Jane Pepper knows how to put on a show. As the former Philadelphia Horticultural Society President, she was the mastermind behind the world-renowned Philadelphia Flower Show for 25 years. The show attracts an awe-inspiring 250,000 visitors annually from around the globe and serves as inspiration to novice and seasoned gardeners alike.
Therefore, when Jane heard about Farm to Families, its mission of connecting Philadelphians with access to and education about fresh food resonated strongly for her. Her Dine In, she decided, would be intimate and cosy, a welcome relief from the formal fundraisers that her close circle of friends, family and colleagues often attend.
Calling on the creative energy she is notorious for in everything she does, she went to work creating a different kind of show — on a much smaller scale of course — but full of atmosphere and beautifully orchestrated. Jane’s brother Simon, in town from the family’s native Edinburgh, Scotland, brought his sense of humor and lovely lilt to the evening. More than 25 friends, many of whom have been friends for decades, chatted in front of a roaring fire at Jane’s home in Media.
Caterer Miranda Kany of Samirand Catering was charged with creating a menu based on ingredients procured from local farms. Some of these included Weaver Valley Farm in Strasbourg, Maple Lawn Organics in Lancaster and Claudio King of Cheese in South Philly. A buffet dinner was served on a table filled with flowers and set with charming hand-drawn cards. Dishes overflowed with shepherds pie made of lamb, French lentils, dandelion salad, and sweet potato gnocchi. For dessert, in a nod to Scotland, fig pudding was one of the delicious items served and savored.
The night was full of energy and enthusiasm, and as one guest said, “we sure were lucky when we got Jane.” Thankfully, Jane’s show goes on.