Thursday, November 5, 2009

Polenta Lasagna with Jonathan Safran Foer

The Chef: Barry Jones Horton

The Menu: A stunning, delicious, incredibly lovely three-course meal. Chef Barry totally spoiled us today with one of the best lunches we've ever had. It started with off with his take on a Cobb salad. Romaine, cornmeal-crusted tempeh, tomatoes, and roasted shiitake "bacon" combined for a stellar salad. For a main course we devoured his polenta lasagna with fresh puttanesca sauce, sautéed kale and mushroom filling, and baked tofu ricotta. As a special accomodation for us, each plate was dusted generously with Parma!, because Chef Barry knows how obsessed we are with it. For dessert, we had a perfectly done raw apple crisp. Yes, we died of glee.

The Goods: The food wasn't our only source of excitement today, as renowned author Jonathan Safran Foer joined us at the table. Sandwiching lunch in between speaking at a local high school and doing a phone interview in the car on the way to a radio interview, Foer chatted with us about his book, Eating Animals, his family, and his role as chef at home. (Lentils are a favorite with his son!) Maybe you caught his recent clip on Ellen? If not, you probably should. Here's Jonathan, Chef Barry, and the whole VN crew: