Sunday, March 6, 2011

March Dinner Party {monthly menu}

This month was our first attempt at capturing one of our get-togethers on film (er, pixels?), and it was no surprise that the process was a bit bumpy. Still, we got all of the food on the table, kept the toddlers entertained (props to the husbands on that account), and shot a few nice photos as well.

March Dinner Party Menu

Braised Fennel in White Wine
Cocktail: Gin and Ginger from design*sponge

Parties with toddlers start early in the day, but not too early for some alcoholic beverages. This cocktail was very tasty, and it was fun to try a different liqueur: Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur. 

Gin & Ginger
1 ½ oz gin
1 oz canton ginger liquor
4 oz ginger ale
juice of ½ lime

Mix all ingredients together with ice and enjoy.

The Gin & Ginger was a zesty complement to what turned out to be a very homey (and beige!) meal. The tortellini gratinata was delicious, but how could it not be when it was almost entirely cheese, butter, and pasta? The fennel was mildly sweet and tasted a bit of the white wine it was braised in. 

Pretty, but pretty beige too. Next time we'll be incorporating a bit more color!

Our dessert was where things went a bit awry. Like the follower that I am, I went blindly along with the Bon Appetit recipe. Either my oven is way way too hot, or the times provided are way way too long. My pears were definitely on the charred side of "roasted." The recipe also asked me to make a lifetime supply of lavender sugar for no apparent reason. At least the lavender sugar is good (and was already incorporated into my pancakes this morning!)

If we did this recipe again, I'd certainly keep closer watch on my pears. I'd also skip the ricotta, and use fresh whipped cream sweetened with the lavender sugar.

We listened to:


  1. Gorgeous photos! Nice call making the gratinata in the ramekins. Your photo looks way more appetizing than Bon Appetit's. I'm glad I found your blog!

  2. Thanks for visiting! I'm off to check out your blog now. Love the name. :)

  3. I will definitely try the tortellini dish (love the individual ramekins). Looks delicious.

    And, YES, to the The Decemberists". I've been listening to them all month long.

  4. ohhh love that you provide the soundtrack as well.

  5. Exceptionally well done, a complete professional package. I second the motion; photography is simply superb.


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