Everyone is invited to bring their appetites to HAVEN’s 11th Men In The Kitchen event on Thursday, April 20, at St. Stephen’s United Church of Christ in Merrill. This year, six volunteer chefs are featured who are each preparing unique menus from which diners may choose. All of the chefs develop their own menus and purchase the ingredients, then prepare their specialties for a table of eight guests, and also serve those who dine at their tables. Each menu includes several courses, such as appetizers or salads, followed by an entrée and sides, and finishing with dessert. Diners will be asked to select their choice of menu when they reserve their tickets.
HAVEN is happy to introduce the cooks for 2017 along with their menus.
•Chef John Sample will prepare a “Mexican Fiesta” including chips, salsa and guacamole (papas fritas, salsa, guacamole) to begin the meal, along with shrimp cocktail (coctel de camaron). Mini burritos (burritos en miniatura), fish tacos (tacos de pescado), chicken enchiladas (enchiladas de pollo) and Mexican rice (arroz Mexicano) comprise the main course, followed by deep-fried ice cream (Helado de frito) for dessert.
•The menu of returning Chef Cal Hinz starts with a feta tossed salad, and features “Fall Off the Bone” smoked ribs with sauce served on the side, accompanied by garlic mashed potatoes and rolls. Dessert for Cal’s meal will be cheesecake.
•Chef Mike Mensching’s menu theme is “Pasta for the People” with a first course of salad, leading to Mexican and Italian Spaghetti as the main dishes complemented by garlic and Mexican breads. Mike will serve two desserts and also a non-alcoholic wine.
•Chef Mike VanLieshout presents his menu of “Pizza Mania” which begins with salad followed by three specialty pizzas: pepperoni, dried tomato and garlic pizza; smoked sausage, mushroom, onion, and red pepper pizza; and a deluxe pizza. His guests will also enjoy ciabatta bread with garlic dipping sauce, and a dessert of lemon bars.
•A traditional Irish menu will be prepared by Chef Pete McConnell starting with a “huge” pub salad along with squash soup. His meal continues with “awesome” corned beef and cabbage, sides of honey glazed carrots and rye pumpernickel bread, plus condiments and pickled relishes. Chocolate mint dessert completes his dinner.
•In keeping with the season, Chef Tom Zentner presents his “Spring DuJour” menu with spring mixta Mandarin salad as the first course leading to savory shrimp, wild rice with almonds, and roasted vegetables. Tom’s dessert will be ice cream delight.
Tickets for Men In The Kitchen are $35 each and must be reserved in advance. Call HAVEN at 715-536-1300 to purchase a ticket for the menu of your choice, as tables can fill up quickly. The evening will begin at 5 p.m. with a social hour and silent auction accompanied by musical entertainment from Paul and Susanna Gilk. Dinner will be served at 6 p.m. After dinner, there will be a short program, followed by the announcement of silent auction winners and other drawings.
HAVEN is very grateful to all of this year’s “Men In The Kitchen” for donating their cooking talents. Thanks go also to the many area businesses who contribute to the silent auction and drawings.
All proceeds from Men In The Kitchen will benefit the work of HAVEN (Household Abuse Victims Emergency Network) which provides advocacy, resources and shelter to those who have experienced domestic abuse and/or sexual assault. For information or help, call HAVEN, 24 hours, at 715-536-1300.