Potluck — Request for Recipes and Stories

24 Mar


Do you love to cook and exchange recipes with friends and family?  Like to talk about food, or just like to eat? If so, join the friends of the Del Paso Heights and North Sacramento/Hagginwood Libraries as we create our first ever community cookbook – Potluck. Whether it’s a story about your first attempt at baking bread, your great-grandmother’s apple pie recipe or a dish you always bring to a potluck, we want it. You can submit as many recipes and stories as you wish, even poetry, photographs and artwork. Stories can be as simple as where the recipe came from or up to 500 words of your favorite food memory

Be sure to include the following:

  • Your full name, address, phone number and email contact information.
  • Category of dish (breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, drink, snack, casserole)
  • List all ingredients in order of use.
  • Provide step-by-step directions or a paragraph describing how to create the recipe. 
  • Include container sizes, e.g., 16-oz. Pkg., 24-oz. Can.
  • Keep directions in paragraph form-not in steps.
  • Use names of ingredients in the directions, e.g., “Combine flour and sugar.” Do not use statements like, “Combine first three ingredients.”
  • Include temperatures and cooking, chilling, baking, and/or freezing times.
  • Include either the story behind this recipe or where the original recipe came from. What makes it so special or delicious? Have you served it any memorable occasion?
  • If you handwrite your recipe and story, please write legibly.


You can submit your recipes and stories by email to: foodtalk@me.com, no later than August 31, 2012. By snail mail to Potluck: Del Paso Heights Library, 920 Grand Avenue, Sacramento or drop it off in the Potluck box, located at both the Del Paso Heights Library and North Sacramento/Hagginwood Library.  


We’ll hold a series of workshops on the last Wednesday of the month at Del Paso Heights Library starting with a Potluck at noon, followed by a time to share from 1:30 to 2:30 pm. Plus, four community workshops at North Sacramento-Hagginwood Library and elsewhere.


For more information check out our blog at foodtalksacramento.com/potluck-recipes-and-stories/

Or call 916-768-6077. 

Del Paso Library — Cookbook Kickoff

12 Mar

Join us Saturday March 17, from 11 am to 4 pm, for the fun-filled kick-off of our Cookbook Project – Potluck . . . Recipes and Stories From the Friends of the Del Paso and North Sacramento/Hagginwood Libraries. We’ll have a cookbook and kitchen gadget sale all day long, plus:

 Cooking Demonstration:             11:00 to 11:45 am

Potluck                                                 Noon to 2 pm

Cook and Then Draw            2:30 to 3:30 pm

 Bring a family favorite potluck dish and a recipe to include in the cookbook.

For the next six months or so we’ll host a series of workshops at both libraries and other community spaces, to help gather the stories and recipes of these culturally rich neighborhoods.

The first workshop – For Starters. . . How to Create a Family or Community Cookbook, will be held Wednesday March 29th, at Del Paso Library from 1:30 to 3:00 pm and will be repeated in April at the North Sacramento/Hagginwood Library.

Guidelines for submission of stories and recipes will be available at both libraries and on line at http://foodtalksacramento.com/potluck-recipes-and-stories

For more information contact Maryellen Burns, 916-768-6077 or foodtalk@me.com.

Morning Coffee

3 Nov

Wednesday November 16, 2011 Morning Coffee 10:15 am to 12:15 pm.

Heard of the new Espresso Book Machine, located on the 2nd floor of the Central Library downtown?  Starting in mid-November it will produce books from local writers – a 200-page book in less than the time it takes to order and pay for your morning coffee.  Join us at 10:15, Wednesday November 16thwith your writing pad or laptop and craft delectable prose and images about the things that inspire you to get up in the morning.  We’ll provide pen and ink, watercolor pencils, and some simple illustration techniques to capture the stories and images that feed your imagination and nourish your soul. Writer Maryellen Burns and artist/illustrators Joy Gee and Lawrence Fox thought we’d convene a group of friends and strangers once a month, in different spots around the city, and see what emerges.  Until we have enough material to publish Morning Coffee – the first in a series of literary books and magazines.  Printed on the I Street Press Espresso Book Machine, of course.

For more information: artworksathelibrary.blogspot.com or maryellen_burns@mac.com. 916-768-6077.

Travel the World Through Chocolate — Franklin, Carmichael, Arcade Library

27 Jun

Chocolate Ants, Hostess Cupcakes, Oreo Cookies and Kisses Galore — Maryellen Burns
Most of my friends had stay-at-home moms who had freshly baked homemade chocolate chip cookies or a triple layered Devils Food Cake waiting for them when they got home from elementary school.

I was greeted by my father, (my mother had the full-time job when I was growing up) who either pointed me to the refrigerator so I could make my own chocolate milk, or tested the boundaries – opening up a can of chocolate covered ants or crickets and daring me to try to them.

He’d spent most of his childhood from seven to fourteen riding the rails, eating in hobo camps and foraging in the woods.

“I discovered early that if you put chocolate on anything, you can eat it”, he told me.

Mom took over mealtimes on the weekends. Her desserts consisted of peach kuchen, pineapple upside down cake, strawberry shortcake and anything else she could make with Bisquick. If any of us desired something chocolate it was usually sated by eating hostess cupcakes, Oreo cookies or a Baby Ruth candy bar.  Or if we were flush – a trip to Harvey’s Hamburgers for a chocolate shake or Dairy Queen for a chocolate-dipped cone.

In 1959 my brothers and I came to the conclusion that if we wanted to survive childhood we were going to have to learn to cook. That Christmas the folks bought me a copy of Betty Crocker’s Cook Book for Boys and Girls.

The very first recipe in the book is Cocoa Fudge Cake.  It took a while and the result was pretty good, but the book also suggested that it was “easy, and good, too, when you make it with Betty Crocker Chocolate Devils Food Cake Mix”. I made one a week or two later and found the results almost identical.  And, for a family that had to count pennies, much cheaper.

Eventually I became a pretty good “from scratch” cook and made a pretty successful go of it as a caterer.  But baking wasn’t really my thing.  I found two guys just starting out in the business to do the baking for me – Walter Goetzler from Freeport Bakery and Rick’s Dessert Diner.

It wasn’t until last year that I made another chocolate cake from scratch, and I have to tell you it was the best cake I’ve ever tasted.  I adapted a recipe from the back of a can of Hershey’s powdered chocolate. It took three hours to make and another four hours to sit before it was ready to eat. I haven’t made another one since.

I figure if I find it hard to carve out time to create a time-consuming chocolate dessert, you’re most likely in the same boat, so what follows are a number of 1,2,3 chocolate recipes that take three ingredients and just about that many steps.  Most of the recipes use ingredients you can find at any grocery store.

You can follow the directions that are showcased on the following pages or come attend Travel The World Through Chocolate on June 28th at Franklin Library, 6:30 pm.  For adults.  June 29th at Carmichael, Kids and Families, 2pm or Arcade Library on July 9th at 1:00 pm, Kids and Families.

Want to host your own Chocolate Party? Give us a call at 916-768-6077 and we’ll give you guidance or for a donation to our non-profit, do the party for you.  Or email: foodtalk@me.com

Cookbook Sale and Swap

21 Jun

Now You’re Cooking — Elaine Corn, Hands-Off Cooking — Ann Martin Rolke, Peach Farmer’s Daughter —- Brenda Nakamoto, Hunt, Gather, Cook — Hank Shaw, Downtown Seasonal Recipes from Two of Sonoma Wine Country Restaurants — Susan and Jeff Mall just some of the featured cookbooks at the Cookbook Sale and Swap, Saturday June 25, 10 am to 3 pm, Café Bernardo Midtown.

 Admit it.  You have cookbooks you haven’t read sitting on bookshelves, stacked alongside the bed, within reading distance of the toilet, residing in boxes in the basement, and the addiction is so strong you’re compelled to buy more. But, you have a rule.  No more books unless you get rid of the books you’ve got.

What to do about it? Join FoodTalk@Cafe Bernardo Saturday, June 25th from 10 am – 3:00 pm for a Cookbook Sale and Swap.

Stop by from 10 am to 11:00 and join the conversation with authors Elaine Corn, Ann Rolke Kate Washington, and Jeff and Susan Mall, as they talk about the pleasures of the table, the ins and outs of food writing, and sign their books.

The Swap begins at 11:00. Bring up to five gently used cookbooks, food memoir, food essays, or food-related novels you’re ready to pass on.  Talk someone else into swapping with you.  It’s that simple.

Can’t part with any of your books? Choose from an incredible collection of new, used, rare and vintage cookbooks, food essays, memoir, gardening and travel books and magazines supplied by the Friends of the Sacramento Public Library Book Den and ArtWorks in the Kitchen and at much better then used bookstore prices.

There is a $15 required donation to MatrixArts (payable by cash or by check). In exchange you get a $15 certificate to use at the ArtWorks book sale table or at future FoodTalk events, plus drinks and snacks.  Have a lot more than five books you want to get rid of?  Donate them to us. Proceeds benefit the Sacramento Public Library and Soil Born Farms.

FoodTalk is sponsored by MatrixArts, a 501(c)3 arts organization that bridges the visual, performing, literary and culinary arts. Café Bernardo is located at 2726 Capitol Avenue in Midtown Sacramento.  Metered parking is on the street or you can park in the garage next door for $5.

For more information contact: foodtalk@me.com or foodtalksacramento.com or call Maryellen Burns at 916-768-6077.

Kitchen Diaries

15 Jun

More FoodTalk@Cafe Bernardo 2726 Capitol Avenue

Kitchen Diaries — Janice Kelley & Joy Gee June 18, 2011

All those recipes, and stories gathering in your head or garnered from cookbooks, blogs, food magazines and memory should be gathered for posterity. Artist Joy Gee and writer Janice Kelley will guide you through the creation of a hand-made book filled with stories, recipes, illustrations, collage, clip art or photographs.

We’ll provide an inspiring brunch plus pen and ink, watercolors, simple illustration techniques, and all kinds of hand-made paper, embellishments and goodies to capture the stories that feed your imagination, nourish your soul and fill your stomach.

Bring memories of feasts with friends, the unwanted guest and the empty place at the table, traditions for family meals, the origin of family recipes, kitchen triumphs and kitchen disasters, hand-me down recipes, or even the list of things you currently have in your pantry.

 Janice Kelley is a storyteller, and “journalist”. Her feature articles and profiles have been published in Comstock’s Business Magazine, Discover Magazine, Western City and the Sacramento Bee. She is the author of numerous books including Driving with the Top Down, a workbook that includes questions and activities that inspire creative thinking.

Joy Gee is an illustrator, painter and art instructor. While in the southlands she worked as a designer for American Bungalow Magazine, as a portrait artist at Disneyland, and for dozens of creative businesses. For the last few years she has concentrated on teaching kids, adults and families how to capture the stories of their lives through the creative arts.

Cookbook Sale and Swap — June 25 10 am – 3 pm. Talk to food writers — Ann Rolke, Elaine Corn, and Kate Washington & buy their books and other new and collectible used, food essay, history, gardening and wine books. Bring up to five books to swap, too. $15



Friends Around the Table

Join Maryellen Burns, plus who ever else shows up, the fourth Friday of every month at the McClatchy Library. Three hours of writing about, drawing about or talking about food, neighborhood, & community. Starts 6/25 1-4 pm. Free!

Now You’re Cooking — Elaine Corn.

Award-winning cookbook author and food journalist Elaine Corn teaches an inspiring three-week cooking class for everyone who is determined that this is THE time to learn to cook – or to just feel more comfortable in the kitchen. 7/ 16, 23, 30  $300 for the series.

Eat. Drink. Be Literary    Meet up with other food, wine and literary types to talk about the morsels and liquids we put in our mouths and the tastemakers, taste producers, and tasters who make it all so interesting.  Tuesday, July 12 from 6 pm – 9 pm. $15 /$10 for FoodTalk members. Includes appetizers, glass of wine, and conversations galore.

Exact dates announced soon!

The Peach Farmer’s Daughter – with Brenda Nakamoto (August)

Kitchen Gadget and Appliance Swap and Sale – (September)

Morning Coffee – coffee, Café Bernardo’s breakfast, plus pen and ink drawing class with coffee as the medium.  (September)

Food as Art — hand-built, ceramic, functional eating ware.

To reserve a spot, email foodtalk@me.com call 916-768-6077, or 916-454-4988 or check out foodtalksacramento.com or talkfood.tumblr.com.

Have ideas of events you’d like to attend or offer?

Want to submit stories, articles and events? foodtalk@me.com or 916-768-6077

Proceeds benefit MatrixArts Kids in the Kitchen, Talk@the Library, and What’s Your Story?

Sponsored by MatrixArts, a 501 (c3) non-profit that bridges the visual, literary, performing and culinary arts.





Hunt, Gather, Cook Saturday, June 11 with Elaine Corn, Hank Shaw

6 Jun

Hank Shaw’s book — Hunt, Gather, Cook — Finding the Forgotten Feast — just received a great review from Sam Sifton of the New York Times and Hank’s blog, Hunter, Angler, Gardener, Cook took the top IACP award for best food blog in the US! He and Elaine Corn will have a conversation about killing, and other facets of his unusual story as a journalist, hunter, forager, and cook at FoodTalk@Cafe Bernardo this upcoming Saturday, June 11th at Cafe Bernardo Midtown, 2726 Capitol Avenue.

Admission is $15 or $30 including a signed copy of the book, the conversation, food, drink and membership in FoodTalk.

To reserve a space call 916-768-6077 or foodtalk@me.com.







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