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Historic Cuisine, Culture

Food

In a series of video lectures by Ken Albala about food through history at Litchfield’s Oliver Wolcott Library, the point is made again and again: Food is a marker of class, and as individuals rise socially they head for the dishes of the rich and famous.
Albala speaks of barbarian tribes in 6th-century Europe who survived on weeds and grasses and grape seeds and, occasionally, on each other. And then there were the excesses of Imperial Rome. They ate extravagantly, Albala tells us.

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A Trip To The City

On the Trail

As I’ve covered in previous installments of On The Trail, there are plenty of local antique stores to visit in the Tri-state area. But since we’re so close to New York City, consider attending antiques week from Jan. 19 to 29.
OK, so it’s more than a week, but it is the standard by which all the other antiques weeks are measured. 

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Sheffield Is Full Of Antiques, Art

On the Trail

Happy New Year! This week we were shopping in Sheffield, Mass., where there are great shops for antiques, art and décor that offer a wide variety in the tastes and styles offered. 
Frederick Hatfield Antiques is located at 99 South Main St. The shop — operated by Fred’s widow, Eve — has been there for about 40 years. The style is casual, country-home furnishings that Eve finds through house calls in the local area. The store is open every day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For information, call 413-229-7986.

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record-breaking light show Captures holiday spirit

Once again, the ERDAJT holiday light display is in full swing at the home of Tim Gay in  Lagrangeville, N.Y.
The annual display, which started in 1995, is named after Gay’s three children — Emily Raejean (ER), Daniel Arthur (DA) and John Timothy (JT). 
The family has earned the Guinness World Record for most lights on a residential property twice — first in 2012 with 346,283 lights, and again in 2014 with 601,736 lights (thanks to a donation of lights from Ritz Crackers, which were lit for three days to reclaim the record).

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East Meets West, Sort Of

Food

I used to have a Chinese cookbook translated from Mandarin with shiny images of banquet dishes and a little boy eating a mung bean popsicle. Though the book did not cover many dishes that interested me, I kept it for a long time because of the first line in one recipe: “First, kill the turtle.”
I thought of that line while putting together Ming Tsai’s black bean and garlic sauce from his beautiful cookbook “Simply Ming” — a book that cooks would love for a holiday gift.

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Holiday farmers market in Norfolk

The Norfolk Farmers Market will host a holiday event on Saturday, Dec. 3, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., immediately following the fire department’s Breakfast with Santa. The market will feature live music, food, gift ideas, a CPR course and more. The Farmers Market is located in Battell Chapel at the Church of Christ Congregational, 12 Litchfield Road. For more information, go to www.norfolkfarmersmarket.org.

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Free Program Highlights Talent

Performing Arts

Amenia Town Hall was full of activity on Saturday, Nov. 26. While most people were stopping by the farmers market set up in the gymnasium, a small group of dedicated students could be found in the auditorium, painting sets for an upcoming talent/variety show that will be held during the town’s Holiday of Lights celebration on Dec. 10.

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A Weekend Full of Antiques

Shopping this weekend, Dec. 2 to 4, should be more fun when including Antiques for Christmas in the Tri-state area. Antiques shops throughout our neck of the woods are featuring special holiday promotions that will highlight antique and vintage Christmas decorations and great suggestions for presents that may have a little more meaning due to their history.
Shops in Millbrook, Millerton, Amenia, Sharon, Lakeville, Salisbury and North Canaan are joining in on the fun. 

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The Reason to Visit Exotic Places

Travel

“Where are you going on your next trip?” It is a question commonly put to me, as is, “Why there?”
I go out of curiosity — I want to see for myself the places I have read about. I want to experience the landscapes, the cities and the people. As an intensely visual person, I want to see the beauty of the art and architecture, the gardens which I have studied for so many years.

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From Artisan Fairs to Fishing Rods, There Are Gifts for All

Gifts

The Salisbury Artisans Group is holding two events in December.

The first is at The White Hart inn in Salisbury from Dec. 2 to 4. The Friday night reception runs from 3 to 7 p.m. and costs $10, which will benefit the Corner Food Pantry. The event is open on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

The second is at the Center on Main in Falls Village on Saturday, Dec. 10, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This is a splendid opportunity to pick up unusual and unique holiday gifts without having to drive all over the place.

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