Herring and glass, of course

The American Swedish Institute (ASI) hosts its second Cocktails at the Castle event July 25 from 7 to 11 p.m. It’s a spin on the Swedish tradition of hyttsill, in which people gather in the lingering warmth of the glassmaker’s furnace, with food and drink. Thus, Hot Shop Herring Glass Blowout coincides with the ASI’s new glasswork exhibit, “Pull Twist Blow: Transforming the Kingdom of Crystal,” which opened last month. The evening will feature glass-blowing demonstrations by Swedish artist Fredrik Nielsen — known as a post-punk, nonconformist master glass blower — along with live music, a Swedish lawn game called Kubb, herring and sausage street food by Fika, cocktails, beer by Indeed Brewing, wine and inventive ice cream flavors from Pumphouse Creamery.

Those who attended the first such event in May and experienced lengthy lines should be happy to know that the ASI staff has responded with more bars, said CEO Bruce Karstadt. Tickets to the event, limited to those 21 and over, are $10 in advance or $12 at the door. ASI members and bicyclists who check in their helmets get $1 off drinks all night. For tickets, visit http://bit.ly/17vB4ph.


And for your bug course

Fifteen years ago, David George Gordon published “The Eat-A-Bug Cookbook,” contending that eating protein-rich bugs is good for us, and the planet. Now he’s back with a revised edition from Ten Speed Press ($16.99) offering “40 ways to cook crickets, grasshoppers, ants, water bugs, spiders, centipedes and their kin.” These range from Three-Bee Salad to … wait for it … Pest-O. This isn’t a book for the squeamish, with photographs of sautéed scorpions and ant-dappled salads. But it’s not a (cough) gag gift, either. Gordon believes, as does a recent United Nations report, that developing an appetite for insects could help end world hunger. Alas, no recipes for mosquitoes.


Organics in Kickapoo

Consumers of Organic Valley products may want to consider a weekend jaunt to La Farge, Wis., about 200 miles southeast of here, for the 10th annual Kickapoo Country Fair on July 27. Wisconsin’s Driftless Area is the stamping grounds of Organic Valley, the nation’s largest cooperative of organic farmers. The fair features workshops (beekeeping, mushroom foraging, composting, etc.) speakers, music (Cloud Cult), organic food, farm tours and a foraging adventure. Leave your pets at home, but bring your own water containers for this free event, meant to celebrate Organic Valley’s 25th year. Gates open at noon to 10:30 p.m. For more info, visit www.kickapoocountryfair.org.