Throwback to July 2013

Here's another gourmet throwback - this time to July 16, 2013. Five of us met for yet another delicious meal at Miss Raquel's. I don't have all of the recipes handy for these yummy dishes, but I do have pictures! So let your mouth water. If something looks really good, email me and I'll track the recipe down.

Raquel never disappoints with her cool table settings
Bridget, LS and Lara

Raquel and Jodi

Appetizer #1 by Jodi

 Appetizer #2 by Jodi


by Lara

Strawberry Spinach Salad and Homemade Poppy Seed Dressing
By Bridget (from Six Sisters Stuff )

2 Tablespoons sesame seeds
1 Tablespoon poppy seeds
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire
Dash of fresh ground pepper
1 Tablespoon minced red onion
10 ounces fresh spinach, rinsed, dried and torn into bite-size pieces
1 quart strawberries, cleaned, hulled and sliced
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
Bacon bits (I cooked fresh bacon and chopped it up)
Red onion slices for the top (optional - I didn't do)
Feta cheese or bleu cheese to sprinkle on top (optional - I used Feta) 

In a blender, process sesame seeds, poppy seeds, sugar, olive oil, vinegar, paprika, Worcestershire sauce, pepper and minced onion. Blend until the onion is pureed. Pour the dressing into a bowl, cover, and chill for at least an hour.

In a large bowl, combine spinach, strawberries, walnuts, bacon bits, red onion slices, and cheese. Toss lightly. Pour dressing over salad right before you are ready to eat so that the spinach does not wilt.

Salmon by Raquel

Green Beans by LS

We missed you Andrea and Lynley!

Gourmet Throwback

Okay, now that I'm back in business with blogging, I thought I'd update by posting some of our gourmet nights from last year. All seven of us met at Lara's on Tuesday, June 4, 2013 for a fantastic meal. I brought Peach-Watermelon Salsa (recipe from Savoring the Seasons with Our Best Bites.) Raquel did this crazy fancy stack-able salad with apples. I'm trying to track down the recipe, but check out the pictures; that is some serious work of art! Lylney brought some delicious crusty breads. (So sorry we didn't get you in any of the pics, Lyn!) Lara's main was Shakshuka from The Shiksa in the Kitchen. LS did a yummy side of Broiled Vegetables With Toasted Israeli Couscous. Jodi made a yummy dessert and Andrea brought all of us fancy olive oils from a recent trip to Arizona.

Lara's lovely table

LS, Raquel and Jodi

Raquel, Lara, Bridget and Jodi

Andrea and Bridget

Peach-Watermelon Salsa 

4 peaches, peeled and diced
1 cup diced watermelon
1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
4 Toma tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 orange bell pepper, seeded and diced
1/2 cup diced red onion
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1 medium lime, zested and juiced

Combine peaches, watermelon, jalapeno, tomatoes, bell pepper, red onion, and cilantro.  Add sugar, salt, pepper, and the zest and juice of the lime. Toss to combine and chill a minimum of 1 hour. Toss again before serving.

Raquel's fancy salad


No-Fry Fried Ice Cream Cake with Raspberry Sauce Topping

1 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
3 cups crispy rice cereal
1 cup sweetened, flaked coconut
1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)
1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream (recipe recommends the square boxes so you can just open up and slice)
Raspberry sauce (see recipe below)

In a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Ad brown sugar and mix until dissolved. In a large bowl, combine cereal, coconut, and nuts. Pour melted butter and brown sugar over cereal mixture and stir until coated. Press half of cereal mix in the bottom of a 9x13 pan. Cut ice cream in 1-inch slices and spread evenly over mixture in pan. Spread remaining cereal mixture evenly over ice cream. Place in freezer for at least one hour. Cut into squares and serve with raspberry sauce. If you don't like raspberries, you can also top this cake with hot fudge, caramel, strawberries, or any other topping you like!

Raspberry Sauce
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
3/4 cup water
1 pint fresh or frozen raspberries
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup orange juice

In a small bowl, whisk water and cornstarch until blended. In a medium saucepan, combine raspberries, sugar, and orange juice. Slowly add cornstarch mixture. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 3-5 minutes, stirring constantly, until thickened.

Andrea brought us all a special treat 
from her recent trip to Arizona; fancy olive oils!

The cutest guest of the night! (Henri.) Sorry, Loic.