Food Friday: Back Into the Kitchen


Summer ended Last week. It is time to reacquaint yourself with the pots and pans and woks and cast iron skillets and cookie sheets that are going to be your seasonal life savers. Turn up the heat and welcome back to the kitchen.

I have some favorites that will be coming back into rotation now that I can’t foist most of the evening grilling on Mr. Friday. And I am relying on one of my favorite food resources, The New York Times.

Some folks have headed back to college, and have gone off their comfortable meal plans, and are fending for themselves for the the first time. There is more to life than ramen noodles and cold pizza. The rest of us come crawling into the kitchen each night, and wonder what on earth we can possible make for dinner without feeling totally keelhauled. Before heading directly for the cheap white wine (although it will be time to switch up to a nice inexpensive Malbec soon!) I want to point out that here are some basics that work without much risk of disappointment or failure.

These are easy peasy, as we are wont to warble. Throw that chicken in the oven and let the Slate Culture Gabfest podcast amuse you with their take on the intricacies of modern culture. And now you can have some wine. http://www.slate.com/articles/podcasts/culturegabfest/2016/09/slate_s_culture_gabfest_on_don_t_breathe_high_maintenance_and_harry_potter.html

Fettuccine Alfredo: http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/9025-elaines-fettuccine-alfredo?smid=fb-nytdining&smtyp=cur

If that seems too fancy, here are eight, 8, ways to make mac & cheese: http://cooking.nytimes.com/68861692-nyt-cooking/961504-amazing-ways-to-do-macaroni-and-cheese

Salmon, for the fish eaters: http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/5703-salmon-roasted-in-butter

Cast Iron Pan Steak: http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1016334-cast-iron-steak

Bearnaise to go with that fine steak: http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1017389-bearnaise-sauce Because if you are going to hell, you might as well go in style. Yumsters.

Because you really could have spaghetti every night.
Spaghetti: http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1016833-spaghetti-and-drop-meatballs-with-tomato-sauce

It took me years, YEARS, to get rice right. Here is a never fail approach: http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1016673-cant-miss-rice

Craig Claiborne’s Beef Stew: http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1321-craig-claibornes-beef-stew It is going to get chilly, honest.

Even easier is a good meatloaf. Although if your household is anything like ours, you have some ancestral meatloaf recipes in place already. Still, does yours count pancetta among the ingredients? Doubtful. http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1012686-fancy-meatloaf

And here is the definitive list of the New York Times’s 50 most popular recipes: http://cooking.nytimes.com/68861692-nyt-cooking/3238216-our-50-most-popular-recipes

You are on your own for salads and desserts. For this week, at least. Next week – breads!

“No man is lonely eating spaghetti; it requires so much attention.”
-Christopher Morley

Garden Club of the Eastern Shore Lecture


author-photo-copyCan a Garden Have Everything? with Colston Burrell, Wednesday, October 12, 2016 at 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM, sponsored by the Garden Club of the Eastern Shore at the Acadeny Art Museum, 106 South St., Easton, MD.

C. Colston Burrell is an acclaimed lecturer, garden designer, award winning author and photographer. Cole is an avid and lifelong plantsman, gardener and naturalist. Cole is a popular lecturer internationally on topics of design, plants and ecology. He has shared his encyclopedic knowledge of plants and his abiding respect for regional landscapes with professional and amateur audiences for 40 years. He is principal of Native Landscape Design and Restoration, which specializes in blending nature and culture through artistic design. In 2008 Cole received the Award of Distinction from the Association of Professional Landscape Designers for his work promoting sustainable gardening practices.

birdhill1Cole worked as curator at the U.S. National Arboretum and the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. He has devoted a lifetime to studying native plants in the wild and in gardens which lead to undergraduate degrees in Botany and Horticulture. He has an M.S. in Horticulture from University of Maryland and a Master of Landscape Architecture degree from the University of Minnesota. He is a lecturer in the College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture at the University of Virginia, where he teaches about plants and their ecological connections to natural systems and cultural landscapes.

After tending a city lot alive with birds and butterflies in Minneapolis, MN, he now gardens on 10 wild acres in the Blue Ridge Mountains near Charlottesville, Virginia, where he grows natives and the best plants of the global garden. Cole’s garden Bird Hill was featured in The New York Times and frequently appears in national and regional publications. The garden is a popular destination for national tours. Visitors discover a collector’s paradise set among a pastiche of woodland, meadow, and gardens inspired by the beauty of the regional landscape.

FREE admission. For more information, contact: www.facebook.com/gardencluboftheasternshore

Adkins Arboretum Offers Oct. 4 Trip to Duke Farms


duke-farms-2Through the beauty of its natural setting, the diversity of its wildlife and the scope and quality of its education programs, Duke Farms inspires people to transform their approach to conservation and start building a more sustainable future. Join Adkins Arboretum on Tues., Oct 4 for a day trip to Duke Farms in Hillsborough, N.J., one of the largest privately owned parcels of undeveloped land in the state.

Participants will take a guided tram tour through the 2,740-acre property rich in rolling hills, streams, waterfalls, ponds, forests, meadow and historic stone structures, and enjoy a tour of the Native Plant Propagation Nursery. Lunch will follow in the Café located in the 1905 Farm Barn, a 22,000-square-foot former horse and dairy barn renovated to LEED Platinum standards to an orientation center. There will be time for participants to explore on their own via tram, bike rentals or walking.

The fee of $95 for members and $120 for non-members includes transportation, driver gratuity, lunch and the guided tram tour. The bus departs from Aurora Park Drive in Easton at 8 a.m., from the Route 50/404 park and ride at 8:20 a.m. and from the Route 301/291 park and ride at 8:40 a.m. Participants may choose their pick-up location and lunch preference when registering.

Advance registration is required. Visit adkinsarboretum.org for more information or to register, or call 410-634-2847, ext. 0.

Adkins Arboretum is a 400-acre native garden and preserve at the headwaters of the Tuckahoe Creek in Caroline County. Open year round, the Arboretum offers educational programs for all ages about nature and gardening. For more information about programs, visit adkinsarboretum.org or call 410-634-2847, ext. 0.

Kent County Native Named an ISA ‘True Professional of Arboriculture’


Kevin Eckert, of Kailua, Hawaii has been named a “True Professional of Arboriculture™” by the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA). The True Professional recognition program honors arborists and tree care professionals for their positive impact on the industry in and around their communities.

Kevin Eckert

Kevin Eckert

As President and Managing Director of Arbor Global USA, Eckert provides arboricultural consulting, training, tree management, and expert witness services to government, corporate, and private clients throughout the United States, Hong Kong, and the Asia Pacific Rim.

“Kevin Eckert has a passion for the arboriculture profession and for sharing his knowledge and experience with students and colleagues.” says de Gourét Litchfield, ISA board president. “He strives to enhance ability and understanding for others in the industry.”

Eckert, who grew up in Chestertown, Maryland, implemented a professional training program at Hawaiian Electric Company (HECo) that emphasized industry standards and certification to improve utility arborist performance. “There were some wonderful industry leaders who were making progress but had not been able to get the desired outcome,” he explains. “The HECo program was successful and significantly improved performance, which caught the attention of government and tree management stakeholders who ended up modeling the HECo program.”

“My life’s goal is to leave a legacy of happy and healthy trees that benefit the natural and human environment that live on well beyond my years,” Eckert shared. Regarding the many training programs he leads, Eckert said that he wants to enhance the environment through trees and future generations. “I enjoy sharing my passion, experience, and knowledge with others to help them reach their goals, correctly care for trees to benefit the environment and our communities, and find as much joy in this profession as I do.”

Eckert was recognized at the opening general session of ISA’s 92nd Annual International Conference last month in Fort Worth, Texas. He is one of eight individuals selected as a 2016 True Professional. ISA launched the “True Professionals of Arboriculture™” recognition program in 2009 to increase public understanding of arboriculture and the professional skills of today’s arborists. Recipients are from various backgrounds in the profession and hold industry credentials including certifications from ISA.

Individuals are selected by the ISA Awards Committee, a diverse group of experts in arboriculture including university professors, retired arborists, tree care company owners, trainers, and forestry managers. After selection, award recipients are approved by ISA’s Board of Directors.

Profiles and case studies of the “True Professionals” will be featured on the ISA website at www.isa-arbor.com and highlighted in future ISA publications such as Arborist News.

Click here for a video on Kevin Eckert.

Eastern Shore Brewing Wins Statewide Medals in Brewing Competition

Pictured from left to right: Eastern Shore Brewing's Zach Milash (Brewmaster), Cory Edwards (Beer Server), Jay Hudson (General Manager), Adrian Moritz (co-owner). Co-owner Lori Moritz is not pictured.

Pictured from left to right: Eastern Shore Brewing’s Zach Milash (Brewmaster), Cory Edwards (Beer Server), Jay Hudson (General Manager), Adrian Moritz (co-owner). Co-owner Lori Moritz is not pictured.

St. Michaels based Eastern Shore Brewing, the oldest brewery on the Eastern Shore of MD, was awarded two medals in the 2016 annual competition of the Brewers Association of Maryland.

Eastern Shore Brewing won a silver medal for their porter named Duck Duck Goose. The brewery also won a bronze medal for their Knot So Pale Ale and an honorable mention for their Situation Critical IPA.

The competition included over 260 entries in ten different categories. Evolution Craft Brewing Company of Salisbury was the only other Eastern Shore brewery to win medals in this year’s competition. Eastern Shore Brewing has won a total of ten medals in the state competition since its inception in 2008.

Owners Adrian and Lori Moritz, and brewer Zach Milash will attend a ceremony and presentation by the Comptroller later this year.

Adkins Arboretum Offers Free Admission, More on Sept. 24 for Smithsonian Museum Day


adkins-arboretumAdkins Arboretum will waive admission fees and offer special activities on Sat., Sept. 24 in recognition of Smithsonian magazine’s twelfth annual Museum Day. A celebration of culture, learning and the dissemination of knowledge, Museum Day reflects the free-admission policy of the Smithsonian Institution’s museums in Washington, D.C. Doors of museums and cultural institutions nationwide will be open free of charge.

The public is invited on Museum Day to explore the Arboretum’s 400 acres of native woodlands, wetlands, gardens and meadows along five miles of trails. Violist Nevin Dawson will perform at 2 p.m., and children’s activities will be offered throughout the day. Visitors also may enjoy a guided walk with docent Margan Glover, audio tours that provide lessons about the region’s natural history, the eighth biennial Outdoor Sculpture Invitational exhibit, and Four Seasons, an exhibit of paintings by Julia Sufliff. A wide variety of ornamental native perennials, trees, shrubs and grasses will be for sale for fall planting at the Native Plant Nursery. Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

For more information about Adkins Arboretum, visit adkinsarboretum.org. For information about Smithsonian Museum Day, visit http://www.smithsonianmag.com/museumday/.

Adkins Arboretum is a 400-acre native garden and preserve at the headwaters of the Tuckahoe Creek in Caroline County. Open year round, the Arboretum offers educational programs for all ages about nature and gardening. For more information, visit adkinsarboretum.org or call 410-634-2847, ext. 0.

Fall Homeschool Programs Begin Sept. 20 at Adkins Arboretum


homeschool 4Homeschool students of all ages can get down and dirty with science this fall at Adkins Arboretum!

In The Science of the Wetland, a 10-week program for students in grades 2 to 5, homeschoolers will grab their buckets and delve into the wonders of this unique ecosystem. Students will develop scientific skills as they build model wetlands, examine wetland plant and animal adaptations, test water quality, observe microscopic wetland life and more. Opportunities to use scientific equipment are part of the learning process.

In Botany for Homeschoolers, for grades 6 and above, students will explore the native plants of the Arboretum’s meadow, forest and wetland habitats through the lens of botany. Areas of study will include plant evolution and classification, cell structure, photosynthesis, reproduction, leaf morphology, plant collection and genetics. Hands-on investigation and the use of scientific equipment are part of the program.

Programs meet concurrently from 1 to 2:30 p.m. on Tuesdays from Sept. 20 to Nov. 22. Arboretum Youth Program Director Jenny Houghton and biologist/science educator Leslie Adelman will teach the programs. Advance registration is required. Visit adkinsarboretum.org for more information or to register your student, or call 410-634-2847, ext. 0. 

Adkins Arboretum is a 400-acre native garden and preserve at the headwaters of the Tuckahoe Creek in Caroline County. Open year round, the Arboretum offers educational programs for all ages about nature and gardening. For more information about programs, visit adkinsarboretum.org or call 410-634-2847, ext. 0.

ESLC 17th Annual Planning Conference Request for Proposals


The Eastern Shore Land Conservancy’s 17th Annual Planning Conference, “Food Fight! Healthy? Sustainable? Realistic?” will be held November 10th at the Chesapeake Bay Beach Club, Stevensville MD.

This conference will take a fresh look at one of the most basic human needs: food!

We welcome proposals for speakers who want to engage attendees in highly interactive sessions to evaluate how we are planning for a better, more equitable, food system built upon Eastern Shore agriculture. As the Eastern Shore’s #1 land use and our region’s biggest economic driver, agriculture continues to play a pivotal role in how the region prospers.

Who benefits from the current food system? Can Shore agricultural or behavioral shifts improve human, societal, and environmental health? What changes to our food system are realistic?

screen-shot-2016-09-19-at-4-22-04-pmTopic areas may include:
– How we define “local” foods
– The reality of GMOs
– Crop diversity on the Eastern Shore
– Food deserts, injustice in the food system
– CAFOs and how the industry meets consumer demands
– The environmental impact of large scale agriculture vs. small scale
– Value-added agriculture and artisanal foods
– Aquaculture, urban agriculture and other innovative practices
– History of Eastern Shore agriculture
– Organic and sustainable farming
– Soil health
– Ability to feed the growing global population
– Mechanized labor vs. manual labor in food production

Ideal proposals will be short, but provocative – setting aside time for vigorous audience participation and interaction. More can be found on the event registration page: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/ 17th-annual-planning- conference-tickets-27078772337
If you are interested in submitting a sketch proposal for the 17th annual conference please submit your application no later than Friday, September 16, 2016 to Rachel Roman at rroman@eslc.org.

Environmental Series Announces Shore Homesteading Series


How do we value food? North America alone throws away billions of dollars worth of food every year- from farms, retail operations, and the back of your refrigerator.  Statistics show that nearly 50% of food is wasted. Follow “Just Eat It” filmmakers Jen Rustemeyer and Grant Baldwin in a story that is equal parts documentary and delicious entertainment. The film will be shown on Thursday, September 1, 6:30 pm at Sumner Hall, 206 Queen Street in Chestertown. You will never look at shopping cart in the same way.


“Just Eat It” has won numerous awards, and was a finalist for the James Beard Awards.  It is part of the new Shore Homesteading Series, presented by the Chestertown Environmental Committee, and designed to inspire lifestyles to support the ecological health of our community. The series consists of films, how-to talks, workshops, and foodie events, and will be held at different locations. For a listing of events, and for more information, visit  http://www.chestertown.com/environment.

The Shore Homesteading Series is free and open to the public. It continues September 20, with, “Growing and Cooking with Herbs,” a talk on spicing up local food, 6:30 pm at the Chestertown Town Hall, 118 North Cross Street. The series is curated by Margo Bailey, and Shane Brill, and is sponsored by the Town of Chestertown.