Monday, February 1, 2010

Snowed In Dinner Time!

The snow hit here pretty hard Friday night and into Saturday night, so a lot of people got snowed in. We had originally planned to make a big dinner Saturday, and we decided we still wanted to go through with it. There were escapades driving to the grocery store on unplowed roads, but unfortunately I had forgotten my camera. I wish I had gotten a picture of Kaitlin's car having to be pushed up a big hill, mais c'est la vie. However, I DID chronicle our dinner, kinda PW style!

The first creation was made by Kaitlin, assisted by Margaret. Some of them are triple decker crackers with a layer of peanut butter and a layer of chocolate. Others are just crackers with peanut butter in the middle and chocolate melted on top. They had a lot of trouble getting the chocolate to melt, but in the end, although they weren't pretty, they were delicious!

The next course was bread drizzled with olive oil and herbs and baked in the oven by Alex...

...with three different types of cheeses supplied by Margaret(gouda, smoked provolone, and smoked cheddar)...

...topped with caramelized onions cooked by Alex! I used to not be a huge onion fan, but recently I've really gotten into them. And these onions cooked with brown sugar and regular sugar were just delicious. The images of the bread, cheese and onions were after we had already started digging in, because I got so distracted by food I forgot to take pictures immediately! Also, we ate some of the cheese and onions with bread that wasn't baked, and that was really good too because the bread was sooooo soft.

Now to make things make sense food wise, I'm going to skip the fact that I started making the pie around now, and just start talking about dinner. But, before I can go into dinner, I have to mention the wine! When we went to Kroger this guy had a stand in the wine section where he was giving everyone samples of hot mulled wine and cheese and crackers. The wine was really good, and PERFECT for a snowed in evening, so Alex bought the ingredients to make it to go with dinner. I can't remember what they were exactly... something about a bottle of white wine, a bottle of red wine, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, and whatever citrus-y fruit you've got laying around.

Not the best picture, but the wine was really good! We let the fruit sit in it for a while so the wine would soak up the flavor. Yum yum yum!

Now, for the main course, provided by Margaret! This happened to be an entirely vegetarian meal, which is certainly odd for me, but everything was delicious! The main portion of it was lentils and rice.

Margaret made a huuuuge pot of lentils and rice, almost twice as much as we could all eat. And there were 8 of us! I can't remember the seasonings that went into it, but the main point was just the lentils and rice. And then of course everybody made jokes for the rest of the night because we were all eating lots of beans.

The other main component of dinner was cabbage. I was really worried about not liking this because it's green and looks like leaves and I don't eat salad, but I looooved this. Margaret sauteed the cabbage in soy sauce, olive oil, and something else, I can't remember what. She said she was going for the chinese food dish of cabbage, and it really did remind me of that. There wasn't any cabbage left over after everyone was done eating. Part of that was because since it's such a light dish, it's easy to still pick at even when you're really full.

The master chef! Margaret cooking away on the stove. It looks like she's posing for this picture, but she really wasn't. While she was cooking she remained stirring at the stove almost the entire time.

And for the finale of the meal, which of course everyone was way too full for: strawberry rhubarb pie! I've never had rhubarb before but I love strawberries, so when Alex requested that I make it, I wasn't hard to convince.

Mixed inside the crust here are strawberries, rhubarb, sugar, quick cooking tapioca, salt, and orange zest.

This is the pie baking in the oven. I coated the top crust with boiled sugar water so that it would be a little glazed. The aluminum foil ball to the left is my extra pie crust that I didn't use stuffed with the left over cheese from the hors d'oeurves.

I had to cover the outside crust partway through cooking because it started to get too brown.

The finished pie! The outside edges were pretty brown, but not burned, so it was fine. Wow, it's so much easier to chronicle things step by step when you're the one taking the pictures! I kept getting in Margaret's way so I couldn't get lots of pictures of her cooking. And, the final food item:

The cheesy pie crust. Which actually wasn't that good because it had too much crust and not enough cheese. Oh well!

And that's it for our snowy dinner! :)

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