Clockwise from upper left: Green Beans with Bacon, Guajolote's Beet Salad with Bacon, Roasted Red and Purple Fingerling Potatoes with Rosemary, Zucchini Blossoms stuffed with Caramelized Zucchini ready for dipping and frying.
Our friend Tammy hosted an eGullet gathering in Ann Arbor. They toured Zingerman's Bakehouse and the Creamery, shopped for many tasty goodies at the farmers' market, Kerrytown, and Zingerman's, and retired back to Tammy's place to cook up a fabulous meal.
I had planned to join them on the tours, but yesterday started on a bad note when the construction zone in front of our house came roaring to life at at the indecent hour of 7am and continued downward when they accidentally cut the gas main, which left us without hot water or the use of our stove. The local gas company sent a guy to check our house to make sure it wasn't being flooded with gas. I thought about cooking breakfast outside on the grill, but then the skies opened up and a flood of biblical proportions poured from the heavens. Well, so much for that plan. At least we managed to fetch the new Harry Potter book. But I did make finally make it over to Tammy's at Great Oak Co-housing in time to chop squash and stuff zucchini blossoms.
The squash blossoms were the big hit of the night. Tammy wanted to recreate a carmelized zucchini dish that she had at Jose's Minibar in D.C., but she wanted to dress up the presentation a bit. She spotted squash blossoms at the farmers' market, and it just all came together. A big thanks to Steve Shaw for calling Jose's Minibar and getting the carmelized zucchini recipe. You can find the recipe for the blossom stuffing, and read others' write-ups on eGullet in the topic Heartland Gathering in MI.
Tempura Zucchini Blossoms Stuffed with Caramelized Zucchini
There were some 26 people cooking, drinking wine, and having a general good time. Some 15+ dishes were prepared and savored. Along with the squash blossoms, I also particularly enjoyed the couscous salad with butternut squash and green beans and mint. It was served with a yogurt dressing on the side that was nice, but I didn't think it was needed. The green beans with bacon were also a delight to me. I'm rather picky about my green beans. My childhood experiences with canned green beans were traumatic, and I'm still recovering. But these were wonderful, with plenty of bacon. The muscian's tart was my favorite dessert. I tend to think that most desserts are too sweet, and tarts often seem to fall into that too-sweet catagory, but this one was perfect -- full of nuts and just enough sweetness to balance the nuts.
And here we are, just sitting down to the soup course...
The full menu is in the extended post.