On Friday night at 6:00, we decided to invite two families (total: six grown-ups, six kids) to our house for an impromptu dinner party. Since we only had a little time to prepare, the menu was a no-brainer for us. This is what we served: Meatball sandwiches, grilled steak, salmon salad, chicken pot pie, chicken soup, pasta with a ragu, braised pork loin with cabbage, a 10-minute baked chicken number, homemade rosemary focaccia, some corn and tomatoes, buttered haricot verts, and for dessert, a log of chocolate cookie dough, cut into slices right on the dining room table and served without even being baked.
I’m serious! That was the menu. And it was impromptu. And we didn’t know we were having the party until 6:00, which was right about the time I turned to Andy and said, “I don’t think I am going to eat again until 2012.”
Last week, I’m proud to say, was the photo shoot for the DALS Book. Among other things, this meant having 20 pounds of meat in my basement refrigerator, cooking about 35 dinners in four days (I wish I took a picture of Andy grilling steak at 8:00 AM while drinking his morning coffee), returning from a grocery shop with a receipt that was almost as tall as Abby (I know I don’t have giants for kids, but still), and every night looking at the saran-wrapped results of what we shot and deciding who should partake in the feasting.
There was a small team of people helping out — you’ll officially meet them later — but the shoot took place in my house in between soccer drop-offs and cello rentals and it rocked. I’ve been on many food shoots in my magazine career, but I never get tired of hearing myself say things like “Do you think the green bean is at the wrong angle?” or “Do we need more pork grease on the platter?” But by Friday, I think we were all ready to swear off food for the year — even though we had a veritable hotel buffet in our refrigerator waiting to be devoured. And lucky for us, we have friends who were up to the task.
Dessert is served! No one can ever accuse me of being too classy.