Tag Archives: Northwest Chefs

New Chef Takes Root in Snohomish

With a new, fresh approach to the restaurant scene in Snohomish County, Chef Cody Castiglia, has embarked on a new adventure, bringing the tastes of the season to residents and visitors alike.

matersWorking with local farmers and producers, Castiglia and his Della Terra crew are committed to sourcing the majority of their ingredients within the community presenting a true farm-to-table experience. Being able to operate out of the Hungry Pelican in downtown Snohomish is an opportunity to partner with area businesses from ranchers to bakers, “Some just down the road,” Castiglia says. “We source the freshest ingredients of the season. While we may not have the abundance of produce now that we enjoy in the summer, we can still make some delicious food in the winter. We use a lot of winter squash, root vegetables, a lot of dried beans and peppers as well. We make celery root sexy.” Castiglia added, “merging unusual, seasonal flavors with traditional elements into fresh, balanced, mouth-watering dishes is our specialty.”

Della Terra, Castiglia’s business umbrella, represents his new restaurant venture along with his catering offerings and cooking classes. Meaning “from the earth” Della Terra ventures stay true to the philosophy of using the best ingredients available from the local harvest. “This allows me to be creative with the vast bounty we have available in the Northwest resulting in better tasting and better-for-you food that benefits the environment and the local economy,” he said.

IMG_0653Get a taste of the local season from Chef Cody during their lunch service (dine-in or to-go) Thursdays through Saturdays, noon to 3 p.m. beginning in December. Dinner service is available Friday evenings, 6-9 p.m. with a menu changing weekly to reflect local and seasonal availability, featuring fresh, hand-made pasta made with local flours along with a variety of local vegetable and meat options. Plenty of shareable appetizers are available also as are gluten-free and vegetarian options. The Hungry Pelican is located 113 Ave C, Snohomish, WA 98290. Reservations are available on OpenTable 

Della Terra has limited openings for holiday parties and any other catering needs. A custom menu can be created for you or select options are available from the current Fall/Winter menu.

A form is available here to send the Della Terra staff more information on your event.

Cooking classes with Chef Cody have been increasingly popular, being offered at Whisk in Bellevue and 21 Acres in Woodinville. Check out the current line-up now offered at the Hungry Pelican in Snohomish. Classes are held most Mondays and Wednesdays including easy take-home recipes with a fun, hands-on, engaging presentation. Class topics include holiday cooking, handmade pasta and fresh and healthy options for the New Year.

Cody’s full winter lineup is available here.

Email Chef Cody at info@dellaterra425.com for more information and visit Della Terra’s Facebook page for more information on upcoming classes and events.


Transforming Holiday Leftovers

Chef Cody Castiglia sent us a few recipes to help us with our Thanksgiving leftovers and we couldn’t get enough.

One of the best things about holiday cooking are the leftovers. We all cook up a storm for two days and eat the leavings for five more. When it comes to the turkey there are more options than just ‘the sandwich’ and Chef Cody Castiglia creates a spicy kick for his Turkey Tortilla Soup and creamy decadence for leftover cranberry sauce.

Note: We kept the turkey “chunked” in stead of shredding and added avocados in our version. 

Turkey Tortilla Soup

Serves 6-8

Turkey Tortilla SoupIngredients

  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • ½ white onion, small diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 7 cups turkey stock or chicken stock
  • 3 cups shredded cooked turkey
  • 16 ounces of cooked, drained black beans or mayocaba beans
  • 16 ounces of frozen corn kernels
  • ½ cup of salsa
  • 5 corn tortillas, cut into thin strips
  • 2 bunches of cilantro, chiffonade


  1. In a large saucepot or dutch oven, add oil over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and saute until softened and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add turkey stock, turkey, beans, and corn. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for 15 minutes to meld flavors.
  2. Meanwhile, spread tortilla strips in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees until golden brown and crispy.
  3. Stir cilantro into soup. Garnish with tortilla chips.

Cranberry and Chocolate Pots De Creme

Serves 6-8

Chocolate Pots de CremeIngredients

  • 9 ounces chopped bittersweet chocolate, preferably Theo’s
  • 4 ounces of prepared cranberry sauce
  • 1.5 cups whole milk
  • 1.5 cups heavy cream
  • 6 large egg yolks
  • 4 Tablespoons sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt


  1. Bourbon Cranberry SauceWhisk the milk, 1 cup of the cream, egg yolks, sugar and salt in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, about 5 minutes, until the mixture is almost boiling and thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
  2. Pour the milk mixture into the blender with the chocolate. Cover and blend until combined and smooth.
  3. Place a dollop of the cranberry sauce on the bottom of small cups or ramekins. Use all of the cranberry sauce except for one tablespoon. Pour the chocolate mixture over the sauce in each ramekin, dividing the mixture evenly. Refrigerate until set, about 2 hours.
  4. Whip the remaining ½ cup cream with the remaining tablespoon of cranberry sauce with a mixer until soft peaks form. Top the chilled pots de creme with the whipped cream.

Getting his start in the kitchen learning Italian classics from his father and grandmother, both restauranteurs and cooks, Chef Cody earned degrees in culinary arts and hotel/restaurant management. He gained hands on experience by working in James Beard Award-recognized restaurants throughout New York and Texas. Leaning heavily on his Italian background, Castiglia also draws from many other cuisines. His recent success hosting pop-up dinners at the Hungry Pelican in Snohomish led to the new restaurant venture, expanding Castiglia’s current offerings as private chef, caterer and cooking instructor.






Roasted Red Pepper, Goat Cheese and Basil Galette

By Chef Karista Bennett

A savory galette feels like a special treat. Especially when summer produce is in full swing. Gorgeous garden ripe red peppers and fresh basil are combined with a silky goat cheese and flavorful basil pesto in this savory galette. It’s the perfect light but indulgent summer meal that is easily paired with a crisp white wine.


Roasted Red Pepper, Goat Cheese and Basil Galette

  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

Serves 4

Roasted Red Pepper, Basil and Goat Cheese Galette 4Ingredients

 Galette Dough 

  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) of very cold unsalted butter, diced into small pieces
  • 1 egg
  • 2 ounces of cold water

For the Galette  

  • 2 red peppers roasted, peeled seeded and sliced into strips
  • 3 -4 ounces goat cheese
  • ¼ – 1/3 cup basil pesto
  • ½ bunch fresh basil, sliced chiffonade or torn
  • 1 egg whisked with 1 teaspoon water
  • Kosher salt or finishing salt


  1. In a food processor, add the walnuts and pulse until finely chopped. Then add the flour and salt and give it another pulse to combine.
  2. Add the cold butter and pulse until the mixture is crumbly.  Then add the egg and while the food processor is running, add one tablespoon of water at a time until the mixture forms a firm dough.
  3. Roll the dough out onto a slightly floured surface and pat it into a round disc. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  4. When ready to make the galette, pre-heat the oven to 375F.
  5. On lightly floured parchment paper, roll out the dough into a rough circle, it doesn’t have to be perfect which is the beauty of a galette.  Roll the dough fairly thin, about 1/8th inch, but not too thin that it falls apart. Then transfer the parchment with the galette crust onto a baking sheet.
  6. Spread the pesto on the bottom of the galette, leaving room around the edges to fold. Then dollop the goat cheese over the pesto and then layer with the strips of roasted red pepper.
  7. Fold the edges of the galette dough toward the center of the galette to form a rustic pie shaped circle and then brush the edges with egg wash and sprinkle with kosher or finishing salt.
  8. Place the galette in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes until the edges are golden brown. Remove the galette from the oven and let it cool. Top with fresh basil chiffonade and serve with a crisp white wine.

Karista Bennett HR 2Karista is a passionate and experienced culinary arts professional, food photographer and freelance writer whose personal philosophy is to connect and inspire, visually through her photos and tasted in her recipes.  She believes “Food should not only satisfy hunger, it should feed the soul, nourish the body and delight the senses”

Her work appears regularly in several food, home and lifestyle magazines and she also publishes a recipe website at karistaskitchen.com  You can find her on Instagram at www.Instagram.com/lifearoundmytable and Facebook at facebook.com/karistaskitchen 

Karista lives in a beautiful and vibrant farming community in the Willamette Valley, Oregon with her husband, two daughters and one very tenacious terrier named Tank.



Russell Dean Lowell’s, In Search of Duende

Prepare yourself for the adventure of a lifetime.

In Search of DuendeFor the first time, one of the Northwest’s most celebrated chefs, Russell Dean Lowell, is making his amazing life’s journey, public. He offers us a peek inside his private journal and with the true spirit of a natural-born story teller, Russell takes us on the adventure of a lifetime. Are you curious? You should be.

Whether he is fly fishing in Baja or hanging with celebrity friends in Malibu, Russell’s charmed life and experiences make this book impossible to put down.

Filled with recipes that are sure to delight home cooks and chefs, In Search of Duende gives the reader a chance to experience a journey of epic proportions and create the delicious dish that corresponds with each fascinating story.

  • 12 mouth-watering recipes
  • Celebrity filled adventures 
Russell Dean Lowell

Russell Dean Lowell

About the Author:

Russell Dean Lowell is the Executive Chef and owner of Russell Dean Lowell Premier Catering and two of greater Seattle’s most celebrated restaurants: The Garden Cafe at Molbak’s in Woodinville and Russell’s, a rustic, yet elegant restaurant nestled in the North Creek of Bothell

Russell’s lifelong passion for food began when he was a small boy, exploring the mangrove swamps of Cuba, catching fish and hunting small game. He began his culinary career at the age of 15, cooking under the direction of a French chef in Southern California. Over the next 33 years, he traveled and worked extensively in numerous high-end establishments which lead him to become the executive chef for several well-known restaurants across the nation. In the mid-90s, he launched one of Seattle’s most sought-after catering businesses, serving the most distinguished clients in business, politics, and entertainment. In 2007, Russell’s was selected as Seattle’s host venue for the prestigious James Beard Foundation’s Taste America celebration.

Book  now available for pre-order

Follow Russell Dean Lowell on Facebook, Twitter and RussellLowell.com

Other Articles featuring Chef Lowell


Visiting Chef Series Dinner; Decadent Cuisine, Exquisite Wines

Dinner PartyI had been tossing around the idea of a monthly Visiting Chef’s Series Dinner for quite a few months. Finding the time to plan/create just didn’t seem to be in the schedule and the final push came from a friend of mine who simply said, let’s throw a dinner party, we’ll do it together and it will be fabulous.

Filet Mignon with Risotto

Filet Mignon with Risotto

Past entertaining has been limited to Friday or Saturday evenings.  Cocktail season was in full swing and deciding this event should not have any limits, I chose a Tuesday evening, sent out the invitations and began working on the decor / theme.  I sent out more invitations than I knew would be accepted, it was after all last minute, and smack dab in the holiday party season.  While some did in fact decline due to scheduling conflicts, a few of my favorite friends and colleagues accepted and the dinner was on.

The menu was beyond exquisite; Roasted Tomato Soup, New Bedford Scallops, White Prawns, Duck Breast, Filet Mignon, Risotto, Chocolate Lava Cake and  Chocolate Caramel Torte.

Duck Breast

Duck Breast

This was a rare treat indeed.  We watched our Celebrated Northwest Chef prepare each course and tasted each dish immediately after preparation, in anticipation of watching him prepare the next delectable bite.  We ate for hours.

The wines were also exquisite.  Marywill Winery sent their best as a gift for our soiree and to compliment our menu.  We sipped, savored, tasted, paired and enjoyed an enchanting evening.

2011 Maryhill Columbia Valley Winemaker’s Red

Maryhill Wines

Maryhill Wines

Aromas of vanilla, cherry cordial and cola. Medium bodied with a sweet core of raspberry jam and toasty oak followed by a medium finish. A classic Washington State red blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc with plenty to offer for those who enjoy a wine that is fruit-forward and easy drinking. ~Christine Havens

2011 Maryhill Columbia Valley Winemaker’s White

On the nose, Bartlett pear and lemon tart. The impression translates on the palate in this medium-bodied Washington State white blend. Nice round mouth feel and a medium finish, the Maryhill Columbia Valley Winemaker’s White represents a pleasantly composed effort for it’s modest price point. A versatile wine, this will be a great choice for entertaining. I’m drinking it this evening with a simple Sunday supper of roasted chicken and haricot verts. ~Christine Havens

“Great wines are our inspiration.  For us, winemaking isn’t about lifted noses or highbrow personalities.  It’s about sourcing the best grapes and treating them with passion, patience and balance.” ~ Maryhill Winery

Maryhill Winery

Maryhill Winery

Located in the Columbia Gorge wine region on a bluff overlooking the Columbia River and majestic Mt. Hood, the winery is a breathtaking place to visit and is situated just 100 miles east of Portland, Ore., and boast a 3,000 square-foot Tasting Room and gift shop, a 1,200 square-foot Reserve Room with a private courtyard, a popular vine-covered outdoor terrace and a 4,000 seat amphitheater that hosts a spectacular summer concert series, all of which are family – and dog – friendly.

Maryhill Winery

Maryhill Winery

Maryhill has produce nearly 40 award-winning varietals and blends and have been recognized as “Washington Winery of the Year” and “Best Gorge Attraction” for their superb wines and stay-for-a-day activities.  Read more here…

The first of our monthly Visiting Chef Series Dinners was an exquisite treat.  We are already planning our January feast and will keep you updated on the menu and wines.