unique menus with local
Chef Charleen brings the farmers' food to you ...
and sometimes she brings you to the farm...
Farm to table may be a marketer’s favorite buzzword, but for chef Charleen it describes the only way she wants to cook. “Once I tasted fresh, locally grown produce, dairy, meats and poultry and what they did for my food, I couldn’t go back.” Her philosophy is to truly let the ingredients be the star of the show and shape her menus.
For chef Charleen, farm to table dinners or “farm dinners” are part of a greater dining experience. “I want to create a sense of excitement of being on a farm and being outside. The experience is a combination of the ambience, the gift of the food, recognition of the farmer, good music and the fun of being with friends.” For her part, Charleen's gift is creating the food inspired by the harvest and the season.
For a recent fall fundraiser dinner in honor of Pendleton King Park, chef Charleen worked with dozens of her favorite local farmers to dream up an elegant appetizer spread and four-course dinner.
Appetizer highlights included egg salad folded with smoked salmon and topped with a roasted poblano butter glaze (one of her signatures); rustic homemade bread for scooping up garlicky kale dip; and roasted okra dusted with Indian spices. Dinner featured a mixed fall greens salad scattered with pickled onions and sweet potato croutons; herb-crusted smoked pork with wild mushroom ragout
served with mixed grains loaded with chard, roasted sweet peppers and local goat feta cheese. Vegetarians were treated to hearty lasagna layered with tender sweet potato and a creamy béchamel sauce, while everyone savored African squash pudding crowned with cinnamon whipped cream and caramelized apples for dessert.
Whether you host a dinner on a nearby orchard,
lavender farm or in your own dining room, chef Charleen creates a truly one-of-a-kind farm dinner experience with a delicious combination of custom farm-inspired menus, stress-free entertaining and warm hospitality.