If youre thinking about entering one of the culinary contests at the Western Idaho Fair this year, its time to get serious. There are contests for every taste from homemade pickles to cookies to your secret sauce.
The fair runs Aug. 16-25 at Expo Idaho, 5610 N. Glenwood St., Garden City.
Here are a few of the bigger ones to get you going:
The Fleischmanns Yeast Best Baking Contest happens at 34 state and county fairs across the country, including Idaho.
Use any type of Fleischmanns Yeast in your recipe and compete for a chance to win prizes of $125, $50 and $25 for the top three. Anything goes from baguettes to coffee cakes to breadsticks.
Or enter the Dessert Pizza Contest with your homemade crust made with Fleischmanns Pizza Crust Yeast or other Fleischmanns Yeast products. The top winner will receive a $125 prize.
This year, the contest will award a special prize for a first-time entry.
For each entry, ACH Food Company will donate $10 toward the No Kid Hungry Campaign.
You can square off against other home-grillers and tailgaters at the BOB-e-Que Battle barbecue cook-off, sponsored by BOB FM, 96.1. Grills fire up at 7 a.m. Aug. 24; judging starts at 1 p.m. This years categories are beef short ribs and tilapia. In the Iron BOB challenge barbecue dessert round you get surprise ingredients to play with. This years judges include Alvin Charlton of the Arid Club, John Berryhill of Berryhill Restaurants and David Knickrehm of Bella Aquila. Registration goes until all 20 spots are filled. Its free to enter and compete for the $500 first place award and other prizes. Call coordinator Teresa Biggs at (208) 585-7693 to register.
Powells Sweet Shoppe in Bown Crossing is running a new contest this year to create a candy bar. Judging is at 2 p.m. Aug. 16. The competition includes making the bar and then proposing a name, packaging and marketing campaign. The winning entry may be made into a real bar to sell at the shop.
Sorrento Cheeses Cheesapalooza offers two contests for the cheese connoisseur at 2 p.m. Aug. 23.
You can enter any non-dessert cheese recipe using one or a combination of Sorrento Cheese products in the main contest. Or you enter the desserts-only competition that must showcase at least one Sorrento cheese.
You can learn more about Sorrento cheeses at SorrentoCheese.com/cheese.
All recipes must be original. The winning recipes will become property of Sorrento Lactalis Inc.
Register for these and other contests at IdahoFair.com. For information, call Biggs at (208) 585-7693.
MORE IN AUGUST
Chefs and caterers from the McCall area will serve tastes of their summer selections paired with wines, microbrews and great music at Taste of McCall. The annual event benefits the McCall Education Foundation. Its from noon to 3 p.m. Aug. 10 at River Ranch, 101 Headquarters Road in McCall. Tickets are $50 per person at mdef.org and at area businesses.
The Idaho Brewers Fest this weekend is just the start of the local beer season. The Barley Bros. Traveling Beer Show will pour some of the best brews from the state and the region from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Aug. 24 and 25 at Julius M. Kleiner Memorial Park, 1900 N. Records Ave. in Meridian.
See page 21 for Brewers Fest ticket details.
Barley Bros. tickets are $30 for one day and $50 for a two-day pass of unlimited samples and a souvenir glass in advance at Brewforia, 3030 E. Overland Road, Meridian; $35 for one day or $60 for two-day at the gate. 888-7668, BarleyBros.net.
NEW DINING AT STATE & LEMP
Former guerilla chefs Remi McManus and Jay Henry created a local buzz by cooking up gourmet meals in private homes with their Off The Grid Dining.
Now, theyre about to put down roots at State & Lemp, an intimate fine-dining space at 2870 W. State St., formerly Pacific Rim Wine Stop.
The chefs have been putting their sweat equity into the space for about a month. The plan is to focus on pre-fixe meals that will cost $75 per plate and up (add $30 for wine and non-alcohol beverage pairing).
They also plan to produce monthly fundraisers and community events that support local arts and culture organizations.
McManus and Henry met and honed their culinary chops working under chef Jon Mortimer at his Mortimers and Franco Latino restaurants.
Theyre shooting for an Oct. 1 opening, McManus says. Check their progress at Facebook.com/stateandlemp.
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