Macy’s cooking demos

Lots of cooking demos are on deck during Macy’s annual flower show, in the downtown store’s eighth-floor auditorium from Sunday through April 7. Each demo begins at noon in the lower level’s Culinary Kitchen. Here’s the schedule: March 25, chefs Beth Fisher and Caroline Glawe of Wise Acre Eatery; March 26, Macy’s chef Marie Hanson; March 27, chefs from Lucia’s Restaurant; March 28, Macy’s chef Susan Johnson; April 1, chef Mike MacKay of Citizen Cafe; April 3, pastry chef Sandra Sherva of the Birchwood Cafe; April 4, chef George Lohr of French Meadow Bakery and Cafe.

In addition, celebrity chef and cookbook author Nancy Silverton will appear at noon April 2 to demo and to sign her latest title, “The Mozza Cookbook.” Reservations are required for limited space. Go to

Also, the Northern Lights Tea Co. will host tastings and tutorials from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on March 29 and April 5 in the second-floor LaSalle Avenue skyway.


Cut a penny in half!

Cutco Cutlery, that staple of demonstrations at home shows and county fairs, is opening a store in Edina next month, at 7101 France Av. S. It will join a half-dozen other stores nationwide as the company adds retail to its usual direct sales often done, for decades, by college students via in-home demos. Products will include kitchen cutlery sets, kitchen knives, flatware, accessories and cookware, along with garden tools and sporting knives. The store also will host special events, cooking classes, seminars and demonstrations. Look for a mid-April opening.


Flavors of the season

Apparently Duncan Hines has decided it’s on to a good thing. A year ago, it introduced Frosting Creations, with stir-in flavors such as cotton candy or cherry vanilla. New limited-edition flavors are now available: key lime, peaches and crème, pink lemonade and fruit punch. Stir the flavor packets into plain frosting, or use in the dessert suggestions at


A new itch to ‘scratch’

Electronic pulltabs may not be proving too popular, but restaurants are betting that a digital scratch game will pan out. Front Flip is a free app for iPhone and Android. Users can look for the Front Flip code at participating restaurants in the Twin Cities and nationally, scan to unlock a digital scratch card and see whether they’ve won, say, a half-price appetizer or free lunch. For details, visit

Pillsbury Bake-Off voting

Vote your preferences for finalists in the first of the three Bake-Off categories. The contest this year has a twist with public choices determining the final cuts from a roster of semifinalists (no Minnesotans made the semifinals in the Amazing Doable Dinners category). You can vote through next Thursday in this first category. The next — Simple Sweets and Starters — will open for recipe submissions April 4. For more info, go to Read about the changes in the contest in an earlier Taste story at


Laugh while you sauté

What happens when a comic starts to cook? Well, he might write a book. “Does This Taste Funny? A Half-Baked Look at Food and Foodies” is the result for Michael Dane, who took up cooking in his 50s. He will sign books at 4 p.m. Sunday at Common Good Books, 38 S. Snelling Av., St. Paul, 651-225-8989,