Vindalho supports champions of local food movement with a dinner fundraiser
Release Date: 04-09-2007

PORTLAND, Ore. — A table set with contemporary Indian food infused with Pacific Northwest ingredients will be the backdrop for the Ecotrust Food & Farms Program springtime fundraiser held at Vindalho Restaurant, 2038 SE Clinton, on Sunday, April 29, at 6 p.m. Funds from the dinner will support an array of Ecotrust programs that seek to bridge the gap between rural producers of our food and urban consumers — bringing local food to the table, the cafeteria and to local retailers season by season.

Help Ecotrust bolster the local food economy while enjoying a family-style Indian feast including drinks and service all for $60. The benefit dinner is open to the public and reservations are required. Contact Laura Ford at 503-227-6225.

“Vindalho rises to the challenge of coupling Northwestern ingredients with the authentic flavors of a distant culture,” says Deborah Kane, vice president of Ecotrust Food & Farms Program.

Vindalho Chef de cuisine Dave Anderson has created an enticing spread of Pacific Northwest’s early harvests informed by the spices and complex flavors of Indian culinary traditions. The meal begins with Washington Mussels in a Goan Coconut Curry; a salad of local beets marinated in spices, mixed greens, crispy chick peas and fennel; and spring vegetable bhaji-fritters made with Bob’s Red Mill rice and chickpea flours served with mint-yogurt chutney.

Entreés highlight Oregon’s coastal and farm treasures. Choose from a Tandoor-roasted Wild Salmon marinated in yogurt and ajwain seeds or Oregon Lamb Seekh Kebabs. Vegetarians can enjoy a Saag Paneer with housemade cheese and local greens set in a tomato masala. Stir fried asparagus with fenugreek seeds and Chole Chaat, central bean garbonzos in a Punjabi style curry accompany the entreés, which are rounded out by Vindalho’s warm pillowy naan bread, radish and green onion raita, assorted chutneys and basmati rice. The meal culminates with a traditional Indian frozen dessert of Strawberry Kulfi with cardamom-pistachio cookie.

A portion of the proceeds from the dinner will go toward promoting Ecotrust Food & Farms five core programs that help keep local food flowing through our region’s food system:

Farmer-Chef Connection Conferences: Farmers, ranchers, growers and fishermen are linked with retailers, institutional buyers and chefs at an annual networking event that encourages and nurtures business connections.

Guide to Local & Seasonal Products: An annual directory-style guide that matches said farmers, growers, fishermen and ranchers and their products with chefs, foodservice buyers and retailers who are looking to purchase locally grown food products.

Farm to School: Ecotrust is part of a coalition of organizations guiding school districts throughout Oregon on how to source local, seasonal, sustainable products for cafeterias, as well as introduce garden based curriculum into elementary schools.

Eat Local Challenge: A seasonal contest designed to stimulate people of all ages to think about where their food comes from. The Eat Local Challenge asks participants to step up and make a commitment to eat within a 150-mile radius of where they live for a week, a month or a season.

Special Events: A long list of lecturers, authors and thought leaders select Ecotrust’s Natural Capital Center as a perfect backdrop to share their opinion of the present or their vision of the future with citizens of the region. Recent guests have included authors Michael Pollan, Michael Ableman and Daniel Imhoff – covering issues of food, eating, health and farming.

About Ecotrust’s Food & Farms Program

Since 2001, Ecotrust’s Food & Farms program has been investing in building direct market connections between farmers, ranchers, and fishermen and restaurant chefs, grocery retail buyers, institutions and distributors. One of five major program areas of the Portland, Ore.-based nonprofit Ecotrust, the Food & Farms Program is building a vision for a sustainable food system.