The Dish

THE DISH

June 15, 2005

Sweet Vidalias

It's Vidalia onion season through the end of June. Vidalias, which are grown only in southeast Georgia, are known for their sweet taste, which makes them great on sandwiches and in salads, dips and sauces.

Although Vidalia season ends soon, you can store them for up to 6 months in the refrigerator by wrapping them in paper towels, newspaper or aluminum foil. You also can keep them for up to 90 days in sheer hosiery by separating each onion with a knot and keeping them in a dry, cool place. Or freeze them by slicing the onion and putting the slices on a baking sheet in the freezer until frozen and then placing the slices into freezer bags.

-- Brooke Snyder

For Dad's sweet tooth

If the way to a man's heart is through his stomach, then bake him homemade brownies this Father's Day and he'll surely be pleased.

Try this recipe from Wilton Enterprises for Dad's Favorite Brownies:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 13-inch-by-9-inch baking pan with vegetable pan spray.

In a small, heavy saucepan, or in a microwave-safe bowl, melt 1 1/2 cups butter and 4 squares (4 ounces) of unsweetened chocolate, chopped; stir until blended.

In a large bowl, combine chocolate mixture with 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar; mix well. Add 4 eggs and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract; blend well. Combine 2 cups all-purpose flour and 1/2 teaspoon of salt.

Add to chocolate mixture; stir until all flour is mixed in. If desired, stir in nuts. Spoon into prepared pan. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool completely.

To decorate, ice with brightly colored frosting and then cut into individual servings. Top with fun candles that represent Dad's favorite pastimes, and serve.

-- Holly Shiver

Teaching seafood savvy

This summer, the folks at Old Bay are trying not only to add flavor to seafood, but help preserve it, too.

McCormick & Co., which owns the Old Bay brand, announced last week that it has teamed with the National Aquarium in Baltimore to launch Oceanwise, a national program dedicated to teaching people about smart seafood choices that may save the world's disappearing fish populations.

In addition to putting tip cards and recipes at seafood counters in grocery stores and seafood markets, the Oceanwise partnership anticipates the summer opening of the Old Bay Cafe at the aquarium that will feature a menu that has been approved by Oceanwise.

For more information on the program, visit www.beoceanwise.com.

-- Nichole Wright

This tool makes for smooth moves

Zyliss makes peeling food easier with its new Zyliss Soft Skin Peeler. The peeler is ergonomically designed with an easy grip to reduce hand stress. Its two-edged, serrated blade also ensures smoothly peeled food without any nicks.

The peelers are available at gourmet retailers and have a suggested retail price of $7. Call 888-794-7623 for availability information.

-- Brooke Snyder

EVENTS

Learn to make strawberry salsa and croustades during cooking demonstrations at 8:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. Sunday at the Baltimore Farmers' Market under the Jones Falls Expressway.

Watch grill barons compete for $15,000 in prize money at the Maryland State BBQ Championship 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Carroll County Farm Museum, 500 S. Center St., Westminster. $10. Children 12 and under free. Call 877-RIBSUSA (742-7872).

The Dish welcomes food news and notes. Send to The Dish, Attn.: Liz Atwood, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278; fax to 410-783-2519; e-mail food@baltsun.com.

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