An update on my recent foray into the world of recipe contests, which I described two issues ago: Reporters apparently don’t have an advantage at the Mountain State Fair cooking contests. John Lee of WLOS showed up at the Malt-o-Meal contest with a mess of jalapeño poppers and promptly joined me in losing to an 11-year-old who was busy showing goats when her fruit-parfait pizza with a cereal crust was named the winning dish. Prizes also went to makers of trail mix, meatloaf and coconut shrimp. My recipe, sadly, was apparently judged too lengthy for the back of a cereal box—and probably deemed too burnt as well. The judges were reportedly impressed with my shopping skills, asking where I’d found sausages with dried cherries. Next time, I’m keeping it simpler: See you at the 2008 fair.
Fortunately for Asheville residents craving good Greek food, baklava freezes well. Stock up on the honeyed dessert and other Greek treats next weekend at the annual Asheville Greek Festival at Martin Luther King Jr. Park. The festival, which runs from Sept. 28 to 30, also features music and dance—but as longtime festival-goers know, the dolmades is the real draw.
Asheville may have embraced the local, organic food movement, but Alice Waters invented it. The doyenne of the fresh-eating revolution will be in Charlotte on Thursday, Sept. 27, and while many events are already sold out, Slow Food Charlotte is selling tickets to Waters’ Queen University talk on her Edible Schoolyard Project. Waters, owner of Chez Panisse in Berkeley, created the project to put schoolchildren in gardens and garden produce in school cafeterias. Tickets to the 8 p.m. lecture are $20, or $10 for educators. Visit www.slowfoodcharlotte.org to register.
Local cooks who listened when their friends and family members said, “You could sell this,” will be hawking their mustards, salsas, pickles, cookies and other treats at the Food Ventures Marketplace event, sponsored by Blue Ridge Food Ventures. The regional kitchen incubator, which helps launch small culinary businesses by providing training and a certified kitchen, will open its showcase to the public on Tuesday, Sept. 25, at 5 p.m. at A-B Tech’s Enka campus.