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By Kimberly Wright|
August 9, 2003
To celebrate National Farmers' Market Week, we hosted a vegetarian pot-luck using produce from local farmers' markets. Our members rose to the challenge beautifully, inspired by the wonderful produce of the season. The salads were so beautiful, perhaps next year we'll just have salad, bread and dessert!
As we assembled, we began with local Monterey County wines, olives that I had brought back from one of the smaller Santa Monica markets, and new member Tom Danza's famous salsa. To serve this many dishes to this many people, we set up a buffet, starting with the salad course. Linda and Ned brought a gorgeous platter of multi-hued sliced heirloom tomatoes with basil and Harley Farms goat cheese. Mary and John brought two salads, one of eggplant 'with Asian flavors' and another of cucumbers. Norma and Harry brought something I love, a salad of roasted beets. Laurel brought a wonderfully herby tabbouleh. Eileen's offering was fresh sliced nectarines and oranges with honey and mint, which also worked well as a dessert.
Even though we had stuffed ourselves on the salads, we still found room for the beautiful vegetable lasagne (hiding under the dishtowel in the photo) that Roxanne made, with fresh egg pasta and veggies from her CSA box. I made a frittata of 'height of summmer' vegetables: corn, red bell peppers, green and yellow zucchini, and a plethora of fresh herbs.
We continued to sacrifice ourselves to pleasure, finishing with desserts. New member Jana O'Brien brought an apple crumble, and Linda and Ned brought grilled peaches with fresh strawberry conserve and roasted almonds. This is when I especially enjoyed the minty freshness of Eileen's fruit salad.
It sounds trite to say, but it certainly seems that a good time was time by all. As always, everyone pitched in to clean up, so the role of host was an easy one.
Footnote: Tom Danza, whom we met for the first time that evening, went to the emergency room the following day with a torn mitral valve (heart). He had surgery on Tuesday, and is now home with Jana, with an excellent prognosis. Keep Tom and Jana in your thoughts!
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