Stir It 28 Campaign ,Chocolate Hazelnut and Banana Tarts, and a Book Giveaway

photographer and graphic designer, Dave Patterson of RH Media Group for creating the STIR IT logo!

Is it February already? Hard to believe it. This month has been filled with so much activity and emotion all over the globe. I don’t think there was one person who hasn’t been touched, moved, or affected by the recent earthquake in Haiti. Never have we felt so helpless as we see both tragedy and miracles on the television. So “What can I do ? “, you may ask. I love to see the blogging the community come together in Haiti’s hour of need. A few of my blogger friends have decided to put our heads together and come up with a multi city effort. You may have seen us tweeting about it or sharing the news with on Face book already. Well here is the whole deal if you are interested. If you look to the left sidebar you will find the link to donate or purchase tickets for your cities event.

Together with Bren of Flanboyant Eats and Chrystal of The Duo Dishes, we have formed Stir It 28: Food Bloggers Align for Haiti Relief–a blogger based fundraising effort to bring money to Haiti. As food plays a very large importance in our lives, we strive to raise money to bring food, water and other necessary supplies to the people of Haiti, which will hopefully do a small part to aid in the short-term relief efforts. We’re calling on all food bloggers to help us make this a nationwide, international even, movement during the month of February. From February 1st through the 28th, we will do our best to come together as a unified group, along with the food community at large, to help bring relief to the island nation. All money raised during the month will go to Share Our Strength and Yele.
Here’s how you can help:

Each one of us will be hosting a food fundraising event on Sunday, February 21st in our respective cities–Los Angeles, Atlanta and Chicago. We’re asking chefs, restaurants, home cooks and food bloggers to participate by donating 2-3 dishes that will feed 15-20 people each. The events will be open to the public with advanced tickets or limited ticket sales at the door. Purchase tickets by clicking the logo image on the top right side of this page. We’re still formulating our respective events, but here are the details so far:


Host: Bren Herrera
Where: SPACE Atlanta, 1310 White Street, Atlanta, GA 30310
(historic West End)
When: 4-7 PM
Tickets: $30 in advance
$40 at the door
DJ Rev Lee will make you shake your rump
to each food station! 
Special surprise live performance by  
popular Atlanta-based artist!
Complimentary wine courtesy 
of Montaluce Winery! 
(visit them at 
and 2 Cash bars!


Host: Courtney Nzeribe
Where: Three Peas Art Lounge : 75 E. 16th Street
(Between Michigan and Wabash) Chicago, IL 60616
When: 3-6 pm
Tickets: $30 in advance
$35 at the door
* Cash bar and delicious house cupcakes for sale


Los Angeles
Host: Chrystal Baker
Where: Sexy Private LA Residence located at
6602 Cahuenga Terrace, Los Angeles, CA, 90068
When: 4-7 pm
Tickets: $30 in advance
$35 at the door
* Complimentary Valet will be available
for first 50 attendees!


Washington, DC
 * Details TBD. If you are in DC, and are interested in partnering with
Bren in hosting an event, please email
with the subject: STIR IT-DC.
New York City Just added!
Sunday, February 21, 2010
4:00pm – 7:00pm
NYU Department of Nutrition –
Food Studies and Public Health
35 W. 4th Street, 10th floor
New York, NY
The New York foodies have joined the Stir It 28 movement!
If you’re in NY and want to attend, here’s your chance.

Advanced ticket sales only: No ticket sales at the door.
$20 for students and $30 for adults/faculty & staff.
Students must pay via the PayPal General Online Donation
button on
or and indicate
“NYU student ticket” in notes.
Must show student ID at the door.

No tickets at door.

Street parking and parking garages
in walking distance.

Each event requires donations of food, so if you’d like to share your talent of cooking with the public, this is your opportunity. You don’t have to cook to be part of the fundraiser. We’ll need help with media/publicity, set-up/clean up, serving, working the door, etc.
You can be part of this! Contact each respective person to let them know you want to be on the team.
Los Angeles: Chrystal @theduodishes
Bren @BrenHerrera
Chicago: Courtney @glamah
If you are not in LA, Atlanta or Chicago, you can still help raise money. Perhaps donate what you would normally spend to create a dish for a post or give the amount you’d spend on a lunch or dinner out with friends. It’s not about how much you give, but the spirit in which you decided to help others. We understand that economic times are hard, but even $1 over 500 or more bloggers would make a difference. Spread the word to your friends, tell your families. Talk to restaurants in your area, chat with cooking school, visit bakeries! The idea is to bring the food community together as a whole, so anyone who lives and loves food should hear the word. You can donate through Paypal. The associated email address for the donation is

Bren has a hunger campaign called One Comment. One Eats, and this is a great opportunity to combine this effort with our Haiti relief project. For every comment you receive on your first post of February, we hope you donate one non-perishable food item to Share Our Strength. You can campaign for the full month of February in order to get as many comments as possible. We will let you know how to get your food to Share Our Strength. Email Bren directly at to get your badge that reads: “I gave to One Comment. One Eats.”

We can only make this work if everyone bands together. The cool thing about food bloggers is that we are a supportive bunch. Most of us have never met, but we forge virtual relationships with people in our own cities and across the world over food. If we combined that same strength and applied it to a great cause, imagine how powerful it would be! Sign up as a cook/volunteer for the LA, Atlanta or Chicago events, join the Facebook page, use the Twitter hashtag #stirit28, get the word out to your friends, solicit donations. We can make a huge difference! And for anyone in any city who is interested in starting their own fundraiser event, please email to let us know. You do not have to have a huge blow-out. An intimate dinner of 10 or 15 on Sunday, February 21st will still make a difference! As long as we’re donating as a solid group of the food community, that’s all that matters.

So to kick of my first my first post for the month of February, and to generate many comments, I am giving away the wonderful Ciao Italia: Five Ingredient Favorites by Mary Ann Esposoito. Forgive me as I have been sitting on this book for a month or so. But other evnts and issues have distracted me. I love the premise of the book . Take five ingrediants which we should all have in our kitchens and make quick, delicious, and flavorful meals. From Antipasti to dessert, Mary Anne Esposito has you covered. With everyone talking about Nutella for World Nutella Day on February 5th, I decided to do these amazingly simple and and decadent Chocolate Hazelnut and Banana Tarts. You wouldn’t believe how simple these come together and you don’t even have to be what I consider a true baker to make these . I even added a touch of rum to mine.
Tortine di Gianduja e Banana
Chocolate , Hazelnut, and Banana Tartlets
adapted from Ciao Italia; Five Ingredient Favorites by Mary Ann Esposito

1 sheet puff pastry
1 cup Nutella
8 oz Mascarpone cheese at room temp
3 tablespoons sugar
1 banana sliced

Preheat oven to 450 F
Roll out puff pastry on clean lightly floured work surface and cut out four 6 inch circles ( for 3 inch tart pans) or whatever shapes you chose to use. Press and line your forms, preferably with removable bottoms, with the puff pastry.
Place tartlet pans on a baking sheet and poke shells allover with a fork to prevent puffing while baking. Bake tartlet shells fro 7-8 min or until nicely browned.
Remove tartlet pans from oven and allow to cool completely.
In a medium bowl using hand mixer, whip up Nutella , Mascarpone , and sugar together until well blended.
Place a layer of banana on bottom of cooled shells, then spoon Nutella mixture into the shells. Refrigerate for several hours before serving. Top with additional Bananas.

I will randomly draw a name from the comments generated by this post on Sunday February 7th. Remember , for each comment I get I donate a non perishable item. How easy is that? So spread the word.