A culinary adventure
Always wanted to visit South Africa but can’t afford the airfare? Don’t fret. Opus in Bangor will hold a wine dinner inspired by the melting pot that is South Africa. Chef Roger Gelis will prepare a six-course menu that incorporates French, Dutch, Malaysian, Indian, Portuguese and native African influences. Among the highlights are Chicken and Foie Gras Samosas, Ostrich Carpaccio with Stone Ground Mustard and Asiago, Bobotie (sweet curried ground beef), Spring Rolls with Peanuts and Two Chutneys and Gratineed Banana-Pineapple Tartlet. Justin and Randy of Wicked Wines will pair each course with a selection from South Africa. For information or reservations, call 945-5100.
Shout about sprouts!
In the list of favorite vegetables, Brussels sprouts usually rank pretty low. But pair ’em with bacon, and you have a side dish that may just change your mind about the dreaded sprout. Heck, even the kids might ask for seconds with this recipe for Sauteed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon from the Maine Nutrition Network: Trim tough ends from 2 pounds fresh Brussels sprouts. In a 4-quart saucepan over high heat, heat 1 inch of water to boiling. Add Brussels sprouts and heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 5 minutes or until sprouts are tender-crisp. Drain. In a skillet over medium-low heat, cook 4 slices bacon until browned. Remove and drain on paper towels. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon bacon fat from skillet. Over medium-high heat, heat bacon fat and 1 tablespoon olive or vegetable oil. Add Brussels sprouts, 2 garlic cloves crushed with a garlic press, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until Brussels sprouts are browned, about 5 minutes. Crumble bacon on top and serve immediately. For more information or recipes, visit www.maine-nutrition.org/Maine/marketbasket.htm.
The taste of freedom
Hood’s latest winner in the “Taste of New England” flavor-naming contest hails from Portland, Maine. Charles Cannone’s “Freedom Trail Mix” combines chocolate-covered peanuts, sunflower seeds and pretzels in honey nut ice cream swirled with caramel. Cannone’s flavor beat out 1,000 other entries, and it will be available in stores starting in early 2007. A portion of the sales will be donated to the Freedom Trail Foundation, the Boston nonprofit that markets and preserves the historic Freedom Trail.
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