Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Dining for literacy, culinary competition and more

Posted By on Tue, Apr 5, 2011 at 2:33 PM

• We begin this food event roundup with a plug for the Pikes Peak United Way's Dine United campaign, which begins Wednesday, April 6, and continues on each Wednesday evening of the month.

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Visit the above website for a list of participating restaurants who are contributing to a School Readiness Initiative.

Here's what the cause supports:

Child literacy rates remain a critical concern in the Pikes Peak Region with 25% of El Paso County third graders unable to read at grade level. In an effort to increase long-term success in school, Pikes Peak United Way has adopted a School Readiness Initiative featuring The Brainy Bunch Program. This program aims to get books in the hands of all families in our community with children from birth to age five.

• Next, a shout-out and wishing of good luck to our Pikes Peak Community College and Pueblo Community College culinary students as they prepare for April 30's American Culinary Federation Western Regional Conference in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Nathan Dirnberger will compete for the Student Chef of the Year title.
  • Nathan Dirnberger will compete for the Student Chef of the Year title.

The teams will compete in a Jeopardy-style culinary knowledge competition, for a chance to advance to a national competition.

And 23-year-old PPCC student and Nosh employee Nathan Dirnberger will compete for the title of Student Chef of the Year.

Here's what that entails:

At the regional competition, students will prepare two portions of a main dish or a hot dessert. Savory menus must incorporate a whole bone-in chicken and dessert menus must incorporate apple. A panel of judges will select the winner based on cooking skills, taste and professionalism. The winner will be announced at the Regional Awards Gala, May 2, and the winner will represent the Western region in the national competition in Dallas in July.

Paravicini's Italian Bistro Chef Franco Pisani will hold a cooking class at noon, April 9 for $25 per person — which includes lunch and wine.

Here's the menu: Fennel & Olive, Orange Salad; Veal Saltimbocca; and Strawberry, Banana and Mascarpone Cream Tarts.

• Catch vegan ecofeminist Carol J. Adams in Colorado College's Worner Campus Center at 6 p.m., Monday, April 11 for a slideshow and lecture titled "The Sexual Politics of Meat."

More on Adams and the topic from a media release:

The slideshow provides an ecofeminist analysis of the interconnected oppressions of sexism, racism, and speciesism through an examination of verbal and visual imagery in American society. It explores the way popular culture presents images of race, gender, and species to further patriarchal attitudes.  Drawing upon images from popular culture, it answers the question: how does someone become a piece of meat? The slide show demonstrates how a trinity of interrelated forces—objectification, fragmentation, and consumption—impact our cultural and personal consciousness about women and animals. She will explain the inextricable connection between gender politics and how we view animals, especially animals that are consumed.  In her book, The Sexual Politics of Meat: A Feminist-Vegetarian Critical Theory (1990), Adams argues that because meat-eating is a seen as a symbol of virility in contemporary society, we equate vegetarianism with emasculation and femininity. Adams is also the author of many other works, including Ecofeminism and the Sacred (1993), Neither Man nor Beast: Feminism and the Defense of Animals (1994), Pornography of Meat (2004), and The Feminist Care Tradition in Animal Ethics: A Reader (2007).

• Lastly, a super early heads-up for the gluten-sensitive and gluten-free crowd: the Melting Pot will host a gluten-free night on May 4, featuring four GF courses — including dessert with GF brownies and lemon pound cake — for $28 per person plus tax/tip.

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