Friday Foodstuffs 3.4.11: I Don’t Care WHAT The Calendar Says-It’s Finally Spring!

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The first signs of Spring are stirring- not only all around us (the thawed ground is starting to show some early signs of daffodils and tulips pushing their way through), but within us, too. It was only last week, on a chilly, miserable day, I was looking at our yard with a “Yecchh, I don’t have the energy for all this cleanup!” Then this week, John, now being  ravaged by the stupid cold that knocks everyone on their ass, turned to me and said, “You know, I feel like crap now, but I’m looking forward to doing some yardwork and planting the garden this year.” And suddenly, some sleeping something awakened in me, jumped up, and was off to the internet: “Wow, ordinary cornmeal will clear up any remaining fungus in the soil!…If I plant the zucchini late the squash bugs won’t get them!…Maybe we can plant peas early, some broccoli..corn…wonder what should be planted next to what?…Hey! I heard on the Splendid Table last week that keeping  just 3 chickens could keep a family in fresh eggs all year!..”  The poor man went straight to the medicine cabinet for a couple of  Advil and to the bedroom for a long lie-down. Was it something I said?

Although the first of the Jersey-grown produce offerings are still over a month away and the farmer’s markets a little while after that, it seems that things are slowly waking up from their long winter’s nap. Check out what’s shakin’ this weekend:

Dr. Seuss Week week wraps up at The Pop Shop today, and the“Euro-Tour @ the Shore” Wine Weekend starts tonight at The Golden Inn Hotel and Resort in  Avalon. And yes, we’ve mentioned it just a wee bit, but we can’t help it: tonight and Saturday is your last chance to participate in Atlantic City Restaurant Week, so make your reservations now  or wait until next year…of course, you can always check out Luke Palladino Restaurant Week in Northfield, from now until the 13th.

As for the one-day events: tonight, get yourself some culture with your eats: Dinner and an Artist – Breaking the Mold: Women Painters is happening at Georgian Court University in Lakewood. On Sunday, there will be a special benefit in Somers Point hosted by Gregory’s and Charlie’s from 12PM to 4PM. The benefit is for the children of Kevin Botta, the man who was killed in a car accident that took place right outside Gregory’s back on January 6.

To keep you workaday evenings interesting: On Monday, there’s the International Chef’s Night Out at Poland Springs Arena in Toms River, an Apokries Wine Dinner at Kuzina by Sofia in  Cherry Hill, and  the Epicurean Society of Southern New Jersey Dining Event at  Redding’s  in Atlantic City. March Madness Beer Wars! starts and goes on every Monday night this month (7th,14th,21st,and 28th) at Geraghty’s Pub & Restaurant  in Burlington. There’s some interesting ways to celebrate Fat Tuesday this week as well; you’ve got the Mardi Gras – Fat Tuesday Party at High Street Grill in Mount Holly, the Flying Fish Exit 9 Release Party at The Pour House  in Westmont, and the Villa Calcinaia Wine Dinner at Caffe Aldo Lamberti in Cherry Hill.

Here’s the cooking class schedule roundup:

Friday: Date Night: Italian Dinner at the Viking Cooking School  in Atlantic City, Favorites of Northern France at Sur La Table  in Marlton, and Gourmet Club at La Campagne  in Cherry Hill.

Saturday: Bread Around The World at Sur La Table and Greek Favorites for Couples at Kitchen Kapers in Moorestown.

Sunday: Homemade Cheese and Dairy Workshop at Sur La Table.


Blogging Out Hunger

Kudos to the students at Fernwood Avenue Middle School for collecting over 1,800 pounds of food for distribution and for the local food bank.


And in the news this week…

Some good (but cautious) news on the Delaware Bay oyster front.

Doyle’s Pour House in Tuckerton will be opening a new location in Barnegat this spring.

And Gaetano’s in Maple Shade will not have to leave town; it will just be changing locations. Hey man – don’t mess with Gaetano’s now.


Have a great weekend!


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