Leek Timbales What's a timbale? Well, technically it's a kind of shallow, Cuban drum – but in the culinary world, it's a custard made with meat, fish or vegetables and a cream sauce that's cooked in a small drum-shaped mold. It's also surprisingly simple to make, adorable to behold and a perfect brunch dish for guests during holiday season. Better try it out, first. Get the recipe here.
Lidia's Italy in America is PBS chef Lidia Bastianich's love letter to the Italian-Americans who took the cuisine from their motherland and updated it with American ingredients and regional influences over the last 100 years to form Italian-American cuisine as we know it today. She crossed the U.S. discovering and tasting great dishes along the way, including Volpi Salami and Imo's Pizza right here in St. Louis. Hear her discuss her book and get your own signed copy at the latest installment of the Sauce Celebrity Chef Series tonight at the Sheldon Concert Hall. Now, as Lidia says, "Everybody to the table to eat!" Wed., Nov. 16 – 7 p.m., $35 includes admission and signed copy of Lidia's Italy in America, Sheldon Concert Hall, 3648 Washington Blvd., St. Louis, 314.367.6731, brownpapertickets.com/event/195222
"The hardest thing to relay to the consumer," explained Tom Halaska of Sasha's on Shaw, is that "this isn't some crappy wine. This is premium wine." Wine from a keg is new and different – and, explained Halaska, it tastes just as delicious from stainless steel as it does from a glass. It's a "greener" process, too. St. Louis' first Keg Wine Release Party at Sasha's on Shaw this Thursday will feature 3-ounce pours of Aiden Chardonnay and Aiden Pinot "on tap," as well as Pushback Sauvignon Blanc and Pushback Cabernet, plus food to pair with each pour. Go ahead, check it out and see – ahem, taste – what this brand new trend is all about. Thu., Nov. 17 – 6 p.m. to close, $20 includes all drinks and food above, Sasha's on Shaw, 4069 Shaw Blvd., St. Louis, 314.771.7274, sashaswinebar.com
The holiday-time Fair-Trade Market at Manchester United Methodist Church gets bigger and more popular every year. Now in its ninth year, the 2,500-square-foot event features sales of clothing and accessories, baskets and boxes, games, holiday items, home dcor, jewelry, books, tableware, toys, and more, but it's the food that gets us going. The goodies, all fair-trade certified to ensure a living wage and safe working conditions for the people who made them, include cookie and cornbread mixes, dill dips, salsas, lime marmalade, hot mango chutney, couscous, dates, olives and olive oil, Native American wild rice, toffee-caramel coffee, and tons of chocolate. We're talking ginger-orange dark chocolate, coffee-milk chocolate, sea salt caramels, what church volunteer Kellee Sikes called "rich, superior, phenomenal baking chocolate," and more, from places like Ghana, Cameroon, Swaziland, El Salvador and Israel's West Bank. Be sure to check out the Chinese blossoming-flower tea, which is lovely to watch as the flowers unfold in the liquid, and St. Louisan Andrea Reubin's addictive "Just Sweets" desserts. Sat., Nov. 19 to Sun., Nov. 20 and Sat., Nov. 25 to Sun., Nov. 27 – 9 a.m.to 3 p.m., Manchester United Methodist Church, 129 Woods Mill Road, Ballwin, 636.394.7506, manchesterumc.org/ftm