Steal This Chef's Perfect 5-Course End-of-Summer Feast
When Boston-area chef Ana Sortun entertains in the summer, the menu focuses on two things: fish and produce.
“It’s a great time of year to eat—and want to eat—fish,” she says. “It’s more abundant, with more varieties of species.”
Fish is simply a natural choice this time of year, lending itself to the type of lighter eating folks crave in the summer, so it’s a real crowd-pleaser. On her family’s annual two-week summer vacation to Cape Cod, “every night is a dinner party with friends,” she explains, “and it’s always centered around fish.”
The second menu anchor, produce, is something of a family affair. Sortun’s husband, Chris Kurth, owns Siena Farms (named for their daughter) and provides most of the produce to Sortun’s three restaurants: Oleana, Sofra Bakery and Cafe, and Sarma. For the family’s yearly vacation, they “literally bring a truck full of Siena Farms vegetables,” she explains. Summertime boasts “the best vegetables you’ll eat all year,” so now is the time to showcase them. And that’s exactly what Sortun does here, with a beautiful menu that celebrates the best you can get from the sea and the farm.
Corn and Crab Pita Nachos
This dish is inspired by the crab melts that New England chef Ana Sortun’s mother made her when she was growing up in the Pacific Northwest.
Beet Salad With Nectarines and Peppers
“Peaches and sweet peppers are a great combo,” says chef Ana Sortun, “so nectarines and shishitos are, too.” To get a head start, you can roast the beets and peppers a day ahead. Use baby bell peppers if you can’t find shishitos.
Swordfish Scaloppine With Capers
This wildly delicious main takes little more than half an hour to put together and is a super satisfying summer dinner.
Tomato-Cucumber Salad With Whipped Ricotta
“I’ve always been inspired by the phrase ‘what grows together goes together,’ ” says Ana Sortun, chef of Oleana in Cambridge MA, among other places. “This salad is a wonderful way to enjoy what the end of summer offers.”
Milk Chocolate Yogurt with Granola and Blueberries
This dessert is adapted from a recipe in Cheryl Sternman Rule’s book Yogurt Culture. The yogurt only has three ingredients, so it’s important to use the best you can get.