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I mentioned last week that I was going to Cooking for a Cause again this year.

Cooking for a Cause is an annual event held to benefit the East End House, which, in the words of the organization, “provides support services to a diverse population, from infants to seniors, to strengthen family and community.”

When you check in at the event, you’re given a bidding number, which you use for both the silent and the live auctions. The silent auctions included gift certificates to restaurants, cookbooks from the chefs in the room, wine baskets, gift baskets, and more. The live auction included a trip to Bermuda and a Red Sox/Yankee game. And like I said, all proceeds from the auction went to the East End House.

As for the food itself.

Oh goodness.

It was wonderful.

I would say it was equally on par with the event from last year.

The picture above is one of the first things I tasted from Craigie on Main. Beet Pasta. That’s right, pasta made out of beets. It was superb…and though I wanted a giant plate full of it, looking around the room at all the other food to sample, I knew I had to stop at one bite.

Brace yourselves.

I’m going to take you on a tour of everything else I ate and drank (yes, the drinks! They were so…dangerously good, too.)

This dish is from Catalyst: A mini tuna steak on a bed of sticky rice with a mango salsa. Again, hard to stop at just one.

Blue Inc. was serving a pork dumpling on a bed of coleslaw. There were a  lot of people hovering around this station ;)

Bistro Du Midi was serving their octopus crostini. I tasted this last year, and it was just as delicious this year as it was then. Though I do wish they served would’ve served up something different for the event.

That, my friends, is pork belly from Aura. It’s on a nice slaw bed. It was juicy and fatty and finger-lickin’ good.

Rialto was serving a nice chowder, but I wanted to sample their lighter fare which was a char crudo — a new item on their menu that they were actually debuting at Cooking for a Cause — made up of pickled rhubarb, parsnip chips, and pea shoots.

This is a crab salad shooter from Island Creek Oyster Bar. They’ve never done me wrong, and it wasn’t about to start here.

Harvest was serving up a crab, garlic, pea, and mint salad. They went the extra mile and had their own little wooden serving dishes and spoons. Check Plus.

Green Street also got creative on the serving front. They had a salad with white fish meat (similar to flounder, the chef described), on endive for the “dish”. Clever — and tasty!

Fuji was serving up their sushi. And honestly, I could’ve just sat in front of this table all night stuffing their spicy California rolls into my face. But I, again, resisted and ate just two rolls. And they were good. Sushi is either a hit or a miss for me — they were a hit.

And let’s not forget the drinks. From top to bottom: The Hawthorne, Eastern Standard, and Tamo Bar. Lots of wine was being served, as well as craft beers, such as beer from Pretty Things.

And last but not least, the dessert:

Kickass Cupcakes made an appearance, however I was disappointed with their cupcake selection — only chocolate and vanilla and a few red velvets on their display.

And Area Four was serving up caramel corn mini cupcakes. Unfortunately I wasn’t a huge fan of these, which was a bummer because dessert is my favorite meal ;)

Other sweets there included Taza Chocolate and Dancing Deer Baking Co.

I was also happy to bump into Elizabeth from Free Food Boston and Jen from Tiny Urban Kitchen :)

Overall, a great event. If you’re looking for a fun and filling night out with proceeds going to a good cause, consider Cooking for a Cause next year. Your stomach and tastebuds will thank you later.

Note: This is the second of two posts on Cooking for a Cause. My ticket to this event was provided to me free of charge from East End House, but all opinions expressed in this post are my own. 

Second note: It is unclear to me how I am not obese after realizing just now how much food I ate at this event.