SUMMER DINNER WITH FRIENDSWe are planning to have friends over tonight for a casual summer dinner. I just love the laid back vibe of summer. Light, easy meals made with fresh seasonal vegetables. Children playing into the twilight, catching fireflies, playing with sparklers, running through sprinklers. I wish I could feel this at ease all through the year. But then, I suppose, summer wouldn't feel so special, would it?
The Menu: Inspired by The New Vegetarian Epicure by Anna Thomas and Susan's Food lists, I am focusing the meal on simple, satisfying, summer foods made from as many fresh, local ingredients as possible.
Spaghetti (always a husband and child-friendly meal!) with a just-made sauce of local tomatoes, fresh basil, whole cloves of garlic, and good olive oil. A hunk of parmesan and grater go straight to the table.
A country loaf, from the bakery
Wine, from the local winery
Greek salad with black olives and feta, with a light olive oil dressing
For dessert. Vanilla Bean ice cream with a Belgian Butter Crisp Cookie, and Bing Cherries (sauteed in butter, dark brown sugar, and balsamic vinegar) spooned on top.
Simple. Local. And (hopefully!) a crowd pleaser!
The Guest List:
Whoever we should happen to cross paths with today. I love finding our guests as the day goes on. Which tired mom would love an unexpected break from cooking? Perhaps I will run into a long lost friend at the grocery store. Or maybe Matt will talk to someone who has no plans for the week-end. That is one reason I like to make meals that I can stretch easily. It won't be any problem to adjust the amount of salad I make and pasta I cook, depending on the number of people that show up. It is always fun to reconnect with Matt at the end of the day, and see who we both have invited over. It never fails to be an interesting, eclectic group of people.