Bestselling author Michael Pollan, whose many works are on the shelves of those following food issues, will be in town May 2 at Beth El Synagogue to talk about his new book, “Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation,” as part of the synagogue’s “Inspiring Minds” series. Pollan is the author of “Food Rules,” “The Omnivore’s Dilemma,” “In Defense of Food” and other volumes that have been must-reads in the food world.

Tickets for the event: $500 for a VIP ticket, which includes a private reception (appetizers by Heidi and Stewart Woodman, chef/owners of Heidi’s and Birdhouse) and a photo opportunity with Pollan, reserved seating, plus a copy of his new book; $180 for reserved seating and a copy of the book; $60 for a general admission ticket; $25 for a senior (65 or older) or student general admission. The event will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. at the synagogue, 5224 W. 26th St., St. Louis Park. For tickets or more information, see or call 952-873-7300.


Nourish: Spring e-book

Here’s a sign of seasonal hope: “Nourish: Spring” by Anna Dvorak now is available as an e-book, the second installment of four focusing on healthy, plant-based recipes linked to the calendar. Dvorak, a certified nutrition, wellness and weight-loss consultant, teaches at metro area co-ops and the Kitchen Window cooking school. She also leads weekend and weeklong retreats for women focused on mindful, balanced living. For more info on the book ($9.99), visit

Cheese, please

The popular Cheese Pleaser sampling event at Mississippi Market’s Selby Av. co-op now is expanding to its location at 1500 W. 7th St. in St. Paul. Now both stores will offer samples and expertise from noon to 2 p.m. each Saturday. For a list of upcoming samples, visit

Cookbooks spring forth

Several local cookbook authors will be chatting and signing books Sunday during the Spring Home & Garden Expo 2013 Friday through Sunday at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Chaska. Here’s the Sunday schedule: 10:10 a.m., Beth Dooley, “Minnesota’s Bounty: The Farmers Market Cookbook”; 10:45 a.m., Jenny Breen, “Cooking Up the Good Life”; 11:15 a.m., Atina Diffley, “Turn Here Sweet Corn,” and 1 p.m., Brenda Langton, “The Spoonriver Cookbook.” Experts in gardening, home decor and personal renewal also are on the schedule, which can be found at Prices have been reduced for this event: It’s free for members and free with gate admission ($12 for 13 and older) for nonmembers.