A Palauan Chef in Susanville + Pacifica’s Forgotten Prison Camp

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Brennan Temol preps for Lassen Community College’s cafeteria. (Lisa Morehouse/KQED)

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Cafeteria Cook Brings Gourmet Dishes Inspired by Palauan Childhood to Lassen Community College 

The town of Susanville in Lassen County is mostly known for its two state prisons. But the town is also home to a chef cooking up gourmet meals, inspired by his childhood in the Pacific Island nation of Palau. Rice and short-ribs, poke, and toasted angel food cake are just some of the culinary treats Brennan Temol whips up in the community college cafeteria. For her series California Foodways, reporter Lisa Morehouse takes us on a food tour with Temol. She learns how the Palauan chef is using his skills to elevate cafeteria food and finding a way to bring a taste of home to a high desert community that in some ways, isn’t so different from his Pacific island homeland.

Pacifica’s WWII Prison Camp Has Largely Been Erased — But It Was There 

Katie Czekowski grew up in the picturesque seaside town of Pacifica. One day, she was scrolling through social media when a photo was shared to a group for Pacifica locals, and the buildings she saw looked like dormitories surrounded by high fencing. Turns out, she was looking at pictures of the Sharp Park Detention Center, where people of Japanese descent were incarcerated in Pacifica during the 1940s. A place for Japanese-Americans considered  “highly dangerous,” according to the government. Today the site is an archery range with no signs distinguishing the park as a former concentration camp. KQED reporter Adhiti Bandlamudi investigates the park’s dark past and digs up diaries from one of its former prisoners in this story from our friends at the Bay Curious podcast.

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