Saturday December 20
It's fun to have guests over in this festive season, especially as we have more time to prep and fuss over the food when classes are out. So we asked Rama, Erik, Shari, and Jack over to share our mid-Chanukah, pre-Christmas celebration.
Our hors d'oeuvres table included black and green olives, jalapeño salad, hummus with David's zaatar and fresh oregano leaves from the garden, Barbara's pickled daikon, carrot, and apple-tizer, and her goat cheese spread whipped up with garden arugula and chervil, plus brie and other cheeses to go with crackers.
For our main course, Holt took two mighty fillets of salmon, sliced them into six portions, sprinkled each with lemon thyme leaves and sorrel from the garden, and with his pastry bag, surrounded them with a crust of pommes duchesse - a recipe that is in Old but not New Joy - and baked them into beautiful presentation pieces. What's more using just the eggyolks to make the potatoes leaves us more whites for Holt's granola.
The salad course to follow that up was baby spinach, a little garden arugula, four avocados, and crabmeat, in a dressing of red grapefruit sections, shallots, oil and white balsamic. Very refreshing.
For dessert, Holt prepared classic Florentine cookies, again only seen in Old Joy, so dependably retro - in memory of our friend Bob, for whose birthday parties, on Dec. 17, we used to make them. There was Graeter's coconut chip and eggnog ice creams to go with the cookies, and you can't get more festive than that.