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  • Writer's pictureRobyn Nicole

2022 ECI Fall Equinox Dinner

Updated: Mar 14

If you missed  Ecological Culture Initiative’s  Fall Equinox fundraiser dinner, you truly missed out! ECI serves Hampton Bays, NY with several environmental initiatives, including a local farmers market, free seed libraries at the public library and at their garden, a community composting program, and an organic heritage garden at St. Joseph Villa which generates food donated to the St. Rosalie’s Community Food Pantry for those in need.

Local legend Chef Colin Ambrose from Estia’s Little Kitchen infused our farm-to-table event at St Joseph’s Villa with vibrant Mexican flavors, delighting 75 guests on September 21st.Chef Colin, a long-time friend and mentor, brought his infectious energy to the kitchen, and his apple polenta cake dessert was simply divine! Discover his mouthwatering recipe here.

Our guest speaker, Tela Troge from the Shinnecock Kelp Farmers, enlightened attendees about their impactful project to rejuvenate Shinnecock Bay with a kelp forest. The people of the Shinnecock Nation have lived on Shinnecock Bay since the end of the last Ice Age. But overdevelopment on unceded tribal land is leading to nitrogen pollution, which is killing marine life. The Shinnecock Kelp Farm is farming sugar kelp (Saccharina latissima) in hopes that it will absorb some of the water’s excess nitrogen. Tela, one of the six women running the Shinnecock Kelp Farm, talked about the future of this effort, and how farming kelp could help Shinnecock Nation regain sovereignty over waters they have tended for generations.

Gracious support from Katelyn Stukas of Service Matters Hamptons ensured the event's success, while Dom Aprile's volunteered photography beautifully captured the evening's essence.

The incredibly talented American Idol contestant, Christinaan Padavan , provided enchanting entertainment, complementing the serene ambiance crafted by Sister Kerry Handal and the Sisters of Saint Joseph. Heartfelt gratitude to all who contributed to this vital cause, including the generous farms, dedicated volunteers, and everyone who attended. It was an unforgettable evening of community, support, and inspiration.

The menu:

-Butternut squash & cheese pumpkin soup with ginger creme fraiche, roasted seeds, smoked chili oil, & fresh cilantro

-Hearty fall salad with roasted and shaved vegetables, sourdough croutons, shaved mecox cheese, & maple dressing

-wheatberry tacos with zucchini, carrot, shaved corn & cilantro -salsa verde & roja

-Polenta pound cake with apple glaze & vanilla bean whipped cream

Tickets for future dinners and events can be found on ECI's website



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