Feast on Art
A series of heirloom food lectures and tastings hosted by
The Carriage Barn Arts Center at Waveny Park, New Canaan
During the 26th Annual Spectrum Art Exhibition
The American Chestnut: A Lecture and Educational Tasting
With Steve Conaway of The American Chestnut Foundation
Culinary Demonstration and Tasting with Chef Silvia Baldini and
Heirloom and Ark of Taste Food Discussion with Analiese Paik
Thursday, March 5
This quintessential heirloom American food is a forgotten flavor due to the blight that decimated billions of native American chestnut trees in the first half of the 20th century. Learn about the history of the American chestnut, a Slow Food USA Ark of Taste food, and ongoing efforts to restore the tree to its native habitat from Steve Conaway of the Connecticut Chapter of the American Chestnut Foundation (TACF).
Conaway is the Conservation & Outreach Director of the Greenwich Land Trust, home of the American Chestnut Tree Sanctuary, and a fountain of information of chestnut growing. Please bring your questions for the Q&A to follow his talk. Next, Chef Silvia Baldini of Strawberry and Sage will discuss how to store, cook, and peel fresh chestnuts, and demonstrate how to prepare Mont Blanc chestnut cakes, a classic chestnut dessert from her native Italy. Analiese Paik of the Fairfield Green Food Guide will inform guests about rare and delicious heirloom and Ark of Taste foods and provide insider tips on sourcing. Immediately following the event, guests are invited to socialize while savoring Chef Silvia’s Mont Blanc chestnut cakes and locally-roasted coffee from Shearwater Organic Coffee Roasters. This event is a co-production of Fairfield Green Food Guide and Strawberry and Sage.
Steve is the Conservation & Outreach Director at The Greenwich Land Trust. Steve has an Environmental Horticulture degree from the University of New Hampshire and his graduate research at Penn State University focused on the biological control of invasive weeds. Steve has developed and implemented many outreach programs to engage the Greenwich community with the beauty and importance of conservation land.
Silvia Baldini always dreamed of being a chef, even during her successful career as an art director. After seventeen years in advertising, she realized her dream by returning to school, graduating from the Cornell and French Culinary Institute and ultimately receiving a Grand Cuisine Diploma from Le Cordon Bleu, London. After working as a chef at prestigious Michelin star restaurants throughout Europe, Silvia returned to the East Coast and established her creative food group, Strawberry and Sage. Silvia has been featured in Saveur, the James Beard Blog, and has appeared on national TV cooking shows. Among her many clients are Bank of America, Royal Scottish Society, and Vista Caballo,JMcLaughlin, and Ralph Lauren as well as private individuals, celebrities, food photographers and cookbook authors. Strawberryandsage.com, [email protected]
Analiese Paik is a local-sustainable food advocate and founder of fairfieldgreenfoodguide.com, a digital news publication dedicated to helping Fairfield County consumers eat more locally and sustainably. Her work has garnered a 2015 Morris Media Group Green Award and 2012 Slow Food Snail of Approval Award. She was featured in Every Day with Rachael Ray magazine as a “foodie who makes a difference” in recognition of both her current work and many years as a PTA volunteer advocating for better school food.
Following a successful career in marketing management, Paik attended the Institute of Culinary Education and studied wine at the International Wine Center. She has been featured as a green food advocate and expert in Fairfield Magazine, Fairfield County Life, Stamford Advocate, Connecticut Cottages and Gardens, and Westport Magazine, among others. Fairfieldgreenfoodguide.com, [email protected].
Shearwater Organic Coffee Roasters is the first and only USDA certified organic coffee roaster in Fairfield County, CT. Headquartered in Trumbull, Shearwater is also Fair Trade USA certified and sells only ethically traded coffee. shearwatercoffeeroasters.com.
About the Greenwich Land Trust Partnership with The American Chestnut Foundation
The Greenwich Land Trust is dedicated to preserving natural land for the benefit of this and future generations. They protect over 740 acres and work to maintain its ecological integrity. The Greenwich Land Trust’s partnership with the American Chestnut Foundation contributes to restoring an iconic tree while improving local habitat and providing a natural classroom for the community. The American Chestnut Sanctuary was planted with 400 hybrid chestnut seedlings and is the first TACF research planting in Fairfield County. It will contribute vital information on how to reestablish American chestnuts in this region. The Greenwich Land Trust’s mission to protect natural spaces in perpetuity means that these trees and their future generations will have a home forever.
About The Greenwich Land Trust
The Greenwich Land Trust, founded in 1976, is a 501c3 non-profit organization and nationally accredited land trust dedicated to maintaining 741 acres of land in Greenwich, CT – to protect the environmental health of our community, preserve its natural beauty and conserve its waterways, forests and wildlife for this and future generations. To learn more, please visit www.gltrust.org
About The American Chestnut FoundationThe goal of THE AMERICAN CHESTNUT FOUNDATION is to restore the American chestnut tree to our eastern woodlands to benefit our environment, our wildlife, and our society. The American Chestnut Foundation is restoring a species – and in the process, creating a template for restoration of other tree and plant species. www.acf.org.