All the Best of All Things Local

Archive: Aug 2013

Grab the last bit of summer at a Fair or Festival near you!

  1. Grab the last bit of summer at a Fair or Festival near you!

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    Garlic copy 2


    No matter where you live, there are fairs and festivals galore that give you a chance to grab a little bit more  summer fun before school begins. Rhonda (Local Goodness) joined Paul Guggenheimer on today’s Essential Pittsburgh to talk about a few of the festivities on her hit list…all within (or an easy drive from) Pittsburgh, including two festivals celebrating the delicious “Stinking Rose” (garlic).

    Listen HERE.


  2. Ricotta Stuffed Summer Squash Blossoms

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    Summer Squash – a seasonal obsession!

    Summer Squash – a seasonal obsession!


    • 1 gallon whole milk (raw or pasteurized, but not ultra-pasteurized)
    • 6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice or 4 tablespoons white vinegar
    • 1 large egg yolk
    • ¼ cup chopped fresh herbs (I like a combination of mint, basil, thyme and oregano)
    • 2/3 cup Parmesan cheese, divided in half
    • 20 medium zucchini squash blossoms
    • ½ cup + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
    • pinch of salt
    • ¾ cup chilled club soda (or seltzer water)
    • 1 ½ cups vegetable oil (for frying)


    Place milk in a heavy-nonreactive pot over medium heat and stir in salt. Heat until milk reaches 180-185 degrees on a candy thermometer, stirring occasionally to ensure the milk doesn’t scald on the bottom of the pan.

    Once the milk reaches temperature, remove the pan from the heat and immediately add lemon juice and stir. Curds should form immediately and separate from the whey, which will be clear. Cover with a dry clean cloth and let sit for 30 minutes to a couple of hours.

    Once the cheese has rested, line a colander with a double layer of damp cheesecloth. Pour or use a slotted spoon to place the ricotta into the cheesecloth-lined colander. Let the ricotta drain until it is the desired consistency – creamy to dry (up to 2 hours). Reserve 1 cup of ricotta for recipe; place the reminder in a tightly sealed container and refrigerate for up to 7 days or freeze for 3 months.

    Stir together the reserved ricotta, egg, herbs, 1/3 cup of Parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper.

    Gently open each squash blossom and carefully spoon (or pipe) in 1-2 tablespoons of ricotta filling – just enough to fill, but able to cover with the blossom. Gently twist end of blossom to enclose the filling.

    Once all squash blossoms are stuffed, whish together the flour, remaining 1/3 cup of Parmesan, pinch of salt and chilled seltzer in a wide bowl (or pie plate).

    Heat oil in a heavy skillet (I like using cast iron) to 375°. Dip several squash blossoms in batter to lightly coat. Fry in batches being careful not to over-crowd the skillet, turning once, until lightly golden – approximately 2-3 minutes. Remove to a baking sheet lined with paper towels or topped with cooling racks to drain. Place in 200° oven to keep warm while cooking remaining blossoms.

    Serve with your favorite marinara sauce (ours is Laurel Vista Farms Regina Margherita sauce!)

    © 2013 Local Goodness LLC, all rights reserved

  3. Planting Seeds of Sustainability

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    SSA Fox Chapel Farmer's Market

    Rhonda visited Shadyside Academy in Fox Chapel, PA, where school administrators, students, parents and the community partner in bringing “real food from real people” to the school and community through a new school farm and weekly farmers market.  Rhonda joined Paul Guggenheimer on Essential Pittsburgh to talk about this innovative program that integrates the farm and market in the school’s curriculum — strengthening education, the community and planting the seeds of sustainability among the next generation.


    Listen and Learn HERE