3rd Annual Mayors’ Healthy Cook-off

Get your taste buds ready! Our very own “Iron Chef” -style cooking challenge will be happening at the 3rd Annual Mayors’ Healthy Cook-off on Saturday, September 10 at Grove Park in Clayton! Come cheer for your city’s mayor and 19 other Contra Costa County mayors who will try their hand at cooking up a delicious brunch from 8am to 12 noon. Fresh salsa and an egg dish must be prepared in order to win the coveted trophy. The mayors will each be provided assistance from local restaurant chefs and given fresh produce from the certified farmers’ market around the corner. And you, the attendees, will get to sample what they’ve prepared.

Local celebrity judges will decide on their favorite dish and judge for creativity, presentation, and taste. Root for your favorites as judging begins at 10:30. Prizes will be awarded at noon. Pacific Coast Farmers Market Association is donating all the organic produce and Mark Hall & Sons will donate all the organic, cage-free eggs from their farm in Napa.

Along with this great cooking extravaganza there will be local business participation in the form of informational booths, a Master Gardener on hand with seed-planting for the kids, live music, and more. Wellness City Challenge, the American Heart Association, and other booths promoting healthy eating and living will be there as well.

The goal of this yearly event is to bring together community leaders, chefs, and educators to show their support for healthy, fresh – and real! – food, and also to teach both children and parents about good nutrition and good health. With an obesity rate in the U.S. that is skyrocketing from too much fast food, sugary sodas, and pre-packaged foods, the return to eating healthy, fresh, unprocessed food is very important for the future health of this generation and the next.

So save the date and support your city mayor, your local restaurants, and your local farmers’ market. Eating healthy and fresh is more important than ever before. Let’s get healthy by eating healthy! For more information visit Wellness City Challenge.

And eating healthy is as easy as visiting your local farmers’ market! And isn’t fall a wonderful time for fresh produce? Doesn’t it remind you of autumn leaves, crisp clean air, and going back to school? At your farmers’ market this month look for the appearance of fall grapes, fresh figs, crisp apples, and juicy pears. Winter squash like acorn and butternut squash will be arriving, as well as persimmons and pomegranates. And this time of year you can still get summer’s best fruits and vegetables like peaches, nectarines, sweet corn, summer melons, fresh juicy tomatoes, bell peppers, lettuce, artichokes, broccoli, and so much more.

Here’s a simply delicious recipe using autumn fruit to put you in the mood for the season to come.

Warm Apple Red Cabbage

1 red onion (or yellow)
1 red cabbage (or green)
2 apples (sweet, crisp varieties)
olive oil
balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper

Cut the peeled onion into thin match-stick pieces. Remove the outer leaves of the cabbage and cut the head into two halves. Next, remove the core with a knife and cut the remaining leaves into thin strips.  Immerse the sliced cabbage in a bowl of water to wash and remove any dirt or grime. Remove the core of the washed apples and cut into thin slices.
 
In a large sauté pan over medium heat, cook the onions in half a tablespoon of olive oil. When the onions begin to brown, add the sliced apples to the pan and cook for 1 minute. Add the cabbage, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, and a dash of water. Stirring often, cook until the cabbage is tender, but still retaining some crunch. Remove from heat and serve.

Look for brand new fall recipes and product information at your farmers’ market information booth and talk to your farmer about what’s new and exciting this September. Happy Autumn to all! Let’s enjoy the fall season by eating healthy with produce from your farmers’ market – and enjoying some community fun by cheering for your city’s mayor at the cook-off!

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