For those of you who are wondering what Feastly is, let me tell you. It’s this wonderful website that connects people who love being a part of new dining experiences with those who love to cook for others. It’s so much more than going to a restaurant because you actually have the option of dining in either a cook’s home, a farm, a park, a warehouse, and so on. Think daily dinner parties with various settings where you’re constantly meeting new people and tasting amazing food. Sounds intriguing, right?
I’ve been hooked on this concept since last year and finally took the plunge towards hosting my first dinner. As you can imagine, I’m pretty much jumping out of my skin with excitement. The theme is “An Ode to Smitten Kitchen”. Both Naomi and I are guilty of loving just about everything that comes across Deb Perelman’s blog. If I ever meet her, I just might pass out (after getting her to sign her cookbook for me, of course). The dinner’s taking place on Monday August 16th at 6:30pm at my residence. The menu and other information can be found by clicking here. If you’re interested, purchase a seat and come join me!
In other news, the personal chef service is slowly but surely starting to kick off :-). One client gained, 3 more to go! By mid-fall, I should be sitting in a content place, if not before. My current client is gluten and dairy-free and so far it’s been a blast cooking for her. While I’ve known what restrictions come with gluten and dairy allergies, I never actually had to cook for someone who actually had those allergies until now so it presented an awesome challenge. It definitely allows you to get more creative with ingredients and substitutes. Take for instance, this vegan lasagna: zucchini “noodles”, tomato and red pepper marinara sauce with squash, onions, mushrooms, and herbs, and soft tofu with lemon, salt, pepper, and lots of fresh herbage. I’m not vegan but I’d eat this. Just needs some ground turkey or beef. The “noodles” were so simple to make, too. You just take a zucchini and peel away it vertically to make strips. This can be done to zucchini and yellow squash. Add spaghetti squash to that and you’ve got yourself a slammin’ pasta substitute.
The chicken dish had a creamless “cream sauce”: herbs, garlic, shallots, and unflavored almond milk thickened with a slurry. I have to admit, that was pretty tasty as well. Cooking for someone with a severe allergy has definitely opened my eyes to alternatives that work just as well, if not better. As much as I love pasta, cream, butter, and cheese, I might try to implement one of these into what I cook at home for me and the hubs. I’m a strong believer of having what I want in moderation, but it also definitely wouldn’t hurt to go just a bit healthier with some things.