Friday, February 20, 2009

Last Night's Simple Menu

Friends came for dinner last night. I didn't use them for guinea pigs like I usually do. I didn't cook one single new thing. How lazy is that?

We started off with Mango Salsa on the patio. Here is my recipe. While we were on the patio the wind kicked up a bit and it turned cool. We headed inside for a Roasted Red Pepper tart with goat cheese served with a simple salad of romaine lettuce. The tart was the most difficult thing on the menu because it requires a lot of steps...roasting the peppers, carmelizing the onions, making the dough, chilling the dough in two different steps, cooking the crust,and then adding the filling. The good news is that I didn't have any problems with the crust or the tart which I cooked in a square tart pan. I dressed the salad with a slightly sweet dressing and there was a nice combination of the flavors and textures of the tart and the salad.

I plated up the dinner of one/half of a cornish game hen with wildflower honey and orange. Of course, I couldn't find wildflower was just honey. You marinate the hen in white wine, honey, orange strips and thyme. I don't think any of these flavors stand out but the hen was very good. Also on the plate was roasted potatoes with thyme and rosemary and roasted asparagus. All of this is easy to do because you first put in the quartered potatoes, then the hen. When the potatoes and hens are done (175 to 180 degrees for the hens), you take them out and put the asparagus in the oven while you make a light sauce with the pan drippings from the hens along with some wine and chicken broth. This looks really pretty on the plate.

The dessert was really simple, key lime pie in a purchased graham cracker crust and a whipped cream topping. It looks pretty because you spinkle the whipped cream with lime zest but I used finely grated lime peel. I found the recipe for the key lime pie in Fine Cooking magazine several years ago and the recipe always draws raves. It is one of the recipes that I don't mess with.

Okay, before you ask......NO. I do not have any pictures of this dinner. I just can't cook and photograph at the same time.


Steve Cotton said...

Let's see. All I need to do is move to Mexico. Make some friends. Learn to cook. And then I culd have a party just like yours.

It sounds as if you had a great time.

I only know how to do one thing you mentioned: how to not take pictures of my dinner.

Billie said...

Steve, we did have a great time but the best part is always the conversation. The conversation is what keeps me cooking.

Islagringo said...

Simple dinner? Sounds more like something you would get at a gourmet restaurant to me!

American Mommy in Mexico said...

The dinner sounded fantastic. The tart especially.

Husband try to make taco stand type tacos tonight. It was very good but not quite like the Taco Stands!

glorv1 said...

Sound like you had a great time. The menu sounded great. thx for sharing.

Islagringo said...

Oh yeah, where's Ned when you need him? Couldn't you have just yelled. "Ned, come out here to the kitchen and get a picture of this tart!"