Scenes from an Urban Garden Dinner Party: Part II


Last week, I showed you the appetizers that I helped put together for a dinner benefiting the Portland Fruit Tree Project. My husband, the chef for the event, didn’t just stop at creative snacks. He prepared a five-course dinner as well, one that was so delicious we converted a 10-year vegetarian into a carnivore for the evening. I’d call that a massive success!

Here’s what we served after the passed appetizers were done.

Course 1: Salad of roasted beets, plums, goat cheese, mung bean sprouts and crispy quinoa.

Course 1: Beets, plums, goat cheese, mung bean sprouts and crispy quinoa

The beets were roasted, the plums firm but juicy, the cheesy was tangy and the fried quinoa added a happy crunchy texture.

Course 2: Homemade tomato leaf strozzapreti with Connie’s tomatoes and fresh basil in a  Parmesan brodo.

Homemade tomato leaf pasta

Homemade tomato leaf pasta

So many pretty tomatoes

So many pretty tomatoes

Fresh tomatoes and Parmesan brodo

Fresh tomatoes and Parmesan brodo

Tomato leaf pasta, fresh tomatoes and Parmesan brodo

This is one of the dishes summer is made for — light and hearty at the same time, rich with cheese but bright from the tomatoes. I could have eaten this whole bowl all by myself!

Course 3: Oregon Albacore tuna salad with potatoes, green beans, pea shoots and pickled elderberries.

Seared and chilled Albacore tuna

Seared and chilled Albacore tuna

Albacore tuna salad with potatoes, green beans and an elderflower vingarette

My favorite element of this dish was the use of elderflower. The greens were dressed with an elderflower vinaigrette and the fish was topped with homemade elderberry “capers.”

Course 4: Handmade rabbit and truffle boudin blanc, braised rabbit, creamy carrot polenta and roasted purple cauliflower.

Cheesy carrot polenta

My husband loves to pair rabbit with carrots. Here the carrot puree added to the cooked polenta gave it a slight sweetness as well as a beautiful color.

Homemade rabbit boudin blanc,

My husband excels at making sausage — this boudin blanc was probably one of his best to date. The texture was extremely smooth and light but the outside had a fabulous snap.

Rabbit boudin blanc, carrot polenta

Course 5: Blueberry and peach hand pies with mulberry swirl ice cream

Peach and blueberry hand pies

Peach and blueberry hand pies, mulberry ice cream

Seriously — mulberry swirl ice cream is awesome!

A happy ending to another delicious dinner! And all for a good cause too…

10 thoughts on “Scenes from an Urban Garden Dinner Party: Part II

  1. Dazzling! I want to hear more about the tomato leaf pasta! Your threat of eating the entire serving bowl by yourself reminded me of a photo of my then 2-year-old daughter Imogen digging into a serving bowl of spaghetti at a party — I couldn’t figure out how to post it here, so I emailed it to you! 🙂

    • I’m still grinning about that picture of Imogen. It was seriously perfect. =) The tomato leaf pasta — I’ll have to pester my hubby about that one. I can tell you the pasta itself smelled fantastic. So herby and bright, just like when you rub a tomato leaf between your fingers. I was actually pretty bitter that was the one dish there were no leftovers of. I was looking forward to hunkering down somewhere line-cook style and shoveling it into my mouth.

        • I have pestered! Take raw tomato leaves and puree in blender (we use a Vitamix) with water and olive oil (just enough to get it to spin) and add to semolina flour. He didn’t need any eggs added to the dough b/c the extruder uses such high pressure. If you need to roll it, you might need to add eggs to get the consistency right. You might also want to use 00 flour instead of semolina.

  2. so I’m thinking my invite must have gotten lost in the mail. Next year? I’ll totally support any project you guys cook for! This is all amazing. It’s mind boggling, really. Bon Appetit has nada on you.

    p.s. I made the Trouble in Paradise cocktail in this latest issue. Yum yum yum yum.

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