Events

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Pitch's Bacon & Bourbon Festival celebrates the spirits and the sow

Posted By on Thu, Apr 10, 2014 at 6:30 AM

The first Pitch Bacon & Bourbon Festival will be held on Thursday, April 10, at the Guild, 1621 Locust. - ANGELA C. BOND
  • Angela C. Bond
  • The first Pitch Bacon & Bourbon Festival will be held on Thursday, April 10, at the Guild, 1621 Locust.

It is, of course, Homer Simpson who has defined our culture's love of bacon. His declaration that he could be a vegetarian only if bacon grew on trees pretty much sums up our endless hunger for the stuff.

Bourbon doesn't grow on trees, either, but the corn-based, fermented whiskey is both vegetarian-friendly and a fine complement to all things fried, smoked or both.

Put them together and you get The Pitch's Bacon & Bourbon Festival, a drinky porkathon with something for every Homer Simpson. From 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Thursday, April 10, eight Kansas City restaurants - including Accurso's, Anton's Taproom, Barrel 31, Blue Bird Café, EBT restaurant, and the Rock & Run Brewery and Pub - join more than 25 whiskeys to fry and pour their wares at the Guild (1621 Locust). The event is sold out.

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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Farm to Market's banana-nut bread makes a great BCJ Sandwich

Posted By on Wed, Apr 9, 2014 at 7:31 AM

Farm to Market's moist, sweet banana-nut bread makes a fine sandwich filled with crispy Burgers' Smokehouse bacon and a slice of Skyview Farm and Creamery's Pleasant Prairie cheese. - DILLON KINNISON
  • Dillon Kinnison
  • Farm to Market's moist, sweet banana-nut bread makes a fine sandwich filled with crispy Burgers' Smokehouse bacon and a slice of Skyview Farm and Creamery's Pleasant Prairie cheese.


One of the businesses appearing at The Pitch's Bacon & Bourbon Festival on Thursday is Our Sassy Pantry, which offers among its jams a savory concoction starring bacon. I was trying to figure out how best to deploy it when inspiration struck: Farm to Market dropped off a loaf of its limited-edition banana-nut bread.

The bread is available in select supermarkets through April 20. That's Easter Sunday - and Easter is the reason for this particular batch.

"We've been offering limited runs of sweet breads for the past 10 years," says Farm to Market vice president John Friend. "We do the chocolate-cherry bread around Valentine's Day and Irish soda bread for St. Patrick's Day. We wanted to do something special for Easter and kicked around the idea of hot cross buns, but my father has a great recipe for banana-nut bread, so we're using that."

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Friday, March 28, 2014

KC Food Circle hosts 'Eat Local and Organic Expo' tomorrow at JCCC

Posted By on Fri, Mar 28, 2014 at 3:59 PM

The 2009 "Eat Local and Organic Expo" at the Shawnee Civic Center attracted a wide range of local farmers, vendors -- and customers. - EMILY AKINS
  • Emily Akins
  • The 2009 "Eat Local and Organic Expo" at the Shawnee Civic Center attracted a wide range of local farmers, vendors -- and customers.


If you haven't made plans for tomorrow - Saturday, March 29 - and would like the opportunity to talk to local farmers and buy local organic produce, vegetable seedlings for home gardening, free-range meat, eggs and dairy, the Kansas City Food Circle presents the first of two spring "Eat Local and Organic Expos" at the Gym at Johnson County County College, 12345 College Boulevard, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. (The second expo is scheduled for April 12 in the gym at Penn Valley Community College.)

Admission to the event and parking are free.

Tomorrow's event is the 16th annual expo mounted by the Kansas City Food Circle. Emily Akins, the co-coordinator (with David Lawrence), describes the one-day happening as "a really large farmers market with a whole lot of farmers to talk to and a lot of things to look at and purchase."

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Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Novelist Rachel Cantor mashes up pizza, time travel, romance

Posted By on Wed, Mar 19, 2014 at 7:30 AM

A_Highly_Unlikely_Scenario_cover.jpg


Rachel Cantor, the author of the recently released novel, A  Highly Unlikely Scenario, or a Neetsa Pizza Employee's Guide to Saving the World, has always been passionate about pizza - she spent six years of her childhood in Rome and became, she says, "a real pizza snob" - but that wasn't the reason that she chose it as a profession for her novel's protagonist.

"He needed to be in a room by himself with a telephone," says Cantor from her home in Brooklyn. "And I remembered that many years ago I overheard a conversation between two writers talking about their very worst jobs. One of the writers said that he - or she, I can't remember - had a job as the person who answered the phone for the complaint line for a national pizza chain.

"He had to field complaints from all over the United States and find a way, from prepared company guidelines, to resolve the complaint. When I was looking for a job for my character, Leonard, that seemed perfect. He's working out of a highly surveilled home office."

Cantor will read from her novel this Thursday, March 20, at the Central Library, 14 West 10th Street, at 6:30 p.m. Reservations are suggested by clicking here.

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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Cookies! Pasta! Feast of St. Joseph celebrated tomorrow

Posted By on Tue, Mar 18, 2014 at 11:22 AM

Italian cookies are just one reason to visit a St. Josephs Table on Wednesday

  • Italian cookies are just one reason to visit a St. Joseph's Table on Wednesday

A century ago, Sicilian immigrants living in and around the Columbus Park neighborhood practiced a custom they had brought with them from their homeland: celebrating the intercession of the country's patron, St. Giuseppe, in preventing a famine - by creating rain during a terrible drought - during the Middle Ages. Sicilians began the tradition of honoring the saint with a lavish feast. Over the years, the feast has been transformed from an eating celebration to a more visual-art form: a St. Joseph's Table is now more about viewing a display of food than eating it.

But in Kansas City, there's still a significant culinary component to the festivities, with many area churches serving a free pasta dinner on the actual feast day - this year on Wednesday, March 19 - and selling a variety of foodstuffs and pastries.

For many years, the historic Holy Rosary parish, with a large Sicilian congregation, was the primary place in Kansas City to pay homage to St. Giuseppe. But other local churches have gotten into the spirit of the occasion.

This year marks the first time that the Guardian Angels parish (4232 Mercier) in Westport has created a St. Joseph's Table in the school cafeteria.

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Friday, March 14, 2014

Farm to Market's Irish soda bread makes a tasty breakfast sandwich

Posted By on Fri, Mar 14, 2014 at 2:12 PM

Farm to Market's sugar-glazed Irish soda bread makes a tasty Irish breakfast sandwich -- with the right ingredients. - ASHFORD STAMPER
  • Ashford Stamper
  • Farm to Market's sugar-glazed Irish soda bread makes a tasty Irish breakfast sandwich -- with the right ingredients.


If you're longing for a traditional Irish breakfast in the days leading up to St. Patrick's Day - Monday, March 17 - but don't want to actually make the combination of eggs, bacon, bangers (British slang for sausages), Irish soda bread, fried potatoes and Irish tea, the iconic Browne's Irish Marketplace (3300 Pennsylvania) begins serving its version of an Emerald Isle-style breakfast beginning at 8 a.m. tomorrow.

Browne's breakfast includes all of the above and coffee, orange juice and tomatoes, and you can have it Saturday, Sunday (beginning at 10 a.m.) and Monday - the actual feast day of the saint - from 7 to 11:30 a.m.

But if you'd rather avoid the crowds, particularly on Monday, but you still want to use one of the round, scone-like loaves of limited-edition, sugar-glazed Irish soda bread made by Kansas City's Farm to Market Bread Co. through Monday, we have an idea for you.

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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Fish-fry season begins this weekend

Posted By on Tue, Mar 4, 2014 at 3:44 PM

Many churches in the metro will begin hosting modestly - priced fried-fish dinners beginning this week. - FLICKR/TOBYOTTER
  • Flickr/Tobyotter
  • Many churches in the metro will begin hosting modestlypriced fried-fish dinners beginning this week.


Yes, it's all Mardi Gras and beads and booze tonight, so live it up. Lent begins tomorrow, kicking off  fish-fry season in Kansas City - and with plenty of opportunity to eat meatlessly for the next six Fridays during the Lenten season. No matter what your religious affiliation, these modestly priced meals - fish, shrimp or some other meatless alternative (usually, but not always, available for diners who don't care for seafood) - can be a cost-effective way to take a family out to eat.

For the last several years, Fat City has listed the area churches offering these meatless meals. If you have additional questions (directions, prices), we suggest contacting them directly. One of the most thorough calendars for choosing the most convenient fish fry can be found by clicking here.

I asked Marty Denzer, reporter with the Catholic Key, which church has the snazziest fish fry - if such a thing even exists.

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Thursday, February 27, 2014

Accurso's Italian Restaurant wins Sugar Rush for second year

Posted By on Thu, Feb 27, 2014 at 2:32 PM

The ice cream made from Makers Mark bourbon infused with blood oranges and cherries will soon be added to the Accurso's Italian Restaurant dinner menu. - ANTHONY ACCURSO
  • Anthony Accurso
  • The ice cream made from Makers Mark bourbon infused with blood oranges and cherries will soon be added to the Accurso's Italian Restaurant dinner menu.

For the second year in a row, restaurateur Anthony Accurso  - of Accurso's Italian Restaurant at 4890 Main - was selected by participants (using gumballs as ballots) as the winner of the "KC Sweetheart Award" at the third annual Pitch Sugar Rush event. Sugar Rush was held February 20 at the Promise Wedding and Event space at 1814 Oak.

Accurso had one of the most elaborate displays of desserts at the event, serving samples of his restaurant's signature cheesecake on a red velvet cake crust, a melon-basil-and mint frozen granita, and an intoxicating  house-made brown-sugar ice cream made from Maker's Mark bourbon infused with cherries and blood oranges: "It's a pretty potent ice cream," Accurso says. "We had to ask for IDs of anyone who wanted a sample."

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Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Sugar Rush returns next week!

Posted By on Wed, Feb 12, 2014 at 12:01 AM

Cheesecake, bundt cakes, cupcakes and an enticing array of other sweets will be sampled -- and judged -- at next week's Sugar Rush. - ANGELA C. BOND
  • Angela C. Bond
  • Cheesecake, bundt cakes, cupcakes and an enticing array of other sweets will be sampled -- and judged -- at next week's Sugar Rush.


What does it take to win the "Kansas City Sweetheart Award"? Not charm. Not good looks. Not even congeniality.

Hint: sugar.

Actually, sugar is just one component of The Pitch Sugar Rush, where many of Kansas City's finest restaurants, bakeries and candy makers compete for top honors. The third annual sweets-and-dessert expo is held from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, February 20, at the Promise Wedding & Event Space (1814 Oak).

The other ingredient is you. As in: You go, you sample goods from the vendors, and then you vote for your favorite. (Tickets to the event cost $12; see getasugarrush.com.)

Last year's Sweetheart Award winner, Anthony Accurso of Accurso's Italian Restaurant (4980 Main), served samples of his grandmother's cheesecake. This year, he's coming back - and introducing a new cheesecake.

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Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Fervere is taking orders for its Valentine's Day loaf

Posted By on Tue, Feb 4, 2014 at 1:08 PM

Fervere Bakery and Bread Studio is still taking orders for the annual cranberry-almond and Christopher Elbow chocolate loaf available on Valentine's Day. - FERVERE
  • Fervere
  • Fervere Bakery and Bread Studio is still taking orders for the annual cranberry-almond and Christopher Elbow chocolate loaf available on Valentine's Day.



When Fervere Bakery and Bread Studio's owner and baker, Fred Spompinato, says his February holiday bread is a pain to make, he means pain - not pane (pronounced pahn-nay) - as in Pane e Cioccolata, the 1974 Italian comedy called Bread and Chocolate in the United States.

Why pain? Fervere's upcoming limited-edition holiday loaf, which is only available on Valentine's Day, is a variation on the crusty almond-and-cranberry bread that the bakery has been making since November. For the Valentine's Day loaf, the Fervere bakers add pieces of Christopher Elbow chocolate to the dough, And not just any chocolate, but a chocolate created by Elbow that melds well with fruits and nuts.The difficult part, Spompinato says, is breaking the chocolate into the even pieces required for each loaf and distributing them evenly through the dough.

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