This Dreamy Spring Spread Stars Cheesy Beet Ravioli & Raspberry-Glazed Cookies

And a picture-perfect tablescape.

March  4, 2019
Photo by Ty Mecham

Spring is about to, well, spring! We're partnering with Anthropologie to share a pretty-in-pink menu that's ready for the season, plus tips for setting a wow-worthy table that pairs perfectly with the food.

I'm not really one to throw dinner parties after the holidays, partially because I feel bad asking my friends to trudge their way through the snowy, ice-slicked streets of New York City to my doorstep. But also because, when it's cold out, I kind of prefer to eat dinner in my pajamas, wrapped up in my favorite fuzzy blanket, watching movies on the couch.

Spring, however, is an entirely different story. Come March, the city is warming up a little bit, the days are longer, and fresh produce is starting to make its way back into the markets. This is when I get inspired to invite people over, set a pretty table that matches the colors of the season, and cook for them.

Normally, my March-through-May menu would include lots and lots of green. Something like this absurdly addictive asparagus or this pasta tossed in a basil-almond-ricotta sauce. And nothing beats some beautiful, verdant spring greens. But this year, I'm really into pink.

That's because a meal starring the season's prettiest pink fruits and vegetables—beets, radishes, raspberries, and more—is actually the most charming (not to mention photogenic) way to say farewell to winter. From little pillows of goat cheese-stuffed beet ravioli to tangy bursts of sugar coated-cranberries, this rose-colored menu was made for the crisp, spring weather (and, yes, Instagram). Of course, a picture-perfect spread wouldn't be complete without the right tableware, so here are all the pink dishes I can't wait to make for my friends, plus a few tips for pulling the whole scene together:

Photo by Ty Mecham

Setting the Table

When I think of a spring table, the first thing I think of is fresh flowers. When putting together an arrangement, flower guru Meredith Sexton suggests picking a color sequence of no more than three flowers; this time of year (and to complement the rest of the table), I'm opting for white and and shades of pink. Instead of a standard vase, I'll opt for a stoneware pitcher to create a bit more visual interest. For serving, rather than a large plate or platter, I'll reach for a white quartz cheese board to make the colors really pop. And for the dinnerware, I generally keep the colors neutral to complement the vibrancy of the food, but love to use brushed gold flatware for a little bit of sparkle.

Something to Nibble On

These candied berries are the perfect sweet-tart snack to munch on at the table. Not only do they look great piled in a bowl, but they're super easy to make ahead of time: Soak the cranberries in an orange blossom simple syrup (if you can't find orange blossom water, rose water works nicely here) overnight, then toss in sugar; they'll last in an airtight container for two to three days. If you want to include something a touch more savory, these pickled deviled eggs or this fig and blue cheese tart would fit right in.

A Bright & Crunchy Salad

This radish and feta number is as pretty to look at as it is easy to prepare. Clocking in at just five ingredients, it gets its kick from orange juice, curry powder, and fresh torn mint. Other bright and punchy options include this bagna cauda salad and radish and broccoli slaw.

A Beautiful Bowl of Pasta

For the main course, these beet ravioli in brown butter sauce really steal the show. If you've never made ravioli from scratch before, fear not, this blush pasta dough is surprisingly easy to make—though it does take a bit of patience. Luckily, you can make the ravioli a few days in advance and store them in a sealed container in the fridge or freezer. That way, you'll only have to boil the pasta and make the sauce before your guests arrive. If beets aren't your style, try this penne alla vodka or this no-cook tomato sauce.

Something Sweet

When I say it doesn't get much better than Molly Yeh's soft yogurt cookies with raspberry glaze, I really do mean it. These wonderfully cakey cookies balance the light tang of yogurt with the sweet flavors vanilla and raspberries, and get a slight crunch from toasted pistachios— or your favorite sprinkles. The best part: They come together super quickly (a quick batter and just 18 minutes or so in the oven) and can be baked the morning of. Other sweet ideas: this strawberry lime crostata or these make-ahead raspberry ice cream sandwiches.

Ready, set, spring! In partnership with Anthropologie, we're excited to set the table and celebrate bright flavors and fresh produce in the season's favorite hue: pink. From homemade beet ravioli to raspberry-glazed yogurt cookies, a spring spread wouldn't be complete without the right tableware. This year, we're stocking up on the essentials, like crackle-glazed plates, laidback linen napkins, and agate cheese boards, from our partner Anthropologie.

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

Erin Alexander is the Associate Editor at Food52, covering pop culture, travel, foods of the internet, and all things #sponsored. Formerly at Men’s Journal, Men’s Fitness, Us Weekly, and Hearst, she currently lives in New York City.