All Posts by Local Food Journey

The Who, What, When, Where: Festa-Nic Central Pa Culinary Showcase

The Who, What, When, Where: Festa-Nic Central Pa Culinary Showcase

By Melanie Phillips, Village Eatinghouse Artisan Foods

It’s the WHY…that makes Festa-Nic special.

Central Pennsylvania has an abundance of large and small specialty food and beverage manufacturers making high quality consumer goods that help to fuel our local economy and support our families and our communities. Friends & Farmers Co-op is our non-profit fundraiser partner and they are helping to fuel the excitement and participation in Festa-Nic.   

Continue Reading: The Who, What, When, Where: Festa-Nic Central Pa Culinary Showcase

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 05/18, 2016 at 08:49 AM

Tags: Festa-Nic | event | Friends&FarmersCoop | VillageEatinghouse |

State College winter farmers market an oasis from winter chill and gloom

State College winter farmers market an oasis from winter chill and gloom

Editor’s note: This is the first piece by our new Local Food Journey intern, Alexandrea Scott, a Penn State communications major.

If you’re the type of person who prefers fresh grown vegetables, homemade jam, organic beauty products, or in the mood for some Alaskan salmon, this is the place for you. The Winter Farmers Market, in downtown State College, takes place every Friday at the State College Municipal Building, located on 243 Allen St. It starts at 11:30 a.m. and goes all day till 5:00 p.m.

Continue Reading: State College winter farmers market an oasis from winter chill and gloom

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 01/20, 2016 at 09:33 AM

Tags: winter | farmersmarket |

Consider donating to PASA on this Giving Tuesday!

Consider donating to PASA on this Giving Tuesday!

On this Giving Tuesday, here’s an opportunity to support a great local food organization with a donation…please see below a note from Jaunette Matis, annual giving manager for the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA):

PASA’s mission to promote profitable farms that produce healthy food for all people while respecting the natural environment means a lot to me. I’m not a farmer, and not a great gardener, so I recognize the need for farmers. Having been a dairy farm laborer’s wife for over 16 years I also know the hardships and sacrifices farmers face. Farming is not always an easy life, but it can be so very rewarding and it’s something that I am committed to support in every way I can. I support PASA because I want healthy food produced via sustainable farming practices to fuel a vibrant life. Don’t we all want that? Won’t you help on this Giving Tuesday?

Continue Reading: Consider donating to PASA on this Giving Tuesday!

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 12/01, 2015 at 09:17 AM

Tags: PASA | GivingTuesday |

Recipe: Via Sexy Crumbs blog, a great recipe for Cucumber and Onion Salad

Editor’s Note: Shannon Ritter works at the Penn State School of Theater in undergraduate admissions and recruitment, and when she’s not at work, she is a master cook and baker. Fortunately for the rest of us, she shares the creations that come out of her Boalsburg kitchen via her excellent food blog Sexy Crumbs. An example of what you will find there is this wonderful recipe for cucumber and onion salad, which is perfect for using up the last of the summer’s cucumbers, or for a real winner of a Labor Day picnic dish. The salad is based on an old family recipe. Shannon shares her version of the recipe and the story behind it below, reflecting on how food can connect us to our past:

Continue Reading: Recipe: Via Sexy Crumbs blog, a great recipe for Cucumber and Onion Salad

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 08/25, 2015 at 07:54 AM

Tags: recipe | cucumbers | onion | summer |

Local food part of Happy Valley Culinary Week June 22-28

Local food part of Happy Valley Culinary Week June 22-28

The Third Annual Happy Valley Culinary Week is here, starting today, June 22, and running through Sunday, June 28. There are 18 restaurants in Happy Valley offering special menus, but there’s special events as well. Learn more about Happy Valley Culinary Week by reading the post below, written by Lori Miller, director of visitor and member services with the Central Pennsylvania Convention & Visitors Bureau. Then tomorrow here on Local Food Journey learn about one of the major highlights of the week, the South Hills Culinary Week Food Festival which will be held on Wednesday, June 24.

By Lori Miller, Central Pennsylvania Convention & Visitors Bureau

We’re very happy to be celebrating our 3rd Annual Happy Valley Culinary Week! It’s a great way to celebrate the dining scene in Centre County. We have a lot of familiar as well as unique dining options with some great chef talent. We hope to encourage people to try a new place and hopefully discover a new favorite.

Continue Reading: Local food part of Happy Valley Culinary Week June 22-28

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 06/22, 2015 at 08:00 AM

Tags: HappyValleyCulinaryWeek |

Gigi’s offers Southern-style food and cocktails with a local twist

Gigi’s offers Southern-style food and cocktails with a local twist

By Emily Edling, Local Food Journey intern

Gigi’s Restaurant and Wine Lounge, located just two miles outside of downtown State College, gives its guests something different by offering a wide variety of menu items that take advantage of local food sources. I spoke with manager Rebecca Larsen to find out what local companies Gigi’s uses and how this affects the development of their menu.

Both Larsen and the chef are relatively new to the restaurant, coming in last year with a vision to create a southern inspired restaurant and bar. She said that her and the chef work together with local providers to see what fruits or vegetables they have and then figure out how they can incorporate that into a menu dish. For example, Tait Farm is one of Gigi’s food providers, and has had a lot of spinach lately. So a couple of weeks ago, the menu featured a petite filet with spinach.

Continue Reading: Gigi’s offers Southern-style food and cocktails with a local twist

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 04/16, 2015 at 10:12 AM

Tags: Gigi's | southernfood |

Jade Family Farm gets spring planting season underway

Jade Family Farm gets spring planting season underway

By Emily Edling, WPSU Local Food Journey intern

While it hasn’t been feeling much like spring, warmer weather is surely on its way, and the staff of the Jade Family Farm is hard at work to prepare for the spring season.

Even though it still feels like winter some days, especially with the snowstorm on the first day of spring, that doesn’t mean that farmers get to take a break. There is much preparation that goes into a farm having a successful growing season.

Continue Reading: Jade Family Farm gets spring planting season underway

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 03/31, 2015 at 08:10 AM

Tags: JadeFamilyFarm | spring | EmilyEdling |

Aardvark Kafe offers vegans a hidden treasure for casual dining

Aardvark Kafe offers vegans a hidden treasure for casual dining

By Emily Edling, Local Food Journey Intern

The Aardvark Kafe is one of the hidden treasures for the vegetarian community in State College. Located on the 900-block of West College Ave, it is just out of reach of the downtown area, but is well worth the trip. Owners Karen and Les Urbanski opened Aardvark Kafe three years ago, transforming the former OIP (Original Italian Pizza) into a combination cafe and antique shop.
In keeping the original OIP menu and adding a whole new menu consisting entirely of vegan dishes, the Aardvark Kafe offers an environment in which vegans, vegetarians, and meat eaters alike can dine together in perfect harmony.

Continue Reading: Aardvark Kafe offers vegans a hidden treasure for casual dining

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 03/11, 2015 at 07:54 AM

Tags: AardvarkKafe | vegan |

Penn State club offers support for those leading the vegetarian/vegan lifestyle

Penn State club offers support for those leading the vegetarian/vegan lifestyle

By Emily Edling
WPSU Local Food Journey Intern

The Penn State Vegetarian Club is just one of the 900-plus student organizations on campus, but they are doing some interesting things both on campus and throughout the State College community. They offer social support for those leading a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle, sponsor food giveaways, host speakers from groups such as PETA, The Humane League and Vegan Outreach, and are currently working with the dining commons to get more vegan options on campus.

I spoke with President Keegan O’Donnell to get the inside scoop on where the best vegetarian options are both on campus and around State College. For on campus dining, he recommends West Commons, which features an entire vegetarian section, Veg Works, and Redifer in South Dining Commons, which offers a good selection of á la carte options. The HUB also offers some impressive vegetarian cuisine with the tofu bowls at Sushi by Panda Express and of course there is always Mixed Greens for a good salad (although they don’t label vegan salad dressings so vegans be wary).

Continue Reading: Penn State club offers support for those leading the vegetarian/vegan lifestyle

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 02/25, 2015 at 08:00 AM

Tags: vegetarian | PennState |

Webster’s Bookstore and Cafe offers up local food options for the literary inclined

Webster’s Bookstore and Cafe offers up local food options for the literary inclined

By Emily Edling, Local Food Journey Intern

Webster’s Bookstore Café is known for its cozy atmosphere of used book and a broad selection of café drinks. But what sets them apart from the other coffee shops of downtown State College is their wide range of food, especially their vegetarian and vegan options, utilizing local sources to make these tasty meals.

Aside from specialty coffee and tea drinks, Webster’s does a lot of things with vegetarian ingredients such as hummus, paté, and portabella mushrooms all of which can be made in the form of sandwiches, salads, paninis, or wraps and that are all vegan unless you choose to add cheese. They also offer a soup of the day and other daily specials, which offer even more vegetarian options.

For non-vegan’s there are also many egg sandwiches and burritos available, each with a literature-themed name. In fact, with the exception of about two or three items, the entire menu at Webster’s is vegetarian friendly—it’s a dream come true! My personal favorite is the Spicy Bean Chili, which is a vegan dish that has the perfect amount of spice to warm up on these cold winter days.

Continue Reading: Webster’s Bookstore and Cafe offers up local food options for the literary inclined

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 02/06, 2015 at 09:00 AM

Tags: vegetarian | vegan | Webster's |

Being a vegetarian in State College

Being a vegetarian in State College

Local Food Journey has a new writing intern, Emily Edling. She’s a Penn State English major, and is also a vegetarian. Her first contribution to Local Food Journey is a piece on her experiences being a vegetarian in State College.

Being a vegetarian can be difficult regardless of where you live. When I first made the decision to give up meat I was in my hometown of Boyertown, PA, where I was struggling to find options that were both delicious and adequate substitutes to meat. Along with this, I also had the burden of enduring endless discussions with friends and family members in defending my choice to abstain from meat, in assuring them that it doesn’t offend me when they eat meat, about where I am getting my protein from, and so on. 

Continue Reading: Being a vegetarian in State College

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 01/23, 2015 at 10:07 AM

Tags: vegetarian |

World Food Day speaker raises modern food issues

World Food Day speaker raises modern food issues

By LaCreta Holland

October 16, 2014, was “World Food Day,” a day for “action against hunger,” proclaimed by the United Nations.

On World Food Day, I attended a very interesting lecture by Bryan McDonald, assistant professor of history at Penn State. His lecture, “Dinner for Seven Billion:  Food Issues for the 21st Century,” was held as part of Schlow Library’s Research Unplugged series.

Continue Reading: World Food Day speaker raises modern food issues

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 10/20, 2014 at 08:46 AM

Tags: WWI | foodtalk |

Lots to discover at our farmers markets in autumn

Lots to discover at our farmers markets in autumn

Fall is officially upon us. The leaves are changing from a verdant green to the many warm shades of red and orange; temperatures are dropping steadily; and, perhaps most importantly, the Downtown State College Farmer’s Market, which is held every Tuesday and Friday afternoon from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on the corner of Locust Lane and College Avenue, has revealed their many seasonal offerings. Those who are fond of decorating in the autumnal and Halloween-esque styles—and even those who just like a good squash—will be delighted to see what Locust Lane has in store on Tuesday and Friday afternoons in October.

Continue Reading: Lots to discover at our farmers markets in autumn

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 10/16, 2014 at 07:00 AM

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Millheim Oktoberfest to be held Saturday Oct. 11

Millheim Oktoberfest to be held Saturday Oct. 11

By Anna Lombardo

Free up your schedule, folks—the second annual Millheim Oktoberfest, presented by Elk Creek Cafe and Aleworks to benefit the Millheim fire company, is just around the corner. On Saturday, Oct. 11, starting at 11:00 a.m. and lasting until 7:00 p.m., the Millheim fire company grounds will host this family friendly, all-weather event, where they plan to offer traditional German food, drink, music, and dancing—in the spirit of community involvement and kinship. 

Oktoberfest, I learn from Elk Creek Cafe head brewer Tim Yarrington (I was pitiably uninformed about the event), dates back to Germany in the early 1800s, when a party was thrown for a young Prince Ludwig, in honor of his marriage. The entire town of Munich, Germany, was invited, and thus Ludwig’s marriage party set epic proportions for this tradition, which would inspire subsequent celebrations all over the world every year for the next several hundred years.

Continue Reading: Millheim Oktoberfest to be held Saturday Oct. 11

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 10/10, 2014 at 07:30 AM

Tags: Oktoberfest | Millheim | ElkCreekCafe |

Bakery focuses on gluten-free options for desserts, pasta

Bakery focuses on gluten-free options for desserts, pasta

By Anna Lombardo

Do you have to avoid gluten? You no longer have to fear pasta.

One of central Pennsylvania’s renowned pasta makers, Fasta & Ravioli Co., recently teamed up with another local food business, Good Seed Baking Co.—exclusive producer of gluten-free items—to begin a new line of their freshly made pastas that cater to those individuals whose gluten allergies likely prevent them from gobbling down plates of spaghetti on a weekly basis like the rest of us do (oh—that’s just me?...okay).

Continue Reading: Bakery focuses on gluten-free options for desserts, pasta

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 09/25, 2014 at 08:16 AM

Tags: GoodSeedBakery | gluten-free |

Recipe: Roasted tomatoes offer a tasty way to say farewell to summer

Recipe: Roasted tomatoes offer a tasty way to say farewell to summer

By LaCreta Holland

Summer is still producing my favorite veggies, but with a nip in the air, not for much longer! I shopped at the Tuesday Farmers Market in Boalsburg this week and found very good prices on the last tomatoes of the summer. I don’t look forward to winter, so a basket of tomatoes right now really makes me smile. There are lots of ways I want to use them, now and in the future.

I like to use them fresh in pasta dishes. This angel hair pasta is mixed with grilled shrimp. Garlic and tomatoes sauteed in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil are added and a handful of julienne basil are mixed in. A very fresh tasting pasta for the end of the summer.

Continue Reading: Recipe: Roasted tomatoes offer a tasty way to say farewell to summer

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 09/18, 2014 at 11:10 AM

Tags: recipe | pasta | tomatoes |

Beyond yellow: ‘Big Al’ takes mustard to another level

Beyond yellow: ‘Big Al’ takes mustard to another level

Editor’s note: This is the first of our new Local Food Intern Anna Lombardo’s articles on the local food scene in Central Pennsylvania.

Next time you’re jonesing for that familiar kick of mustard on your hot dog or seeking out a dip for your big neighborhood shindig, set down the Heinz bottle and look no further than a locally brewed and packaged concoction: a jar of Big Al’s Sweet and Spicy Mustards.

You’ll know you have the right product when you find two adorably animated peppers—one yellow, one red—embracing each other as they beam and wave at you from the packaging. Inside the jar, things only get better. Big Al—also known as Allen Weimert, a retired schoolteacher, who makes the mustard right out of his Stormstown home alongside his wife, Maryann—uses only locally grown ingredients, many of which he grows in his own backyard. For example, the red, yellow, and orange peppers you find delectably strewn throughout the brew have most likely been cultivated at the hands of the Weimerts. What they can’t grow, they buy from local vendors. Al tells me that his business both flourishes and is dependent upon the availability of fresh, local foods grown in central Pennsylvania. He says that part of the reason that he and Maryann have been “blessed” with this project is because they have the local resources to do so.

Continue Reading: Beyond yellow: ‘Big Al’ takes mustard to another level

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 09/16, 2014 at 10:51 AM

Tags: mustard | condiments |

Recipe: Zucchini Tian makes a perfect meatless late summer meal

Recipe: Zucchini Tian makes a perfect meatless late summer meal

By LaCreta Holland

What is a “tian?”

A tian is “a dish of finely chopped vegetables cooked in olive oil and baked au gratin.”  My tian is an adaptation of a Julia Child recipe–it makes a great side dish or you can use it, as I did, as the main course for a meatless meal.

After all, with so many lovely fresh vegetables available right now, why would you need meat?

Continue Reading: Recipe: Zucchini Tian makes a perfect meatless late summer meal

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 08/27, 2014 at 08:13 AM

Tags: recipe | zucchini |

Recipe: Zucchini Egg Bake a tasty solution to too many zucchinis

Recipe: Zucchini Egg Bake a tasty solution to too many zucchinis

Editor’s Note: We will be getting contributions to Local Food Journey from time to time from LaCreta Holland, who runs Happy Valley Learn to Cook, a local food blog, and teaches cooking classes in State College. Her first post offers up a wonderful recipe that will help you use up all those zucchinis that are coming non-stop from your garden.

We visited friends over the 4th of July holiday and they feed us very well. For brunch one morning, we were served Zucchini Egg Bake, a moist and herb-y egg creation that we could not stop eating! I had to get the recipe.

Continue Reading: Recipe: Zucchini Egg Bake a tasty solution to too many zucchinis

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 08/19, 2014 at 10:32 AM

Tags: zucchini | recipe | eggs |

Guaranteed local at the Bellefonte Grower’s Farmers Market

Guaranteed local at the Bellefonte Grower’s Farmers Market

Post by Nick Benard

Living in Bellefonte, I love tracking the progress of spring to summer with the Bellefonte Growers Farmer’s Market. Located in the Gamble Mill Parking Lot at 160 Dunlap St, the market runs every Saturday from 8:00 a.m. to noon. This market is akin to a self-regulated cooperative, ensuring that the people you buy your food from are the ones who actually grow it. Did you ever wonder why some farmers markets will be flush with corn and beefsteak tomatoes for Memorial Day, even while our PA gardens are just taking root at the end of May? Chances are they’re buying from farms in the South and California.

Continue Reading: Guaranteed local at the Bellefonte Grower’s Farmers Market

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 06/25, 2013 at 10:21 AM

Tags: BellefonteFarmersMarket |

Winner of the Butternut Squash Recipe Contest

Winner of the Butternut Squash Recipe Contest

Thanks to everyone who participated in this month’s butternut squash recipe contest! Congratulations to Ashley of State College and her Butternut Squash Risotto recipe. She is the recipient of a $25 gift certificate to Harrison’s Wine Grill & Catering

Continue reading to see all of the submitted recipes. Enjoy!

Continue Reading: Winner of the Butternut Squash Recipe Contest

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 11/02, 2011 at 08:08 AM

Tags: butternutsquash | recipe | recipecontest |

The Splendid Table Comes to WPSU-FM

The Splendid Table Comes to WPSU-FM

We’re pleased to announce that starting November 6, the The Splendid Table with Lynne Rossetto Kasper will be joining the WPSU-FM line-up Sunday mornings at 11:00 a.m. (with The Thistle and Shamrock moving to Sundays at 8:00 p.m.).

Continue Reading: The Splendid Table Comes to WPSU-FM

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 10/27, 2011 at 12:33 PM

Tags: wpsu |

Winner of the Eggplant Recipe Contest

Winner of the Eggplant Recipe Contest

Thanks to everyone who participated in this month’s eggplant recipe contest! Congratulations to Albert of State College and his Lavash Flatbread recipe. He is the recipient of a $25 gift certificate to Mount Nittany Winery in Centre Hall.

Continue reading to see all of the submitted recipes. Enjoy!

Continue Reading: Winner of the Eggplant Recipe Contest

{name} Posted by Local Food Journey on 10/03, 2011 at 07:22 AM

Tags: recipe | eggplant | recipecontest |

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