The ideal way to greet out-of-town relatives or friends on a chilly Thanksgiving morning is with a cup of strong coffee and a pan of freshly baked cinnamon rolls. But not just any cinnamon rolls. We want to give our Fat City readers an opportunity to be really creative in the kitchen, so we're offering an opportunity for three of you to win an autographed copy of I Love Cinnamon Rolls (Andrews McMeel Publishing, $19.99), local cookbook author Judith Fertig's new book.
Three questions, all having some connection to the word cinnamon, are on the Fat City Facebook page. The first three commenters to correctly answer these questions - only one try per commenter, please - will be selected as the winners. The answers will be posted on Fat City tomorrow at 9 a.m., and the three winners will be notified at that time.
All answers must be made in the comment section on the Fat City Facebook page only by 7 a.m. Thursday, November 15, 2012. No answers will be accepted as comments on this post. No substitute prizes will be awarded. Winners must come to The Pitch offices at 1701 Main to pick up their prize.
The number 1111 (which numerologists believe means "a new start in life") was a lucky one for cheesecake-loving Kevin Bogan, who won the "Great 8" Dessert Competition hosted by Cafe Trio (with assistance from The Pitch). His recipe for Bananas Foster Cheesecake received the greatest number of votes online — more than 2,000 people cast votes — from among the recipes submitted by the seven semifinalists.
To celebrate the eight-year anniversary of Cafe Trio, the stylish boite on the Country Club Plaza, the restaurant is hosting a "Great Eight Dessert Contest" (with help from co-sponsor The Pitch) that boasts a payoff of $800 worth of prizes and the opportunity to have the winning dessert featured on the Cafe Trio menu for one month.
I was one of three judges — along with Cafe Trio executive chef Leon Bahlmann and Cafe Trio co-owner Chris Youngers — to narrow down the dozens of submitted recipes to the seven finalists. Those seven recipes are currently receiving votes online — you can vote by clicking here — until noon on Monday, July 23.
The panel of judges has voted, and the three winners of the first annual Pitch cheeseball competition are officially elevated to cheeseball history. After careful consideration, Jacquelyn Brittain's sweet "Deconstructed Cookie Ball" was chosen as first-place winner, receiving a $50 gift certificate to Pryde's Old Westport, for a dessert-style holiday ball that can be served with fresh fruit and cookies.
Aaron Shrum's "Give 'Em Hell, Harry" cheeseball recipe — a recipe created and prepared by his grandfather during the Korean War for visiting commander-in-chief Harry S. Truman — getting second-place honors, receiving a $30 Pryde's gift certificate. The third-place honors in the contest went to Celeste Lindell's "Garlic Cheese Ball." Lindell received a $20 Pryde's gift certificate.
Special honors go to all of our other contestants, including Barb Beavers, Kathleen Leighton, Sandy Smith, and Brian Spoonemore.
Each of these cheeseballs makes a great addition to a party tray or as a culinary gift item. The winning recipes follow.
There will be prizes tonight for the culinary winners who enter the recipe competition at the "Get Your Grow On!" Community Picnic and Potluck, held from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in the Pavilion at Loose Park, 51st Street and Wornall; the event is part of this weekend's Urban Farms & Gardens Tour.
"We haven't gotten as many recipes as we would like so far," says volunteer Bonnie Winston, who encourages local cooks to bring their favorite dish (it needs to serve at least five people), plus a printed recipe and, maybe, a serving spoon, to the Loose Park Pavilion no later than 6 p.m. There's also a $10 entry fee.
UPDATE: So you want the answers to this quiz? You'd like to know which five of the restaurants were totally phony? Well, we're going to tell you ... on the Fat City Facebook page!
The new hot boite in Prairie Village, Story, is the featured restaurant in this week's Pitch Cafe review. I have to admit that when I first heard the name of the venue, which is the creation of chef Carl Thorne-Thomsen and his wife, Susan, I thought it sounded just a shade precious. Why not Poem? Novella? Haiku? And then again, Story is short, sweet and easy-to-remember. What more could a restaurateur want?
Interestingly, I've heard a half-dozen incorrect variations on the name Tavern in the Village: that other new restaurant in the Prairie Village Shopping Center. Since it opened, people have told me that it's called the Village Green, the Village Tavern, Tavern on the Green, and my current favorite, Tavern on the Range.
Over the years, Kansas City has had its share of unusual and eccentric restaurant names and a couple of real clinkers. In the latter category, I'd nominate the ill-fated Segafredo Zanetti Espresso, the Machine Shed, and the Raisin Rack.
|It's all about happy endings, right?|
One of my tables was occupied by a particularly attractive couple who came into the dining room late, already well-lubricated and radiating hostility to each other. I was terrified that someone might get hit with the wine bottle, including me.
Should anyone be surprised that some enterprising entrepreneurs took the title of the popular 2002 Nia Vardalos movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, and used it as a restaurant title? The owners of the Arizona-based My Big Fat Greek Restaurant chain -- the subject of this week's Cafe review -- did, and you have to give them credit: It's clever, and it works.
This isn't an isolated idea. There are many other restaurants named after famous movies, including the Canadian restaurant, above, named for a 1945 Warner Bros. film, Mildred Pierce, about a waitress turned restaurateur -- played by Kansas City's own Joan Crawford.
Until the mid-1990s, I spent almost every New Year's Eve -- starting as a teenager -- busing tables, waiting tables or bartending (or doing all three).
It can be a grueling night for a restaurant staffer, what with a dangerous holiday combination of booze, unrealistically high expectations ("You're having fun, aren't you? Why not?") and pricey packages. For the people working, all that can add up to a lucrative night. But not always.
|Image via Flickr: kapgar|
The correct questions to the "Groovy TV commercials" quiz are: 1) Puffa Puffa Rice 2) Bit-O-Honey 3) Life Savers 4) Cheerios 5) Mounds Bar and Almond Joy ______________________________________________________________In the 1960s, as catchy pop filled the airwaves, those wise marketing gurus on Madison Avenue figured out that a great way to build brand recognition for a food product was to give it an infectiously memorable jingle. Played enough times on TV -- particularly on Saturday mornings for the youngsters, who would later pester their parents for sugary cereal products, soda pop and candy -- each jingle could become a mantra. You couldn't get the tune or the lyrics -- like this vintage Cracker Jack jingle -- out of your head! Today's contest tests your memory to see if any of those vintage jingles are still lurking around in there.
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