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Published: Sunday, 4/10/2005

TBG welcomes spring with a garden party luncheon

With beautiful weather on our doorstep, make attending a garden party a part of spring.

Don a beautiful hat for the second annual Crosby Awards Luncheon from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. May 20 at the Toledo Botanical Garden, 5403 Elmer Dr.

The luncheon menu prepared by Rockwell's restaurant will feature poached glazed chicken breast stuffed with fruit, brie, and ham; baked asparagus, and barley and wild rice pilaf salad. The entree, garnished with an edible flower and herbs, will be pretty enough to fit into a hat box. For dessert, chocolate-stuffed figs prepared by Karen Lucas of Petit Fours will add a sweet note.

The luncheon, which was developed to raise funds for the Garden during a springtime event, will honor three women who have had an impact on gardens, arts, nature, and education. This year's honorees are well-known potter Edith Franklin; Posy Huebner, who with her husband, Robert Huebner, established the Blair Museum of Lithophanes at TBG, and Prudence Hutchinson Lamb, who may be best known for her leadership of the Wolcott House Museum complex in Maumee (where she established an herb garden, according to Pat Appold of the food committee).

The formal outdoor luncheon led by chairman Joan Bayer is $250 per person. Deadline for reservations is April 11. Call Michele at the TBG Development Office at 419-936-3893.

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The safety of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in our food is the topic of Deborah Coons Garcia's film, Future of Food, which will be shown at 6:30 p.m. on April 18 in the McMaster Center located in the Main Branch of the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library. The screening, which is free and open to the public, is sponsored by the Phoenix Earth Food Co-op, Toledo GROWS, and Clamor Magazine.

The film challenges two claims made by biotech companies. The first is that hunger is due to insufficient food production; the second is that genetic engineering is the only way to increase agricultural production to meet the world's food needs. A recent USDA study indicates that yields were not significantly different between conventional and genetically engineered crops.

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Country of Origin Labeling for seafood finalized by the United States Department of Agriculture went into effect April 4. Fish and shellfish must carry labels that identify their country of origin and state whether they are farm-raised or wild-caught.

Consumers now have the right to know the origins of the seafood they purchase in supermarkets. According to Rebecca Goldburg, Environmental Defense senior scientist, estimates are that 78 percent of seafood consumed in the United States is imported. Sometimes crawfish in Louisiana is imported from China, crab sold in Maryland is frequently imported from Asia, and shrimp can come from around the world.

If you don't see the labels, ask the clerk at the fish counter. Consumers can use this information in making purchasing decisions.

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The Wood County Committee on Aging has put together a county cookbook, Taste of Ohio Wood County's Best!. Cost of the cookbook with 150 recipes from Wood County residents is $10. Proceeds will benefit the building of a kitchen to serve the five senior citizens centers in Wood County. To order, call Wood County Committee on Aging at 800-367-4935. The cookbooks are also for sale at Georgio's Cafe International in downtown Toledo and Gourmet Curiosities in Sylvania.

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Original and unpublished recipes that use American-grown rice are being sought for the seventh annual Rice to the Rescue Recipe Contest. A $5,000 Grand Prize and a nine-piece set of All Clad stainless steel will be awarded to one amateur cook for the winning recipe. Five finalists will receive a $1,000 cash prize and an All-Clad two-quart rice pot.

Recipes must be made 30 minutes or less with no more than six ingredients and use at least one cup of uncooked or 3 cups cooked rice. Visit www.usarice.com/consumer/rescue2005 for contest rules. Deadline for entries is April 29.



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