By Katie Byard

Beacon Journal staff writer

The newsletter headline sums it up: “Do not (I repeat) do not rinse the turkey.”

Despite what you might read, food safety experts “are steadfast in their warning not to rinse off raw turkey,” says the article from the Chow Line newsletter, produced by the Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.

Rinsing doesn’t work, the article says, noting that raw poultry is often contaminated with bacteria. But research by the British Food Standards Agency showed that rinsing off whole poultry, “or beef for that matter,” does not remove all of the bacteria from the surface of the meat.

Additionally — “and even more important,” the article notes — rinsing off the turkey can result in splattering bacteria from the surface of the meat “all over your sink, onto your kitchen counter and over to anything that happens to be around it.”

Some estimates say the splatter can spread up to 3 feet. And people don’t clean up properly, the article says, noting that research shows people tend to clean up using only a damp cloth, when hot soapy water followed by a sanitizing bleach solution are necessary.

Madrigal Dinners

The roasting spits are ready. Local foodies Larry Poulos and Dominic Fallucco will again bring some meaty authenticity to the Madrigal Dinners at St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church in Akron.

Poulos, a local attorney, and parishioner Fallucco again will set up an open spit outside the church to roast pigs and chickens.

The dinners will be Dec. 11 and 12. Doors to Corrigan Hall, on the campus of the church and elementary school, will open at 6:30 p.m. with fanfare, and dinner will begin at 7 p.m. Tickets are $40, available until Dec. 9. Call the church office at 330-535-3135, ext. 10.

St. Vincent de Paul is at 164 W. Market St. The four-course meal includes mulled wine, ale and spiced cider and Christmas pudding — the nut, fruit and rich batter made by Marimargaret Roberts. The pudding, actually a steamed cake, has its roots in medieval England. It’s the dessert, topped with holly, that appears in the big meal at the end of A Christmas Carol.

Local attorney and actor Tim Champion will lead the cast of madrigal players. Members of Canticum Novum Renaissance Choir will sing carols and Keller Consort will perform on period instruments.

Cookbook signing

Award-winning Cleveland chef Jonathon Sawyer will prepare dishes from his family-centric cookbook, Noodle Kids: Around the World in 50 Fun, Healthy, Creative Dinners the Whole Family Can Cook Together at 2 p.m. Dec. 6 at the Hudson Library & Historical Society. This program is for adults and children 8 years and older.

Sawyer, winner of the 2015 Beard Foundation Award for Best Chef Great Lakes, runs his flagship Greenhouse Tavern, Noodlecat, Trentina, Sawyer’s Street Frites in FirstEnergy Stadium and the SeeSaw Pretzel Shoppe in Quicken Loans Arena. He has appeared on Iron Chef America and Dinner: Impossible, among other shows.

Sawyer will sign copies of his book, which will be available for purchase. Registration is required at or call 330-653-6658, ext. 1010. The library is at 96 Library St. in the First & Main shopping center off state Route 303.

Brunch and a movie

The Nightlight, downtown Akron’s independent film theater, is again offering a movie and brunch event — providing enough people pledge to attend.

Academy Noms is scheduled for Dec. 5 with a brunch prepared chef Dick Kanatzar of Vaccaro’s Trattoria in Bath Township.

The plan is to have Kanatzer serve brunch before the showing of Oscar-nominated The Magnificent Seven. That’s the 1960 Western that is based on the 1954 Japanese classic by Akira Kurosawa, Seven Samurai.

If enough people pledge, brunch begins at 10:30 a.m., followed by the movie at 11:30 a.m. Tickets for the brunch and the movie are $25. Folks wanting the brunch-movie package can pledge at

As with the Nightlight’s Best Picture Brunch earlier this month, The Nightlight is using the “tilt campaign” method on to gauge interest. Seventeen people attended that first event, enough to make it happen.

Kanatzer will offer four menu options, including buttermilk chicken and waffles and banana Nutella French toast.

The Nightlight, which has a bar and offers locally made snacks, is at 30 N. High St., north of East Market Street. Movie-only tickets are available at

Nightlight executive Kurtiss Hare said in a release that The Magnificent Seven is the featured flick for the event because of its connection to December releases The Hateful Eight and Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

‘From Our Kitchens’

Zack Hirt, chef and co-owner at Nuevo Modern Mexican & Tequila Bar in Akron, will sign the new Cleveland Independents recipe book From Our Kitchens from noon to 1 p.m. Friday at the Learned Owl Book Shop, 204 N. Main St. in Hudson. Hirt and other members of the group that promotes independent Cleveland area restaurants contributed to the book, which will be available for purchase.

Speaking of Nuevo, the restaurant at Mill and High streets in downtown Akron, will host a holiday tasting from 5 to 9 p.m. Dec. 20.

Stations will allow patrons to mingle, and employees will pour draft beers, including Perro Nuevo, a black lager made for the restaurant by Thirsty Dog Brewing Co. of Akron, Spanish and South American wines and flavored margaritas. Also featured will be a taco bar, guacamoles and salsa, among other finger food.

Cost is $40.

Raise a glass

• Highly rated Orin Swift Wines of Napa Valley will be featured at a tasting at Regency Wine Bar in Fairlawn from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday. Cost is $18. Regency is at 115 Ghent Road, across from Summit Mall. For reservations, call 330-836-3447.

• John Caldwell, owner of Caldwell Vineyard in Napa Valley, will visit the Brecksville location of 750ml for a meet and greet at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 5. The latest release of his Rocket Science red blend will be available for tasting and Caldwell will sign bottles. Cost is $20 for club750 members and $25 for nonmembers. Reservations are required. Call 440-526-8100. The Brecksville 750ml is at 8903 Brecksville Road.

• More than 100 wines will be featured at the annual Holiday Wine Tasting at the Galaxy Restaurant, 201 Park Centre Drive, Wadsworth, at 7 p.m. Nov. 28. Included will be hors d’oeuvres, music, cooking demonstrations and contests. A silent auction will benefit the Salvation Army. The cost is $75. For reservations, go to or call 330-334-3663.

‘Latkes 2.0’

• Reminders: Leah Koenig, the New York-based author of The Hadassah Everyday Cookbook, will present “Latkes 2.0,” a demonstration featuring modern versions of classic Jewish foods at 7 p.m. Dec. 2 at the Shaw Jewish Community Center, 750 White Pond Drive in Akron. Koenig’s free appearance is offered by the Beth El Congregation. Koenig’s most recent cookbook, Modern Jewish Cooking, was published earlier this year.

• Make and drink holiday libations at “Craft Cocktails,” presented by the nonprofit Countryside Conservancy, and award-winning bartender Lorilei Bailey at 7 p.m. Dec. 2 at the G.A.R. Hall in Peninsula. Cost is $30. Each participant will taste three cocktails, receive recipes and get some cocktail trivia. For more information or to register, visit or contact Julie Gabelman at 330-657-2542 or

• Reeves Cake Shop at 2770 Cory Ave. will offer gingerbread house making classes at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 2 and 9. Cost, which covers all supplies, is $25. Space is limited. Call 330-848-1036 to reserve. And if you have a large group, employees of the 39-year-old family-owned shop will come to you. Rick Reeves said he and co-workers present workshops at homes, businesses, schools, churches and other locales. Cost for a workshop is $22 per house (minimum of 10). Group classes will be offered Nov. 27 through Dec. 18.

• Dietitian Judy Rogers will talk about “mindful eating” at a holiday-oriented cooking class, in which participants will bake and sample cookies and casseroles, at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 8. The class, at St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church at 6462 Ridge Road in Sharon Center, will include a talk on “mindful eating for enjoying holiday food and provide strategies to avoid gaining those extra holiday pounds.” Cost is $20. Recipes, handouts and all food supplies are included. Sign up by Monday by emailing Rogers at Class size is limited.

Send local food news to Katie Byard at 330-996-3781 or You can follow her @KatieByardABJ on Twitter or become a fan on Facebook at