Vegetables are the new health food. When I was a kid, the adults used Popeye the Sailor man to get me to eat spinach. It worked. I love spinach! Not only do I love spinach but I have a tendency toward vegetarianism. Fruits and vegetables are much more appealing to me than meat, chicken or fish. The challenge is to find restaurants that create delicious and gourmet looking vegetable dishes.
One of the last cooking parties at Messina Hof featured an entire menu of just fruits and vegetables. Each dish was beautifully plated by chef JC Broome. The first course was a Mediterranean Cous Cous using an Israeli Couscous that looked like beautiful pearls mixed with olives, tomatoes, and Feta cheese and served in a puff pastry bowl.
The star of the meal was the Spicy Parmesan Risotto with Vegetable Shrine. It was an elaborate construction of perfectly steamed asparagus, Cabernet Sauvignon poached Portobello mushrooms, beef steak tomato slices, and sautéed summer squash and zuchinni on a bed of spicy risotto. All elements were “mortored” with a sweet green curry and parmesan cheese.