Man Saved by Condiments this Week in Food

Get your Kwanzaa on at the History Center
Get your Kwanzaa on at the History Center

We're still in the throes of our Christmas food coma, but that doesn't mean we're going to kick back this week and tackle that 2012 diet early. From Kwanzaa to New Year's there still plenty of activities worth exploring this Week in Food.

12/26 Transition from Christmas to Kwanzaa at the Minnesota History Center, which hosts a unifying community experience for family and friends to enjoy "first fruits of the harvest." The celebration includes storytelling, West African drumming and dancing, a cooking demonstration, and an art activity inspired by the theme of unity. It's all free with regular museum admission ($11 adults, $9 seniors and college students, $6 children ages 6-17) and runs 12-4 p.m. For more info visit the History Center's website.

12/28 Unlikely but true stories are always the best: "Man Saved By Condiments" plays Wednesday at the Bryant-Lake Bowl and tells the tale of a man, trapped for five days after crashing his car, who survives on nothing but hope and condiments. Written by "Mystery Science Theater 3000" alumna Mary Jo Pehl. Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door, and the show starts at 7 p.m. For more info visit the Bryant-Lake Bowl's website.

12/29 Planning to host a blowout New Year's Eve party but put off the planning? No fear: Cooks of Crocus Hill will straighten you out with its Knockout New Year's Cocktail Party class. Wow your guests with a fabulous feast taught by chef Terry, who will show you how to throw it together from start to finish. The menu will include pulled pork tostadas; flank steak croustades with goat cheese; coconut shrimp with marmalade sauce; smoked salmon and scallion mini quiches; crispy polenta with sauteed wild mushrooms; mini white chocolate pastry cream tartlets; and apple ring fritters. The class costs $65 and runs 6-9 p.m. at the Edina location.

12/31 At a loose end for New Year's Eve? There's still time to check out the "New Year's Eve Solera Sensory" event, which promises two floors of fire dancers, aerialists, burlesque, DJs, live music, break dancers, delicious Spanish appetizers, a dessert buffet, drink specials, and complimentary champagne at midnight. Quite the list, no? Doors open at 9 p.m. and the insanity ensues until 2 a.m. Tickets are $50 and are available at Tempo Tickets. For more information call Solera directly at 612.338.0062 or visit their website.

Ring in the New Year with five courses
Ring in the New Year with five courses

If something quieter is more in order, check out the offerings at the Nicollet Island Inn, which features a five-course feast to help you ring in the new year. Executive Chef Adam Droski kicks things off with a golden beet borscht and then tackles eggplant caprese, several salads to choose from, and a main course of either duck, tenderloin, or lobster gnocchi. The meal wraps with your choice of either pumpkin cheesecake or chocolate croissant and poached fig bread pudding (you can start the 2012 diet tomorrow). Dinner costs $68, and reservations can be made by calling 612.331.1800.

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