Ben, BDan, and I went to Henrietta’s Table for dinner on Friday, and then to Cirque du Soleil (a benefit performance for The Food Project!) Henrietta’s Table is a farm-to-table restaurant right near Harvard Square. I highly recommend it. It’s very cosy and homey, and the food was wonderful. They gave us Real Bread to start, and I had a rock crab cake appetizer. It was very tasty, but not quite as flavorful as I could have hoped. Ben and BDan both had bowls of this amazing pumpkin soup — it was very pumpkiny without having whatever taste it is that I don’t really like about winter squash, and also without being all sweet and pie-like. For the main course, I had a ginormous heirloom tomato salad with fresh mozzarella, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar. The tomatoes were arranged very prettily, and had an amazing variety of colors. I found it somehow ironic that there was all this meat that I’d be happy eating since it was sustainable and humane and stuff, and I got the tomatoes. But they were really, really good tomatoes. Ben had some very nice fish over polenta, and BDan had a different kind of polenta with mushrooms and goat cheese. After eating the deceptively small but very rich polenta, BDan had had enough food. This, for those not acquainted with him, means that it would have been enough food for at least two of me. We then had dessert, which was strawberry shortcake and chocolate bread pudding. Very tasty. They also have a “pie of the day”, which that day was pumpkin (I suspect the same pumpkin as was in the soup, which was also a special of the day).
It was not cheap, but was affordable on a grad student budget for a special occasion, and I felt like we definitely got what we paid for. They have little profiles of the different farms on their website, and are great about answering questions. They also have a gift shop with pig- and farm-related toys and books (the “Henrietta” in the name was a prize pig), as well as various locally sourced treats. There were some beautiful bottles of garlic scape vinegar with the scapes looking like some sort of alien worms. I kind of want to make some next year as a gift and play up the alienness for the next geek wedding or similar event I go to.
Cirque du Soleil was extremely shiny. I feel like I need pictures to properly convey the shininess, but it was very shiny. And made me kind of miss theater.
After the farm pickup yesterday we made lots of pickles. One quart of dills, two quarts of spicy dills, one quart of pickled radishes and salad turnips, and one quart of sweet pickled young butternut squash. The young butternuts would make a reasonable substitute for green papaya. They’re at that state where they’re right in-between summer squash and winter squash. They were not actually part of the share; Ben rescued them from where they were growing in the compost pile. I chatted with several small people while picking beans, on of whom informed me that the beans were like marshmallows. :-)