Monday, March 26, 2012

one-pan wonder

I haven't posted much lately because, frankly, there haven't been very many dinner parties to write about. We've been holed up on the couch with the dog, ordering in take out, having friends over for a drink before having dinner out somewhere. And having our usual weeknight eating-in-front-of-the-TV suppers. But warmer weather is here, which always renews my enthusiasm for being social. I'm not sure why -- shrugging off the hibernation mentality that comes with winter, I guess.

I did make something recently that would be perfect for a dinner party. It's chicken but it's not boring, there is minimal clean-up, and it's basically a one dish -- or pan -- meal. It's from a Bon Appetit story on "one-sheet" dinners and it's smart in a "Why didn't I think of that?" kind of way.

Monday, March 19, 2012

past and present

Dan and I were in Florida a few weekends ago visiting family. Whenever we go home there is a family dinner of some kind. Lucky for us, our parents live in the same city -- and even luckier, they get along -- so everyone gets together for a meal at one family's house or the other. This time, my grandparents were in town visiting, so it was a large gathering: parents, grandparents, great uncles and cousins.

These dinners aren't about the food, although the food is always good. They are about sitting around on the patio or porch, talking before dinner. They are about playing dice games around a long table. They are about laughing, and catching up, and being annoyed at one another, and taking lots of photos. Just like any other family.

A few hours before dinner, my parents were setting the table for 14, grabbing chairs from every room in the house. We were short a few chairs, as usual. So they called my grandparents, who were staying at my great uncles' house to ask them to bring chairs and a bag of ice. "What? Isn't dinner tomorrow night?" was the response.


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