winedinedonate.gifNext week is the third annual San Francisco Wine. Dine. Donate dinner. It’s a fundraiser for America’s Second Harvest and our own San Francisco Food Bank in particular. Each year the venue changes, but it always includes a fantastic multi-course meal, a chance to meet Tanya Steel, editor in chief of Epicurious and to learn a bit about the programs of the food bank. Last year there was even a snazzy gift bag.


This year’s dinner is being held at Acme Chophouse and it reunites friends and chef colleagues–Traci des Jardins and Elizabeth Falkner. Here is a sneak peek at the “From Farm to Table” menu:

Passed Hors d’oeuvres:
Tomales Bay Oysters
Craig’s Charcutiere
Steak Tartare

First Course:
Cured anchovies boquerones style, squid-charred and marinated with local shelling beans and a sardine a la escabeche. Family style with Grilled Breads and marinated seasonal vegetables.

Second Course:
Spit Roasted Porchetta, Devil’s Gulch Pork, Slow Cooked Kale with Lemon, Romano and Wax Beans with Tomato

Cheese:
Andanate Dairy Cheese with Breads

Dessert:
Elizabeth’s Dessert olive oil crema, summer fruits (pieces of peach, and or plum) berries, pine nut streusel, and avocado ice cream with a grating of spicy chocolate

What: Wine. Dine. Donate Dinner

Where: ACME Chophouse, 24 Willie Mays Plaza, San Francisco

When: Wednesday, July 30th 2008 Reception 6:15 p.m. Dinner 7:15 p.m.

How: Tickets are $125 and include a donation to America’s Second Harvest The Nation’s Food Bank Network. Purchase tickets.

Why: Support a cause that serves many in our own community, experience a collaboration between two great chefs and enjoy one great local meal.

More than anything, the dinner is a chance to focus on those at risk of going hungry in our community. Undoubtedly you have seen the headlines in yesterday’s San Francisco Chronicle about soaring food costs and food banks “feeling the pinch.” The numbers tell a sad story, in 2007 the San Francisco Food Bank served 118,000 people and today they are serving 124,000.

Here’s a great recipe from Elizabeth Falkner’s Demolition Desserts cookbook, that uses luscious ripe cherries. Spoon them over ice cream, cake or cheesecake.

Wine-Soaked Cherries
Makes about 1 cup

1/2 cup Cabernet Sauvignon or Zinfandel
3 Tablespoons granulated sugar (about 1 1/4 ounces)
1 cup halved and pitted Bing cherries (about 4 ounces)
Small pinch of freshly ground black pepper

In a saucepan, combine the wine and sugar and place over medium-high heat. Heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar, for about 2 minutes or until the mixture comes to a boil. Lower the heat to medium-low and simmer for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the liquid is reduced by half, forming a syrup. Pour the syrup into a heatproof bowl and let cool for 2 minutes.

Stir the cherries and pepper into the syrup and let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes. Serve the cherries right away, or cover tightly and refrigerate for up to 2 months.

Recipe reprinted from Elizabeth Falkner’s Demolition Desserts, Copyright 2007 Tenspeed Press

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