First, the bad news: Summer has crested and is now waning. The good? Farms and gardens are fruiting in full color, so it's a great time to gather and share the bounty. As the evenings begin to cool and darkness comes earlier and earlier, late-summer potlucks can take place outside around a fire — and you can still get home before midnight. So if you haven't enjoyed a friendly, crowd-sourced meal yet this year, it's high time to get on it.
With that in mind, Seven Days checked in with seven local chefs to see what ingredients have been inspiring them — and gracing their tables — in this time of farm-fresh abundance.
Together, their recipes add up to a celebration-worthy feast, from cocktails to kebabs, carpaccio to sweet-corn cookies. Hungry yet?
*For tempura batter, I use a recipe from Tadashi Ono and Harris Salat, writing for Saveur: Place 2 egg yolks in a bowl. Add 2 cups ice-cold water, then 2 cups cake flour. Using chopsticks, push the flour into the liquid, mixing it into a loose, lumpy mixture. Do not overmix! While the liquid should be the consistency of heavy cream, it should still have powdery lumps of flour.
Chef's note: This workhorse of a dressing will make salads or grilled chicken taste great, and it'll brighten the shit out of anything you put it on.
Chef's note: Carpaccio technically means "paper thin" and traditionally refers to slices of beef served with lemon, capers and arugula, but I've [made it with] heirloom tomatoes, grilled peaches, puffball mushrooms, marinated eggplant, octopus, scallops and even sardines. Right now I am most excited about the peppers that are blushing in my garden. A few minutes on a super-hot fire blisters the outer skin and invokes both smoke and sugar throughout the pepper.
Chef's note: Everyone loves a dang good cookie. I just finalized [this recipe] for ArtsRiot, and it's a good dose of summer.
The original print version of this article was headlined "Chef's Table"