Tuesday Top 5: Global Cuisine for World Food Day
For this week’s Tuesday Top 5 — where we pause to marvel and share a specific element, image, or detail from events we love — we’re focused on delectable global cuisine.
World Food Day, on October 16, celebrates the 1945 founding of the Food and Agriculture Organization by the United Nations to lead international efforts to defeat hunger. The group’s advice for achieving #zerohunger includes not wasting food, adopting a more healthy and sustainable diet, and advocating for hunger relief with your local and national authorities. We at PartySlate have been heartened by the altruistic stories we hear arising from the events industry of individuals and organizations hosting free holiday meals for those in need, donating leftover food, making company-wide charitable contributions, and offering free goods and services to benefit causes.
Today we want to also celebrate the variety of international cuisine being prepared and served at events. Our global society continues to shrink; traditional cuisine from around the world represents cultural history and brings us all together — around the table.
1. Cuban Vaca Frita
We love this deliciously fresh take on the classic Cuban dish, Vaca Frita, from the chefs at Paramount Events. The dish typically consists of fried and shredded skirt or flank steak topped with sautéed onions and served with rice and black beans. For last year’s N.I.C.E. Awards at The Geraghty in Chicago, Paramount’s culinary team conjured delectable bites of garlic crostini topped with red bean butter, bacon shreds, and frisée for guests to enjoy. Kehoe Designs curated the chic Havana-themed event celebrating the achievements of Chicago-area members of the the National Association for Catering and Events (NACE) and the International Live Events Association (ILEA) in the areas of event planning, catering, entertainment, creative and support services.
2. Southeast Asian Black Pepper Crab Dumplings
In Singaporean cuisine, hard shell crabs are fried with ground black peppercorns for a spicy delicacy. This hors d’oeuvre from Patina Catering, combines cultures with a Chinese-style dumpling filled with black pepper crab to create a tasty and unique dish for this corporate Chinese New Year celebration. The event, designed by theLfeid and set at Los Angeles’ unique landmark South Park Center, also featured a signature themed cocktail incorporating lychee-infused vodka, Chinese five-spice syrup, and blood orange, along with desserts that included moon cakes, which are traditionally served during the mid-Autumn festival. Lanterns and musical performers playing Chinese instruments — a guzheng and a yangqin — further set the mood for guests.
3. Filipino Kamayan Feast
Another delectable dish from Southeast Asia, this Filipino Kamayan feast from the chefs at Chicago’s Sunda New Asian, features interesting flavors, textures, and a communal dining experience. Guests at this interactive dinner party dined on Lechon Kawali (Filipino pork belly), crispy soft shell crab, shrimp & chicken adobo skewers, whole crispy snapper, Longanisa (Filipino sweet sausage), purple cauliflower, crispy pork shank and more. The meal was served family-style in the traditional way, meaning guests were encouraged to use their hands. Sunda’s veranda provided the stylish setting for the fare, which was served as a runner down the center of the table on top of beautiful palm leaves with small bowls of dipping sauces dotting the spread.
4. Lebanese Flatbread
This eclectic Mediterranean dinner party in the Hollywood Hills has us drooling for its delicious-looking Lebanese flatbreads from the catering team at Haute Chefs LA. These mini Za’atar Man’ouche, also known as a “Lebanese pizza” are a type of bread usually made on a wood fire, and always made with Za’atar (Middle Eastern herbs) and olive oil. While the flatbread can then be topped with cheese, vegetables, or anything you can dream up — just like a pizza — Chef Nimer kept these classic and small for easy pairing with other dishes. Guests also dined on Kibbeh bulgar meatballs, herbal and lemony Tabouli, and organic beef Sfeeha’s filled with currants and pine nuts, all while sipping house-made white sangria to cool down on the warm summer night.
5. French Croque-Monsieur
This 30th birthday party from — and celebrating — event planner and designer, Confero, was all things cosmopolitan and all things fabulous. Hosted at WorkPlay in Birmingham, Alabama, the event boasted neon and glowing elements everywhere from the stage and tables to the confetti; even the food was served on luminous trays. Party-friendly dishes from metropolitan areas included adorable, perfectly-composed mini hot dogs from New York and crispy, gooey Croque-Monsieur from Paris. Caterer, Kathy G. and Company, cooked up delicious triangles of the French grilled ham and cheese goodness for partygoers to snack on in between dancing to DJ Coco’s tunes and watching Cirque-like performers.
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