June 13 will mark the first-ever mesquite conference sponsored by the UA Cooperative Extension, Western SARE (Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education) and Baja Arizona Sustainable Agriculture.
The event, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., is for “innovative bakers and chefs, gourmet locavores, alternative farmers and creative aggies, wildcrafters and nutrition buffs,” according to a news release from the organizers.
The conference, “Mesquite: New Agricultural Traditions for an Ancient Food,” will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Cochise College Benson Center, 1025 State Highway 90, just off Interstate 10 at the Benson/Sierra Vista/Fort Huachuca exit.
It will include presentations by mesquite experts from the University of Arizona and the Tohono O'odham Nation as well as nonprofit groups that work to promote modern mesquite harvesting, consumption and recognition for its potential to become a new arid lands food crop, according to the news release.
Demonstrations will include pod sorting and drying, food safety issues, and testing and baking mesquite breads and desserts in solar ovens. Mesquite flour and baking mixes and mesquite cookbooks will be for sale.
Registration is $30, with discounts available. Lunch and mesquite snacks are included. Register online at bajaaz.org/calendar/mesquite-workshopcq or call 331-9821.cq