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by Tina Fogall, DERU’s Food Sourcing Manager

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My life at work is in many ways an extension of home. It is filled with people that I love like family, great food, and a sense of responsibility to the community and the planet. The difference is, at DERU, we are feeding far more people and have a greater impact on the world.

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Every day at work is different but revolves around finding the most beautiful, responsibly produced, and local food that I can find. I geek out about seeing the whole process. A seed is placed in the earth, the seed grows, the farmers nurture and then harvest, the chefs prepare and then I (we) eat. There is much more that goes into the process, but you get the idea. While I mostly get to see the product after harvest, the work up to that point is just as important as the work after.

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On any given day, I meet with the chefs to discuss menu items, seasonal produce availability, the chefs’ whims, and changing the world (yes, we want to change the world). I also spend time with staff educating them on new items and farms. Its important for the staff to understand the work and love that goes into growing so that they can carry the same enthusiasm to its final destination: the plate. Then, I head to a farmers market to shop for ingredients, meet farmers and their apprentices, and get a good pulse of the coming and going in our real food world. My time is also dedicated to visiting farms and meeting the farmers on their soil to see how and what they grow. The true passion of the farmer shines. The whole DERU Crew recently got to hear Farmer Ryan of Steel Wheel Farm talk fervently about soil and it was so moving to see his dedication to what he does.

 

I’m lucky I get to do what I do and I’m so grateful for the opportunity to do it. My heart and soul have never been this engaged in a work endeavor and I look forward to the future of food at DERU.

 

Follow my adventures on Instagram @derugetslocal

TINA FOGALL

DERU FOOD SOURCING MANAGER

This summer we had the opportunity to host our first Farmer Pop Up.

What the heck is a farmers pop up?!

Think farmers market meets DERU’s parking lot.

We love our farmers and we love our neighborhood, so we decided to bring our farmers to our guests. They work so hard to grow the incredible products we cook with everyday, what a joy it is to share their bounty with the community that we cook for. There is something really magical about having the actual hands that grew the food right next to the plates being served out of DERU’s kitchen.

We source as much as we can from local sustainable farms. The seasonal food that we get from our farmers is the heart of DERU. We believe our food can only taste as good as it is grown; that includes bio diversity, loving hands, organic growing practices and being harvested fresh for our plates and pantries. Education for our team and community is also at the heart of DERU. Who better suited to share and inspire than the farmers themselves!

Our last Farmer Pop Up of the year will be, Saturday November 21st Ft: Steel Wheel Farm + Finn River Cider

Hope to see you there!

 

 

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Boldbrook Farm is made of up partners in farming and living Marni + Steve, located in Sultan, WA. They live on the property that they farm and are currently producing on about 2 acres of land. Their focus in on vegetables and herbs, growing with ecologically responsible farming methods.

We are proud to buy from Marni + Steve’s and love their passion to connect people with food. You can find out more about them on their website. They host a weekly booth and the Kirkland Wednesday Market, stop by and say hi! You will find a variety of their beautiful products on our menu, commonly squash, arugula, kale, cucumbers, radish and more!

Looking forward to cooking for you soon and seeing you at our next Farmer Pop Up!

Cheers, Chef Jamie

 

by guest blogger + DERU foodie Julie Arnan

Back in the deli counter days, before DERU Market was synonymous with best-place-to-take-your-girlfriends-to-lunch, I stepped through the front door into the small, darkly painted “market” with slight trepidation. I had been sent there on assignment from a local online news blog; my only clue was a quick line from my editor saying, “It sounds like your kind of place, Julie.”

 

My kind of place? Did I give off a Middle Eastern spice bazaar vibe? Images of the post-communist Hungarian markets I’d travelled through as a teenager also came to mind. It took a few moments, then, to reconcile the scene before me – towers of chocolate chip cookies, monstrous cakes slathered in waves of creamy frosting, scones with peek-a-boo berries. Oh, a bakery! Errrrrr…wrong again.

 

It’s funny to think of that first experience now. When chefs Jamie and Jordan finally unveiled the current incarnation of DERU Market – complete with seating, pristine white walls, and a marble tabletops accented by elegantly simple lighting – it suddenly made sense. Honest, clean food from integrity-filled chefs sourced from hardworking local farmers; everyone committed to the highest quality products nature can produce.

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These days, DERU Market is our go-to family stop after the long (and slightly painful) concerts up at the middle school. Wood-fired pizza and ooey-gooey dark chocolate chip cookies go a long way towards reviving the body and soul after sitting on bleachers for a couple hours listening to “music”.

Of course, as I mentioned above, DERU Market is a favorite lunch destination for local ladies (and, apparently, young hipster dudes). Lunch combos – half sandwich and salad – fly out of the kitchen by the dozens. As much as I love the housemade focaccia rich with olive oil and sprinkled with salt (aka DERU’s “sandwich bread”), I generally opt for one of the composed salads and roasted veggies in the deli case. My absolute favorite is the golden beet salad with pistachio pesto! There’s a special place in my heart for the roasted carrots and the cauliflower drizzled with crème fraiche, as well.

 

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This year, my summer birthday landed on one of those inferno-like days of early July. There was no way I wanted to turn on my oven on that hellishly hot evening. No problem, I told my visiting sister. Let’s just stop by DERU and pick up a few orders of the pistachio-fig meatloaf. (I hate to even refer to it as meatloaf – what degrading company that label conjures.) It was the perfect solution to our summer cooking aversion, not to mention a tasty birthday treat.

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In fact, I think I’ll make my new motto: Don’t suffer through – just DERU. Now, there’s a verb I can get behind!

AUTHOR, OUR DEAR FRIEND AND #DERUFOODIE

JULIE ARNAN // @JULIEARNAN

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