Whether Eddy and I host a party or attend one, we try to have dishes made with local ingredients. When we went to the Spa City Co-op’s Fall Potluck, we made orange pecans using pecans from Jody Hardin’s Foodshed Farm. At our last dinner party, Eddy made two kinds of chili, meat and vegan. Both were made with Arkansas pinto beans, corn, tomatoes and garlic that I preserved. We used peppers from our garden to spice both chili. We used ground beefalo from The Beefalo Woman for the meat chili. We used bulgur from War Eagle Mill and mushrooms that we foraged for the vegan one.
When hosting a dinner party, many people come up with the menu first. They then head to the store to buy necessary ingredients. Eddy and I do the opposite. We look at what we have at home, both fresh and preserved. Then, we come up with the menu for the party. This way, we reduce the number of items that we buy at the store. Some times we don’t even have to go to the store to get ready for the party, helping us save gas and time.
So, next time you host or attend a party, serve dishes made with local produce that you have at home!