Daily Archives: August 21, 2006

Muffin Toppers, I Need Help


I am hosting a reception/party at my house on Thursday night. I’m expecting 40+ people. My anchoring items are two poached salmons from Market Hall Caterers. I need to round it out with a big salad (I can manage that; will make spinach salad with homemade candied pecans, blue cheese, red onions and raspberry vinaigrette) and a lot of appetizerish kind of things and dessert. It needs to be elegant but not too expensive or complicated. I have a few teen helpers who will be walking around with trays of appetizers. What would be impressive, yummy and fun? And what kinds of desserts? (I am thinking about Christine’s creamy lime bars, and maybe something chocolatey)

E-Z Food


It’s probably going to be either amusing (or disgusting) to follow up a post on such amazing haute causine with… easy, instant, time-saver cooking! Let’s just put this in the same category as the Spam and the ramen, okay?

A few years (?) ago, Christine invited me to a Pampered Chef party at her house. I am such a sucker for those things. I cannot resist people selling me things in other peoples’ living rooms. Anyway, the party Hostess whipped up this very pretty looking edible wreath, using Pillsbury Poppin’ Fresh “dinner crescents” (ha). It had chicken and water chestnuts and broccoli and a bunch of other stuff in it. I remember thinking, THIS will impress the folks at home! Little did I know. I bought the round pizza stone, and shortly after that, I whipped up my own little concoction, calling it “chicken parmesan wreath.” (ingredients: chopped up cooked chicken, some pasta sauce and grated mozzarella cheese)

WELL. It was such a hit, and every time I make it, my kids act as if I’m Thomas Keller or something. They fall over and swoon and thank me a million times over. Their normal response to my dinners is a monotone, Dad-induced, “Thanks, Mom,” but when I pop the wreath out of the oven, they go completely berserk with happiness.

Today was my elder’s First Day of School and First Day of Crew Practice, and so I pulled out the pizza stone to give her something happy to come home to. She just called. “What’s for dinner?” “The wreath.” “OMG MOM, THANK YOU, I AM SOOOOOOOO HAPPY!”

Not haute cuisine, but if it makes them happy, it makes me happy. And it’s not so bad either.