For the past 10 years, Paula Tejeda has been quietly working her own brand of business development and cultural exchange, one empanada at a time, in San Francisco’s Mission District. Stroll by the Redstone Building, to taste for yourself her efforts to connect Chile and California.
Chile Lindo, named for a song extolling the beauty of the country, is a storefront kitchen known and loved in the neighborhood for its Neiman Ranch beef, and other varieties of empanadas. The classic Chilean empanada is simple and instantly recognizable: thinly-rolled dough filled with beef, egg, black olives and raisins and then folded into a distinctive trapezoid shape. No lazy half-circles or crazy curried-duck-and-cardamom-with-rhubarb-compote combinations here in Paula’s kitchen. This is the real thing. And very, very good.
She carries her savory empanadas along Valencia Street during the lunch hour, selling to merchants who can’t leave their shops. You’ll see her offering them to hungry patrons during Friday happy hour at the Make-Out Room and the Latin American Club. On a sunny day, you might even spot her in Dolores Park with her familiar wide, wicker basket. Anyone who can resist Paula’s smile, warm banter and freshly baked empanadas, has a heart — and stomach — of unyielding ice.
One newly converted customer claimed her empanadas are even better than Julia’s in D.C, knocking down the queen of empanadas and pushing the never-ending East Coast-West Coast rivalry into the world of South American empanadas. We are so happy to have Paula as our Sustainable Chef Showcase Producer!
Chef: Iso Rabins
Time Frame: 12:30 to 1:00
Recipe: Curing meat
2 lb salt
12 sprig rosemary
12 bay leaves
4 garlic cloves
1 T black pepper
2 T chili flake
5-6 strips lemon zest
5-6 strips orange zest
1 btl red wine
7-9 lbs beef top or bottom round
Bio: Iso Rabins is the founder of ForageSF & The Underground Market, The Wild Kitchen & Forage Kitchen. A leader in the San Francisco food scene, Iso has run his business over the past 8 years, always hewing to the mission of supporting the local food community, while exposing eaters to the abundance of wild edibles all around them.
Story: Education is a large component of what forageSF’s mission. We mean to teach people about what’s edible in their local landscape, and in doing so, help them look at the area they live in a different way. Through guided walks and forays you learn to identify some of the wild edibles you see every day, with a focus on sustainable harvesting techniques, recipes, as well as the history of foraging in the Bay Area.
Chef: Troy Barber
Time Frame: 1:00 to 1:30
Recipe: Pure Raw Almond Milk
Ingredients: Raw almonds and fresh coconut water
Bio: The Milkman is committed to providing healthy and delicious products in the most convenient way for people with busy schedules. The Milkman delivers to your home or business on Thursdays between 7am – 5pm to San Francisco County.
Story: The Milkman's philosophy is that healthy living and eating is a lifestyle. He is now delivering Pure Raw Almond Milk, using only the highest quality ingredients. The Milkman’s mission goes beyond amazing customer service and hand-crafting a quality natural product; he reduces his impact on the environment, and gives back to the local community. Besides the fact that fresh Pure Raw Almond Milk is a delicious treat, it's most nutritious non-dairy alternative and is high in protein, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phyotchemicals, living enzymes, and healthy omega fatty acids including calcium, zinc, vitamin E, magnesium, manganese, selenium, iron, B12, and potassium.
Sajen – Mamu Earth Drink
Chef: Morsinah Katimin
Time Frame: 1:30 to 2:00
Recipe: Rojak: Indonesian-Malaysian Fruit and Vegetable Salad w/ Peanut Dressing
Ingredients: Salad: cucumber, pineapple, jicama, sweet potatoes, chayote, shredded cabbage, bean sprouts, kale. Dressing: peanuts, dark soy, shrimp paste, sal, palm sugar, tamarind pulp.
Bio: Morsinah Katimin feels the need to raise awareness that ancient food is still relevant and the contributions of indigenous people to the world continue to be enormous. She would like to catalog them, beginning with jamu.
Since January 2008, she has been receiving technical assistance from La Cocina Business Incubator Program. She wishes to represent her own culture through food and beverages. Through Sajen, Morsinah is eager to support social and financial programs that empower women and care for elderly people, worldwide.
Story: Morsinah Katimin formed Sajen to capture and to share the goodness of the traditional beverages of her ancestors - Javanese, Indonesian. In the process, she hopes to remember and honor the creators of jamu culture, a culture where children, men, women, peasants, and aristocrats reach for jamu in their daily lives as it is said jamu heals everything. Making jamu is her family’s tradition. Her ancestral grandmothers brewed jamu using fresh ingredients for their families and neighbors in Para’an, a small hamlet in Central Java, not far from the famous Borobudur Temple, a UNESCO--World Heritage. In 2006, she came to San Francisco after spending more than twenty-years working in London, Geneva, Paris, New York City, Nagoya, Kathmandu, Washington D.C, Oregon, and Superior Arizona.
Chef: Sascha Weiss
Time Frame: 2:00 to 2:30
Recipe: sauteed vegetables with ginger miso sauce and quinoa
Ingredients: ginger miso sauce, seasonal vegetables, quinoa
Bio: Sascha Weiss has been with The Plant, formerly known as lettus, since it was just an idea. He shares the vision of making pure organic ingredients easily available to one and all. Sascha's background in natural foods is a perfect complement to The Plant's mission. He attended the Natural Gourmet Cookery School in New York City and later worked as the Executive Pastry Chef at Millennium in San Francisco, a vegan fine dining restaurant (contributing to their first cookbook). In addition, he has been the Pastry Chef at Roxanne's, a raw food restaurant, Sous Chef at the Ravens in Mendocino, Private Chef to George Lucas, and owned andoperated Urban Kitchen, a natural foods catering company in Berkeley, CA. Sascha is an ongoing culinary instructor in the Holistic Nutrition and Culinary Arts program at Bauman College in the Bay Area. His recipes have been featured in numerous publications.
Story: The Plant grew out of a desire to make it easy and affordable to eat delicious healthy local organic food. Our mission is to promote the well being of people and planet, and provide an avenue to support healthy choices and sustainable practices. Everything we serve is made with exclusively 100% organic and local ingredients. Our produce is seasonal from around the bay area, often picked only days before being served. Our poultry is free range and organic and seafood wild/sustainable. Almost everything served is made from scratch in our kitchens to ensure freshness and quality. The Plant's menu is diverse, comprised largely of contemporary California cuisine and Asian inspired flavors. Items range from freshly made juices and smoothies, salads, sandwiches, wholesome grain dishes and pastas, poultry and fresh seafood to 100% organic house-made pastries and desserts. The broad menu aims to provide organic options for meat eaters, vegetarians and vegans alike. The Plants are designed and built using some of the greenest materials, in support of lowering emissions and impact on climate change.
Chef: Danny Gabriner
Time Frame: 2:30 to 3:00
Recipe: Bread Starter
Ingredients: organic flour, water, and salt
Bio: Sour Flour was founded in 2008 by Danny Gabriner when, through home experimentation with sour dough baking, he decided to start a bakery with a twist. The first 1000 loaves would be free and would be given away to neighbors, collaborators and anyone who expressed an interest in Sour Flour.
Story: A bread community began to be born and Danny Gabriner began to enjoy the idea of reciprocity that the free bread engendered. People began to sift through the woodwork offering help and wishing to learn the art and science of baked bread. While bread sales remain a focus of Sour Flour, neighborly bread gifting, and bread education are high values held by Sour Flour.
Chef: Christina Sasser
Time Frame: 3:00 to 3:30
Recipe: Sauerkraut & Kimchi
Ingredients: Cabbage, Sea Salt (samples and other necessary tools & ingredients)
Bio: Christina is the founder of Activation Foods, an artisanal producer of high-vibrational, organic, local, and seasonal super-foods. We specialize is creating delicious catered meals, event menus, and products that feature fermented, live, cultured, sprouted, and wild harvested ingredients.
Story: Activation Foods has been my dream for many years. I have been a lover of organic, seasonal, and local food since I moved to the west coast over 13 years ago. I find my greatest connection to the earth, community, and my own body through food. I started to explore the world of fermented foods six years ago while managing a kitchen at an ecovillage and permaculture education center. My gut, curiosity, and foodie passions were "activated" by this new world of flavors and the health benefits that came with them. I've been sharing cultures, classes, and workshops on fermented foods ever since.
The Ticy Kitchen
Chef: Karen Yaella Frankel
Time Frame: 3:30 to 4:00
Recipe: Thai Root Vegetable Salad
Ingredients: Dressing--combine these ingredients in a small bowl to marinate. Dress salad just a few minutes before serving: 1 large shallot sliced. 3 limes or 6 key limes squeezed. Fish sauce (usually in equal amount to lime juice--may use salt as a substitute for vegetarians, likely.
1 Tsp. 1-2 Thai chilis (fresh is best or 1/4-1/2 tsp dried chili flakes as substitute)
1 Tbsp ground palm sugar (or raw agave syrup as substitute)
Combine the julienned vegetables with the dressing and add the following just before serving: 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves (no
stem). 1/2-1 cup chopped cilantro including stem
1/2 cup freshly toasted Spanish peanuts (save half for sprinkling on top).
You may use any of the following ingredients in equal amounts of 1/3 pound julienned preferably or grated: daikon radish, carrot, golden beet, celery root, jicama, green beans (chopped small)
Cabbage (thinly sliced).
Bio: Yaella Frankel grew up in Thailand eating amazing, fresh Thai food every day. She applies her passion for delicious food from around the world to finding that unique balance of flavors and textures that make a dish great. She believes that every vegetable and food can be delicious when cooked in a way that suits it and highlights it's best texture. Yaella shares her passion for fusion food by cooking dinners out of her home and for events and workshops. She gets her inspiration from the farmers market each week seeing all the bounty that's in season.
Story: Yaella jumped on the opportunity to share a Thai-style salad, called a "Yum", which can be made using a variety of vegetables depending on what's in season. One classic and famous Thai salad that uses this same dressing is "som tum" or green papaya salad. This salad does not require any fancy equipment, nor any cooking except toasting the nuts and is a very healthy, low fat salad. It could be considered an Asian "slaw".
Papi Chulo Salsa
Chef: Robert Biggs
Time Frame: 4:00 to 4:30
Recipe: Bloody Mary - Papi Chulo Mix
- 16 oz glass filled with ice
- 1 T pureed HOT Papi Chulo Salsa
- 2 dashes Worcestershire sauce
- 2 oz top shelf vodka
- Organic tomato juice
- 1 squeeze of lime
- Garnish with a celery stalk
- Directions: Fill 16 ounce glass with ice to the brim. Add that papi chulo salsa. Add the worstashire sauce. Add the tomato juice. Stir or shake the beverage. Squeeze your lime and garnish with the celery stalk and enjoy this delicious Premium Bloody Mary. It gives the word sustainable another meaning...Salut
Born and educated in Sacramento, CA. I grew up a Foodie and managed many restaurants, Mexican and Gourmet and tended bar. I moved to the Bay Area in 1989 where I continued my college education and continued working in the Food and Beverage industry as a server, bartender, and Corporate Operations Supervisor and Trainer till 2009. Story: Papi Chulo Salsa … prepared in “The City by the Bay” --San Francisco. We handcraft our gourmet salsa by roasting our chiles in a special way, caramelizing the onions just so, and roasting the garlic just right to create a very special flavor. Our other ingredients are also prepared uniquely and remain a tightly held secret. We make our savory salsa in small batches then put our artisan food into Earth friendly containers so that everyone may savor our wholesome, 100% natural and uniquely delicious salsa with every bite made from the best ORGANIC ingredients which are grown locally from certified organic farmers. We pride ourselves in creating the best salsa anyone has ever tasted and strive to improve our flavors and branding.
Chef: Paula Tejeda
Time Frame: 4:30 to 5:00
Recipe: Ensalada Chilena
Cut an onion into thin plumes (cut vertically rather than horizontally). Peel and slice tomatoes. Cut cilantro. Ad salt and olive oil. Mix.
Ingredients: tomatoes, onions, cilantro
Bio: Paula Tejeda (aka The Girl From Empanada) is a native New Yorker of Chilean ancestry. Her atypical formative years, between the United States and Chile, granted her with unique bicultural expertise and first-rate bilingual fluency in Spanish and English. Likewise, she is familiar with the United States immigrant experience, from interacting with these communities in New York City, Oakland, and San Francisco. Her multicultural insight is exceptional.
Story: Chile Lindo Delicatessen & Coffee Shop is a classic South American style gourmet delicatessen and coffee shop located in the Mission District. Chile Lindo offers artesanal, home-style cooking, comprised of nothing but top quality ingredients, bought locally, and adhering to sustainable farming principles. The house specialty is handkneaded, fresh baked empanadas. The beef empanadas are prepared with Niman Ranch beef and cage free eggs; the vegan recipes are cooked with the meat-like consistency product, Yves Meatless Ground.