Dinner Party Hearty

| July / August 2006

The difference between a forgettable group meal and a great dinner party is quite simply a matter of choice-the choice of the music to play, the guests to invite, and, most importantly, the food to serve. Such choices determine much more than the relative success of a single evening. A simple meal made with an informed understanding of food's greater social and economic impact can yield a delicious feast that, according to Anna Lapp? and Bryant Terry, coauthors of Grub: Ideas for an Urban Organic Kitchen (Tarcher, 2006), promotes health for the planet as well as for guests. In a recent interview with Plenty (April/May 2006), Lapp? and Terry posed the argument that if a dinner party seeks to establish communal integration, the meal itself should be a means to the same life-affirming end. By ditching mass-marketed brands awash in pesticides in favor of sustainable organics, Lapp? and Terry say, consumers embrace a universally healthy lifestyle-and healthy never tasted so good. For your next gathering, rock out with the Straight-Edge Punk Brunch Buffet described in Grub: spicy tempeh sausage patties with roasted yellow pepper sauce, nonalcoholic tangerine mimosas-and a Bad Brains album. -Evan Noetzel