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Celebrating Mother's and Father's Day with Tanya Smith from Bodhi Farms and Steve Kuntz from Feast Raw Bar & Bistro

I had the honor of interviewing Tanya Smith and Steve Kuntz from Bodhi Farms and Feast Raw Bar and Bistro during the Mother's Day and Father's Day celebrations for the Hola Montana Leguminosas website (https://www.holamontana.com/blogs/).


Tanya and Steve, beyond their roles as key supporters, consumers, and advocates of Montana-grown lentils, chickpeas, and dried peas, are also exceptional parents. They are not just raising children, but nurturing the future of local agriculture. Their kids, Gigi and Sienna on Tanya's side, and Josephine and Henry on Steve's, are being instilled with the values of community, sustainability, and a deep love for local produce.


As you read their story, you'll discover how these two Bozemanites have significantly impacted our community through their support for local agriculture and their roles as parents and community members.





Tanya Smith: A mother who cultivates a connection with nature through cooking






Tanya, Rayner, Gigi, Sienna, and Bodhi



By: Claudia Galofre Krevat


Tanya Smith, co-founder of Bodhi Farms in Bozeman, Montana, is a mother with clear principles and purposes: To instill a deep connection with nature in her family and those around her through food.


I had the pleasure of meeting Rayner and Tanya Smith in 2020, shortly after the opening of Bodhi Farms, a farm located in Bozeman, Montana. Living just six miles away made me curious about the buzz around the new organic farm. From the beginning, I was captivated by the vision of this entrepreneurial and environmentally conscious couple.


Find out more about Bodhi Farms by going to their website. https://www.bodhi-farms.com/


In 2022, I had the opportunity to introduce our Lentil Community and Bodhi Farms to a group of food importers and distributors from Latin America and the Caribbean. This introduction was made possible by Weston Merrill, who is a promoter of the Hola Montana initiative and a part of the state Department of Agriculture. The group, consisting of twenty participants, visited Montana as part of a trade mission. They were all amazed by the grounds and beauty of the farms, as well as the gracious hospitality of Tanya and Rayner.



Claudia Galofre Krevat (CGK): What motivated you to become the owner of an organic farm? Why did you choose the name Bodhi?

Tanya Smith (TS): My family moved to Bozeman, Montana, about ten years ago. We were looking for a place to enjoy outdoor dining and were surprised by the lack of options in the city. So the idea of ​​a farm-to-table restaurant came about, where you could walk through the gardens on the way to your table. When we started Bodhi Farms, we wanted it to have a purpose beyond just the vision. “Bodhi” means “awakening” or “enlightenment,” and we wanted it to be a place where people would feel inspired to be more environmentally conscious and support local farmers.



CGK: How did you duringtransform your vision into what Bodhi Farms is today?

TS: We opened our doors in June 2020, in the middle of the pandemic, which forced us to adapt our plans. We start with activities like yoga and weddings and then added events like our popular farm parties during the summer. Over time, we have expanded our operations to include year-round glamping and dining. This has been made possible thanks to our incredible team, who share our passion for sustainability and local foods.



One of the yoga sessions at Bodhi Farms



CGK: What is your family's role on the farm?

TS: My husband Rayner oversees all daily operations, from the gardens to the restaurant and hospitality, while I handle sales, marketing, and wellness. Our children are also involved, helping with activities such as children's camps and our Thursday farm parties with live music.













Rayner during one of his services at Bodhi Farms



CGK: How do you select what to grow and raise on your farm?

TS: Our selection is based on the growing season and what we want to have on our restaurant menus year-round. We grow a variety of greens, herbs, and herbs during the summer and early fall and try to pickle or preserve what we can for the colder months.


CGK: How do you design the menu at your restaurant?

TS: We believe in the importance of a local supply chain and cultivating long-lasting relationships with our local farmers and ranchers. Our farm-to-table menu highlights local and seasonal produce, reflecting our commitment to sustainability and quality. For us, food is a way to bring the community together and honor our local producers.


CGK: What advice would you give to women getting started in farming, cooking, or wellness?

TS: Start small and focus on what you are passionate about. Growing your own food and living healthily can be rewarding, but it takes time and effort. The most important thing is to stay true to yourself and find joy.


CGK: What dish with lentils or chickpeas do you remember most from childhood?

TS: I've always loved hummus. It is a dish that takes me back to my childhood and the comforting flavors of Mediterranean cuisine.



CGK: Could you share a recipe with legumes for our viewers?

TS: Sure, I'd love to have you. Here's my recipe for Pickled Beet and Lentil Salad.


Pickled Beets and Lentil Salad



Ingredients:

• 2 medium beets, roasted and peeled

• 1/4 cup cooked black beluga lentils

• 1 ounce crumbled goat cheese

• 2 cups of mixed vegetable salad

• 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar

• 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

• 1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard

• 1 teaspoon minced garlic

• Salt and pepper to taste

• A handful of microgreens



Preparation:

1. Cook the lentils according to package instructions and let them cool.

2. Wash the beets and place them in boiling water. Boil them for 30-45 minutes or until they are tender when pierced with a fork. Let them cool, then peel and cut them into slices or wedges.

3. Marinate the sliced ​​cooked beets in 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar for at least 1 hour before serving.

4. Mix the dressing with apple cider vinegar, olive oil, Dijon mustard, minced garlic, salt and pepper.

5. In a small bowl, add enough apple cider vinaigrette to cover the bottom.

6. Arrange the mixed vegetables on a serving platter or individual plates.

7. Arrange the roasted beet slices on top of the leaves.

8. Sprinkle the crumbled goat cheese over the beets.

9. Drizzle the cider vinaigrette over the salad.

10. Add microgreens as an extra garnish and enjoy.





 


Steve Kuntz is a father and a chef who is passionate about life and cooking



 

By: Claudia Galofre Krevat

 

Steve Kuntz established the foundations of Feast Raw Bar & Bistro in 2015. After an extensive journey through various cuisines worldwide, he combined his culinary experiences into a unique gastronomic concept.

 

The Feast Raw Bar & Bistro menu stands out for its wide range of dishes made with carefully selected local ingredients. Since its opening, Steve and I have forged a relationship of collaboration and friendship that was born at the farmers market, where we anticipated and celebrated the opening of this establishment.

 

Today, Steve, his wife Molly, his children Josephine and Henry, and their beloved pets call Bozeman, Montana, home. I invite you to click on the link below to learn more about the unique culinary experience that Feast Raw Bar & Bistro offers. https://feastbozeman.com/

 



Claudia Galofre Krevat (CGK): What motivated you to open your restaurant? Why did you choose the name Feast Raw Bar & Bistro?

Steve Kuntz (SK): When we decided to open Feast, we felt Bozeman was missing an opportunity. The restaurants operating at the time were not adventurous enough, and we wanted to change things. By focusing on fresh seafood, layered flavors, and global cuisine, we hoped to attract diners who had experience with more sophisticated food. Feast is both a noun and a verb; you can delight in Feast!

 

 

CGK: What has it been like growing up within the gastronomic industry?

(SK): Although the restaurant industry has many challenges, such as working holidays and weekends, long hours, etc., I have never wanted to do anything else. We get so much satisfaction from creating these masterpieces and watching guests melt as they devour them. We are artists, and our creations are ephemeral. There is always the joy of creating something new.

 

 



Ahi with Beluga Lentils

CGK: Do you work with local producers, ranchers, and winemakers? How do you select your associations?

(SK): When selecting products for our restaurant, we first look for quality. We must start with the best items we can find. Fortunately, in the Gallatin Valley, we are lucky to have producers whose passion matches ours.

 

 

CGK: What has influenced the style or philosophy of your restaurant?

(SK): We were influenced by the idea of ​​a French bistro, which was informal in style but elevated in presentation. We do not claim to be a fine dining establishment but have very high standards. Our policy has always been to start with the highest-quality ingredients and then prepare them carefully. We also love the sense of place we create by using as much local produce and protein as possible.

 

 

CGK: Tell us about your family and the message you are trying to convey to them. How many children do you have, names and ages?

(SK): We try to show our children the value of hard work and taking care of the process. Josefine is 5, and Henry is almost 2, so we are in the middle of some of the most impactful years for developing the skills that will help them throughout their lives.


CGK: What is the philosophy you try to transmit to your children?

(SK): We want our children to enjoy the little things in life and find happiness in experiences, not material things. We also want them to show respect for all people and animals.

 

CGK: Montana is a leader in the production of lentils and chickpeas in the United States. Do you remember any dish from your childhood that included lentils or chickpeas? Tell us which one.

(SK): I remember my dad making a green lentil soup that is still one of the most satisfying meals I have ever had. I always finished each dish with a splash of red wine vinegar, and I have continued to do so, but I prefer aged sherry vinegar.

 

CGK: Could you share a recipe with legumes for our viewers?

(SK): Sure, I would love to. Here I share my recipe for Chickpea Panels

 

 



Recipe:

Chickpea panels

 

5 cups of water

2.5 cups chickpea flour, sifted

1 cup chives, chopped

2 teaspoons of salt

1 teaspoon pepper

 

---------------------

 

Put water to boil. In a metal bowl, pour water over the ingredients and whisk quickly until no lumps form. Spray pan spray on a ½ sheet pan and spread the mixture and level before allowing to cool. Cut it into “fingers” and put it in the refrigerator for about half an hour to set. To serve, pour ½ cup of vegetable oil in a frying pan and fry until golden brown.

 

Serve with tartar sauce.

 





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