Chef Davin Waite
With our stomachs rumbling, and our August Adventure Kit shipments rapidly approaching, we thought we’d get a head start on our meal prepping! That’s when we reached out to one of our favorite local chefs and asked if he too would be interested in partnering. Here’s why we had to pick Davin and what we are creating working together.
Davin Waite, is a native San Diegan, demonstrating his culinary talents and home-grown entrepreneurial spirit across town with his creation of uniquely assorted fresh and sustainably-minded restaurants. First there was the Fish Joint, then pop-up turned the must-see-eat-enjoy destination, Wrench & Rodent Seabasstropub, both in Oceanside, CA. Davin is now working with his wife Jessica (how could we not love her?!) as co-founder of The Plot, plant-based establishments. The two are committed to a healthier way of existing, and you may catch them at one of their upcoming educational classes and speaking events.
When we reached out to ask if he’d be the first chef to partner with us to create recipes for reVessel, Davin generously offered his time and his talents. If we didn’t have a bit of a celebrity crush on him already… we sure do now! Upon meeting him, it’s impossible to ignore his zeal for the craft and the incredible innovation he’s brought to the table. Chefs like Alice Waters, Rick Bayless and Dan Barber have taught us how professionals influence food systems and behaviors and Davin’s approach is no different. His belief, and moreover his menus reflect what’s possible with food, both from creating demand for less common goods in the supply chain to repurposing what others might be told are waste to the amazement when consumers experience his creations.
"It's a whole lot easier to get a lot of people to change a little than fewer people to change a lot. If you beat people up, they are going to go the other way. If you give them a cool option, they are going to go with it."Davin Waite
You'll see below his resourceful approach to meal planning. After seeing a pattern of banana peels piled up in the compost bin, Davin set out to capture those nutrients in a purposeful way. The banana peel replaces pork, traditionally in the adobada. Waste not, is certainly at the core, but it's not your bland re-use the leftover smorgasboard, but a truly spectacular combination of flavors one would not typically expect. As Davin says, "If you give them a cool option, they are going to go with it." We couldn’t agree more, and that can be in the many ways to eat for health and the planet, or in the choices of products we purchase. Change, even for the better, can be hard, but being presented with viable, smart, and tasty (or sleek) alternatives that make better use of resources, certainly makes it far more appealing to adapt to more sustainable ways.
And because he was crafting a meal designed to be a perfect first dish for the Adventure Kit, we asked Davin for his professional opinion: "I had so much fun geeking out on all the things I can do with the containers. It keeps food the way it was meant to be without bleeding. To take something designed so anyone can use it and make it cool. You make it the cool thing and everyone wants to do it and then you make it do good. That’s the genius!" Davin shared a similar insight on vegan food. While either stigmatized as a hippie food or shunned for his blandness or more accurately represented as junk food, it has always been a little counter-culture or relegated to the back of the natural products store. However, by reinvigorating the recipes and focusing on the best ingredients that are minimally processed, Davin has shown that it doesn’t have to be boring. He serves up an amazing customer experience, thoughtful menu items and because of that demonstrated that vegan dishes can have mass appeal. But don’t take our word for it, just visit any of his restaurants and taste for yourself!
We love the inclusive approach at all of Davin’s restaurants and what he and his wife have come to stand for. reVessel believes in a circular food system - farm to table to farm for human health and for the planet and we cannot think of anyone we’d rather partner with!
So without further ado, here’s Davin’s seasonally inspired, responsibly sourced feast- perfectly sized for your Adventure Kit. Notice his twist on a classic dish, but with a focus on minimally processed foods that celebrate nature.
Banana Peel Adobada + Spanish Quinoa + Elote Corn + Taco Shop Carrots and Chips
Taco Shop Carrots
CARROTS, ONIIONS, JALAPEÑOS
- 6 carrots cut .25" thick
- 1 small brown onion cut thin (fajita style)
- 1 jalapeño cut in rounds (remove seeds for less spice)
- 1 cup cider vinegar
- 1 cup water
- .5 cup white vinegar
- .5 cup lemon juice
- 1 cup morena (unbleached) sugar
[ minimally processed, can also be substituted with another alternative ]
- 1 tbsp pickling spice
[ bay leaf, juniper berry, mustard seed, dill, peppercorn, ginger, clove, coriander, red pepper, cinnamon stick ]
- 1 stick cinnamon
- 1.5 tbsp salt
In a saucepan: combine and bring the pickle brine to a boil. Then add the jalapeños, onions and carrots. After 1-minute remove from heat and let steep until cool. Refrigerate and enjoy.
Vegan Elote Sauce
- 1 cup vegan mayo
- .25 cup lemon juice
- 2 chipotle peppers
Combine mayo, lemon juice and peppers in a blender. Blend until smooth. Apply generously to corn and sprinkle with vegan cheese garnish with chopped cilantro
Prepare corn by pulling the outer husks down the ear to the base. Clear the silk from each ear of corn by handand replace the husks. Place the ears of corn in a large bowl of cold water with 1 tablespoon of salt for 10 minutes. Remove corn from water and shake off excess. Place the corn on the grill, close grill and cook 15 to 20 minutes, turning every 5 minutes, or until kernels are tender when pierced with a paring knife. Remove the husks and eat on the cob or remove the kernels. Serve with the elote and vegan cheese crumbles.
- 1.75 cup water or vegetable stock
- 1 cup quinoa
- 6 oz tomato sauce
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
Bring to a boil: water or vegetable stock, quinoa, tomato sauce, cumin, salt and pepper. Reduce heat to a simmer and cover (approx 20 min) or when all moisture is absorbed. Let cool for 10 min and serve.
Banana Peel Adobada
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- 1 dried guajillo
- 1 dried Chile California
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp agave nectar
In a saucepan: sweat 1 small diced brown onion, add blender mix and simmer. Cut the peels from 4 bananas and place directly into simmering adobada broth simmer as low as possible for 45 min (it will take on the flavor). Serve with spanish quinoa.