Having seen her recipes in Bon Apetit and the New York Times, I was tickled to have the opportunity to have dinner with Alison Roman at Salt Water Farm. Actually, she prepared the dinner and sat with 20 new friends when she wasn’t tending a bubbling pot.
The menu was just like her recipes, tasty without requiring one to spend all day in the kitchen. How can you not like that?
I happen to like anchovies but never would have thought to pair them with potato chips. Talk about a winning combination!
It’s hard to say which course I liked best. The clam pasta was so good I would have been happy to stop right there. The lemon and garlic flavors were just right, and the addition of walnuts was, again, a touch of the unexpected.
Fresh Maine seafood was the star of every course.
Beautiful filets were poached with tomatoes to create the main course. Every bite exploded with flavor in the mouth. It was definitely a dish to be savored with groans of pleasure. The toasty garlic bread was a perfect complement.
Asking about the taste that was more than just garlic and butter, Alison revealed the secret ingredient was anchovies. That’s another take away for my at home efforts.
By the time we got to dessert, I was in food heaven. Though billed as made with plums, Alison chose to use delicious Maine peaches which are now in season. Recipes that can be made with substitute ingredients are winners in my book.
By the end of the evening, those who dined farm style at the dining hall’s long table were well acquainted. All of us were drawn there by an appreciation of good food and a love of cooking.
It was fun watching our Salt Water Farm hostess, Annemarie Ahearn, and Alison work in the kitchen. Both are delightful young women whose passion for food makes wonderful things happen. Both are also cookbook authors, so you may want to add their publications to your library.