For the next 10 days, May 16 – 26, Alligator Press Productions will be presenting “The Righteous and Very Real Housewives of Utah County.” Last night I attended a media event to promote the play and the awesome culinary specials that will be accompanying it as it runs.
Growing up in Utah can be an interesting experience – in regards to both the lifestyle and the food. If you have lived in Utah for any amount of time, Mormon or not, you are aware of the culture that permeates life here – and also the very interesting Mormon fare. This play is a fun, and at times, very serious, take on what life can be like in Utah for different members of one Mormon family, The Pratts, as they deal with cultural and religious hurdles. While some of these characters can be over-generalizations of the idea of what a Mormon woman is, this play does a great job of hitting on the complex, difficult, and yet honest experiences that many Utah woman and families can face. Each character in this play emphasizes a certain type of Mormon woman that probably most Mormon or ex-Mormon women could likely find in themselves. If you are a Mormon (or were raised Mormon) each of these women will remind you of someone in your ward at one time. The play tends to appeal to the liberal Utahn or ex-Mormon, however, the issues that are discussed (inter-racial marriage, homosexuality, unwanted pregnancy, faith, family, and money) are universal and the questions the play asks should be contemplated by all.
What I love love about this play, and book, is that it pays homage to our amazing Utah cuisine. Who doesn’t love green jello? Before the play we were invited to “Mormon Cocktail Hour,” where we were able to hear from the playwright, Miguel Santana, and also enjoy food and beverage from local restaurants who are supporting the play and running specials. We enjoyed Funeral Potato Croquettes, Green Key Lime Jello with Carrots, Butter Cream Carrot Macarons (Pago & Finca), and Happy Valley Punch (Wild Grape Bistro).
Each chapter in the novel begins with a real Mormon recipe – the first being Funeral Potatoes. I believe that culture is completely intertwined with food, and Utah culture is no exception. Three wonderful local restaurants, The Wild Grape Bistro, Pago, and Finca are all featuring their own spin on Utah flavor and I invite you all to take an evening to check out the specials these local restaurants are serving in support of “The Righteous and Very Real Housewives of Utah County”–and then check out the play!
Happy Valley Punch – Wild Grape Bistro, Mixologist Sean Neves
This is an amazing take on a summer sangria with white wine – infused with an amazing carrot sorbet. Delicious!
PAGO: Funeral Potato Croquettes by Chef Phelix Garnder
Can you go wrong with creamy funeral potatoes in croquette form? Nope! Make sure to try these delicious appetizers!
Thank you to Vanessa Chang and AP Productions for hosting us.