Chow Fiesta report:
Saturday's 2nd annual Chow Fiesta suffered no sophomore slump, as 42 hounds ate and drank their way through dozens of delicious dishes. We raised $1156 to help keep Chowhound.com going, including $297 from the Silent Auction. ($300 went to venue rental.)
We're all hoping for invites to Patrick's house for risotto cooked in the beautiful copper risotto pan and for some ribs made in the great pressure cooker donated by Russ.
And now for the chow.
It seemed as if pork was the ultimate Chowhound food,
as several people brought porcine variations.
Chowhounds singled out Jeff's slow-cooked, succulent pulled pork, Patrick's ribs, Russ' ribs and Dana's perfectly-spiced chili as some of the highlights from the pork category. Paloma's carefully-crafted turkey escabeche with homemade masa cakes, Beth's sauerbraten and the fesenjan chicken from Javan Restaurant also won favorable mentions.
In the side dishes, guests enjoyed the spring rolls with spicy chili sauce, the Persian rice and Sandra's chicken liver pate, among many others.
Desserts were neck in neck with pork for "most popular category," with raves going to Patrick's cheesecake, the moist coconut cupcakes from Auntie Em's, the refreshing, not-too-sweet cucumber mint sorbet, Layne's sesame cookies, the macaroons, the tiramisu and Chowpatty's personal favorite, The Beach Club's light lemon hazelnut torte.
It was truly wonderful to see a gathering where everyone put so much care into the food instead of "buying everything at Costco," as Jeff put it.
The night before, some Chowhounds went to King's Palace for dinner, causing Dana to stay up until 2 cooking after dinner and Jeff to make frequent phone calls monitoring the cooking temperature of the pork. Thi bought a selection of unusual Chinese gelatin in black sesame and rosewater flavors to bring to the Fiesta, but the gelatin mysteriously disappeared in his apartment the next day.
We talked about planning an Ultimate Chowhound Quiz
with chow-worthy prizes, so hopefully next year's
event will be even bigger. Thanks also to those who brought wine for all of us to share. Don't miss Spoony Bard's wrap-up below.