Hi, I’m Elka.

I live in Southwestern New Mexico, completely off-grid, in a riparian canyon. My partners Kiva Rose and Jesse Wolf Hardin support our rather idyllic existence here with their magazine for herbalists, Plant Healer, as well as an annual herbal conference.

My life revolves around food & family, building and tending fires, moving water around, and playing in the kitchen. Making messes, enjoying the heck out of the results, and cleaning them up. Homemade bread, endless pots of soup and panfulls of stir-fries, pastries, jams and chutneys, pickles and other preserves, and fun homemade condiments. Filling mason jars, emptying them, and filling them once again. Even in the winter I manage to find things to can!

It’s hard for me to imagine life without my beloved river and the things that grow here, as well as butter, parsnips, figs, lemons, rosemary, fir trees, blackstrap molasses, toffee, and a few other things that don’t, or at least, not yet.

In spite of the fact that not everything I desire grows here, I often feel like I live in a kind of faeryland, and that there may or may not be creatures I’ve never seen playing tricks in the shadows. Which could be the cause of so many lost flashlights & kitchen knicknacks, paw prints in the dough, and missing jars of honey. Or maybe it’s just the cats.

This began as simply a food blog, (as so many do) but very soon I began to see that I wanted to include more. I have never been very well disciplined, but I think there’s something in between a complete lack of focus and a focus so extreme that it feels like a lie. I’m not a wilderness Martha Stewart. I have no interest in being so industrious or tidy that I have no time for naps by the river.

But, I certainly wouldn’t argue with any little faeries that wanted to wash all the daily spoons and mason jars, and untangle all my many colored threads, in a happy trade for weekly shortbread!

Some of the Things that make me happy, that you will see on this blog:

wild foods & using common domestic plants

traditional foods

baking

gluten-free cooking/baking

condiment making

cookbooks, and other books

sewing/embroidering/mending

re-purposing fabrics and other materials

fashion design/ fashion

learning from other cultures

watercolor art/art in general

You can email me at enchantedcanyonkitchen@gmail.com if you’d prefer that to leaving comments on the posts. Thanks!

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