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RX: Food



Browse through Northville and Bantam Markets, and you’ll notice a preponderance of labels featuring two green forks intersecting a sunrise. The little green forks—the logo for New Milford Hospital’s healthy-food program, Plow to Plate—have been popping up all over Litchfield County recently. It is part of an effort to partner with local restaurants and grocers to promote healthy eating.

More than 30 local restaurants and markets have joined the program’s Signature Dish initiative since it started last year, according to Susan Twombly, the hospital’s community-outreach coordinator. Participating businesses agree to print the logo next to a dish on the menu or near products that adhere to the hospital’s nutritional principles, which includes using whole grains; limiting added fat, sodium, and sugar without compromising taste; and, when possible, using locally sourced ingredients.

The underlying intent is to steer customers toward healthier choices, says Kerry Gold, New Milford Hospital’s food service director. “It’s about getting awareness out there, that what you eat today can affect your health tomorrow. So, by having the restaurants partner with us and cook in a healthful way—eliminating fats, using fresh herbs and portion control—it just gets the message out to eat smart and eat well,” he says.

More than four years ago, the hospital revamped its food-service operation as a result of poor patient food ratings and adopted an aggressive, healthy-food initiative. The food drastically improved, thanks to guidance from Plow to Plate, a grass-roots program founded in 2006 by three local women. Marydale Debor, a former vice president of external affairs at the hospital, Anne Gallagher, a chef and caterer, and Dr. Diane D’Isodori, a pediatrician, joined forces to bring locally grown food to the hospital and the community.

Among Plow to Plate’s initiatives is Senior Suppers, which invites seniors to enjoy a full dinner for $5 in the hospital café. With entrees like garlic crusted salmon in white wine lemon sauce, the program became so popular that additional seating was added. Another program is called Young Chefs, which teaches middle- and high-school students how to cook from scratch, learn professional culinary skills, and, after visiting local farms, understand where their food comes from.

This year, Plow to Plate will be working with Brookfield High School students, according to D’Isodori. The school procured a grant to build a greenhouse where students can grow their own produce and herbs.
 At D’Isodori’s practice, Candlewood Valley Pediatrics in New Milford, a seasonal vegetable display is set up in the lobby. “I think it sends a message that fresh, local produce is a very important part of preventive medicine,” she says. “It’s like Hippocrates said: ‘Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.’”

To that end, Gold, who graduated from the Culinary Institute of America, continues to source ingredients from local farms and to use vegetables harvested from the rooftop garden he installed several years ago. In the café, dishes that border on haute cuisine attract regular diners from the community.

The popular Signature Dish initiative, meanwhile, challenges chefs to get creative. They’ve come up with some exciting stuff, says Gold. G.W. Tavern in Washington prepares a new signature dish each season. For fall, it is a wheat-berry-acorn-squash cake that uses local and organic acorn squash served with sage-honey goat-cheese mousse, a side of baby greens, and apple vinaigrette.

In New Milford, Ristorante Lucia’s signature dish—a poached pear topped with baby greens and hearts of palm and sprinkled with caramelized walnuts and gorgonzola cheese—won a Plow to Plate–sponsored chef contest.

And, with the construction of the hospital’s emergency department underway and relocation of the café, Gold plans to expand the rooftop garden and offer terrace dining. It’s a radical departure from the standard canned-food fare found at most hospitals.

But, says Gold: “Real food is primary care, and it’s good medicine.”


 

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December 2018

What sets the Washington Art Association’s Annual Holiday Sale apart from others is not only the exquisitely hand crafted gifts by local artisans, but a talented group of volunteers designers and...

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Washington Art Association & Gallery
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Take inspired works of art; a Library magically transformed into a sparkling, vibrant gallery; add infectious community enthusiasm... Put it all together and the result is the Mark Twain...

Cost: Free

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The Mark Twain Library
439 Redding Road
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Sponsor: The Mark Twain Library
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Decorating gingerbread houses has been a tradition at Hunt Hill Farm for many years. We invite you to join us this year with pastry chef extraordinaire Claire Bevington.

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Cost: Free

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Telephone: 914-875-9088
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Byrde + the b is pleased to announce an exhibit of Walter Fields new  artwork opening on Friday November 2 from 5-7:00pm at Byrde + the b, 10 Titus Rd, Washington Depot, CT 06794.  The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
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Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
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Cost: FREE

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
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Telephone: 860-868-2878
Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
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Byrde + the b is pleased to announce an exhibit of Walter Fields new  artwork opening on Friday November 2 from 5-7:00pm at Byrde + the b, 10 Titus Rd, Washington Depot, CT 06794.  The...

Cost: Free

Where:
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10 Titus Road
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Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
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What sets the Washington Art Association’s Annual Holiday Sale apart from others is not only the exquisitely hand crafted gifts by local artisans, but a talented group of volunteers designers and...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
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Telephone: 860-868-2878
Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
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Cost: Free

Where:
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10 Titus Road
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Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
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Sponsor: Fine Line Art Gallery
Telephone: 203-266-0110
Contact Name: Mally DeSomma
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Cost: FREE

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Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
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Cost: no charge

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2 Titus Road
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Sponsor: KMR Arts
Telephone: (860)868-7533
Contact Name: Kathy McCarver Root
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Cost: donation

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44 Upland Road
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Sponsor: Hunt Hill Farm
Telephone: 860.355.0300
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Cost: Free - registration requested

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10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
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Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
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A Litchfield County tradition for over 45 years, the Kent Singers is an enthusiastic ensemble of 35+ singers. The new dynamic musical director, Knox Sutterfield, trained at the Yale School of...

Cost: $25.00 Adults- Kids are Free

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New Milford, CT  06776
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Contact Name: Kimberly
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KMR Arts presents Mark Seliger: Platinum Prints. The exhibition opens on Saturday, October 6, 2018 from 3-6 pm with a reception and book signing of the monograph, MARK SELIGER PHOTOGRAPHS, with the...

Cost: no charge

Where:
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2 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
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Sponsor: KMR Arts
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Website »

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The Fine Line Art Gallery’s Holiday Art Show 'Miniature Masterpieces' features artwork perfect for gift-giving. The exhibit will include small works of art, such as miniature...

Cost: Admission Free

Where:
Fine Line Art Gallery
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View map »


Sponsor: Fine Line Art Gallery
Telephone: 203-266-0110
Contact Name: Mally DeSomma
Website »

More information

What sets the Washington Art Association’s Annual Holiday Sale apart from others is not only the exquisitely hand crafted gifts by local artisans, but a talented group of volunteers designers and...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Washington Art Association & gallery
Telephone: 860-868-2878
Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
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More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

What sets the Washington Art Association’s Annual Holiday Sale apart from others is not only the exquisitely hand crafted gifts by local artisans, but a talented group of volunteers designers and...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Washington Art Association & gallery
Telephone: 860-868-2878
Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
Website »

More information

The internationally renowned Slam Allen is a messenger of love. This dynamic entertainer uses the genres of Blues, Soul, R&B, and a touch of Rock and Roll to deliver powerful soul stirring...

Cost: $30.00

Where:
Hunt Hill Farm
44 Upland Road
New Milford, CT  06776
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Telephone: 860-355-0300
Contact Name: Kmberly
Website »

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Decorating gingerbread houses has been a tradition at Hunt Hill Farm for many years. We invite you to join us this year with pastry chef extraordinaire Claire Bevington.

Cost: $90.00

Where:
Hunt Hill Farm
44 Upland Road
New Milford, CT  06776
View map »


Telephone: 860-355-0300
Contact Name: Kimberly
Website »

More information

KMR Arts presents Mark Seliger: Platinum Prints. The exhibition opens on Saturday, October 6, 2018 from 3-6 pm with a reception and book signing of the monograph, MARK SELIGER PHOTOGRAPHS, with the...

Cost: no charge

Where:
KMR Arts
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Contact Name: Kathy McCarver Root
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Cost: Admission Free

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Woodbury, CT  06798
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Sponsor: Fine Line Art Gallery
Telephone: 203-266-0110
Contact Name: Mally DeSomma
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