The Dining Society’s Edible Centerpieces

May 23, 2011

The Dining Society’s 2011 summer season kicked off last weekend in Los Angeles’ Echo Park, with a menu that included Kusshi oysters and roasted root vegetables and shrimp and squid sauteed with corn and pork belly with mustard and fava beans, finished off with strawberries and homemade ice cream. The food, presented family style, was practically perfect in every way. The drinks were BYOB, with a nightcap courtesy of cocktail creators Alie & Georgia: rum with homemade chai.

The guests, including food writers and artisans like Jen Smith of Full Moon Pickles (http://fullmoonpickles.blogspot.com/), gathered in the driveway at Jaime Honkawa’s house for the evening. She’s decorated her house beautifully, but since it was an outdoor gathering, she needed to bring some of her design sensibility outdoors. Enter Woolly Pocket!

While the cooks chopped up everything in the kitchen, Jaime spent the day getting the driveway all gussied up for the dinner party, which included boring stuff like sweeping, but also fun stuff like setting the tablescape, with our sweet lil’ Islands – four Tinas and a Lana. She planted the pockets with a mix of succulents and edibles, which ended up being pretty AND practical when the kitchen ran out of rosemary and Debbie, Dining Society’s sous chef, came running down and did some last-minute shopping from one of the Pockets. By using living centerpieces, guests got to add some fresh herbs to their meals creating an ‘interactive’ food experience.

Jaime also put a lot of heirloom lettuces in, especially the gorgeous speckled kind, as well as purple basil, fennel, cilantro and the saving-the-day rosemary. The evening was a success, and both table and décor were delicious.

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