The Farmers market plays a significant role each time I’m brainstorming on how to create stunning tablescapes for my dinner parties.
Whenever I go to the farmers market, most especially in the morning, I’m always inspired by the fresh fruits, vegetables and the season. This is where I usually decide what I am making for dinner that evening ( yes you heard that right).
I often do not have a menu planned or a table set planned until I find inspiration in the farmers market. Be it flowers, vegetables or fresh seasonal fruits, something always inspire an idea and the rest usually follows.
A couple of times, I’ve seen florists using vegetables as table decoration but I am yet to try it, although it’s usually created by a skilled florist which I am not, unfortunately.
On the market day, I created a table filled with Fresh artichokes ( spoiler alert). Artichokes are very healthy for the liver, even the French feasts on artichokes during artichoke season as a cure for overindulging on the delicious French wine.
The farmers market is always filled with beautiful seasonal artichokes and cauliflower of all colors. I was inspired by these colors and freshness of the vegetables to the extent that I filled my basket with both veggies, thinking I would create an artichoke dip and a cauliflower mash. However, I found the veggies too pretty to cook and thought “this might be the perfect time to incorporate this abundance of nature into my tablescape”.
The veggies inspired this tablescape and table setting, leaving me nothing to cook. I couldn’t help it, I started playing with the veggies and made a makeshift arrangement, what came out was nothing nearly as nice as what a florist would create, but I loved it all the same.
It was simple and the guests loved it, which also made a great start for conversations as well as inspirations to my friends who in turn tried out vegetable centrepieces for their next dinner party.
In the end, it was a creative DIY (do it yourself) tablescape that inspired me to try other vegetables as centerpieces.
Fruits such as apple, carrots, grapes, a bowl of cherries, are amazing for tablescape decor. interestingly, they can serve for two purposes at a different time; for decorations and a meal the next day!
The colors of the vegetables are what inspired my choice of tables cloth, dishes and napkins. The vegetable brussel sprouts, artichokes and cauliflower are sets the tone and color choices for my entire tablescape.
Just like the other day, I used Fouta towel from Tunisia for my table cloth, enhanced with assorted glasses and yellow sunflower napkin rings that I found in an old thrift store; seems like I’m experiencing the 80’s again. It is amazing how fashion keeps revolving, everything old is turning new again.
Although I did not use the artichokes I bought from the farmers market for the dinner, I made an artichoke dip as an appetizer using canned artichokes.
Below is the simple recipe I used.
Recipe for artichoke dip
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream, 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, 3 garlic cloves, minced 1 (14-ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped, 1 (10-ounce) package frozen, chopped spinach, thawed, drained, and squeezed dry, 1 (8-ounce) block 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, 1 (8-ounce) block fat-free cream cheese, softened 6 ounces part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded and divided (about 1 1/2 cups), 1 ounce fresh Parmesan cheese, grated and divided (about 1/4 cup)
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 350°.
Combine first 7 ingredients in a large bowl, stirring until well-blended. Add 4 ounces (1 cup) mozzarella and 2 tablespoons Parmesan; stir well. Spoon mixture into a broiler-safe 1 1/2-quart glass or ceramic baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella and remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until bubbly.
Preheat broiler to high (leave dish in oven). Broil dip for 3 minutes or until cheese is lightly browned.
Xoxo Love darviny