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Chef Carl Dooley Likes Healthy and Easy

Chef Carl Dooley posing at The Table at Season to Taste in Cambridge, MA

Central Mass and Metrowest offer us a lot of dining options. Because of that, venturing down Mass Pike East, even while the traffic is still light and the sun stays out late, requires explanation.

For the fourth installment of Chef’s Favorite, I visited 2247 Massachusetts Ave. in Cambridge, also known as The Table at Season to Taste.

Preparing plates at The Table at Season to Taste in Cambridge, Massachusetts
Preparing plates at The Table at Season to Taste in Cambridge, Massachusetts

There, I found several reasons to warrant the commute. One, you can enjoy a moderately priced $65 four-course prix fixe menu featuring French techniques, seasonal ingredients, and international flavors. Two, the 20-seat open kitchen concept allows diners unique access to watch Top Chef alum, Chef Carl Dooley, prepare each dish with his team. Three, you can take a selfie with Carl, who placed fifth in season 13 of the famed reality show.

When asked if people want to take photos with him often, Carl humbly responded, “I’m happy to enjoy my 15 minutes. Some people come in because they’ve seen the show. Others check out all new restaurants. I’m confident that the people who come in will want to come back.”

After dining at The Table, I’m confident too. I also think his fame will last longer than 15 minutes, especially here in Massachusetts. While TV notoriety may be commonplace for residents of California and foodies of New York City, here we take great pride in our Bay State celebs.

With the most important question about selfies out of the way, Carl and I discussed what he likes to make at home: his chef’s favorite.

Chef Carl Dooley enjoys fresh salads at home, with grilled vegetables.
Chef Carl Dooley enjoys fresh salads at home, with grilled vegetables. (Photo from Instagram)

“In the summer, I make big grilled vegetable salads with grilled pita bread. It’s healthy and easy. Then you don’t have any dishes to clean up,” says Chef Dooley.

Circumventing a sink full of dirty dishes while still enjoying a home-cooked meal is a concept I can easily get behind. Dooley’s winter favorites, on the other hand, employ more advanced techniques than the average weekday meal in my house.

Chef Dooley and his wife like to prepare comfort food during the cold New England months. “I take a baked sweet potato and stuff it with pork ragu or duck confit—and top it with roasted walnuts, sage, parmesan, and sautéed kale. It’s an easy way to create a bold dish,” he said.

Outside of his home kitchen, Chef Dooley’s summer menu at The Table pulls its inspiration from locally-sourced, seasonal ingredients and Southeast Asian flavors like green curry. Since the menu changes frequently, it’s best to follow him on Instagram at @chefdooley to stay current. That way you’ll know exactly who to tag when you stop in for your selfie.

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A French-Themed Menu for La Grande Fête

Worcester Art Museum's 2015 Corporators Ball: Festival Of Lanterns

On Saturday, June 11th, the Corporator Council of the Worcester Art Museum will be hosting the second annual Corporators Ball, La Grande Fête, a gala fundraiser in celebration and support of the Museum’s mission to connect art and community.

This year, event co-chairs Lisa H. McDonough and Susan M. Palatucci have prepared an elegant evening inspired by WAM’s superb collection of French art, including Monet’s Water Lilies, and Bonnard’s Dining Room in the Country, currently on loan from the Minneapolis Institute of Art. In addition to the works of art that will be on display during the evening, the entire evening will combine cuisine, sights and sounds of France while in the company of over 350 of the region’s most prominent and influential business leaders, art enthusiasts, and philanthropists.

Festivities include red-carpet arrival and champagne welcome, a French-themed menu prepared by Pepper’s Fine Catering, finely-curated silent and live auctions, and a fabulous post-dinner party, Après Fête.

Editor’s Note: The dinner/auction is sold out, but tickets remain for Après Fête.


Tickets are available online »