Sauce: The local food scene is a-roiling
There's so much Sauce, the pot is boiling over.
On the farms: Trax Farms, Finleyville, begins its Fall Festival Weekends Sept. 18, continuing through Oct. 31. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Events include hayrides, pick-your-own-pumpkin and a giant corn maze (412-835-3246; traxfarms.com).
And Armstrong Farms, 971 Ekastown Road, Saxonburg, is holding its first Autumn Festival through Oct. 31. Corn maze, petting zoo, hayride, vendors with fresh produce, refreshment stand with naturally and locally raised Angus beef hamburgers. Hours: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mon.-Thurs; 6 to 11 p.m. Fri.-Sat., with evenings ending with a bonfire; 1 to 5 p.m. Sun. Admission: $7 for adults, $4 for children ages 12 and under. 724-352-1158; armstrongfarms.com.
Pennsylvania apple growers note that the crop is running ahead this year, due to an early spring bloom and hot summer. I noticed two weeks ago that trees in my neighborhood were bursting with bright apples. They'll be smaller than usual this year because of the wild weather but should be sweeter, says Karin Rodriguez of the Pennsylvania Apple Marketing Program (pennsylvaniaapples.org).
Nun news: The Sisters of St. Frances of the Providence of God, world's wordiest order, will hold their 6th Autumn Gala fundraiser beginning at 6 p.m. Sept. 17 with a reception, dinner at 7. Entrees: Petite filet mignon, Flounder Florentine. Praline cheesecake for dessert. I've said it before: These sisters can cook, so get there. Tickets: $65 or $350 for a table of six. Raffles include grand prizes of $1,000 to $250. For reservations, call 412-885-7232.
The Sisters of St. Joseph, Baden, are offering free classes by master gardeners from Penn State Extension and experts from Cura Hospitality in conjunction with their Miriam's Garden community plot, in which 11 families are growing food for themselves and for soup kitchens and food banks. Classes -- 7 to 8 p.m. in the former Mt. Gallitzin Academy, Baden -- continue Tuesday with composting/harvesting and preserving fresh produce; insects and diseases in the garden, Sept. 22; cooking root vegetables on Sept. 28. Register at 724-869-2151, ext. 6285.
September is Hunger Action Month. The Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank has put up a calendar, "30 Ways in 30 Days," detailing ways you can help beat hunger. View it at pittsburghfoodbank.org.
McGinnis Sisters, 4311 Northern Pike, Monroeville, will be holding its Local Food Month celebration from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sept. 18. Contestants are being sought now for the apple bake-off to be held at noon that day. Prize: $50 store gift certificate and a bushel of apple products.
Soup Sega! begins Saturday at the Bulgarian Macedonian National Educational and Cultural Center, world's wordiest fraternal organization, 449-451 W. Eighth Ave., West Homestead. Choose from one of 14 varieties of soup from 9 a.m. to noon every Saturday until spring. A sampler: potato leek, vegetarian and Balkan bean. Other specialties: gyuvech, a stew; pulneni chushski, stuffed peppers; and banitza, cheese strudel. 412-261-6188.
Grow Pittsburgh bursts forth with "A Taste of Grow Pittsburgh," its first large-scale fundraiser, 5 to 8 p.m. Sept. 19 on the lawn at the Frick Art & Historical Center, 7227 Reynolds St., Point Breeze. Featured will be restaurants that source locally grown produce, including Six Penn, Enrico Biscotti, Dozen, Casbah, Frick Cafe, La Prima, Legume and Quiet Storm. Tickets are $60. Growpittsburgh.org
"Flavors of Pittsburgh," benefiting the American Liver Foundation, begins at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 19 at the Westin Convention Center hotel, 1000 Penn Ave., Downtown. Limited individual tickets are $225. Participating chefs come from Toast!, Caileigh's, Cioppino, Solstice, UUBU6, McCormick & Schmick's, Habitat, Steelhead and more. liverfoundation.org/chapters/westernpa/events/153.
"A Taste of Cranberry" shows off township restaurants from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday at the municipal building, 2525 Rochester Road. Sponsored by The Chamber of Commerce Inc. Adults, $12; seniors, age 60 and over, $10; children ages 5 to 12, $5; free for kids ages 4 and under.. Family plan ticket: Two adults, two kids, $30. Thechamberinc.com; 724-934-9700.
The Pittsburgh Irish Festival begins tomorrow, continuing through Sunday, at Sandcastle's Riverplex in West Homestead. Food ranges from Irish nachos to Irish coffee to corned beef and boxty. Buy advance tickets and save $2. pghirishfest.org; 412-422-1113.
Reed Alexander, star of Nickelodeon's "iCarly," will be at Market District, Settlers Ridge, Robinson, from noon to 2:30 p.m. Sept. 18, to conduct a healthy eating demonstration. Mr. Alexander, 16, has a web site, kewlbites.com, that he established after losing weight.
Finally ... drumroll, please, "Savor Pittsburgh: A Celebration of Cuisine" sold out last Thursday and raised at least $120,000 for the American Respiratory Alliance of Western Pennsylvania. Winners: Best appetizer: SAVOY Satay from SAVOY Restaurant and Lounge. Best entree: Pepper Pork Mignon, Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Apple Creme Fraiche from Tusca Global Tapas. Best Dessert: Praline and Goat Cheese Cheesecake with Praline Sauce and Candied Pecans, which was also selected as Dish of the Year, from Tree Tops at Polymath Park. People's Choice Restaurant: McCormick & Schmick's, SouthSide Works.
First Published September 9, 2010 12:00 am