Today's Florida Film Fest '11 (FFF) Food event, the "Swamp Cabbage Culture, Sweet Tea and Pie" extravaganza showcased chefs and food that represented some of the tastiest Florida cuisine. Gary Mormino, food scholar; Scott Jones, former Executive Food Editor for Southern Living magazine; and Norman Van Aken, internationally recognized, award-winning chef educated and entertained us with tales and descriptions of their favs, with history and details.
The menu included:
Peroni Battered Gulf Shrimp - with local Winter Park Dairy Sunshine Bleu Cheese dressing
Collard Greens - with local Palmetto Creek Farms smoked ham
Braised Swamp Cabbage - served with a bowl of local Palmetto Creek Farms pork knee stew
Popcorn Gator - crispy gator bites served with Habanero infused local Tupelo honey
Sweet Shawnee Corn Fritters - local Shawnee Farms corn fritters served with local kumquat and Plant City strawberry jam
If you avoid fried foods for any reason, this was an exception for your rule. The batter was light and tasty. The gator was tender and hot. With or without the dressings, the gator bites and corn fritters stood on their own merit.
The air outside was sweet with flora in bloom and a balmy breeze. It was even sweeter inside the cozy Enzian. The film fest staff and chef Charles Hamilton did a superb job. These were the tastiest dishes I've ever had at the Enzian. Up next: Fish Camp Brunch manana. This article is a work in progress...come back in a little while for the rest of the story! Ahhhhh....