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Register fruit trees
Salt Lake City residents can now share the bounty of their fruit or nut trees instead of letting the produce go to waste. The city's food policy task force has set up a web site to allow residents to register their trees or to volunteer to be part of the Fruit Gleaning Project. Tree owners can allow volunteers to harvest on a pre-arranged day and time, or they can sign up as an "open harvest" source for trees on the parking strip. People would be welcomed to respectfully harvest from those "open source" trees any day. Some of the food would benefit local food banks. This food-waste reduction program is a partnership of the city, TreeUtah, Avenue's Fruitshare, Green Urban Lunch Box and Salt Lake Community Action Network. For details visit: apps.slcgov.com/general/absolutefp/Fruit_Form.htm
Winter farmers market
Pick up Easter eggs, fresh produce, seeds and meet Utah farmers at the fifth Pop-Up winter market sponsored by the Downtown Alliance. Vendors include Tifie Ranch, Clifford Farms, Blue Spring Farm, Mololo Gardens, Zoe's Garden, Chad's Produce, Kenyon Organics, Lorenz Mobile Sharpening, Urban Compost Systems, and food trucks. Farmers will also be on hand to talk about Community Supported Agriculture programs and explain how to sign up.
When • Saturday, March 16, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where • Holy Trinity Cathedral, 279 S. 300 West, Salt Lake City.
Utahn's cake wins big
Naomi Kress of West Jordan won the grand prize in the King Arthur flour brand's 2012 Great Cake Contest for her Masquerade cake. (see recipe). The cake, which includes beets as the secret ingredient, bested 15 competitors from Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Carolina Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Washington. Kress won a $500 gift card to the brand's catalogue and her recipe be featured in the Spring 2013 issue of The Baking Sheet, King Arthur's subscription baking newsletter.
Local 'bacon butter'
Vernon-based Christiansen's Family Farm is now selling lard from the 220 pigs it raises and butchers each year. It recently received the U.S. Department of Agriculture's stamp of approval, via an inspection label and is selling four-pound tubs for $15. The back and leaf fat (deposits around the kidneys and inside the loin) can last for nine months in the freezer. The fat, rendered without preservatives, comes from the family farm's pasture-raised, Berkshire, Large Blake and Mulefoot breed pigs. For more information visit: christiansenfarm.com
Watch competitive eaters take on five pounds of beef and a 12-ounce side of fries at Salt Lake City's Lucky 13 bar and grill tonight at 4 p.m. Miki Sudo who can eat 147 wings in 17 minutes, 35 ribs in five and a 120-ounce steak with sides in under an hour will challenge Jamie "The Bear" McDonald starting. The 2012 All Pro Competitive Eating Rookie of the Year can eat 287 wings in 30 minutes, 24 chili dogs in 20 minutes and 27 tacos in 5 minutes. The competitors will have 30 minutes or less to eat two gargantuan meals, with the winner getting $1,000.
First they will try to down The Big Benny, a nearly three-pound, 14-inch tall burger made of four, 7-ounce patties topped with ham, bacon, onions and cheese.
They will follow that up with The Lucky 13 Burger, a 2-pounder made of two, 7-ounce patties topped with jalapenos, habaneros, grilled onions, Belizean habanero hot sauce and melted cheddar cheese. It is served between two grilled cheese sandwiches filled with the equivalent of eight roasted jalapenos and eight roasted habaneros. Both come with about 6 ounces of fries.
The rules are: "no sharing, no getting up from your seat and no vomiting."
When • March 13, 4 p.m.
Where • Lucky 13, 135 W. 1300 South, Salt Lake City
SLC's food scene is hot
Salt Lake City was listed as one of seven "Up-and-Coming Food Cities," along with Charleston, Boulder, Colo., Athens, Ga., Louisville, Kent., Nashville and Birmingham, Ala., in a new Zagat blog post. The listing said the "burgeoning culinary scene is undeniably exciting," citing restaurants like Pago and Forage that emphasize local products.
Easter treats made by you
Whip up homemade marshmallow Easter eggs, chocolate-dipped eggs, balloon chocolate bowls and divinity in a demonstration-only class.
When • Saturday, March 16, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Where: • Thanksgiving Point Emporium Kitchen, 3003 N. Thanksgiving Way, Lehi.
Cost • $40
Details • thanksgivingpoint.org/
11/2 cups (granulated sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 (15 ounce) can sliced beets
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
11/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
11/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (4 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup (2 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon Instant ClearJel
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup heavy cream, whipped to stiff peaks
3/4 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
7 tablespoons (31/2 ounces) heavy cream
11/2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups (8 ounces) confectioners' sugar
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9" square pans and line with parchment.
For the cake: In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream sugar and oil. Drain beets and reserve 1/2 cup of the juice. In a blender, puree beets with the reserved liquid. Add to creamed mixture along with eggs and vanilla. Blend well. In a separate bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, cocoa powder and salt. Add to creamed mixture and mix for 30 seconds. Scrape sides and bottom of the bowl, turn the mixer on high and beat for 2 minutes. Divide between prepared pans and bake for 25 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes. Remove cakes from their pans, peel off the paper and cool completely on rack. Cut each cake in half to make four 9" x 4" strips.
For the filling: Whip cream until it holds a stiff peak. In a small bowl, mix softened cream cheese and butter together. In another bowl, whisk together instant ClearJel and confectioners' sugar. Whisk cream cheese mixture and confectioners' sugar mixture into the whipped cream in small amounts, alternating between the two until all are added. Chill the filling thoroughly before using.
For the frosting: Melt the chocolate and butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir until smooth. Remove from the heat and pour into a mixing bowl. Add cream, vanilla and powdered sugar. Beat with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy.
To assemble: Spread filling on the tops of three of layers of cake and stack four layers high, topping with remaining cake layer. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for several hours. Remove from refrigerator and frost. Garnish with grated white chocolate. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Refrigerate leftovers.
Servings • 16 servings.
Source: Naomi Kress, West Jordan grand prize winner in King Arthur's 2012 Great Cake Contest