Michael Stoddart, owner of Lexington Ice Sculptures and co-owner of Seasons Catering & Special Occasions, has added gold and silver medals to his collection of trophies for his ice-carving abilities.
During January, Stoddart competed in a three-day Ice Magic Festival at Lake Louise in Alberta, Canada, and placed sixth among international competitors. He also participated in a National Ice Carving Association-sanctioned event at the Greenbrier Resort at White Sulphur, W.Va.
At the Greenbrier event, Stoddart won a silver medal for the carving of a grasshopper, and gold for a horse sculpture. Learn more at Seasonsevents.com.
Stoddart's son Matthew also competes and has advanced from amateur to professional.
Fundraiser to help kids
Each week, volunteers in Woodford County fill backpacks with food for children to take home for weekend meals. In order to provide meals for children when they are not in school, the Versailles-Woodford County Rotary Club has undertaken the "Spring Break Backpack Program."
To raise funds for the program, the club will hold a charity ball on Feb. 16 at The CastlePost, 230 Pisgah Pike in Versailles. "A Night for a Better Tomorrow" will also benefit the Global Polio Eradication Initiative.
The Young at Heart Big Band will entertain. The band also helps children by providing musical instruments to youngsters who can't afford to buy them.
Tickets are $200 a couple, or $125 a person. Contact Amanda Omohundro Adams at Aomohundro@photizogroup.com. Tickets can be purchased online at Regonline.com/anightforabettertomorrow.
Phil Dunn's cooking classes for winter reflect his love of hearty, flavorful menus. Classes are held at 6 p.m. at Architectural Kitchens & Baths, 345 Lafayette Avenue. Cost is $50 per class. Call Dunn at (859) 533-3553.
Here's the schedule: Feb. 18, soups; Feb. 20, venison; Feb. 21, one-dish dinner; Feb. 25, warm and cozy dinner; Feb. 27, easy and elegant entertaining; March 1, date-night dinner; March 2, Saturday night supper club; and March 4, breakfast ideas.
Williams-Sonoma at Fayette Mall, 3473 Nicholasville Road, offers in-store cooking classes. Here's the line-up for this month. Classes begin at 11 a.m. Call (859) 272-5856.
■ Saturday, the store will repeat its popular Flavors of Morocco class.
■ Sunday, A Taste of ABC's The Taste. Instructors will re-create favorite recipes from the show, which airs at 8 p.m. Tuesday.
■ Feb. 17, Making the perfect omelette. Class covers both rolled and open-face omelettes.
■ Feb. 24, Making ravioli. You'll learn how to make fillings, how to stuff and seal ravioli, and how to make a simple sauce.
Fresh food donations
Green BEAN Delivery, an online home delivery service that provides organic produce and natural groceries to members, donated 2,000 pounds of fresh produce to God's Pantry Food Bank last month. The company is introducing itself to the Central Kentucky market and now offers its service to Lexington consumers.
The network of farmers and artisans with organic and sustainable practices distributes organic, local and sustainably grown foods directly to consumers' doorsteps. Since it's winter, the donation to God's Pantry came from national suppliers, but in season, produce will come from local producers. Go to GreenBEANDelivery.com.
Are you game for bison?
Kentucky State Resort Parks are offering several opportunities to enjoy wild game and bison meals this winter. Go to Parks.ky.gov.
■ Kentucky Dam Village State Resort Park, Gilbertsville, will serve an elk and bison buffet from noon to 8 p.m. Feb. 23. Cost is $19.95. Included are bison steamship round carved on the line, wild boar with honey chipotle barbecue sauce, elk meatloaf, spicy duck stir-fry, bison taco pie, and bison chili. Call 1-800-325-0146.
■ Jenny Wiley State Resort Park, Prestonsburg, will have an Appalachian wild game dinner from 4 to 8 p.m. March 2. The menu includes baked quail, country-style ribs, smokehouse chili, mountaintop half-runner green beans, sour fried green apples, hollow picked corn on the cob, and turnip greens Cost is $15.95. Call 1-800-325-0142.
■ Pine Mountain State Resort Park, Pineville, will host a Frontier Night buffet from 5 to 8 p.m. March 8. The buffet will include elk, venison, bison, rabbit, frog legs, and catfish. Cost is $19.95. Call 1-800-325-1712 or (606) 337-3066.
■ Rough River Dam State Resort Park, Falls of Rough, will have a buffalo and wild game dinner March 23. The menu features carved buffalo, buffalo chili, stews, and duck. Cost is $21. Call (270) 257-2311 or 1-800-325-1713.
A little Valentine's variety
Want to impress your sweetheart this Valentine's Day? Choosing a menu from the Central American country of Belize just might do it.
Belize's first hardcover cultural cookbook, Flavors of Belize: The Cookbook, was put together by a team of Belizean cooks and chefs as well as photographer Matt Armendariz, and food stylists Adam Pearson and Gaby Dalkin. Go to Flavorsofbelize.com.
Here's a recipe from the book that would be great for Valentine's Day.
Shrimp in black bean sauce
2 pounds shrimp, peeled, deveined
2 teaspoons salt, to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons olive oil
3 teaspoons garlic, crushed
¾ cup red onion, diced
½ cup green bell peppers, deseeded, diced
2 teaspoons sugar
1 tablespoon soy sauce, to taste
6 tablespoons black bean garlic sauce
1 teaspoon habañero or cayenne pepper, optional
1 cup water, as needed
Salt and pepper shrimp. Sauté garlic in olive oil until aromatic, about 3 minutes. Add shrimp and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes until shrimp is half cooked. Remove shrimp from sauté pan and set aside. Sauté onion and green bell pepper. Add sugar, soy sauce, and black bean garlic sauce, continue to sauté for 2 to 3 minutes, adding a little water if necessary to keep the sauce liquid. Return shrimp to pan, sauté 2 to 3 minutes. Serve over rice or noodles. Makes 6 servings.
Variations (½ cup carrots, julienned, ½ cup broccoli florets, sliced, or ½ cup cauliflower florets, sliced) may be added when sautéing green bell peppers and onions. Shrimp can be substituted with lobster, chicken, beef, pork or fish. Add 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger with chicken, beef, pork, or fish.