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Regional Wedding Cuisine: Pacific Northwest


Nothing says Pacific Northwest like a meal that has some type of seafood. Smoked salmon is one way to introduce your guests to the fare of the Pacific Northwest, but there are so many others. The beautiful coastline and the long growing season with fresh fruits and vegetables available almost year round, make the wedding fare come alive with goodness. When your wedding cuisine is from the Pacific Northwest, you’ll include dishes that have a multitude of herbs and spices but retain their exquisite natural flavor.

Start with appetizers. Select some appetizers that feature the ocean pleasures famous in the Northwest. Salmon, trout, and sturgeon can be smoked and served hot or cold with crème fraîche and preserved lemons. Include roasted or grilled red peppers on the plate with dill cream cheese and mini bagel halves for one type of appetizer.

You also should have a plate of freshly sliced artisan cheeses. The Pacific Northwest has a whole world of specialty cheeses made by local farmers. You’ll not find these cheeses anywhere else and the cuisine of the Northwest would not be complete without them. Try some of the older cheese producers. You can find several of them at the Oregon Cheese Festival in Central Point, OR. There are specialty farms in both Washington and Oregon, which produce both hard and soft cheeses from both goat and cows’ milk. Serve the cheese with marcona almonds and freshly sliced fruits, include with them local grapes, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and strawberries.

Don’t forget a platter of stuffed mushrooms. Have the mushrooms stuffed with blue cheese or select from the wild mushrooms available at market for a premium price. The new craze for wild mushrooms from the forested area of Oregon brings a delightful taste treat to your guests. Choose a salad that screams Pacific Northwest to serve before the entree. You might like one that has all fresh market greens grown organically sprinkled with local herbed goat cheese and edible flowers, or a baby spinach salad served with feta and citrus vinaigrette.

Your main entrees should of course include grilled wild salmon fillets or halibut crusted with sun dried tomatoes, basil, and olives. If you have vegans at your wedding ask for a dish like roasted vegetable napoleon. Don’t forget the meat or chicken lovers with a grilled chicken breast and some of those wild mushrooms made into an herbed sauce or an herb crusted beef tenderloin with a wonderful red wine and rosemary glaze.

Side dishes can include delightful herbed roasted vegetables, roasted potatoes with rosemary butter and sea salt, brown rice pilaf, or grilled asparagus drizzled with lemon butter or vinaigrette. Don’t forget to include the exotic fregola served with mushrooms, rosemary, and sage.

Fresh fruit and wedding cake make the final compliments for the dessert. Your guests will rave about the food and come away a little healthier for their experience. You might want to leave a tray of cheeses and fruits out for the evening for guests to snack on as you dance the night away.

There is one last item that is almost forgotten and yet is so important to the Pacific Northwest cuisine. Of course, there should be cold beverages like a punch or if you choose, an open bar. You should also have herbal teas available, but don’t forget to bring the icon of Seattle and serve several different types of Starbucks coffee, both in decaf and regular. You could have a small coffee bar where they mix the favorites from the Starbucks selections to give your guests the true taste of Seattle at your wedding.

michelle writes about,fashion,jewelry and weddings for silverlandjewelry.com you can find crystal bridal jewelry and affordable bridesmaids gifts at silverlandjewelry.com

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Listed: May 6, 2009 6:07 am