This year’s “Buy Local Cookout” stood out for several reasons: very good recipes, Maryland produce looking its finest this year and it was held at night! Cool and grown-up made for a more chic event. People were really enjoying themselves on the lawn of the statehouse in Annapolis. Maryland wines and farm-to-brewery beers added to the fun. There were beauty queens and live music, to boot.
Maryland has always had a treasure trove of produce — just look at any vintage Southern cookbook for all the Maryland tomato, corn, peach and melon recipes. The fruits and veggies this year were deeply, brightly colored with the sunshine we’ve been getting . . . almost like Photoshopped food!
A few recipes at the cookout (some of which you can look up with the link below) really stood out:
How many of Chef Roger Black’s Ten Ten American Bistro English pea toasts with foraged pickled ramps could I eat in the privacy of my room . . . watching reruns on ME TV into the middle of the night? Too many!
Chef James Barrett of Azure Restaurant thought outside the box with rockfish sausages. They were tender — not dry like some fish things can get — and really, you might have thought they were veal sausages or something else well marbled.
Kilby’s sugar-free black raspberry ice cream. This was sugar-free?! Really? It was marvelous, rich, fruity. As regular readers of this column know, I have to keep the sugar intake to a dull roar. Well, time to bring the cooler up to Cecil County and stock up!
The 6th Annual Buy Local Cookout, an increasingly popular event, celebrated Maryland’s Buy Local Challenge Week, July 20-28. Recipes for the event, submitted by teams of Maryland chefs and producers, were selected for their availability of ingredients, geographic representation, maximum use of local ingredients and creativity. During Buy Local Week, Marylanders are challenged to eat at least one locally grown, made or harvested product each day.
Governor Martin O’Malley supported support the challenge by hosting his sixth annual Buy Local Cookout which will be held at Government House on July 25. Earlier this year, Governor O’Malley invited teams of chefs and producers to submit original recipes for the cookout that highlight the diversity of local products. Some 25 recipes were submitted; and 14 were selected. The Government House chefs will also provide two dishes for the cookout.
“Buying local supports our farmers and our agricultural heritage, creates local jobs and local economies, and helps us create a greener, more sustainable Maryland,” said Governor O’Malley. “Right here in Maryland, our farmers provide the fresh, nutritious food we all need for a diet that is both healthy and delicious. During the Buy Local Challenge Week, Katie and I challenge our fellow Marylanders to purchase locally grown products for their favorite dishes and to try some new local products.”
All recipe submissions will be published later this month in the 2013 Buy Local Cookout Recipes, which includes wine pairing recommendations from the Maryland Wineries Association. The cookbook will be free and available online when complete.
The following recipes were selected to be prepared at the cookout:
•English Pea Toast with Pickled Ramps, submitted by Chef Roger Black of Ten Ten American Bistro in Baltimore. (www.bagbystenten.com) with producer Cunningham Farms in Baltimore County for pickled ramps, English peas, micro greens and radishes.
•Maryland Corn Fritters with Tomato Salsa, submitted by Chef Katie Moose of Conduit Press (www.conduitpressmd.com) in Talbot County with producer Michelle Wright of Wright’s Market in Wicomico County (www.wrightsmarket.com) for corn, tomatoes, peppers, cilantro, green onions, garlic.
•Rockfish Sausage with Heirloom Tomato and Roasted Corn Relish, submitted by Chef James Barrett of Azure Restaurant at the Westin Annapolis (www.azureannapolis.com) with local watermen and producer Arnold Farms in Queen Anne’s County for tomatoes, corn, pepper and onions.
•Deviled Eggs with Smoked Bacon, Farm Fresh Yogurt and White Balsamic Glaze In Bibb Lettuce Wraps, submitted by Chef Craig Sewell of A Cook’s Café in Anne Arundel County (www.acookscafe.com) with producers David Smith of Springfield Farm in Baltimore County (www.ourspringfieldfarm.com) for eggs and smoked bacon; and Bobby Prigelof Prigel Family Creamery in Baltimore County (www.prigelfamilycreamery.com) for plain yogurt; and Baywater Greens in Wicomico County (www.baywatergreens.com) for hydroponic bibb lettuce.
•Stuffed Zucchini, submitted by Chef Travis Szerensits of The Manor Tavern (http://www.themanortavern.com/) in Baltimore County with producers Jon Shaw of BaltimOrganic in Baltimore County (www.baltimorganic.com) for asparagus, heirloom tomatoes and radish.
•Cucumber and Watermelon Salad with Maple Thyme Vinaigrette, submitted by Chef Daniel Elardo of Zeffert & Gold Catering in Baltimore (www.zeffertandgold.com) with producers Bartenfelder Farms in Baltimore County for cucumbers, watermelon, thyme; Lindemann’s Apiary in Carroll County for honey; Distillery Lane Ciderworks of Frederick County (distillerylaneciderworks.com/) for apple cider vinegar; and S & S Maple Camp of Allegany County (www.ssmaplecamp.com) for maple syrup.
•Bison Ravioli in Bay Blue Mornay Sauce, submitted by Chef David Hayes of Bistro St. Michaels in Talbot County (www.bistrostmichaels.com) with producers Holly Foster of Chapel’s Country Creamery in Talbot County (www.chapelscountrycreamery.com) for milk, garlic and chive chedder and bay blue cheese; and Bill Edwards of SB Farms in Dorchester County (www.sbfarmsinc.com) for bison roast; and Baywater Greens in Wicomico County (www.baywatergreens.com) for micro greens – arugula and red russian kale.
•Chesapeake Soft Crab with Road Stand Relish, submitted by Chef Paul Bartlett of Phillips Crab Deck in Annapolis (www.kitchensolutionsconsulting.com) with producers John Walton of Walton’s Seafood in Charles County for Maryland soft crabs; and Piscataway Farms in Clinton for tomatoes and cucumbers
•Gunpowder Farms Bison Burger with Smoked Bacon, Goat Cheddar, Marinated Tomato, and Hot Mix, submitted by Chef Bradley Willits of B&O American Brasserie in Baltimore (www.bandorestaurant.com) with producers Trey Lewis of Gunpowder Bison & Trading Co. in Baltimore County (www.gunpowderbison.com) for ground bison; Alice Orzechowski of Caprikorn Farms in Washington County (www.kidslovegoatmilk.com) for goat cheddar cheese; Denzell Mitchell of Five Seed Farms in Baltimore City (http://fiveseedsfarm.com) for tomatoes; and Steve Blaes of Full Circle Urban Farms in Baltimore City (https://www.face book.com/FullCircleUrbanFarm) for micro hot mix.
•Honey Brined Smokey Rub Chicken with Quick Pickle Salad and Chesapeake Lettuce Bouquet, submitted by Chef Bryan Davis of The Classic Catering People in Baltimore County (www.classiccatering.com) with producers Jesse Albright of Albright Farms in Baltimore County (www.albrightfarms.net) for chicken and cucumbers; Barbie Maniscalco of Chesapeake Greenhouse, LLC (www.wegrowlettuce.com) of Queen Anne’s County for lettuce; and Jim Roberts of Bees By The Bay in Baltimore County (www.beesbythebay.com) for honey.
•Chesapeake Crabcake with Corncake, Eastern Shore Melon Salad, submitted by Chef Martin Saylor of Coastal Sunbelt Produce Company in Howard County (www.coastalsunbelt.com) with producers Margret Frothingham and Bob Arnold of Arnold Farms of Queen Anne’s County for corn, onions, herbs, watermelon, cantaloupe, peppers, and cucumbers; Rich Evanusa of Beach to Bay Seafood of Somerset County for crabmeat.
•Tandoori Beef with Honeydew Tzatziki, submitted by Government House Chefs Medford Canby, Cathy Ferguson, and Charles (Buz) Porciello with producers Roseda Beef of Baltimore County for beef tenderloin and Bobby Prigel of Prigel Family Creamery of Balitimore County for plain yogurt.
•Gertrude’s Charolettetown Farm Ricotta Doughnuts with Peach Caramel Sauce, submitted by Chef Douglas Wetzel of Gertrude’s in Baltimore (www.gertrudesbaltimore.com) with producers Pam Miller of Charlottetown Farm in Baltimore County (www.charlottetownfarm.com) for fresh goat ricotta; Emily Zaas of Black Rock Orchard in Carroll County for peaches (twitter.com/BlackRockOrchrd); and Valerie Smith of Springfield Farm in Baltimore County (www.ourspringfieldfarm.com) for eggs.
•Honey and Goat Cheese Ice Cream, submitted by Government House Chefs Medford Canby, Cathy Ferguson, and Charles (Buz) Porciello with with producer Firefly Farms of Garrett County for chevre goat cheese.
•Mint and Sage Lemonade, submitted by Chef Dana Sutton of Evensong Farm (www.evensong-farm.com) with producers Julie Stinar of Evensong Farm in Washington County for herbs.
•Richardson’s Watermelon Sorbet Wine Float with Lime Pepper Foam, submitted by Chef Ben Simpkins of Richardson Farms (www.richardsonfarms.net) with producers Les Richardson of Richardson Farms in Baltimore County(www.richardsonfarms.net) for watermelon; and Susan Renner of Boordy in Baltimore County (www.boordy.com) for ice wine.
The Maryland Wineries Association and Honest Tea are donating products to the cookout as are Amberfields Malting and Brewing and Monocacy Brewing Company. (The beer is brewed by Monocacy Brewing Company in Frederick using malted rye from Amber Fields Malting and Brewing Company in Keymar.) In addition, five of the creameries on Maryland’s Best Ice Cream Trail are donating ice cream: Prigel Family Creamery, Kilby Cream, Keyes Creamery, South Mountain Creamery, and Misty Meadows Farm Creamery.
In its 2010 and 2012 Policy Choices Survey, the University of Baltimore Schaefer Center for Public Policy found that more than 78 percent of Marylanders said they want to buy produce grown by a Maryland farmer. The goal of the Buy Local Challenge is to raise awareness about the benefits of local farms and food so that Marylanders will become more familiar and more frequent consumers of fresh, local products. The Buy Local Challenge was created in 2006 by the Southern Maryland Agricultural Development Commission and has grown into a statewide initiative.
Buying locally is key to ensuring a smart, green and growing future for Maryland families. It preserves farmland, protects the environment, bolsters local economies, and provides wholesome, nutritious, great-tasting fresh food. To learn more about Maryland’s Buy Local Week Challenge and sign up to take the pledge to eat local, see: www.buy-local-challenge.com. Find local Maryland products, locate a farmers market and more online at: www.marylandsbest.net Sources of local seafood can be found at www.marylandseafood.org.
For more benefits of buying local, see: http://mda.maryland.gov/farm_to_school/Documents/buylocalbenefits.pdf
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