Pam Rainey: Don’t let food age past its prime

When November winds blow and leaves begin to fall, we might as well get our party duds cleaned and ready to wear. Holiday festivities and get-togethers are just ahead.

Take-home skills

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Have you walked the downtown area on the evenings of First Friday Denton, when many of the stores, especially art galleries and arts and crafts shops, are open to welcome you?

MCT file photo

Martha Len Nelson / Food

The weather is still hot, but all over town school bells are ringing and football players are scrimmaging. And if you follow the sports pages, you’ve read that University of North Texas product Lance Dunbar, a second-year player with the Dallas Cowboys, is making a name for himself as a running back with the team.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Denton Community Theatre managing director Mike Barrow secured the rights to the Southwestern regional premiere of The Color Purple, the Broadway musical opening tonight at the Campus Theatre.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Now should be the prime time to find fresh peaches for our summer enjoyment. And how do I know? Because I had a birthday this week, and my mother canned peaches all day on the farm in Argyle the day before I was born.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Martha Len Nelson: Chicken casserole a tasty dish

The Denton Community Theatre is furnishing laughs galore for us this summer. Last Friday was opening night for Sly Fox, beautifully directed by veteran Bill Kirkley. He assembled a large cast of audience favorites who seemed to be having a jolly time working together.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

The beat never stops in Denton. Mike Steinel, a jazz trumpet professor at the University of North Texas, will assume the personality of Tex Zimmerman with his annual Memorial Day concert, “Dylanfest,” from 5 to 8 p.m. Monday at Dan’s Silverleaf on Industrial Street.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

If you were there — and scores of thousands were — then I don’t have to tell you that the beautiful weather brought out a huge crowd for the entire Denton Arts & Jazz Festival.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

If you liked Elvis, you’ll want to make reservations for Music Theatre of Denton’s upcoming production of All Shook Up, opening Thursday at 7:30 p.m. and running through the next weekend. You’ll know all the songs, including “Blue Suede Shoes” and “Love Me Tender.”

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Plenty of worthwhile presentations are on the calendar for April. This weekend brings the final performances for Denton Community Theatre’s excellent The King and I, with a very large, terrific cast in an amazing production directed by Pete Kelly. A recent addition to the theater’s website, www.dentoncommunitytheatre.com, is a ticketing page where you can choose your seats online and purchase them, all without leaving your home.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

So many upcoming events to enjoy coming up! The Denton Community Theatre will present the all-time favorite, The King and I, two weekends, beginning April 5.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Denton has become a hotbed of entertainment these days! This weekend alone we have a choice to attend Music Theatre of Denton’s production of the always enjoyable Gypsy, with Maria Harris fabulous in the role of Mama Rose; or the 28th annual Texas Storytelling Festival in the Denton Civic Center; or a diverse offering of live music downtown.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

What wonderful opportunities we have here in Denton! Last week’s Thin Line Film Fest, the only all-documentary film festival in Texas, not only entertained but, more particularly, enlightened us about ourselves and the world about us.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Beginning today, for the sixth year, Denton will be host to the Thin Line Film Fest, a unique 11-day festival that offers a plethora of documentaries — some short, some longer, but all true.

Martha Len Nelson: Sausage bites fit for big game

For a fun family diversion from the television set, why not take the family to Denton Community Theatre’s production of Cheaper by the Dozen?

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Did you have your black-eyed peas this New Year’s Day for good luck? As a bona fide Southerner, it doesn’t seem right unless I eat a few, good luck or not.

Maggie Jover: Reducing portion sizes for better health

Many of us will set “eating healthier” as a New Year’s resolution for 2013. One way to achieve this resolution is by reducing portion sizes. Most of us eat more than we realize.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Ho, ho, ho! Time to finish your shopping and any homemade gifts you’re planning.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

If you love the flavor of lemon, you are going to love the recipe I have for you today! This recipe for Lemon Brownies comes from my friend Pat Heath. When she served them recently, I knew that’s what I wanted to make to take to The Arts Guild’s 34th annual Auction for the Arts on Saturday night at the Center for the Visual Arts.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

So much to see, so much to eat, so much to do, so tempting to buy! There’s never a dull moment in Denton county.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

This weekend and next, Denton Community Theatre will present The Elephant Man, the true story of a repulsively deformed Englishman in the late 1800s, his experiences first as a carnival freak, then later as he’s taken on as a project by a young doctor.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Attention, all seniors: The city of Denton, Texas Woman’s University, the University of North Texas and various nonprofit agencies are uniting to offer the seniors of Denton an opportunity to “Age Well, Live Well” with a free Senior Fitness Assessment and Healthy Aging Fair at the Kitty Magee Arena in Pioneer Hall on the TWU campus Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The goal is to make Denton the healthiest place in the nation!

Martha Len Nelson / Food

The British are coming! The British are coming! Both the Denton Community Theatre and the Denton Benefit League have chosen British themes to open their fall seasons.

Martha Len Nelson: Prep pear strata for breakfast to savor

It’s back-to-school time, with no time left for leisurely breakfasts. Today’s recipe comes from Bonnie Bassett, a friend who cooks and eats healthily and can still do “the splits” just as easily as she did in high school!

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Looking for something to do to get out of the heat? Join others at the Denton Community Theatre’s production of the Broadway hit musical Hairspray this weekend and next.

Martha Len Nelson: Bake with garden’s bounty

This weekend you have the opportunity to take your children, grandchildren — or in my case, great-grandchildren — to see Denton Community Theatre’s Theatre School production of Alice in Wonderland … or Down the Rabbit Hole and Through the Looking Glass.

Martha Len Nelson: Chicken Puffs a party favorite

You still have time to enjoy Denton Community Theatre’s production of Broadway’s award-winning The 34th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee this weekend by calling 940-382-1915 for tickets. Although it sounds as if it were written for children, it is an adult show as the participants — some from the audience — describe the pangs of growing up.

Martha Len Nelson: Fresh kernels are worth the trouble for corn salad

Musical theater is alive and well in Denton, Texas! Several of the shows are sold out for Texas Woman’s University’s Miss Nelson Is Missing, a production that’s fun for all ages, but particularly suitable for first- to fourth-graders. There may be a few tickets for today’s 10 a.m. and Saturday’s 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. performances. For ticket information, call 940-898-2020.

Martha Len Nelson: Carrots get a kick

A delicious lunch was served by the women of the literature and art departments of the Ariel Club when Jane Hopkins was the speaker last month at the Denton Woman’s Club Book Review.

Martha Len Nelson: Tortilla roll-ups an easy treat to make for casual occasions

There’s plenty to do in “Little D” this weekend other than going to the lake. Mike Steinel (a.k.a. Tex Zimmerman) will celebrate 50 years of Bob Dylan’s greatest hits at Dan’s Silverleaf from 6 to 9 p.m. Memorial Day to benefit the nonprofit group Instruments of Change, which includes Mike and his wife, Beverly Hoch, who go to Haiti every year to share music with victims of earthquakes and poverty.

Martha Len Nelson: Seafood’s come a long way

School is winding down, organizations are stopping for the summer break, but the monthly book reviews at the Woman’s Club continue this month and next.

Martha Len Nelson: Put a twist on brownies, and cross fingers for clear skies

Could we somehow pay the weatherman to bring good weather this weekend for the Denton Arts & Jazz Festival that begins tonight?

Martha Len Nelson: Irish casserole unusual, delicious dish to serve

A delightful musical production of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women awaits you this weekend at the Campus Theatre.

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Today’s recipe is perfect for a cold winter night. It comes from educator Oscar Rodriguez, a friend of my eldest daughter in Dallas. It makes quite a bit, so make it, then freeze for another cold night!

Martha Len Nelson / Food

Our community will have the opportunity to experience a fun, family-friendly evening while supporting a worthy cause when Our Daily Bread sponsors the internationally acclaimed Harlem Ambassadors at Denton High School next month.

Holiday Traditions 2011