Marie’s Report: Newcomers Gourmet Dining Interest Group

Marie’s Report: Newcomers Gourmet Dining Interest Group
By Marie Mossman

How about an adventure through the food of different nations, in pleasant company and for a reasonable cost? The popular Newcomers Gourmet Dining interest group invites you to participate in a tasty adventure during the 2019 -2020 season, which will start in September.

Meeting people and inclusiveness are constant guidelines for the group, though other aspects vary from year to years. The group gathers when a member offers to host, chooses a date, and proposes a theme. Dinners take place approximately once a month. Often, the host will provide a main course, and organize the menu. Cooks can find recipes in library books or on the internet. Often the host offers further sources for information.

Not everyone can host a large group, so the host may limit the number of guests. Dinners are so popular that hosts have considered drawing names to ensure everyone has a fair chance to join the diners.

According to our excellent 2018-2019 coordinator’s report, members tickled their palates with meals of seven different cultures this past season: Indian, Spanish, Vietnamese, Mexican, Cajun, Greek, and Caribbean.

Since the report we’ve enjoyed an indoor-outdoor ice-cream picnic for a joint celebration of Canada’s and the United States’ birthdays. One participant brought tarts to the picnic. Some had a blueberry and raspberry filling and a tiny star pastry top to represent the American flag. The other tarts had an apple filling for our valley and a maple leaf pastry top to represent the Canadian flag. Charming and delicious.

A member who participated in the first years of the Gourmet Dining group tells me that early members were people who wished to experiment with different meals and to learn about different cultures, and were not expected to be seasoned cooks. If the dish didn’t turn out well the cook was encouraged to look at the situation as an opportunity to discuss what might have caused the disaster. I like these learning aspects.

Whose national cuisine would you like to try? If you choose to participate in the Gourmet Dining Interest Group come September, you can introduce new perspectives, because Newcomers groups are shaped by their participants.

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