Island Senior: Cooking With Kate, The Mullis Center’s New Cook

Posted November 1, 2019 at 5:49 am by

Kate Stone - Gretchen Ganty photo

Island Senior is a reg­u­lar col­umn on the San Juan Update writ­ten by Peg­gy Sue McRae…

The Mullis Cen­ter has a new lead cook. I was delight­ed to learn the new cook is my friend Kate Stone.  Kate recent­ly returned to San Juan Island after mov­ing with her fam­i­ly to New Zealand for a 5‑year adven­ture that stretched into 13 years.

I can vouch for Kate’s cook­ing. I first met Kate when she had Katrina’s, where Mike’s Wine Bar is now. It was a favorite meet­ing place for a cir­cle of girl­friends and there was always some­thing tasty on the menu. Lat­er, I lived across the street from Kate and often enjoyed the joy­ful may­hem of her young fam­i­ly and always, there was some­thing good to eat at Kate’s.

Kate began her culi­nary stud­ies tak­ing omelet and crepe class­es at a depart­ment store in Port­land then becom­ing her family’s omelet mak­er. Her Grand­ma Cora had a chow­der house styled restau­rant on Hood’s Canal. Kate grew up eat­ing oys­ters and clam chow­der and on spe­cial occa­sions Oys­ters Rockefeller.

Lat­er, while work­ing as a deck­hand in Alas­ka she said, “I usu­al­ly was the cook, as well.” There she mar­ried a fish­er­man and start­ed a fam­i­ly, tak­ing on many cook­ing and bak­ing jobs along the way. After her first husband’s untime­ly death she returned to Ore­gon and pur­chased a con­vert­ed school bus that she even­tu­al­ly moved, with her then teenage daugh­ter, to San Juan Island.

It wasn’t just my girl­friends and I who enjoyed meet­ing at Katrina’s. Kate met her hus­band Jor­dan, “I mar­ried one of my favorite cus­tomers” at Katrina’s. Kate had two more chil­dren before tak­ing a fam­i­ly vaca­tion to New Zealand where they learned that their pro­fes­sions were in demand.

Return­ing to New Zealand for a longer stay, besides trad­ing baked goods with neigh­bors and teach­ing sour­dough bread-mak­ing class­es, Kate earned her Mas­ters Degree in Screen­writ­ing from Auck­land Uni­ver­si­ty of Tech­nol­o­gy. She has writ­ten 3 fea­ture length scripts and returned to San Juan Island to write. Work­ing 3 days a week at the Mullis Cen­ter she says, “is man­age­able with such aspi­ra­tions plus, it pro­vides social con­tact and heart­felt vol­un­teers to col­lab­o­rate with.” Wel­come back Kate!

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  1. I LLOVED Katri­na’s and was sor­ry when it closed. This is def­i­nite­ly good news that such a great cook is back. I always felt her deli­cious food was homey but healthy. Wel­come back Kate! Here’s a good rea­son to try lunch at the senior center. 🙂

    Comment by Stephanie Prima on November 1, 2019 at 8:34 am
  2. Real­ly real­ly good news!!! How lucky are the seniors at Mullis! I can mir­ror Peg­gy Sue’s com­ments as know­ing Kate since she arrived her the first time. And all else said, yum yum yum; I still make the spinach pies she taught me and wow, her tri­fle! may I taste that again one day! The lunch­es will get more crowd­ed now I sus­pect! wel­come Kate, so hap­py you are here. Pam Fry

    Comment by Pamella C Fry on November 1, 2019 at 1:43 pm
  3. How lucky are the San Juans to have a cre­ative genius return to it’s arch­i­pel­ago! Much respect, Mrs. Gan­ty. May you and that fine daugh­ter of ours per­pet­u­ate culi­nary joy at the Mullis. A thou­sand thanks, PSM :@)

    Comment by J Alexander on November 2, 2019 at 1:53 pm

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