Blue Sky to Host Vegetarian Farm Dinner

By Patty Wetli | Wednesday, August 17, 2011

You've seen them at the Lincoln Square Farmers Market, now join Julia and Todd McDonald for dinner at Blue Sky. photo courtesy of Peasants' Plot website.

As a non-carnivore, I have to admit I’m intrigued by the concept of a farm dinner but not so much by the thought of having to take a pass on the majority of the meat-centric dishes offered. No, don’t mind me, I’ll just munch on my arugula while the rest of you chow down on your beef brisket and bacon ice cream.

That’s why Blue Sky Bakery‘s upcoming vegetarian farm dinner caught my eye.

On Aug. 30, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m., Blue Sky, 3720 N. Lincoln Ave., will host Todd and Julia McDonald of Peasants’ Plot Sustainable Farm, located in Manteno, Ill. The three-course meal, served family-style, will consist of goat cheese-stuffed squash blossoms, zucchini ricotta fritters and an heirloom tomato tart. Each course includes a paired wine or cocktail. The cost is $30 per person, or $25 for members of the Peasants’ Plot CSA; tickets can be purchased in person at Blue Sky or online.

Lincoln Square residents may recognize the McDonalds from the neighborhood’s Tuesday morning farmers market; here’s your chance to join them for dinner and pick their brains about running an organic farm, which seems to have replaced joining the circus as the #1 office worker’s fantasy. If you’d like an even closer look at the couple’s operation, they offer a worker share program: You lend a hand on the farm or at the farmers market for a few hours each month, they return the favor with a weekly box of vegetables. Peasants’ Plot popular CSA program, available to Lincoln Square and Northcenter residents (with Blue Sky serving as a pick-up location), is sold-out for the current season but check back in 2012.

Oh, are all you meat eaters feeling left out? Blue Sky is nothing if not egalitarian. A second farm dinner, scheduled for September 22, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m., features the livestock-loving Carr family of Mint Creek Farm. The menu will offer corn and bacon fritters (you knew there would be bacon), cumin-scented pork tenderloin and homemade pie and ice cream. Tickets for this event, also available at Blue Sky or online, cost $35 or $30 for Mint Creek CSA members.

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