Most months, Kyla McCracken and Ashleigh Hill host the Backyard Supper Club, a gathering of friends, neighbors, and kindred spirits for a multi-course dinner in their apartment in Red Hook. Last Sunday, they opened their home for a special potluck supper to celebrate the indomitable spirit of their neighborhood in the aftermath of Sandy.
“We weren’t certain it was appropriate to have everyone gather and be celebratory quite yet," said Ashleigh. "But then we decided, hey, maybe community is exactly what we all need right now, and isn't that what food is for?”
Kyla made a big pot of noodles with a butternut squash bechamel, cheese and kale, along with a corn bread topped with a sweet onion jam. Others brought savory braised dates, bean soup, kumquats, mashed sweet potatoes, creamed spinach and more. Many a glass was lifted to toast the resilience of the neighborhood's community.
“Hurricane wine," the name bestowed by local wine shop Dry Dock Wine & Spirits upon the vast stock of bottles whose labels were destroyed in the flooding, flowed freely. Donations were gathered for the many local charities still hard at work in the recovery effort.
What better way to seek a little comfort in tough times than gathering around a toasty backyard fire with neighbors and friends, to enjoy some wine, cookies, and fresh-out-of-the-oven hot apple crisp?
The Backyard Supper Club meets each month in Red Hook. All are welcome.
Photography by Heather Phelps-Lipton. All rights reserved.