Sunday, April 18, 2010

Time for some fun

Over the last year or two we seem to have got out of the habit of entertaining as much as we used to. The summer evenings and weekends all seem to have been filled with some Guide- or Cub- or school-related activity and flew by with barely a pause for breath, let alone a convivial barbecue. Must do better this year.

Now, we've seen a couple of Canadian Thanksgivings and we have not yet tried to play in the forty-assorted-guests-for-turkey-dinner league. Mostly, we just have a couple of friends around at a time, usually with children in tow, but children are such easy-going guests. I don't think we've even catered for eight adults since before the children were born.

So last evening we waited slightly anxiously for three of my work colleagues and their partners to arrive. This was an informal dinner, but we had to break out the good china and silverware just to scratch up matching sets of eight of anything. And the occasion prompted us finally to repair one of the dining chairs with a sagging bottom that had been sitting, neglected, in the end room for years.

But everyone arrived. Wine & beers were ceremoniously cracked open, conversation flowed, dinner was served, and not a lot was left at the end of it. Everyone seemed to depart happy, and we certainly enjoyed the evening.

The Menu

Cajun chicken salad (Crisp lettuce hearts, topped with a few slices of red onion, ranch dressing, and thinly sliced chicken fried in cajun seasoning. Simple but effective.)

Beef Wellington (Tender striploin, sealed and laid on a bed of fried onions, mushrooms, liver pate and cream, and wrapped in puff pastry.)
Served with red cabbage braised in red wine, asparagus, carrots, and potatoes.

All sweetened with homemade trifle and washed down with wine, courtesy of our guests.

Today we were in recovery mode, just attending to the minimum necessary weekend chores. The sun shone, and we packed up a picnic and went out to Witty's Lagoon to gaze at the seals (and a couple of otters) and mountains while the kids mooched around in rock pools.

And today we let Magic explore the house, and meet some of her new family.

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