It really is the best time of the year to declare this. It’s a time of corn on the cob, grilled greatness without a cause, and trips to the pick-your-own berry farm. From Alaska to Hawaii, peaches to new potatoes, the late-summer sun is smiling on local produce, wherever you live. So let us eat it.
On September, 16, Just Food will host its second-annual fundraiser gala. “Let Us Eat Local” will boast small plates from some of the city’s biggest restaurant names, and each will source their food locally, and thoughtfully. Today, I’m asking fellow food bloggers to do the same, and post their unique recipe featuring food from your region or community. The one that the judges decide their overall favorite will win a ticket to “Let Us Eat Local.” Or, for non-New Yorkers, a prize.
So it’s a cook-off for the food bloggers, but instead of meeting one another at a bawdy bar, we’ll get to sip on North Fork Wines, local craft beers and eat oysters and tasty tidbits from Jean Georges, Blue Hill, Gramercy Tavern and fifteen more awesome eateries. Who’s in?
And who are these judges, who will be reading your entries, to vote on a favorite? Not it! They are:
Juventino Avila, Chef/Owner, Get Fresh Table and Market: Growing up in Brooklyn, locally grown food might not have seemed like it had much in the future for Juventino. But since opening Get Fresh as an artisanal food market a year ago, and serving brunch and family-style dinners at it since January, he’s become an active member of the local food-movement community, earning a Snail of Approval from Slow Food. Juventino has worked with some of the biggest chefs in the city before that, and was nominated for “Best Latin Chef” by Time Out New York in 2001.
Sam Mason, Executive Chef, Tailor: Sam earned his “edgy chef” cred as the pastry chef at wd-50, a gig which he was nominated for a James Beard Award in 2008. Since then he’s opened the celebrated Soho restaurant Tailor, starred in Dinner with the Band (upcoming on the IFC Channel this fall), and probably gotten a few more tattoos. Sam is not afraid of meshing culinary references from several cultures, or using innovative techniques that have never traditionally been done with any of them. So neither should you, with your recipes.
Angela Davis, Community Food Education Program Coordinator, Just Food: Public places like schoolyards and community gardens serve as the executive kitchens for Angela. Understanding that providing access to fresh and local food is only successful if people really enjoy eating it, she gives cooking demonstrations and workshops for all ages of pupils through Just Food, and leads the nonprofit’s culinary team efforts.
So there are your judges, and here are the rules to enter the food blogger challenge!
1. Create an original recipe featuring local, seasonal food for your area and publish a blog post about it on or before Sept. 12, 2009. In the post, describe where the main ingredients were purchased and why you chose these purveyors or farms.
2) Send me an email with the subject line: “Let us eat local blogger challenge” in the sujbect line. Winners will be announced by Sept. 13.
As mentioned, the contest’s winner will gain free entry to the gala event on the 16th. If you’re not an NYC local, you can still compete. Another best-recipe award will be handed out to a non-NYC based blogger. Since it’s unlikely this latter winner’s vacation might sync perfectly with the date of the “Let Us Eat Local” fete, we’re giving away a second prize of a mixing bowl set from Preserve recycled products. It may not command as high a monetary value as the gala ticket, but they’ll probably last a lifetime, and they stack together nicely. And they’ll be shipped to your door.
So, who’s ready to get cooking locally?