Rather than focus on the ravages of the disease -- Muscular Dystrophy is the world's most common lethal genetic disease for children -- the Buckeye CableSystem MDA Toledo Summer Kickoff Fund-raiser will instead celebrate the good work done by the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
The event, the first of its kind in this area, will be at 7 p.m. on May 24 at the Toledo Country Club, 3949 River Rd. According to organizer Dock David Treece, it will be a party with an elegant, jazz-age feel, complete with a band and dancing.
And, of course, food. It is a relatively low-cost affair as these things go, just $55 for the sake of a good charity (MDA also works to fight other muscle-related illnesses, including ALS). So the food served will be appetizers. But as whipped up by club chef Richard Grimm, the appetizers will be memorable as, once again, these things go.
We're talking mini beef Wellingtons. We're talking seared tuna with teriyaki orange on a multi-seeded cracker. We're talking gazpacho shooters. We're talking smoked salmon on corn cakes. We're talking shrimp crostini with sweet chili sauce.
We're doing the talking. Maybe, if you have the money to spare, you'll want to do the eating.
For reservations or more information, visit MDAToledo.org.
Classes with class
Even the best cooks can learn things from cooking classes. And if you're not such a good cook, but maybe you think you ought to start getting better, it wouldn't hurt to head over to Williams-Sonoma in the Westfield Franklin Park mall. They have cooking classes, where you get to do some of the cooking yourself, for 50 bucks a pop, as well as technique classes, where you get to watch their chef make stuff, for, like, free.
Let's start with the free part. Technique classes are held on Sundays at 10 a.m. and repeated at 7 p.m. Mondays. Today's class, repeated tomorrow, is about the finer workings of making a brunch. On May 20 and 21, it will be about making a Memorial Day menu. May 27 and 28's classes will be all about the cool things you can make with a Vitamix blender. At their peak speed, Vitamix blenders spin their blades at a jaw-dropping 37,500 rpm. A chef of this column's acquaintance says they can liquefy gravel. He's joking, we think.
And a special class from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday will teach kids how to decorate cupcakes, just in time for Mother's Day. Reservations are particularly recommended for this class.
Marty Kokotaylo will be the instructor for the $50 cooking classes. On May 16, from 6:30-8:30 p.m., the subject will be poultry: chicken coconut soup with lemongrass, chicken pot pies, chicken saltimbocca, and oven-crisped chicken. This same class will be repeated on May 23, from 6:30-8:30 p.m.
To reserve a spot or for more information, call the store at 419-475-6368.
Meanwhile, fans of chef Roberta Acosta will be happy to hear that her next cooking demonstration at the Fresh Market (3315 W. Central Ave.) will be on Saturday from 1-4 p.m. This month, she is making grilled pound cake and chocolate berries.
Resistance, we understand, is futile.
The demonstration is free and will be repeated during the three-hour session, so you can come at any time and see the whole thing.
Slow-food aficionados in Bowling Green, and those who want to come to Bowling Green, may want to head to the Happy Badger restaurant, 331 N. Main St., on Friday or Saturday at 7 p.m. for its second slow foods dinner.
On the menu will be roasted red pepper soup with fresh mint and cilantro served with grilled bread with baked garlic and lavender; field greens, shaved goat gouda, alfalfa, radish, and homemade croutons with an emulsified rhubarb and honey dressing; grilled asparagus with truffle oil, lemon, and cracked pepper; lamb shank braised in mint and lavender tea served with couscous, sauteed cherries, figs, and shallots; and dark cocoa and Earl Grey panna cotta with espresso or tea.
The cost is $45, and if you want wine you'll have to bring it yourself. Only 25 seats are available each night. For reservations, call 419-352-0706 or send them electronic mail to email@example.com.
Or if you are more into pairing wines with your meal, consider Zia's Spring Wine Dinner created by chef Peter Deitrick and sommelier Eric Arsenault. The dinner will be May 23 at 6:30 p.m., and they have dreamed up a menu of:
Chilled ramp soup with fiddlehead fern and prosciutto, paired with Il Follo Prosecco; pancetta-crusted redfish with saffron risotto and white asparagus, paired with Sartori Ferdi Garganega; farfalle with a wild morel mushroom and garlic sauce, paired with Cascina Ca'Rossa Nebbiolo; and a flourless chocolate torte topped with fresh berry and brachetto compote, paired with Cascina Ca'Rossa Birbet.
The dinner will set you back $49.95 apiece, not including tax and tip. Reservations are required at 888-456-3463. Zia's is at 20 Main St., at the Docks.
The Great Lakes Wine and Beer Fest will be at Michigan International Speedway on May 19, which is reason enough to head to Brooklyn, Mich., in Jackson County. But here is another incentive: the pairings of wine and food.
All afternoon long, once an hour, there will be specially chosen pairings of food and wine from different wineries. For instance, at 12:30 p.m., a Lawton Ridge Winery pinot grigio will be served with pan-seared monkfish with Napa cabbage slaw in Suite 215. At 1:30 p.m. in Suite 218, grilled flank steak with wheat berries and arugula will be served with a cabernet sauvignon from Sandhill Crane Vineyards.
A grilled lamb skewer with vegetable couscous will be served at 2:30 p.m. in Suite 215 with a Nice Red from Chateau Chantal. Sauteed lemon thyme pork medallions and sauteed vegetables will be served in Suite 218 at 3:30 p.m. with a pinot grigio from Circa Estate Winery. And a St. Julian Wine Company pinot noir will accompany chocolate panna cotta with fresh berries at 4:30 p.m. in Suite 215.
Each pairing is $10 and is limited to 50 people. Admission to the festival, which is required for the tastings, is $25, which includes $10 worth of tasting tokens. For reservations or information, call 800-354-1010.
One last thing
And finally, we would be remiss if we did not mention that the Perrysburg Farmers' Market in downtown Perrysburg, one of the largest farmers' markets in town, is opening Thursday.
It will be held rain or shine each Thursday through Oct. 11, from 3-8 p.m.
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