Meet A Local: Carolyn Wallace
This week's Meet A Local features none-other than Carlolyn Wallace - founder, creator + head preserver at her namesake, Wallace Comestibles (soon to be re-branded as Jammin' Malibu). Hailing from the beautiful oceanside of Malibu, CA, Carolyn utilizes only fresh fruit and ingredients sourced from Los Angeles' Farmer's Markets to create hyper-seasonal + hyper-flavorful jams, conserves and preserves. We are honored to be featuring her + her Blueberry Conserva in our November Basket!
Curator: Carolyn Wallace
What inspired you to start Wallace Comestibles?
I’ve always loved cooking and a friend with a booth at the farmers markets asked me to do some of my chutneys and jams for him to sell—it kept growing.
Tell us about your products.
Seasonal, organic and fresh fruit from the farmers markets is the inspiration for my original recipes. I try to build on the natural flavors of the fruit, not mask it with too much sugar or additives like artificial pectin. Our preserves are all small batch, hand crafted using organic sugar, honey from the farmers markets, or other natural sweeteners such as raisins and dates.
What does the word "artisan" mean to you?
Artisan means hand crafted, high quality products. No mass production or artificial fillers.
What are your favorite artisanal treats?
Favorite artisanal treat at the moment is Beachy Cream all organic ice cream sandwiches. Love the ginger ice cream
What drew you to food?
My father was a good home cook, as were both grandmothers. I used to be my father’s sous chef for his neighborhood gourmet dinners
Where does your food inspiration come from?
Food inspiration is the seasonal organic fruit from the farmers markets. And FLAVOR.
What products are you working on now?
Working on persimmons!! I’m making persimmon chutney with fuyus and persimmon butter with hachiyas.
Do you have a favorite product?
Favorite product is 'Meyers and Bloods,' a traditional marmalade with Meyer lemons and blood oranges. I love it on toast, oatmeal, sweet potato chips, and with cheese
Latest ingredient obsession?
Passion fruit is in season, along with guavas. I’ll probably combine with mango or orange for a great tropical jam.
What did you have for dinner last night?
Last night’s dinner was creamed mushrooms on toast—amazing variety of mushrooms from LA Funghi.
What person, living or deadd, would you most like to have try your products?
I’d like to serve my preserves to the First Lady, Michelle Obama. I love her concentration on healthy foods.
What's the best piece of advice you've received in building your business? What advice would you give to other artisans?
Best advice I had building my business is not to compromise on quality.
What other local food artisans or chefs do you admire?
I admire Ann Ryan of BEACHY CREAM, L’Artisan du Chocolate, The Wilde Thistle in Palms for scones, Gloria Serleto for salsa (not commercial). For jams, June Taylor Jams takes the same approach to preserves that I do
If you had to choose your last meal, what would it be?
My last meal would be a perfectly roasted chicken—idea stolen from Jacques Pepin
Favorite restaurant or food experience?
Recently, going to Eatily in Chicago. Classically, dinner at Antoines in New Orleans and The Pump Room in Chicago as a child.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the kitchen?
Outside of the kitchen, I hike and forage in the Malibu hills, knit, avid reader. Very active in community organizations
What's your favorite kitchen soundtrack?
I usually listen to audio books. Right now, "Game of Thrones" and “A Fighting Chance “ by Elizabeth Warren.