Kickapoo Country Fair, Wisconsin (and a smoothie recipe)
Oh, such a delightful weekend I had, I’m still dwelling on it. As mentioned in an earlier post, I traveled to the Driftless region of southwest Wisconsin, home to the co-op Organic Valley, which hosted the Kickapoo Country Fair this past Saturday and Sunday. I knew it would be a great time when I rolled into the Organic Valley parking lot on Friday to be greeted by a sea of sunflowers.
After being delayed by a traffic jam navigating around a car engulfed in flames, followed by a torrential rain storm that had the roadster hydroplaning on the winding roads, I took this sight as a sign of a great weekend ahead, and that was certainly the case.
Organic Valley invited me to cook in their kitchen tent at the fair, to demonstrate easy variations for grilled cheese sandwiches and smoothies. I love the organization because it pays good prices to small farmers, and has lots of delicious organic products available in grocery stores across the country. And there were plenty of kindred spirits there to enjoy the samples cooked up by volunteers from Slow Food University of Wisconsin.
I grilled up their delicious Vermont Cheddar with a touch of rhubarb jam, demonstrated variations with pesto, sun-dried tomatoes and chopped artichokes, and twirled up every sort of smoothie I could imagine. But the hit of the day was on the indulgent side, a creamy blend of Kickapoo Coffee and Organic Valley chocolate milk, which I’m sharing with you here. I knew I had a hit on my hands when people kept coming in asking when I would demonstrate the chocolate and coffee smoothie. The ones with berries and apricots went over well, particularly when I put in a bit of maple syrup, but chocolate seemed to win the popular vote.
The Sunday highlight was a keynote panel starring organic heroes, including a couple of my own: Ken Cook of the Environmental Working Group, and Tim LaSalle of the Rodale Institute. All in all, it was a true celebration of delicious local food.
Chocolate Coffee Smoothie
1 cup Organic Valley chocolate milk
1 cup double strength cold-brewed coffee
1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 tablespoon chocolate syrup
1/2 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
6 ice cubes
Put all ingredients in a blender. Turn on high and go take a shower while it purees for five minutes to allow the oatmeal and ginger to fully incorporate into a smooth, velvety breakfast drink.
Tags: organic smoothie