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I got some super exciting news today – thanks to Bertolli Sauces, we’re On The Menu at the Foodbuzz Blogger Festival next month!!

When Foodbuzz announced last month that there would be a few sponsorship opportunities to cover the cost of travel and accommodations for the Festival and that the first would be offered by Bertolli Sauces, I knew that I had to submit an entry. I was excited but I never thought that I would actually be chosen! Entrants were asked to develop to 2-course menu using two different Bertolli Sauces products – I wanted to do something different since I figured they would be flooded with Italian recipes, but it didn’t take me long to come up with my menu.

Since the Festival is being held in San Francisco, I thought it would be fun to start my menu with something representative of the city. I don’t know what says San Francisco more than sourdough and cioppino! But I didn’t want to make just any old cioppino – it needed to be different! So I used Bertolli Sauce’s Fire Roasted Tomato and fish stock as my base, and added lots of garlic, celery, onion, and other traditional cioppino flavors. The to kick it up a notcht, I gave it a Spanish spin by adding saffron, shrimp, and mussels. The final dish has a markedly Spanish flavor that’s slightly spicy and a wonderful aroma that ignites your senses the moment you bring the fork to your mouth. Sourdough was the perfect tool for sopping up all of the extra broth. We ate every last bit and I’ve been itching to make more ever since.

From the minute I tasted the final Menu Item, I knew that it was a winner. This was SO GOOD and it’s killing me that I’m not allowed to share the actual recipe with you all (yet). But here’s the deal: Foodbuzz and Bertolli Sauces tested my recipe and I made it into the Top Eight. That means I won the sponsorship and get to go to the Festival for free (whoo!) and that this dish is On The Menu. BUT only THREE of us get to actually demo and serve our Menu Items at the Festival. This menu item is fabulous, and I really want to share it with my fellow bloggers. This is where I need your help: The top three recipes will be chosen by a vote from the Foodbuzz Community. So, can I count on your vote? Pretty please?

Voting starts tomorrow, Friday, October 23rd and runs through November 2nd. I’ll post the final details when I receive them.

Don’t you want some of this??

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(In case you were wondering, only my appetizer was chosen as a Menu Item. My entree was Lamb Meatballs in a Cumin-Scented Sauce over Spaghetti Squash and Wilted Spinach. It was also amazing – Shawn actually said he liked it better than the cioppino but I disagree – and I’ll be posting that recipe to the blog soon.)