Anna Getty's Spring Dinner Party Recipes
5.15.13

We’ve relied on Anna Getty for some great green home tips and a little helpful advice for encouraging safe and eco-friendly habits in our families. Now we’re peeking in on Anna’s casual Sunday open houses. Anna’s simple, farmer’s market-fueled Sunday get-togethers have turned into a cozy ritual that her friends and family have come to treasure. Here Anna shares a few easy and casual recipes that remind us all just how refreshing it can be to take the time to care for friends and family and dig in to the season’s best fresh and local ingredients. Be inspired and let us know how you like to entertain below!

In October of last year I started hosting a Sunday open house. I love to cook for friends, so I decided that every few weeks my front door would open and friends could just come in, eat, swim, chat and chill out. My friends come with their families, the kids play, we eat and talk about food or current events or children or…food. I only have the time to host these get-togethers about once a month and they are always casual affairs where people can just grab food, read the paper and relax. But here we are in May and it’s been eights months or so of this lovely and cozy ritual!

Every now and again a friend will bring food over. In November my friend Stefan’s mother-in-law brought an amazing Austrian Goulash and Potato Salad. But, generally, this is my opportunity to hit the farmer’s market and cook and I want folks to come and enjoy a cozy afternoon being pampered by me and my family.

I start each Sunday morning off at the Hollywood Farmer’s Market, where I feel like the mayor, every ten feet bumping into another old or new friend. I pick up seasonal, local and organic food, come home and cook until my guests arrive. For my most recent open house, I was able to create some tasty dishes with spring’s new bounty. I poked around and found pea tendrils, peas, asparagus, gem lettuces, radishes and locally made La Nogalerea walnut oil. I found amazing blue corn muffins and salted caramel croissants from Valerie Confections, a wonderful local artisan bakery, grabbed some goat cheese from Soledad Goats, famous for their goat cheese balls marinated in olive oil and herbs in mason jars, and Pressed Juicery dropped off a dozen lovely fruit and vegetable juices to enjoy.

From my market finds I was able to create a lovely goat cheese frittata with peas, tendrils and tarragon and the two recipes below. I also served a large bowl of cherries and snap peas so the kids could snack. I like not to make special “kid’s food” so that the kids are exposed to and taste new foods!
  • Gem Lettuces with Walnut Vinaigrette & Oven-Roasted Asparagus with Hard-Boiled Egg
    Serves 6-10

  • Salad Ingredients:
    For the salad:
     
    8 heads little gem lettuces, washed tried and torn to bite size pieces
    1 large pink grapefruit, sections peeled and the flesh removed from the pith, broken into bite size pieces
    1 small head fennel, fronds removed, cut into thin slices
    4-5 small radishes, thinly sliced rounds
    1 large and ripe Haaas Avocado cut into cubes
     
    For the vinaigrette:
     
    1 medium shallot, finely minced
    Maldon or Kosher salt to taste
    1/3 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
    2 Tablespoons lemon juice
    3/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive oil
    1/4 cup Walnut oil
     fresh cracked pepper to taste
  • Salad Directions:

    In a mason jar combine the shallot, salt, vinegar and lemon juice, place the lid on the jar and then shake up the ingredients. Then add the olive and walnut oils and pepper and continue shaking till emulsified.

    Place all remaining ingredients into a large bowl and gently toss with the vinaigrette.

  • Asparagus Ingredients:
    2 bunches asparagus tips about 4-5 inches long (Look for the thinnest asparagus you can find for better roasting)
    salt
    olive oil
    2 hard boiled eggs, finely chopped
    1 block Italian parmesan cheese (Don’t be fooled when it says 'imported'. It may come from China or Argentina. Look for Made in Italy -it simply tastes better!)
    Freshly cracked pepper to taste
    Basil, finely chopped for garnish
  • Asparagus Directions:
    Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees
     
    Place asparagus tips in a shallow baking dish, sprinkle with a large pinch of salt and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 15 minutes then increase oven temperature to broil and broil for 3-5 minutes, making sure asparagus does not burn.
     
    Remove from oven and allow to cool 10-15 minutes. Sprinkle the crumbled hard boiled egg pieces evenly over the asparagus. Using a vegetable peeler, gently shave thin parmesan slivers over the egg. Then sprinkle the basil over the dish and pepper to taste.

    *Note: I had a little bit of extra dressing from the gem lettuce salad and spooned some of it over my asparagus on my plate. Delish!
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  1. Dear Anna,

    I love this SO much! When I lived in Tucson for 10 years, from 96-06, about mid-way through I started “sunday suppers” which was, initially, just making sure that my son and I turned off the electronics and spent a day reading, playing/listening to music, cooking, eating and enjoying our time together. Eventually, I started inviting people over to join us and by 2004 it was a dedicated party at least once a month. Such a great thing…I revived it a bit when I moved to Portland, Oregon to be in the wine biz. My son continued the tradition when he went to college and rented a house with a bunch of other students! That was so cool.
    I need to get back to doing this. I want to start a wine salon (I’m now a wine professional) with a different chef every month…thinking about this seriously.
    Thanks for sharing this! I love it (and would love to drop by…looks amazing!).
    Cheers & thanks,
    Michele


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