March 9, 2012

Leaf’s Spring Equinox Dinner – Raw, Vegan, and Gluten-Free

By Evan Sandsmark -  

Boulder’s Leaf Vegetarian Restaurant – a popular establishment in the Pearl Street area that is, as the name unequivocally implies, a vegetarian restaurant – will host the Spring Equinox Raw Dinner on Tuesday, March 20th. The dinner, which includes four courses, will be a four-and-a-half-hour affair, starting at 4:30 PM and concluding at 9:00 PM, and every item on the menu is entirely raw, vegan, and, of course, gluten-free.

The dinner will begin, naturally, with the first course: a johnny cake, made with sweet corn, wild mushroom pate, arugula, walnut, cold smoked tomato sauce, and “ricotta cheese.” (“Ricotta cheese” is in quotes because it technically isn’t a cheese on account of it not being produced by coagulation of casein, not because Leaf is trying to serve you some illegitimate ingredient, needless to say.)

Next up is a fennel soup made with green pea and cream fraiche. The latter ingredient was recently made famous by South Park’s Stan Marsh in an episode appropriately titled “Crème Fraiche,” wherein the ceaselessly misguided Mr. Marsh follows his culinary passions to the detriment of his marriage. The type of people who go to nice dinners like Leaf’s probably won’t understand, much less appreciate, this reference, but maybe this South Park allusion will draw a few people from the younger generation to the dinner. In any case, this is our official justification for the reference when we get accused of drifting off on a tangent of only the faintest relevance.

The third course of the dinner is the main event, also known as an “entree” in the culinary world. The dish is called “Mediterranean Napoleon,” and its description is making us hungry. Made with mushroom cutlets, kalamata olive hummus, tahini sauce, cucumber red onion salad, and radish sprout, we’re curious to see how this dish is presented. There is recipe for Mediterranean Napoleon available online (although it is not made with the same dietary restrictions in mind as Leaf’s creation), and the dish is constructed as a stack, with vegetables, sauces, and other ingredients layered one on top of the other, so perhaps Leaf will utilize a similar technique. We’ll see.

Of course, no first-rate dinner would be complete without dessert, and Leaf has come up with a delicious-sounding one. It’s a cannoli made with flax seed almond flute, cashew orange sweet cream, pistachios, and chocolate drizzle. What a way to end the evening!

If you are interested in attending this dinner, the organizers highly recommend making a reservation, which can be done by calling this number: 303-442-1485. If you are only interested in the food, the cost of the dinner is $35, but if you want your meal paired with wine or cocktails, the cost is $50. Knowing Leaf, we’re sure they will put together an excellent dinner, one that will no doubt appeal to gluten intolerant vegans with a penchant for raw food, but also to other food enthusiasts as well.

If you would like us to post an announcement for your gluten-free event, send an email to We’re happy to help get the word out!

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