For three days this month, the Sustainable Communities Network is offering classes on how to have a healthy and sustainable local food system.
The 2012 Bluegrass Local Food Summit will be March 22 to 24 at Crestwood Christian Church, 1882 Bellefonte Drive. The cost is $45 each day.
Elmwood Stock Farm, Lexington Pasta and others will provide food for the luncheons each day.
March 22 has been set aside for elected officials and government staff. Topics March 23 will include farm to school, farm to institution, beginning farmers, sustainable farming, and faith and food.
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On March 24, there will be a school garden workshop ($45) and sustainable living workshops for $20 each. Workshops include:
■ Healthy cooking, with chefs Carolyn Gilles and Mary Katherine Miller.
■ Make your own rain barrel, with Bluegrass Pride and Obiora Embry.
■ Beekeeping basics, with Tammy Horn.
■ Raising chickens, with Wayne Davis and Beverly Davis.
■ ABCs of composting, with Chad Hilton.
■ Raising goats in the city, with Susan Miller of Bleugrass Chevre.
Call (859) 270-3699 or go to Sustainlex.org to register.
Apres event menu
P.E.O. Chapter F at Midway College will hold its 12th annual Book Event at 1:30 p.m. April 9. Frank X Walker will be the featured author.
Tickets are $15. Proceeds are donated to Midway College and support several philanthropic educational programs at Cottey College in Nevada, Mo. Call (859) 266-6286.
Sara Lord, formerly with Dupree Catering, and Charlann Wombles have created a menu for the reception after the event. Included are mini cucumber and herbed fromage paninis, cheddar tea biscuits with shaved Bluegrass ham and bourbon apple butter, warm spring pea bisque shooters, green tea poached chicken salad in sesame won ton cups, baby rhubarb strawberry tartlets with vanilla whipped cream, carrot cake pops with white chocolate frosting, and Weisenberger shortbread with lemon curd and fresh raspberries.
South Indian style
Seetha Subramanian, a retired professor at Bluegrass Community and Technical College, will teach a class on South Indian cooking on Wednesday.
Subramanian will explain the blending of spices that make up the flavors of South India. "South Indian cooking doesn't use a lot of ginger or green chilies, cardamom, cinnamon, allspice or cloves. It's quite different from North India. We use coconut in cooking more than anything else, and coriander and cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, black pepper and red chilies. Rice is the base. Every portion of the meal has rice in it," she said.
Subramanian's class will be 6 to 9 p.m. at the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service, 1140 Red Mile Place. Call (859) 523-5696. The cost is $25.
The recipe for mini maple Spam doughnuts won the grand prize in the Great American Spam Championship. The national contest is hosted by Hormel Foods at state fairs around the country.
The overall winner was Jason Munson, 41, an aircraft mechanic from Seattle. He won a trip for two to Hawaii in April for the annual Waikiki Spam Jam food festival.
The savory and sweet bite-size buttermilk treats are paired with a fried Spam ring and finished with maple icing and a sprinkling of diced Spam.
Here's the recipe.
Mini maple Spam doughnuts
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1⁄8 teaspoon salt
1⁄3 cup buttermilk, plus 1 tablespoon buttermilk
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1 can (12 ounces) Spam, hickory smoked, with bacon, or classic
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon maple flavor
In large bowl, mix flour, brown sugar, baking soda and salt. Stir in 1⁄3 cup buttermilk, egg and melted butter. Beat together until well blended. Spoon batter into a pastry bag fitted with a round tip or a resealable plastic bag. Chill mixture for 1 hour. Meanwhile, prepare Spam rings and glaze.
For Spam rings: Remove Spam from can and slice from the lid side to the bottom into 12 slices, with each slice about 1/4 inch thick. Using a 11/2-inch round biscuit cutter, cut each slice of Spam into two rounds (you should have 24 rounds from the can). Using a straw, knife or small pastry tip, cut a small circle out of the center of each piece of Spam to make a ring. Place rings into a large skillet and fry until golden brown on both sides; set aside. Take the remaining pieces of Spam and finely dice. Place diced Spam into same skillet and fry until golden brown; set aside.
For glaze: In small bowl, whisk together powdered sugar, maple flavor and remaining 1 tablespoon of buttermilk until well combined; set aside.
For doughnuts: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Remove chilled dough from refrigerator. Spray mini doughnut pan — recipe will make 24 doughnuts — with non-stick cooking spray. Pipe batter into mini doughnut pan, filling each opening 2⁄3 full (if using a resealable plastic bag, snip corner of bag and pipe batter into mini doughnut pan). Place Spam rings on top of dough. Bake for 10 minutes or until doughnuts spring back when touched. Allow doughnuts to cool slightly, then carefully remove from pan. Spread maple glaze over doughnuts and top with diced Spam.
Serve doughnuts slightly warm.