Farm to Tapas a celebration of locally-grown food, agriculture

Aug 13, 2018

It was virtually impossible to find a single dish that didn’t include ingredients from a South Coast farm at the fourth annual Farm to Tapas dinner on August 12.

The fundraising event, hosted as a partnership between the Southeastern Massachusetts Agricultural Partnership and The Livestock Institute of Southern New England, featured tapas prepared by nearly 20 restaurants from Westport to Wareham -- and one from Boston. But all shared one similarity: Locally grown ingredients were at the forefront of the menu.

Just ask the chefs, and they were proud to list off sources. Like Breanne Cabral from Not Your Average Joe’s, who served up caprese salad with ingredients sourced from Wishing Stone Farm, Walker Farm, and Narragansett Creamery out of Rhode Island.

Others, like Bear in Boots Gastropub, offered caprese parfait featuring basil and tomato jam prepared and grown at the Falmouth location.

“A lot of our ingredients are grown right on site,” said Craig Orsi. “We’re at around 97 percent in growing our own.”

Dartmouth eateries were also represented, with Farm and Coast Market serving beef bratwurst with beef sourced from Round the Bend Farm, and homemade sauerkraut and pickles. Lisa Lofberg of Little Moss prepared cucumber salad and celery soup.

“We knew it was going to be really hot today so we went with a few nice cool sides,” Lofberg said.

In addition to local food, the event was also a celebration of regional agriculture. The event’s co-hosts both provide education and resources to support agriculture in the region.

“As much as anything else it’s also a time to get the [agricultural] community together,” said Andy Burns, a Dartmouth farmer and president of The Livestock Institute.

The event included silent and live auctions, and a special “cowpie” contest. Contestants chose a grid on a checkerboard-like game board, which corresponds to an area inside a cow pasture located nearby. Two cows were let loose on the pasture, and the first one to deposit a fresh cowpie decided the winner.

The funds benefit educational programming each organization offers.