Ojakangas memoir debuts

We know her recipes. Now celebrated cookbook author Beatrice Ojakangas tells us about her life in a memoir, “Homemade: Finnish Rye, Feed Sack Fashion, and Other Simple Ingredients From My Life in Food” (University of Minnesota Press, $22.95). Ojakangas, who lives in Duluth, will be feted Oct. 12 in a book launch at the American Swedish Institute, 2600 Park Av. S., Mpls. In a Q&A with Kim Ode of the Star Tribune, Ojakangas will talk about a life that’s included milking cows, inventing Jeno’s Pizza Rolls, and cooking with Julia Child and Martha Stewart. A 5:30 p.m. reception and book-signing, with samples of her recipes, precedes the 6:30 discussion. Tickets range from $5-$10 and registration is recommended. Visit z.umn.edu/homemadelaunch.


Men cook to aid women

The Junior League of Minneapolis hosts “Men in the Kitchen” on Oct. 8 to raise funds and awareness of its community programs to develop the potential of women. The evening will feature samples of dishes prepared by 15 chefs, who also are the husbands, friends, fathers and brothers of Junior League members. Guests vote on their choice for top chef of the evening. The event is at Warners’ Stellian in Edina, 3553 W. 70th St. Cost is $40 per person or $75 for two. For tickets, visit jlminneapolis.org.


Celestial Seasonings redux

It happened with New Coke. It’ll happen again when another beloved product seeks to change things up. Celestial Seasonings is bringing back its quirky, colorful and sometimes fantastical packaging designs after an ill-received redesign with boxes that were “cleaner” with more white space. The company, founded in 1969, is perhaps best known for its herbal Red Zinger and Sleepytime Teas. The teas themselves never changed, “but our fans made it clear that our refreshed boxes were missing some of that special Celestial magic,” according to a company statement. The new (old) packages began appearing in stores this month, along with five new tea flavors and the (online-only) return of Almond Sunset Herbal Tea.


‘Dinner Spinner’ on the air

There’s a new cooking show on the air. Allrecipes’ “Dinner Spinner” TV show is a half-hour competitive cooking series aimed at helping home cooks reinvent their daily menus. Each week, two home cooks show their creativity in a race for the best plate, with each episode touting the value of using fresh flavors and ingredients to create easy, family-friendly meals. The show airs on the CW Network’s “One Magnificent Morning” programming block, targeting teens and families. Locally, it airs at 11 a.m. Saturdays on WUCW.