In lieu of Financial Friday, I must post a more timely recap of the how2heroes Hoedown I attended at Smolak Farms last Sunday. The event, which was held from 1 to 5 p.m., featured locally-sourced food samples from some of the area's best restaurants, as well as beer and wine from Narragansett and the Wine Connextion, a pig roast, hay rides, cooking demos, and even an amateur baking contest. The cost of admission was $25.00, with a percentage of proceeds benefiting the Federation of Massachusetts Farmers Markets.
Quick disclaimer: I was fortunate enough to attend the Hoedown with my cousin, Catherine, thanks to Image Unlimited Communications, Ltd. Despite their generosity, all opinions expressed in this post are 100 percent honest and my own.
Catherine and I ate more than our fair share of food on Sunday, but here's a recap of some of my favorite culinary offerings that day.
Bread & Chocolate - Sweet Corn Buns with Sage:
Bread & Chocolate's corn buns were incredibly dense, albeit incredibly delicious. The sweet, fresh, whole kernels of corn were prominent throughout each bun, and the bread itself was buttery and perfectly flavored with the sage. These buns were a great way to get started for the culinary tour to come.
Sweet - Ginger Peach Whoopie Pies:
No pun intended - these whoopie pies were incredibly sweet. There's really no other way to describe them. Fortunately, the bright, eye-popping flavor of the ginger helped to cut the sweetness slightly, while the peach provided a refreshing, additional taste to the pies.
Orzo - Pasta Salad:
I love pasta salad, and Orzo's sampling was top notch, as far as pasta salads go. The dish was made with tortellini, and was wonderfully dressed with a vinegar/citrus coating and fresh herbs.
Wine Connextion - vino:
The folks at the Wine Connextion (a brother/sister team) were incredibly friendly and helpful in picking a wine each attendee would enjoy. They had plenty of red and wine options, but I had two chilled glasses of white throughout the day. After visiting their booth, I'm eager to go back to the Wine Connextion after the friendly and attentive service I received on Sunday.
Smolak Farms - Peach Crisp and Apple Cider Doughnuts:
Confession: I didn't try either of these items, but they looked amazing. By this point, I was already in sugar overload, and needed a break from eating. We decided to take a breather by going to see the pig roast - which had just ended.
As soon as we realized we missed out on the pig, we heard the tractor pull up to the parking lot, and knew the next hay ride was about to leave. With our wine glasses in hand, we caught up with the tractor and jumped in. The hay ride took us all over Smolak Farms - I had no idea how large their land is!
The ride was beautiful, although really humid - but it did provide a much needed break from eating. After we got off the hay ride, we went back for some more samples.
How2Heroes - Zucchini Bread and Rosemary Lemonade:
This was the moistest zucchini bread I've had to date, and the bright flavors of the fresh zucchini were completely evident in each bite. At this point in the day, no lemonade was found, but the delicious zucchini bread made up for it.
Other highlights of the day: The Chilled Corn Soup with Toasted Cumin by Parsons Table, and 62 Restaurant's ribs with spicy red cabbage. There was also plenty of entertainment throughout the afternoon, including a dunk tank and “The Hoedown Throwdown Baking Contest," an amateur baking contest presented by King Arthur Flour and how2heroes using farm fresh produce as the main ingredient, as well as King Arthur Flour.
The how2heroes Hoedown was a fun, unique way to spend a sunny Sunday afternoon. The vibe at Smolak Farms is always inviting and relaxing, and I really enjoyed perusing their bakery and store after the Hoedown festivities. I may or may not have left with a homemade Peach and Raspberry pie from their bake shop...which I highly recommend you purchase the next time you're there.
What are you going to miss most about the summer?