$20 Menu Challenge - Elements Global Cuisine

In honor of this week's upcoming Food Issue — The $20 Menu Challenge — EatMyFlorida will have a recipe o' the day for the next ten days.

Our challenge to local chefs: Create at least three courses of wonderful food for two and keep the ingredients to under $20. Not too difficult for a home cook, maybe, but we wanted more. We wanted meals that are restaurant quality for all those being pinched by the economy who can't afford as many nights out at the bistro as they could a few years ago. Exquisite food, light on the wallet. Turns out, that wasn't too hard for most of the accomplished chefs who participated, either.

Today's offering is from Elements Global Cuisine in Gulfport. Chef/owners Catherine and Jose Luis Pawelek went the extra mile by creating four menus, one for vegetarians, and three for meat and seafood eaters. Most of the dishes are not only easy for the home cook, they're quick, with a lot of prepared ingredients bought from the supermarket. After the break is the first menu from Elements, an entirely vegetarian feast.