Dora’s Tomatillo-Feta Appetizer!

Juan Pablo Peña Mejia

Buy Haywood’s “Cooking Local Together” event at Haywood’s Historic Farmers Market on August 23, 2014, was a huge success thanks to our guest chef Juan Pablo Peña Mejia and his collection of family recipes for a variety of SALSAS inspired by his home in Guadalajara, Jalisco.  (Click HERE for chef bio)

The Buy Haywood team shared 240 samples of three different salsa dishes with a diverse group of participants!  Recipe cards were given out that included a creamy Tomatillo-Avacado Salsa & Divine Burnt- Red Salsa.

Here are some event highlights:

The third salsa dish sampled was Dora’s Tomatillo-Feta Appetizer, recipe as follows:

 Visit our Online Directory for local ingredients!

Dora’s Tomatillo-Feta Appetizer

(Inspired by Dora, the guest chef’s mother)

4-6 large Tomatillos
1/2 medium Onion
A handful of Cilantro, finely chopped
1-3 Garlic cloves
Serrano Pepper, finely chopped with seeds (Jalapeño can be substituted)
Salt to Taste
1 cup crumbled Feta Cheese (Cotija Cheese, a slightly salty crumbly Mexican cheese can be substituted)

Steps of Preparation
Finely chop all ingredients and mix in a bowl.  Add the Serrano pepper, salt & garlic to taste.  Serve with crackers, tortilla chips or use as a topping for grilled fish, chicken or pork.

For the creation of these recipes, our ingredients were purchased locally.  We’d like to acknowledge the following farm for their continued partnership with Buy Haywood:

Steve & Terry King • 828.734.1044

Special thanks to Heidi Dunkelberg & Karen Grogan of Coffee Cup Cafe in Clyde, NC, who came to enjoy the event but stepped up most graciously and helped us serve samples!

When farmers & chefs get together, magic always happens!  Steve & Terry King of King Harvest Farm with Heidi Dunkelberg & Karen Grogan from Coffee Cup Cafe
When farmers & chefs get together, magic always happens! Steve & Terry King of King Harvest Farm with Heidi Dunkelberg & Karen Grogan from Coffee Cup Cafe

Additional thanks to volunteers, Mrs. Alex Pena & Mr. Alex Masciarelli, for supporting this Buy Haywood event and having a great sense of humor every time someone called out the name “Alex.”  As an organization, Buy Haywood relies on volunteer support and we have been extraordinarily blessed by a dedicated and talented team!

Event photos by Mrs. Alex Pena

Uniquely Local Food Crawl

August 21-24 & August 28-31, 2014

Buy Haywood has officially launched our 2014 FOOD CRAWL!
Want to know what in the world a food crawl is?
Visit our website,

Farm to Table. Web Use

Look for our Uniquely Local PARTNER logos—
Farm to Table, Artisan Produced & Farm Fresh
marking individual “CRAWL” destinations.

Full list of Food Crawl partners, flavors,
& event calendar  CLICK HERE

We have put together some sample CRAWL itineraries (see below)…just a few ideas to help get you started.  Or, create your own CRAWL by using the online Event Calendar.  Crawl as often or as little as you’d like to explore the premier culinary event of the summer season celebrating our Uniquely Local partners!

Payment occurs at each individual crawl destination—
so there are no billing surprises!

Remember to enter to win one of our Uniquely Local prizes each and every time you Crawl.  Full listing of prizes available on our website, CLICK HERE.

The more you “crawl” the greater your chances to win!



Doing Downtown

Start with the in-store tasting event @ Copper Pot & Wooden Spoon (both Fridays of the Crawl, see Event Calendar for complete info)

Lunch at any of our “downtown” partners, see Event Calendar for full listing.

Stroll over to Frog Level Brewing Company for a stop at their Creek-side Tasting Garden.  Be sure to pick up the recipe card for Pub-Style Pot Roast featuring FLBC’s award-winning Tadpole Porter, local beef, farm fresh vegetables and herbs.

Meander up to Sunburst Market for their in-store tasting event (Friday, 8/22 @ 5-7p) featuring Hickory Smoked Trout Dip & local beer from Frog Level Brewing Company.  (Bring your “market” basket and stock up on farm fresh produce from area farms, Sunburst Market is your neighborhood specialty grocery for a wide variety of Uniquely Local items!)

Dinnerat Frogs Leap Public House for the most extensive local food menu in Haywood County! (Reservations Encouraged)

Lastly, “CRAWL” on up Main Street to the Classic Wineseller for some local favorites & live music.

OR end your “Crawl” at The Strand at 38 Main for a showing of Cataloochee – A Documentary (7:45p Showtime) while enjoying some local dessert.  Food Crawl Special:  Enjoy a slice of layer cake hand-crafted locally by Just Simply Delicious (and featuring local eggs). $5.25

Cold Mountain Crawl

Start with a delicious breakfast at Breaking Bread Cafe in the heart of historic Bethel.  Be sure to pick up a copy of Bethel Rural Community Organization’s “Cold Mountain Heritage Tour” self-guided driving tour CD.

Or, tour first and have lunch or dinner at Breaking Bread Cafe or Jukebox Junction!

Tour the Bethel community, taking in the history and beauty of the community by using the self-guided Cold Mountain Heritage Tour CD.

Stopat one of our agritourism sites by visiting the Ten Acre Garden‘s on-farm market or the Seasonal Produce Farm Market.  Bring your own market basket and take home ingredients to make your own UNIQUELY LOCAL meal!

Continue the history tour and dine at Sid’s on Main in Canton, NC

Al Fresco Crawl

Start with lunch at Coffee Cup Cafe in Clyde.  Chef Heidi Dunkelberg and the Coffee Cup team have created daily UNIQUELY LOCAL specials featuring Haywood’s freshest farm products that can be enjoyed on their outdoor patio.

The Patio Bistro also offers outdoor dining on their beautiful arbor-covered outdoor area.

Or, begin at Kanini’s or City Bakery (both in Waynesville) with a “take-out” order to be enjoyed at your favorite outdoor spot!

Enjoy any number of outdoor adventures by accessing the Blue Ridge Parkway or Cataloochee Valley via Soco Gap in Maggie Valley, NC.  For a list of things to see and do around Haywood, Visit NC Smokies website for itineraries & more!

Crawl to a relaxing farm-fresh dinner in Maggie Valley, NC, by visiting J Arthur’s or Frankies Italian Trattoria!

Saturday Morning Market Crawl

Start at Haywood’s Historic Farmers Market (in the HART Theater parking lot) for a free Cooking Local Demonstration & Tasting @ 10am Saturday (tasting continues until 12 noon, as long as supplies last) featuring guest chef, and local jewelry artist, Juan Pena Mejia showcasing a variety of SALSAS inspired by his home in Guadalajara, Jalisco.  Market vendors will also be offering samples of seasonal fare!  CLICK HERE for Chef’s bio.

Or, start at Waynesville’s Original Tailgate Market (in American Legion parking lot) for “A Taste of Summer” with free samples of local cantaloupes, melons and tomatoes fresh from the farms of Haywood County

Bring your market basket & shop directly from Haywood County farmers.  Uniquely Local doesn’t get any fresher than this!

Mosey on over to The Mahogany House Art Gallery and Studios
in downtown Waynesville, NC, for a local honey tasting @ 12:00 Noon…Where local meets art!

Crawl to any of the UNIQUELY LOCAL lunch destinations all around Haywood County, NC, listed on the Saturday event calendar!  CLICK HERE for complete listing.

Enjoy another in-store event at Sunburst Market in downtown Waynesville, NC: 2-5:00pm, Visit Sunburst Market for a taste of Sunburst Trout Farm’s Rainbow Trout Caviar– three ways.

Dine out for a Uniquely Local dinner, CLICK HERE for destinations!

Crawl for local entertainment in downtown Waynesville, NC

The Strand at 38 Main Food Crawl Special Event!
Bigfoot Wars-Red Carpet Movie Premiere & Pre-Party

Celebrate uniquely local Haywood County author Eric S. Brown with a party and premiere screening of the Hollywood movie, starring Judd Nelson and Jackey Hall, based on his best-selling series “Bigfoot War.”

Black Tie Pre-party, 6pm, $25:  Catered pre-release party with hors d’oeuvres, author meet-and-greet/book signing, PHOTOS WITH BIGFOOT, and red carpet walk. (Film star Jackey Hall plans to attend the pre-party.) Formal attire. Steampunk Formal welcome.

Red-Carpet Movie Premiere, 7:45pm, $6:  Satisfy your Bigfoot-Sized Hunger all day with our locally hand-crafted pretzel sticks and Fines Creek Gourmet Pepper Butter dipping sauce. $3
Pre-purchase of tickets strongly recommended

Or, visit The Classic Wine Seller
Hosting Food Crawl special events with LOCAL flare!
Food Crawl Special: The Classic Wineseller’s restaurant opens at 4:00pm serving local and imported cheeses, freshly prepared appetizers, tapas, and small plate entrees.  Experience the thrill of a live music performance starting at 7:00pm!

End with Frog Level Brewing Company to wind down at their Creek-side Tasting Garden.  Be sure to pick up the recipe card for Pub-Style Pot Roast featuring FLBC’s award-winning Tadpole Porter, local beef, farm fresh vegetables and herbs.

Enjoy the Highlights of Harvest Season at Buy Haywood’s
“Uniquely Local Food Crawl”

Don’t forget to enter to win a Uniquely Local prize at each “crawl” destination!

The more you “crawl” the greater your chances to win!


Seed Saving with Haywood County Public Library

Scarlet Runner Beans
Scarlet Runner Beans

Building a seed saving community…
one packet at a time!

Guest Post
Kathy Olsen

Since the creation of The Seed Lending Library of Waynesville in March of this year, I have witnessed what I had only hoped would be true.  And that is an overwhelmingly positive response and enthusiastic participation from the people in our community.

I had heard about seed lending libraries in Colorado, Arizona and California, and when the community was described, it sounded so much like ours I had high hopes that it would be successful here. What seemed to be necessary for success was an interest in issues of self-sufficiency, an awareness of the importance of eating whole foods and a desire to protect heirloom vegetables that are unique to one’s area.  From March until early June, not a day went by without at least one person checking out seeds!

Scarlet Runner Seeds
Scarlet Runner Seeds

The true test of the sustainability of this project and the commitment of the community will be in the return of the seeds.  The library has educated the public about the ‘why’ and the ‘how-to’ of seed saving through several (free) classes taught by local experts such as Lee Barnes, Kathleen Lamont and various Master Gardener Volunteers.  So, I am hopeful that there will be a great return of seeds, even though it’s only our first year.

Let me share why I think this is important for our community:

  1. Humans have been saving seeds for over 12,000 years.  But the last hundred years or so we have lost much of that knowledge, and along with it, some of our plant diversity.  When you grow your own plants and save your own seeds, you will develop plants that are well suited to your climate. 
  2. Preserving our plant diversity is important!  Biodiversity leaves us less vulnerable to disasters (think potato famine in Ireland).  We also want to protect the diversity of plants because of taste.  If you compare a grocery store tomato to one that you grew yourself, there will be no question that tomatoes bred to withstand travel have inferior taste!

  3. The Haywood County Public Library wants to remain an integral part of this community.  We strive to remain relevant and necessary, and this program helps us to create a culture of sharing through education about seed saving and gardening.  It’s just one more great reason to visit your local library today!

Stop by and explore our seed project!
– Kathy Olsen

Mobile Seed Lending Library
Mobile Seed Lending Library

For more information, contact:

Kathy Olsen
Adult Services Librarian
Haywood  County Public Library
828.356.2507 •

Summer Bruschetta

Bruschetta (pronounced in Italian as bru’sketta) is an Italian antipasto meaning served before the pasta.  The literal translation is “roasted over coals.”  You will find many variations across Italy – some with grilled bread and some simply spread on bread fresh from the hearth.

Here is a simple and delicious Buy Haywood version for two versions of Summer Bruschetta made with ingredients picked at the peak of flavor, fresh from the farms of Haywood County, NC.

 Visit our Online Directory for local ingredients!


Tomato & Basil Bruschetta

Artisanal Bread (grilled or fresh)
4 medium-ripe Tomatoes, cored and diced (your favorite in-season varieties)
10-15 leaves of fresh Genovese Basil (rolled & sliced thinly…careful not to bruise basil leaves)
1 clove Garlic, pressed or finely chopped
3-4 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1-2 Tablespoons Aged Balsamic Vinegar (from Modena, Italy is preferred)
Salt & Pepper, to taste

Note: Adjust acidity depending on the sweetness of the tomatoes, by adding more olive oil or vinegar to achieve the desired flavor balance.

Steps of Preparation

Combine all above ingredients in a bowl.  Let stand unrefrigerated before serving (at least 15 minutes) so that flavors have an opportunity to combine.

Spoon over bread & serve!

Pesto Bruschetta

2 1/4 cups loosely-packed fresh Genovese Basil leaves
1/3 cup toasted Walnuts (or Pine Nuts)
2 medium Garlic cloves, peeled & chopped
1/2 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper

Steps of Preparation

Combine all ingredients except olive oil in a food processor (or blender).
Pulse several times to combine.
With machine running, add olive oil & puree until smooth.
Season with salt & pepper to taste.

Spread onto bread & serve.

Serving Suggestions:
Top with freshmozzarella for a variation of flavor!

Also, this recipe for pesto is perfect stirred into 1 lb of cooked & drained pasta for a lunch or dinner treat!

Cook. Share. Enjoy!

For the creation of these recipes, our ingredients were purchased locally.  We’d like to acknowledge the following growers & producers for their continued partnership with Buy Haywood:

KING HARVEST FARMS—Tomatoes, Basil, Garlic
Steve & Terry King• 828.734.1044


POTTERY — Generously Donated by
Jimmy & Molly Richardson