Wednesday, September 23, 2015

VeganMoFo Day 23: Eat the Rainbow! Annual Double Rainbow Potluck!!

Today's MoFo Prompt is: "Autumn Equinox eats." 

Well, I hope you'll forgive me, but I'm going to veer just slightly off theme today and blog about last weekend's Totally Epic 5th Annual Double Rainbow Potluck. I think it counts, because my pals and I always have this party at this late-summer / early-fall time of year when the farmers markets are bursting a rainbow of produce... so it's tangentially related to the season and the equinox. The produce selection this time of year is so enchanting. 

This year we had a few new friends in the mix (yay for new friends!), so I made name tags featuring a rainbow of fruits and veggies.

Here are the rules: This is a Double Rainbow potluck because we aim to have the entire red thru violet color spectrum represented with both an array of sweet dishes AND with an array of savory dishes. So, all the guests select a color and either "sweet" or "savory." For example, Mr. VE&T picked "red sweet." Got it? As the hostess, I usually end up doing whichever things are left unclaimed. This year, for unexplained reasons, I was seriously feeling it, and went a bit overboard, as you will soon see. 

This blog post is gonna have 1 million photos, so I'm gonna keep the text to a minimum, 
and let the colors do the talkin'

Red Savory: Bright Red Mini Burgers

I made a batch of the Beet Burgers from Isa Does It, but I shaped them small. Then I made a batch of the hamburger buns from Vegan Diner, but I dyed them red with beet powder. Then I dressed the burgers with ketchup, red onion, red tomato, and red lettuce. Just 'cuz.

ps. thanks to every who has recommended that beet burger recipe! Why did I wait so long to make them? easy and GOOD.

Red Sweet: Giant Bowl of Strawberries

Mr. VE&T felt a little sheepish about his simple contribution, but we all loved them and it was nice to have something so fresh and perfectly perfect out on the table. Plus, the kids were seriously into this giant bowl of berries. 

Orange Savory: Ginormous Double Batch of Kittee's Buffalo Cauliflower

I used two enormous heads of cauliflower, made a huge double batch of this tasty dish, and there were about 6 lonely pieces left at the end of the night. Not pictured: a squeeze bottle of Vegan Ranch Dressing (from The Abundance Diet). You should go make this right now.

Orange Sweet: Mango Sticky Rice Dumplings.

Dudes. These were so good and so special and so delicious. Sophia made her own dehydrated mango fruit leather and then filled it with coconut sticky rice, for a deconstructed version of mango sticky rice. They were so delicious, and so fun to eat, and she rolled them in all different shapes, which was extra fun too. 

Yellow Savory: Persian Lemon Wedding Polow

Ms. N brought along this huge platter of totally delicious persian rice. She actually brought it to my house still in the skillet, and we very carefully and daringly had to flip it out on to a serving platter. It was mostly savory, but also a little bit sweet and 1 million percent delicious. Conveniently, the leftovers were left behind at our house. Whoo hoo! This recipe was from Silk Road A Vegetarian Journey -- one of my favorite cookbooks! 

Yellow Sweet: Lemon Coconut Cake with (hiding in the background) Lemonade Ice Cream

Birthday girl Connie brought this beautiful and perfect lemon bundt cake surrounded by candied lemons. Inside, it was lightly colored with turmeric, which didn't affect the taste, but gave it a wonderful yellow color. I think she said this recipe was from Veganomicon. It was VERY GOOD. Also, I didn't get a good pic of the Lemonade Ice Cream she brought, but it was also wonderful and was a great combo with the cake. I had a leftover piece of the cake in my freezer, but I ate it for lunch the other day. Mmm.

Green Savory: Spinach-Cilantro Rice with Micro Greens

Oooooh, so green and so pretty and so good. Alana brought along a huge crockpot full of piping hot green rice. It was SO good. One of my faves of the evening for its light and fresh flavors. Especially with that giant heap of microgreens on there.

Green Sweet: Raw Cheesecake with Kale

Surprise hit! The last couple of years, Kendra has picked "green sweet" in her attempt to woo us all with kale desserts. Last year's Kale Cake was a surprise hit, as was this year's Kale Cheesecake. The flavor was tangy and bright and you really couldn't taste the kale at all. You can't see the chocolate cookie crust made with Mary's Gone Crackers gluten-free chocolate cookies, but it was very good. 

Blue Savory: Blue Potato Latkes

You know what's pretty great? When Max brings an enormous serving bowl filled with latkes to your party. You really can't see the blueness in this picture (blue food is so hard), but you could see it when you bit into the latkes and the insides still had the purpley-blue hue of the potatoes. 

Blue Sweet: Mini Raw Blueberry Cheesecakes

Well, wasn't that convenient to have the Mofo "Blue Food" challenge just a couple days before my potluck?? ha ha. I used this recipe from Little Vegan Bear and they were really good. Not really all that blue, but damn. What are you gonna do!? I halved the filling and the topping recipes since my mini muffin pan seemed to make smaller mini muffins than hers. These were very rich!

Purple Savory: Fig & Caramelized Onion Tart

Hannae brought along this gorgeous gluten-free tart. The recipe is from Yum Universe (I even found the recipe online!), and holy moly it was good. That was definitely the tastiest gluten-free crust I've ever had. I liked this so much that I might just go out and buy that book. I was lucky that one of these pieces stayed with me after the party and I got to eat it the next day and give it the proper love and attention that it deserved.

Purple Sweet: Blackberry Velvet Cake

Ms. N brought this gorgeous little number, drizzled with the most awesome flavor-bomb blackberry sauce. It was so delicious. She assured the lavender-wary amongst us (myself included) that the flowers were only for decorative purposes. Phew. I am not a fan of lavender in food, but I WAS a fan of this cake.

Clouds: Coconut Cupcakes with Sour Rainbow Candy Strips

We also have a funny little tradition of always having a "clouds" dish at the end of the rainbow -- and this year Alana made a huge slew of perfect coconut cupcakes decorated with awesome little rainbow candies. I took mine outside to get a better photo, and look who else was curious about it!

Here's the Red-through-Green part of the spread... complete with my little veggie garland that my mom got me for my birthday (a thrift-store find for the ages!)... plus the perfect rainbow napkins that Alana brought. Plus, there are rainbow banners and other decorative items all over the place. Every year I acquire more and more rainbow decor.


Plus, we always have to have a rainbow salad! Maybe you can't tell, but I make this salad in my giantest bright blue bowl. This here is a LOT of salad. Under all that colorful glory is 1.5 pounds of spring lettuce mix. In previous years, the salad always disappeared too quickly, so this year I made a bit too much, which is how it should be. Of course we tossed it before we actually ate it.

Rainbow Tomato Galette in the making...

Rainbow Tomato Galette

Remember how I told you I got really into the Rainbow Potluck this year? Well, in addition to all the other things I made, I also made this rainbow tomato galette. Mostly just because I had the idea, and then I had to do it. I made the basic pie crust from Joy of Cooking (made with the homemade butter from Homemade Vegan Pantry!!), put in a layer of pesto mixed with tofu, and layered on the tomatoes. So yummy! 

Rainbow fruit tart with local fruit

Plus!! It was Connie's birthday, and even though she brought a cake, I wanted to make her something special too... so I made a shortbread crust with vanilla custard filling and fresh fruit on top. I actually put a little rainbow candle right in the middle of that little fig hole for her to blow out, and we sang happy birthday to her. Birthdays are fun! 

this year I FINALLY bought myself some knee-high rainbow socks. 
What took me so long?! I love them.

My dinner plate
Apparently I was the only one who ate my dinner in rainbow order. My friends are slackers!!!
Where is their commitment to the rainbow cause??

It's also part of the rules that you wear the color you are representing, and then we take a picture of ourselves in rainbow order. Parties with rules, folks. That's how I roll.

Sophia, my fellow dessert enthusiast, showing us how it's done!

My dessert plate. For the record: also consumed in rainbow order. 

As you can see, I am super lucky and have awesome friends who are fun and playful people, and who are also super talented in the kitchen. Yay! The rainbow potluck is one of my favorite parties of the whole year, and such a nice way to soak up and celebrate the colorful abundance of the season, before we enter into the season of greens and winter squash.  Goodbye, Summer... Hello, Autumn!

eat the rainbow! 


  1. I think that this is one of my favourite Mofo posts ever! Jaw dropingly good food. You and your friends are so inspiring. I think everyone reading will want to have rainbow parties now! I love that you have all the traditions attached to it too like the photograph.

  2. Awesome post & what an incredible, colorful spread! This is such a neat tradition! :D

  3. I always love your rainbow party posts, and this one is super fantabulous! I could cry over the beauty of that tomato galette.

  4. I just love this idea so much. Everything looks so gorgeous! Also, when I go to potlucks the first thing I snag is the strawberries. I mean, if strawberries are present. No need to feel sheepish, Mr. VE&T :)

  5. Wow all that food looks fantastic. Those little beet burgers are freakin adorable. I really wanna go to a rainbow potluck now! :o)

  6. OMG I love all this food! I wish I had a group of friends who were into cooking enough to have one of these parties! I think I would have to make it all myself! Maybe I will anyway! I love the beet burgers too, they are my favorite make-at-home veggie burger for sure :)

  7. I look forward to your rainbow post every year, and this one was sensational.

  8. Wow, what an amazing group of friends and absolutely gorgeous food! So wishing I could have joined you! We are planning on having a mini rainbow party sometime soon. It's just my family of 4, but I think it will be fun. :)

  9. Wow, that is such a cool concept!

    Everything just looks absolutely delicious! There was so much food!

    Your beet burgers are really read all the way! I've never done Isa Does It's beet burgers, but I'll keep them in mind. Where do you get beet powder?

  10. This is my favorite post every year. So much fun and yumminess!

  11. Everything looks so delicious and beautiful!


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