News of Pawpaws and Plenty More

Pawpaw fruits and blossoms

Pawpaw fruits and blossoms

Most of this post describes upcoming food events in Kentucky, but first, Savoring Kentucky applauds two institutions that are doing good things right this minute.

Already in place and worthy of support and encouragement:

Fayette County Public Schools welcomed new superintendent Tom Shelton with a courtyard reception that included foods prepared by Mtani Catering—and occupying center table? Beautiful fresh vegetables, gorgeous grilled vegetables, and fruits. Cake and punch hugged the ends of the tables, but our produce friends held pride of place. I appreciate our public schools leading toward good health by using flavorful, excellent foods at a celebration.

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Alfalfa Restaurant—yes, it's a Lexington institution, nearly 40 years old and thriving—now buys 120 dozen sustainably grown local eggs each week, using them for everything from the popular brunch specials like "Cousin Benedict" ("Two poached eggs on toast points with country ham and hollandaise") to pastry chef Tom Martin's amazing Chocolate Mousse Cheesecakes. The beneficiaries: our health, growers' income, and the regional economy.

Upcoming:

Pawpaws for dinner: Dr. Kirk Pomper writes that the Third International Pawpaw Conference will be held at Kentucky State University on September 9–10, 2011. The Pawpaw Extravaganza Dinner will be held on Saturday evening, September 10th, at the Center for Sustainability of Farms and Families. Kentucky pawpaw will be featured as part of each course of the dining experience. Kentucky fresh water prawns and Kentucky tilapia will also appear on dinner plates, thanks to the KSU Aquaculture Program and the Kentucky Aquaculture Association.

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Special Holly Hill Inn meals: On September 8, Chef Ouita Michel promises her signature "wacky tomato dumpling" as one part of a bountiful vegetarian feast, the Inn's first. On September 16, enjoy the other end of the spectrum -- a meat extravaganza, cooked Argentine barbecue style. Bet on many of the veggies and meats having Kentucky origins. With either meal, the savvy wine-ists at Holly Hill will be ready with good suggestions for glasses, flights, or bottles selected to make the food and wine make beautiful music together. Full menus and reservation information here.

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Birds of a Feather: Tommy Collins, chicken expert, will speak about the importance of good feather condition and its relationship to health in chickens. That's September 10, 2:00 PM, at Good Foods Market & Cafe. CLUCK, the "Coop"erative of Lexington Urban Chicken Keepers, now associated with Seedleaf, Inc., organized this event.

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Make and share soup. The next Seedleaf Soup's On communal soup-making and soup-sharing event happens Thursday, September 15 (and every first and third Thursday of the month), from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM at Woodland Christian Church, 530 E. High Street. Please bring a container to transport your soup after the event (assuming you don’t want to stay and eat together). Also, Seedleaf asks for $8 donation to help cover the cost of the nonseasonal ingredients. If you want more details, read about a recent Soup's On here.

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Field-to-Fork dinner for a cause: Louisville's Food Literacy Project hosts a benefit in the form of a fine-sounding feast, prepared by noted Louisville chefs, September 22, 2011, 7 PM, Big Spring Country Club, 5901 Dutchman's Lane, Louisville.

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March Madness Dream Dinner: As part of the fast approaching 2011 Incredible Food Show on October 8, God's Pantry Food Bank offers a chance to eat a Jonathan Lundy meal on the floor of Rupp Arena, coupled with a little basketball shoot-around where those tall guys play the game that keeps Kentucky warm all winter. $20 raffle tickets and more information available here.

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