Monday, August 20, 2001

Festival unites people, peppers




By Jenny Callison
Enquirer Contributor

        The Civic Garden Center of Greater Cincinnati held a celebration of good taste Sunday, and all the best peppers were there.

        Fresh produce lovers of all ages gathered for the Terrific Tomato, Pepper and Sunflower Festival in Corryville, sponsored by the Civic Garden Center.

        The afternoon event showcased fruits of the season and featured several colorful surprises.

        Folks at the tomato-tasting table speared mouthfuls of sweet, sun-ripened orange and red tomatoes. But there were also striped varieties and one called Granny Smith, which is naturally green and has an unusual flavor.

        “It's almost apple-like,”Jan Eilers of Symmes Township said after her first taste. “It's got a crunchy consistency. It would be good in salsa.“

        Peppers were there for the tasting, too, labeled according to their firepower. At another table, festival-goers dipped chips into several batches of salsa.

        Mary Swortwood, of Tink's Cafe and Brown Dog Cafe, and Ron Wise, of the Iron Horse Inn, worked with chicken and a cornucopia of garden produce.

        “That mint really does something for that chicken,”Chuck Schramm of Northside said as he sampled Ms. Swortwood's chicken roulade, which was stuffed with mint, zucchini, squash and eggplant.

        Mary Ann Mieling of Covington waxed enthusiastic about Mr. Wise's vegetable recipe.

        “I liked what he did with his eggplant,” she said. “He put in a little half-and-half, flour and sesame seeds and pan-fried it.”

        For information, about the Civic Garden Center of Greater Cincinnati, call (513) 221-0981. The Horticulture Hotline is (513) 221-TREE.
       

       



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