Thursday, February 04, 2010

Dinner Party

I had a dinner party tonight!! Woo hoo!! I haven't done one in so long because... well I don't quite remember why because it was great!  I was originally going to have Kasii, a new colleague, and her husband over for dinner as Kasii just moved her from Minnesota but then I thought they should meet some new people.  So I invited Teesha.  And then Jennie.  And then Jennie's friend Jeff and his (chef) roommate Bennett.

Bennett made the most amazing potato leek truffle!! Yummy!! He cut the potatoes super thin with a mandolin.  Man, do I want one of those!!  I love the leeks and I found out its called truffle because that is the oil that he used to cook it.

Jennie wanted me to make what she calls "Thanksgiving in your Mouth" since I couldn't blog it until I made it because I never quite remember what is all in it until I start throwing things together.  On the side I made a spinach salad with poached pears as well as butternut and acorn squash.  So, here it is... all that I made...

Thanksgiving Millet - aka Thanksgiving In Your Mouth

3/4 cup millet
4 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup celery, diced
1/2 medium onion, diced
2 or 3 cinnamon sticks
1/2 cup turkey, pulled apart
1/2 tsp poultry seasoning
1 tbsp parsley
1/4 tsp ground cloves
black pepper, to taste
chili powder, a pinch
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 apple, diced
1/4 cup dry Sun Dried Tomatoes, diced

I cook it all in my rice cooker but you could always cook it on the stove too.  I start by adding the millet, 2 cups broth, and cinnamon stick to the cooker and turning it on.  Then I chop and drop the celery and onion.  Pull the turkey apart and add it.  Add the seasoning and put the top on the rice cooker. You will need to stir occasionally and if it starts to go dry add more broth enough at a time to keep it a little runny. After about 20 minutes add the raisins, apples and sun dried tomatoes.  Continue to stir and add water as necessary.  The rice cooker will click off when it is done. 

Poached Orange Pears

 2 cups orange juice
1 cup Madeira wine
1 heaping tablespoon brown sugar
 2 cinnamon sticks
8 bosc pears

Cut the stems and part of the base of the pear off so you can stand each pear up.  Cut the pair in half and core it.

In a large saucepan, bring the orange juice, Madeira, brown sugar and cinnamon stick to a boil. Reduce heat; cook and stir over medium heat until sugar is dissolved. Add pears, standing up on base; cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until tender but firm.

I changed up this recipe from August...

Maple Walnut Squash

1 acorn squash
1 butternut squash
2 cup walnuts
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup dried unsweetened coconut
1/2 apple, diced
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds and stringy stuff (save the seeds for roasting if you want). Put the acorn squash in an 8 x 8 pan and then butternut squash in a 9 x 13 inch pan with the cut sides facing up.

In a food processor, combine the rest of the ingredients and pulse until the nuts and raisins are coarsely chopped. Scoop the walnut mixture into the scooped out sections of the squash.

Fill the bottom of the pans with water 1/2 inch high. Cover pan with foil and bake until squash flesh is tender (about 1 hour 15 minutes is how long it took for me).

Great food, great friends, and great wine... does it get any better than this!

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