November 9th. Cigarettes 3. Birthdays 33.
Tonight is the night I promised long ago - the urban family dinner party commemorating Bridget Jones's birthday. While a friend told me I should not actually make blue soup, omelet, and marmalade (after 4 hours of careful cooking), it was quite tempting.
Instead, tonight's menu includes mainly things I've never made before that could become problematic and represent the "blue soup" phenomenon.
Heirloom Tomato and Fresh Mozzarella Salad
Pesto Cheese Manicotti
Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Sage Butter sauce
Roasted Green Beans
And Wine of course. Lots of wine.
I did a very un-Bridget like thing and did a lot of pre-planning and prepping. I prepped for about 4 hours last night, so I can already report some disastrous results.
For instance, the tiramisu recipe I chose was based on it being much easier than actually making tiramisu from scratch. My first recipe called for pre-made lady fingers, but having found none in stores, I opted for a recipe with a pre-made Angel Food cake instead. Easy enough, no? No indeed. I was supposed to "whip" the whipping cream and marscapone cheese until it was "stiff." That never happened. I got to the point where I thought it was getting less stiff instead of more stiff and stopped. In short, the tiramisu is a runny mess in my fridge, and it's the only completed item for the menu. This bodes well for the meal.
But other prepping worked out much better. I made the sweet potato gnocchi (I'm a big fan of both sweet potatoes and gnocchi) completely and totally from scratch, and I do think it's going to work out pretty well. The only remaining obstacle will be when I make the sauce tonight and saute them. Fingers crossed.
The cheese manicotti is the only thing I've successfully made before. (I've roasted green beans, but they didn't turn out too well...I ended up throwing them away uneaten.) To prove that this dinner would indeed fit the "blue soup" requirement, my manicotti shells split while boiling them, so they are pretty much a broken, folded pasta mess with cheese. I happen to like a folded pasta mess with cheese. I hope my urban family does as well.
Let me extend an open invitation for Mark Darcy and Daniel Cleaver to join the festivities tonight. Please note you will be required to fight each other, preferably to the tune of It's Raining Men. (Hallelujah!) I have it on iTunes. Not a problem.
In other news, Caperberries...apparently always a bad idea.