[ Baked Bruschetta Mac and Cheese, available at Pine Hills ]
Six of Starved Rock Country's best growers have signed on to provide area chefs with tomatoes, beans, peppers, garlic, egg plant, zucchini, squash, apples, peas, spinach, lettuce, cantaloupe, watermelon, cucumbers, and even locally raised meats, courtesy of Marseilles’ Hufendick Farms.
"We wanted to keep the program fairly small for the first year, so we reached out to restaurants in town that were already accustomed to using farm-to-table ingredients,” added Bedei. "Chefs had free reign to create whatever kind of dishes they want with these ingredients. About two weeks ago they started reaching out to the farmers, to discuss products, costs and to plan their menus."
Featured restaurants will include such local favorites as Tangled Roots, B.A.S.H., Corner 230 and Pine Hills. Throughout this weeklong festival, these restaurants will offer special menus, highlighting which farms provided which ingredients to the appetizers and entrees available for order.