However, last night we were invited to Bari for a wine dinner to benefit Slow Food Memphis. Knowing that several vegetarians would be attending, Chef Jason Severs planned a vegetarian option for the two seafood dishes on the five-course menu.
While most enjoyed rock shrimp over new potatoes with an olive-laced tomato sauce, I was treated to warm tempeh with the same set-up. What a treat! It's nice to see a chef unafraid of such an unusual ingredient. When the time came for the fish course, I received a well-seasoned tofu steak that had been seared on the grill and served over wilted swiss chard and topped with microgreens from Urban Farms and a sweet white balsamic vinegar reduction. Earthy, smoky, sweet, and spicy...this dish was really awesome.
I'm grateful when a chef like Jason takes the time to think about the meatless among us. It was a great night and an incredible meal. (And we're so planning an orange-honey-and-almond dessert inspired by Jason's creation because that was really something to remember as well.)