Apples top the menu at first of three fall Slow Food Pittsburgh events – Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Unusual heirloom apple varieties will take center stage at the first of Slow Food Pittsburgh’s three events scheduled this autumn.

The group is planning an Apple Dinner Social Night at 7 p.m. Oct. 17, at Quickhatch Coffee + Food in Etna. For the first course, Chef David Bulman plans a tasting course featuring apple varieties that diners might not be familiar with. Slow Food Pittsburgh Co-Leader Virginia Phillips expects Mr. Bulman to showcase heirloom varieties that have fallen off most people’s radar.

The remainder of the menu includes: Buckwheat pappardelle with apple-braised pork trotter, fresh ricotta and roasted apples. Sourdough bread with farm butter and apple butter. Truffled chicken breast with celery root yogurt and walnut-apple confit. Apple cake with ginger custard, milk jam, candied apple and apple sorbet.

The dinner is BYOB, and a vegetarian option is available. Dinner is $50 per person or $45 for Slow Food Pittsburgh members.

Ms. Phillips said all three of the fall events have a “unifying theme” highlighting the work of a single chef or producer. These are people who are “quiet talents” and “under the radar, but we think that shouldn’t be,” Ms. Phillips said. In the case of the Apple Dinner Social Night, the featured talent is Mr. Bulman.

The second event is a Beef Potluck from 2 to 5 p.m. Oct. 22 at Rose Ridge Farms in Waynesburg, Ohio, just under a two-hour drive from Pittsburgh. This event will feature Rose Ridge owner Deanna McMaken’s Global Organic Alliance-certified beef, and attendees will be asked to bring a side dish or dessert to share, plus $5 to cover the beef costs.

“We’ve known Deanna for 15 or 16 years, since the days when we had to recruit carefully raised meat products,” Ms. Phillips said. “You used to have to go to the airport hotel and meet the chicken guy.”

Now Ms. McMaken is one of Slow Food Pittsburgh’s featured meat vendors at its periodic “Laptop Butchershop” events bringing organic and local meats to a central sale location in the city.

The third event is “Don’t Be Shy About Pie,” a pie demo and tasting event from 2 to 5 p.m. Nov. 12 at Auburn Meadow Farm in West Middlesex, who will bring empanada-style pork pies because she raises pigs on her farm. She also intends to make a Rustic Apple-Pumpkin Pie with slices of roasted squash and apples. Ms. Phillips plans to contribute a vegetarian mince tartlet, and her Slow Food Pittsburgh co-leader Susan Barclay will contribute a traditional beef mincemeat pie recipe that has been handed down through her family for generations.

The pie event will carry out Slow Food Pittsburgh’s goal of promoting heritage foods, Ms. Phillips said.

“What’s older than something enclosed in pastry? It dates back to the Middle Ages.”

For information or to register for Slow Food Pittsburgh’s events, go to for a registration link to be posted at a later date.

Rebecca Sodergren:; @pgfoodevents.

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