Matanuska Valley


Salads at locally owned Turkey Red in Palmer are just one healthy, delicious menu item. Other dishes include grilled polenta, chicken with figs, moussaka, cioppino, soups, hot and cold sandwiches, pizza, and an array of desserts. Photo by Kaylene Johnson-Sullivan. Alex Papasavas did not set out to become a chef much less the owner of one of the most popular restaurants in Palmer, Alaska. In the early 1990s, she worked for the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) as a horse packer at the Three Peaks Ranch in the Wind River Range of Wyoming. When the ranch cook had to leave for a family emergency, Alex agreed to fill in. “I thought, my gosh, I don’t know anything about cooking,” Alex said. Her saving grace was a 1984 book, Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen by Harold McGee. “It just opened the door for me.” Since then,…