Going to Morocco — our annual fundraising dinner on March 23

ImageMelbourne chef turned criminal barrister Charlotte Duckett has chosen a Moroccan theme for the Newstead Community Garden’s renowned annual fundraiser dinner on March 23.

Charlotte will use broadbeans, tomatoes, silverbeet, eggplant and other produce from the community garden, meat from Ross Barker’s Newstead butchery and Ron Snep’s famous Welshmans Reef verjuice to create a menu of spicy Saharan cuisine.

Meats served will include lamb and chicken (vegetarian options are planned) warmed in the garden’s pizza oven.

There are four courses, appropriately dubbed Mezze (canapes), What the Sahara (entree), Getting the Camels Hump (Mains) and Making it Mecca (dessert).

Charlotte, who has cooked in restaurants in London and Hong Kong, trained with Stephanie Alexander and also worked as sous chef with Karen Martini at St Kilda’s highly lauded The George Melbourne Wine Room before running her own restaurant, Gourlay’s in Malvern.

Though now a full-time barrister, she loves to cook and has presented fundraising dinners annually in Newstead since 2010.

Her sister, Georgina, is a community garden plot holder and masterminds the occasion with help from fellow gardeners.

This year’s dinner, again, will raise funds to help pay the garden’s annual water bill. It will be in the garden, starting 6pm.

Tickets, at $55 each, are limited and must be booked. Drinks are BYO.

Demand for seats at the annual dinner has grown year by year as word about the food and garden setting spreads.

Dinner tickets are available from Liz Bell, at The Red Store, Lyons St, Newstead, phone 54762380 or email@theredstore.net.au . Thanks to Gen Barlow for the article and note that tickets always sell out quickly!

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