Monthly Archives: September 2013

Join BFBL in our 4th Annual Harvest Party!

Harvest Party

Central to the spirit of the local food movement is a sense of community—the interconnection of food, farmers, and friends. We share in the bounty and the hardship of our neighbor’s pursuits, which in turn allow us to gain an understanding for the unpredictable nature of food production. In celebration of yet another year of great food, Buy Fresh Buy Local is hosting our 4th annual Harvest Party. You can pre-order your ticket here.


The Harvest Party will feature at least 7 small dishes prepared by member chefs using locally produced food items donated by member farms.  You can see a list here. Local food enthusiasts can attend this premier fresh, local food event to enjoy dishes prepared by BFBL member chefs, try beverages from BFBL vintners, and finish the evening with a cup of coffee from Zanzibar’s Coffee Adventure.  Participants can also get to know the farmers involved in growing their food.


Our members are not only willing, but enthusiastic to share their products with the greater Des Moines community. Jill Burkhart from Picket Fence Creamery is excited at the prospect of donating ice cream for the event. “This is a great celebration of the bountiful harvest we’ve enjoyed despite Mother Nature’s unpredictable weather patterns this growing season,” she said. “Through it all, we seem to emerge with some of the most tasty local foods in the world, thanks to our Iowa soil and a lot of human perseverance. We’re glad to be part of the event, the camaraderie, and of course a great meal!”  Picket Fence is donating ice cream for the event to compliment plenty of tantalizing main courses before the creamy finale.


The Homestead is donating Redfree, Jonafree, and Liberty apples for the event. Eric Armbrecht, Vocational Director of The Homestead, believes “The Buy Fresh Buy Local Harvest Party is the epitome of living out the name and enjoying it,” he said. “We have participated before by donating food and have been fortunate consumers of the wonderful food that results.”


We’re still building the menu as donations come in, but for now we can promise 7 varieties of jam courtesy of The Jelly Lady; sheep summer sausage from Griffieon Family Farm; produce from Rinehart’s Family Farm; gouda and gouda curds from Frisian Farms; Maytag Blue Cheese from Maytag Dairy Farms; tomatoes, potatoes, and garlic from Coyote Run Farm; tomatoes from Butcher Crick Farms; apples from The Homestead; ice cream from Picket Fence Creamery; and coffee from Zanzibar. Curious as to how this hodge-podge of ingredients can possibly come together? Leave it to Cyd Koehn Catering to create innovative, collaborative dishes that will keep you running back for more.  Sodexo Dining at Drake will also prepare some meals.  We’ll keep you posted as additional members sign up to bring amazing dishes.


This year’s Harvest Party will take place on Sunday, October 13th from 4pm – 6pm. Tickets are again $20 a piece and can be purchased here.  We also offer a family ticket for $50, up to two adults and all children under 18 in the same household, and Patron sponsors making a $100 donation receive 6 tickets.

What’s Fresh: Peppers

By: Kelsey Johnson


With temperatures consistently breaking into the hundreds in Iowa recently, it’s no secret that people are searching for ways to keep cool. Which is why we are featuring peppers in this months “What’s Fresh,” because eating spicy foods actually helps cool your body down. (No really: proof.) PLUS they are in peak season in Iowa.

This week’s recipe is thanks to the allspice recipe archive and is packed with farm favorites, all of which are in season! Yay! You can grab some absolutely beautiful heirlooms from Butcher Crick Farms or Grinnell Heritage Farm, peppers from Overhome Farm, garlic from Grade A Gardens, and Habanero Chile Powder from allspice. We can’t get enough of all the fresh, delicious produce available in Iowa, and we want to help you make the best of it while you can!


Chilled Red Bell Pepper and Habanero Soup


Photo by Overhome Farm


  • 4 medium red bell peppers
  • 2 lb tomatoes
  • 1 sweet onion (1/2 lb)
  • chopped 2 garlic cloves
  • chopped 1 tsp Habanero Chile Powder
  • 1/4 Cup plus 2 Tbsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil, divided
  • 1 and 3/4 Cups reduced-sodium chicken broth


Roast bell peppers on gas burners over high heat (or on a broiler pan about 2 inches from broiler element), turning with tongs, until skins are blackened, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let stand 20 min. Peel peppers, then halve lengthwise, discarding stems and seeds.

Cut a shallow X in bottom of each tomato, then blanch them: dip each tomato in simmering water 20 seconds and transfer to an ice bath. Peel and coarsely chop, reserving tomatoes’ juices.

Cook onion, garlic, chiles, 1 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper in 2 Tbsp oil in a 3- to 4-quart heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until softened and pale golden, about 8 minutes. Add tomatoes and their juices, bell peppers, broth, and 1/4 tsp salt and simmer, covered, until peppers are tender, about 5 minutes.

Purée soup in 2 or 3 batches in a blender (use caution when blending hot liquids – it can blow the lid off the blender and scald you), drizzling remaining 1/4 cup oil into first batch with motor run.

Allow soup to cool before serving. Can be made several hours ahead of time and chilled in the refrigerator.

What’s Happening: September 5


Civil Music Association Kick off (Jasper Winery), September 5, 5pm-7pm
FREE Season Kick Off party on Thursday, September 5, 2013 from 5-7 pm at Jasper Winery.  This free event will not only kick off the beginning of Civic Music Association’s 89th Season, but is a “Toast to Music Teachers” thanking local teachers for their service to our community.


Practical Farmers of Iowa – Field Day at Rosmann Family Farms, September 6, 1pm
Ron Rosmann will discuss farm PFI research on organic swine feed efficiency, including feeder settings and adjustments. Other talks and topics are lined up for the afternoon, and food will be served. More information here.


Fall Farm Cruise, September 7, 10am – 4pm
Cruise through three central Iowa Farms, including member Cory Family Farm. Take a hayrack ride through an apple orchard and pumpkin patch, see chickens, cows, sheep, goats, and other farm animals, and find out how vegetables are grown on a local farm! Local artisans will be at each of the sites to demonstrate how they make their products, many of which will be available for purchase. Admission is free!


5th Annual “Line in the Soil” Farm Celebration, September 7, 5pm-9pm
Enjoy a free, family-friendly event featuring music, Cory Family Farm grass beef (gluten-free & all natural meal), and Picket Fence Ice Cream! Tom & Mary Cory Family 10941 NE 56th Street, Elkhart, Iowa 50073 515-257-0726 (Mary) or More Info


Vegan Saturday Brunch, September 7, 10am-3pm
Fresh Café & Market will be hosting a VEGAN BRUNCH this Saturday, September 7th. They will be serving a few breakfast dishes in addition to our full September menu, as well as juice and smoothie specials.


12th Annual Slow Food Des Moines All-Food Fest and “Competitive Potluck,” September 8, 1pm-4pm
The event will be held at Jasper Winery with meat grilled up by Mo’ Rub. You just bring a contest entry and a favorite side dish to share. If you have some friends who love good food, please bring them along! Everyone’s invited. This event is a great opportunity to show off your blue-ribbon dish, and enjoy the best food from fellow Slow Food Des Moines members. Event cost, Slow Food Members $25; Non-members $30. Bring a dish for the culinary competitions, and get a $5 discount. Proceeds will cover the meat, contest prizes, venue, etc.


Greater Des Moines Neighborhood Conference, September 12, 8:30am – 3:30pm
You’re invited to the Second Annual Greater Des Moines Neighborhood conference with keynote speaker Jay Walljasper! Our mission is to connect neighborhood resources with community leaders and residents, highlight best practices, and inspire others to build stronger communities through collaborative efforts.  When: September 12, 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Where: Plymouth Church/Waveland Hall 4126 Ingersoll Ave. Des Moines, IA 50312 Cost: $20 Click here for the full schedule of speakers and events.


Des Moines Edible Garden Crawl, September 14, 9am-12pm
Join Urban Ambassadors and Eat Greater Des Moines to tour three school gardens in the Des Moines Public School district. Learn how these schools have started a garden program and how it works into learning for eager children.


Iowa Wine Tour, September 15, 12-6pm
Enjoy a Sunday afternoon visiting four picturesque Central/Southern Iowa vineyards and wineries! Enjoy wine tasting, food pairing, education, vineyard tours and on-site shopping. Member wineries on this tour include Jasper Winery and Two Saints Winery. Price per person of $55 includes ticketing fees, climate controlled round-trip transportation, bottled water and snacks on-board the bus. Must be 21 years or older to participate.


Brews and Muse (Peace Tree Brewing Co.) September 21, 5pm
Our annual mini music fest with specialty brews, a commemorative pint glass to take home, food vendors and of course, music!  This year we have lined up James Biehn and the Surf Zombies.  Headliner to be announced soon!
This all ages event will be held in the lot next to the brewery.  Awesome BBQ by Captn’s Cookin Que and special cupcakes by Cupcake Addict will be available for purchase.  Tickets just $10 in advance or $15 at the door.  Kids under 16 are free!  Grab some friends and your dancing shoes!


Wheatgrass 101 (Fresh Café & Market), September 25, 6:30pm

WHO (Who should drink it? Who can grow it?) WHAT (what is it? what’s it good for?) WHERE (where can I grow it? where can I get it?) WHY (why would anyone want to drink this or even grow it?) HOW (how do I grow it?)
$20 per person. YOU MUST PRE-REGISTER and PRE-PAY. We have room for 12 people. You will leave with your own flat or pound of grass OR a punch card for FRESH shots… so it’s practically FREE!
Please call the cafe at 515-440-4700 with your credit card or send in a check to 1721 25th Street Suite 110 West Des Moines, Iowa 50266. E-mail, message or call with any questions!


Homemade Happy Hour Summer Cooking Demonstration Series, Every Other Monday 3pm – 5pm
These demonstrations will happen bi-weekly starting June 24th on Monday afternoons from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the kitchen of Kitchen Collage. The event is free and there are many samples to be had! (Dates: September 16 & 30)


Food for Thought Dinners, Thursdays 5:30pm – 8pm
The Wallace House invites you to a new program, “Food for Thought,” that combines locally-sourced dining with conversation about food. Diners will order from a changing menu of appetizers, entrees, and desserts created from local ingredients, including fruits and vegetables grown at the Country Life Center. Entrees range from $15-$20, appetizers $6-$8, and desserts $5. Bring your own wine. Reservations are encouraged, as seating is limited. Call 515-243-7063 or email carlahicklin@wa​ http://www.wall​​html
September 5: Yoga
September 12: Vinegars
September 19: The Incredible Apple
September 26: Childhood Hunger


Hear it in the Grapevines (Two Saints Winery) 1-4pm
Live music concert series Sundays.
September 8 – Hot Tamales & The Red Hots
September 22 – Tony Valdez


unWINEd: The Other Side (Jasper Winery) 5:30pm – 8:30pm
Enjoy wine, sangria, and Madhouse beer by the glass and bottle at Grey’s Lake South Terrace . The City of Des Moines will be cooking up food for purchase as well!
September 6 – Brian Holtz Band
September 20 – Sonny Humbucker Band


Wine-In Movies (Grape Escape)
Every Saturday night from June through September join us for our Wine In Movies in the Vineyard.  Outdoor movies on a 11 foot by 20 foot screen with surround sound, full 1080p High Definition picture, and fire pits.


Sunday Socials, 2pm – 5pm (Grape Escape)
Wine Education Segments Yard Games Great Wines Good Times with friends, new and old