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- More from Deborah Pankey
Bakers take note! You have until noon Friday to enter a pair of contests hosted this year at the DuPage County Fair in Wheaton and judged by the Daily Herald's own Annie Overboe.
Overboe, author of the monthly Baking Secrets column, will be on hand Saturday to weigh in on entries in the Ghirardelli Chocolate Championship and the King Arthur Flour Great Cake Contest.
Ghirardelli is looking for your most decadent chocolate recipe for a dessert or treat. Create your best entry using at least one of the Ghirardelli premium baking products (chocolate chips, bars and/or cocoa).
Judging takes place at 9 a.m. Saturday, July 24, in the entertainment tent and the first-place winner will receive $150 and a Ghirardelli chocolate gift basket. Second place gets $50 and a Ghirardelli gift basket; third place goes home with a Ghirardelli gift basket.
A $150 online shopping spree and a chance to compete nationally are on the line in the Great Cake Contest.
The cake must use King Arthur Flour and the UPC code will be required for proof. Judging takes place at 10 a.m. Saturday, July 24, in the entertainment tent. Second place earns a $75 gift card to kingarthurflour.com; third place prize is a $50 gift card.
The first-place prize winner at the DuPage County Fair will be eligible to compete with the grand prize winners from 14 other fairs around the country for a $500 prize and a trip to the company's culinary school in Vermont.
Complete entry details and rules for each contest are available at dupagecountyfair.org.
Getting fresh at Fresh 1800: In his effort to spread the word about locally grown produce, sustainable agriculture and the benefits of organic products, acclaimed chef Hagop Hagopian of Fresh 1800 restaurant in the Hyatt Regency Woodfield-Schaumburg will host a series of farmers markets at the hotel this summer.
From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays July 24, Aug. 7 and Sept. 4, the Hyatt will showcase local farmers, artisans and organic wines. In addition, chef Hagopian will demonstration cooking methods that bring out the bold, vibrant flavors of the fruits and vegetables grown in your own gardens.
Taste of summer: Learn innovative ideas for summer entertaining and family dining from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday, July 22, at Mangel's of Long Grove.
The gourmet shop has invited six brilliant chefs and gourmet specialists to showcase summer recipes and wine pairings during the evening of cooking presentations and sampling.
Participants include Harper College culinary instructor and caterer Pat Doepke, Alex Hernandez from Victoria's Mexican Grill, Kathleen Nevera from Three Girlz Catering, Rick Petrocelly from the Olive Tap, Josh Baudin from Sweet Whimsy and wine consultant Donna Musson with Glunz Family Winery.
Tickets cost $27.50 and can be purchased at the shop, 421 Robert Parker Coffin Road, or by calling (847) 634-3731.
Bayless book signing: Rub elbows with celebrity chef Rick Bayless of Chicago's Frontera Grill on Tuesday, July 27, at Anderson's Bookshop in Naperville
Bayless, who also won Bravo's "Top Chef Masters," will talk about and sign copies of his new book, "Fiesta at Rick's: Fabulous Food for Great Times with Friends."
Anderson's is located at 123 W. Jefferson Ave. in Naperville, (630) 355-2665.
Milk the moment: The national "got milk?" Milk Mustache Mobile Tour stops in the 'burbs on Sunday, July 25, touting the benefits of milk and family meals and offering a chance to win a trip to San Francisco and dinner with celeb chef Tyler Florence.
Families can enter by telling how they "milk the moment" and make the most of time together around the table from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. and 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday at Brookfield Zoo, 3300 Golf Road, Brookfield.
The event also features activities co-sponsored by the NFL and National Dairy Council's Fuel to Play 60 initiative.
Find details at whymilk.com, at Facebook.com/MilkMustache and through Twitter, @MilkMustache.
• Contact Food Editor Deborah Pankey at email@example.com or (847) 427-4524. Listen to her discuss food and restaurant trends during Restaurant Radio, 5 to 6 p.m. Saturdays on WIND 560 AM.