reno or at www.Tiassweettreats.com
Reno resident Stephanie Stika is a horticulturist and avid gardener. She also owns Your Plant Guru www.yourplantguru.com
Consumers are challenging conventional wisdom.
WRITTEN BY AMANDA BURDEN
PHOTO BY CAROLE TOPALIAN
Welcome to the food revolution.
Many people are challenging the standard methods of our agricultural system. Consumers are asking questions. They want to know where and how their food is grown and prepared (with or without chemicals and other additives).
Some conventional and alternative farmers are at odds with one another. Some farmers say that the organic movement is a myth or a marketing gimmick. Some think that our conventional agricultural system is working just fine, thank you. They say we are feeding the masses and we can’t do that the natural way.
We, at edible Reno-Tahoe, are excited to be stimulating this discussion. We seek to educate and offer different perspectives on food issues. We hope to empower you to make informed decisions on your food choices.
It’s also our mission to celebrate and support our local food culture. And we want to emphasize local farmers and food purveyors who are providing us with healthy, sustainable, natural, and humanely raised options.
We support agriculture. We think it is a great industry in Nevada and California.
And it appears to be growing and becoming an even brighter light for our future.
Food issues can be controversial. And our spring feature on sustainably and humanely raised meat did, in fact, spur debate. But we believe the story offered a perspective that needed to be shared. Many people don’t realize where their meat comes from, besides the grocery store.
We recognize that there are many fine cattle ranchers and dairy farmers in Nevada and California who are struggling to make a living. Farming often is not an easy or profitable venture. Those who grow our food deserve our thanks.
For this reason, we believe local beef deserves a closer look. So in the fall edition you’ll find an intriguing feature on local cattle ranchers. You’ll step into the ranching world, meet cattlemen (and women), and peruse a listing of local meat resources.
The food debate will continue. We all need to keep asking questions. And we, at edible Reno-Tahoe, will continue to educate, support, and honor our local healthy food culture.
Autumn Food & Wine Festival
lures foodies from near and far.
WRITTEN BY AMANDA BURDEN
PHOTO COURTESY OF AUTUMN FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL
Grab your favorite foodie friends and head for the hills this fall. You’ll sample the latest in haute cuisine with local flair, as well as extraordinary vintages, at the Autumn Food & Wine Festival. Get ready for a savory and sweet sensory overload that will thrill your taste buds.
This year’s festival, the 25th annual, also offers culinary demonstrations and workshops. And the affair is set in the alpine glory of Northstar Resort in Truckee.
What makes this event so special? Participants partake in memorable cooking and wine seminars presented by nationally and locally revered chefs and winemakers in an intimate environment. There’s also an Iron Chef-style cook-off, kids’ cooking classes, and a grape stomp.
And the weekend’s finale is the Grand Tasting, which features extravagant, walk-around tastings by acclaimed vintners and talented chefs. This premier epicurean event is set to turn up the heat this year. So don’t miss it. Mark your calendar for Sept. 10 – 12.
For details, call 888-229-2193 or visit
Waste not, want not
Compost Tahoe diverts food waste.
WRITTEN BY MELISSA SIIG
PHOTO BY CAROLE TOPALIAN
Imagine if a restaurant could grow fruits and vegetables out of the food waste it produced, creating a sustainable, zero-waste cycle.
For a group of South Lake Tahoe businesses, that dream is becoming a reality.
In January, Embassy Suites Lake Tahoe, Marriott Timber Lodge, Marriott Grand Residences, and Zephyr Cove Resort partnered with South Tahoe Refuse Co. to create CompostTahoe. Twice a week, the trash company collects food waste from the participating hotels. Instead of delivering it to the Sparks landfill, it’s diverted to Full Circle Compost in Minden where it’s turned into organic compost blended especially for Tahoe’s sensitive ecology.
Garry Bowen, an adviser on the project, estimates that the venture is keeping a couple tons of food waste per week out of the landfill. And more restaurants are expected to sign on in the future.
“All our vegetables come from hundreds of miles away, but they are priced higher and have less nutritional value,” says Bowen, who hopes the garden will change that by providing fresh, local produce.
Compost Tahoe’s goal is to use the compost in a 2,500-square-foot community garden, where both residents and participating restaurants can grow fresh, organic food year-round. The location of the garden has yet to be determined. As a companion to the project, plans for a solar-powered geodesic dome greenhouse have been completed. Compost Tahoe organizers also are working with the City of South Lake Tahoe to get restaurants to switch to compostable to-go containers.
That way, nothing is wasted.
Melissa Siig is a freelance writer based in Tahoe City, Calif. She is still trying to figure out how to compost in the mountains without inviting bears over for dinner.
Choose non-toxic pots and pans.
WRITTEN BY MORGAN TIAR
PHOTO BY CAROLE TOPALIAN
Nonstick pans are easy to use. But are they safe for our health?
Most contain PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene or Teflon) and PFOA
(perfluorooctanoic acid). At high temperatures, these coatings can break apart and emit harmful toxins.
Some safer alternatives include stainless steel, cast iron, copper, enamel-coated cast iron, or glass. All cook and must be cleaned differently. Do your research to find the best fit for you.
If you continue to cook with pots and pans that have nonstick surfaces, be sure to use only low and medium heat, avoiding high temperatures. Stop using pans that are nicked or scratched to avoid leaching toxins. Finally, use plastic or silicone utensils to keep your cookware in tip-top shape.
Morgan Tiar owns EcoReno, a retail store at 1095 S. Virginia St. in
Reno. For details, call 775-32-GOECO or visit www.Goecoreno.com.