May 2009 Gourmet Night

I'm on a roll! Can you believe it? I'm posting May's gourmet events before June has even happened! (Unfortunately due to crazy schedules and traveling gourmet members, we did not meet in April).
The evening of May 12, 2009 was another feeding frenzy at Miss Jodi's. We started off the evening with some crazy appetizer by Andrea which we could not get enough of (see pictures). Lynley provided a delicous Salad with Warm Goat Cheese AND Strawberry Pretzel Squares. Bridget's side was a cold Cous Cous salad and Jodi seared up some amazing Ahi Tuna! For desert we all indulged in Lara's fabulous Strawberry Cake! Since Laura Steven's spot is semi-permanently vacanct we all voted in a new member of gourmet girls, Raquel Carter! Welcome Raquel! We can't wait for you to join us next month!

Andrea, Jodi, Bridget & Lynley

Bridget, Jodi, Lynley & Lara

Bridget & Jodi shoving their faces with appetizers.
Lynley looking beautiful.

Our hostess, Jodi having her way with the Strawberry Pretzel Squares!

Yummy Appetizer
(you can bug Andrea for the recipe)

and Cous Cous Salad

2 boxes cous cous (I like the pine nut flavor)
2-3 stalks of celery, finely chopped
2-3 green onions, finely chopped
2 Roma tomatoes, finely chopped
2 Avocados, finely chopped
Cook the cous cous according to the directions on the box. Let cool and chill. Mix with the above ingredients and toss with a little balsamic vinegar just before serving. Very tasty and very easy! (I credit Lori Paulsen with this one!)
Salad with Warm Goat Cheese

Strawberry Cake
1 box white cake mix
1 3 oz box strawberry flavored gelatin
1 10 oz package frozen whole strawberries w/o syrup, thawed and pureed
4 large eggs
1/2 cup oil
1/4 cup water
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9" pans. In large bowl, combine cake mix and gelatin. Add pureed strawberries, eggs, oil and water. Beat well and pour into prepared pans. Bake until toothpick comes out clean, 28-30 minutes. Cool completely. Frost with strawberry cream cheese frosting. Decorate with fresh strawberries.
Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting
12 oz cream cheese, softened
4-5 oz pureed strawberries
1/2 cups soft butter
1/4 cups whipping cream whipped
About 7 cups powdered sugar

03.31.09 "Breakfast Dinner"

So I ran into two different ladies in the past 10 days who both said the exact same thing to me, "Hey when are you going to update your gourmet blog?!" Did I have any idea people actually read this and actually tried our recipes? I do now! My apologies for my tardiness in posting our gourmet updates! Here are pictures and recipes from our "Breakfast Dinner" on March 31, 2009 hosted by Bridget. Bridget's "main dish" was "Baked French Toast Casserole", a Paula Dean Recipe. Andrea brought delicious Sweet Rolls, Lara made a savory "Strata" and Jodi made "Ham Logs" (don't laugh!) Since LS was not able to join us, we had our friend Maureen, aka "Mo" join us. She made fruit smoothies and brought a delicious "Apple Bread". As always, we filled our plates and stuffed our tummies and had to double up on our gym attendance for the rest of the week!

Lynley, Jodi and Lara

Bridget and Andrea

Mo and Lara

Bridget and her disgustingly packed plate full of gourmet goodness!

Baked French Toast Casserole

Cinnamon Rolls

Ham Logs

Arizona Cheese Strata
1 cup milk
2 large eggs
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup (packed) grated Monterey Jack cheese
2 TBS sliced green onion
1-2 Roma tomatoes, sliced
2 cups cubed white bread
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly butter a 9" pie pan. Whisk milk, eggs, salt, and pepper in medium bowl to blend. Mix in the cheese and green onions. Add bread and stir until moistened. Add tomatoes to top. Transfer mixture to pie plate and let sit 5 minutes. Bake strata uncovered until light brown around the edges, top is crusty, and knife inserted into center comes out clean, about 20 min. Can be served topped with salsa.

Lynley was sweet enough to bring all of us carmel-dipped apples rolled in Snickers! Yum!
Mo made a fabulous "Apple Bread",
which we failed to take a picture of.
1 cup Crisco Oil
2 cups sugar
2 eggs well beaten
1 cup of less nuts
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour
3 cups coarsely chopped apples (peeled)
Mix all ingredients and apples last. The batter will be stiff. Press batter into a greased 9x13 pan. Sprinkle top with 4 TBS sugar mixed with 1 teaspoon cinnamon. (Mo used 2 loaf pans and baked at 325 for 55-60 min.)