Helena Market Days going strong

Published 10:34 am Monday, July 23, 2012

Chef Estinfort and Chef Pambo from Cafe De Paris prepare a French Summer Salad with cantaloupe, watermelon, tomatoes, feta cheese, sliced beets and black olives tossed with a French Vinaigrette. (contributed)

By LAURA BROOKHART / Community Columnist

The energy at Helena Market Days has been growing steadily this summer no matter the heat. Many regulars come early, make their favorite selections and are headed home when the next wave shows up to check out the chef demo at 9 a.m. and musical performers that follow.

Peaches, purple hull peas, homemade pickles and plums; nectarines, watermelons, cantalopes; parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme; bread for your spreads and honey for your honey. Helena Market Days has it all. Plus our craft vendors — Sassy Domestic’s stylish aprons and bags, KT Lights, Cheeky Maiden Soap and The Pen Man, Ronny Parker, with his hand turned wooden bowls and writing instruments.

Welcomed for the first time were Chef Estinfort and Chef Pambo from Cafe De Paris, who prepared a French Summer Salad and Chef Chris Vizzina from Samford, who brought a taste of Sicily with his Summer Caponata.

Returning favorites drawing a crowd were Chef Sue Lemieux of Fox Valley and Chef Gray Byrum from Echelon Catering. Our guest chefs have been graciously sharing their recipes and these can be found online at Helenamarketdays.com.

The First Annual Boston Butt Cookoff raised $400 for Friends of Helena Schools. Jeff Burns won the judges’ choice and Best Butt Trophy, topped with a golden pig, and Keith Nolen was awarded the People’s Choice trophy.

Market regulars have enjoyed a variety of musical performances — from students of Heather Batey Voice & Piano Studio to the duo of Miles Apart, Thomas Trussell and Ashley Partridge.

Tents, tables and chairs have been added so that everyone will have cooler spots from which to view the chef and the musicians.

Coming up through August:

July 28: Dyron’s Low Country Cuisine – Chef Randall Baldwin.

Featured charity: Disability Rights and Resources and LifeSouth Blood Drive 8-noon. Music by Abbey Greer.

Aug. 4: Ross Bridge Resort – Chef Robert Kamm; Birmingham Rose Society and music by Katie Searcy.

Aug. 11: Rio’s Bar and Grill – Chef Hamric; Featured charity OLVCC Knights of Columbus and music by Jeremy Puckett.

Aug. 18: Boy Scout Iron Chef Cook Off; Music By After2Glasses and featured charity, Alabama Symphony Youth Orchestra.

Aug. 25: Ocean – Chef George Reis; featured charity, Mothers of Pre-Schoolers. Music by Andre’ Taylor.

In a recent column, we incorrectly listed a website. The correct information for Southern Balloon Journeys is phone: 213-1054 and email: info@flysbj.com.


Laura Brookhart can be reached by email at labro16@yahoo.com.