Friday, October 10, 2008

Autumn dinner

Ok, I have hosted very few gatherings since the baby was born. (I've had two parties - an Easter brunch, which was family-only; and my wine and roses dinner for friends, which was gals-only, so Brian kept little man.) It's just difficult to host anything nice with little people running around.

But I want to do more of it. That's one of the reasons there are so many "entertaining" goals on My 101 List. So, I made an effort towards that last night. I had some folks over for (what I'd hoped would be) a nice autumn dinner. (I had initially thought we might eat out on the back patio, but because we had some wee ones in attendance, I opted to serve dinner inside.) We had six adults, two little guys, and one VERY well-behaved older child.

The menu:

Appetizers - an assortment of yummy cheeses, bagel crisps, and other munchies. (Sweet Sandi brought these.)

Salad - an autumn recipe of field greens, pears, red grapes, cheddar cheese (I picked a variety with a delicious paprika-spiced exterior), apples, and pecans. I thought this was really good, and I will probably make it again. It's dressed with an apple juice reduction, with apple cider, olive oil, salt, and pepper blended in.

Entree - Pork roast with autumn vegetables - rutabagas, fennel, carrots, and onions. (We make this recipe every fall. I love, love, LOVE it.) Sandi also brought some of the best-tasting sweet-potato biscuits I've ever had. (I snatched the recipe and will post it later. Those bad boys are going on my annual fall recipes list.)

Dessert - Pecan tartlets that I purchased at the awesome new Kroger bakery counter.

To drink, we served iced tea, really bad red wine, mulled apple cider, and pecan praline coffee.

The food was great. The company was great. The problem? Clay had a total meltdown. He wanted me to hold him the entire night. I know that he's had a rough week, and part of me felt really sorry for him. But most of me just wanted to put him to bed at 6:30 p.m.

Here's the rub - you plan and prepare for a nice evening. But sometimes, your kid's got OTHER plans, kwim? And last night, Clay had other plans. He has NEVER been that fussy when we've had people over. Ad it made it very difficult for either Brian or I to enjoy the night. Poo on him. Next time, he's going to grandma's.


Sandi said...

I thought the dinner was fantastic all around - the food, the company and yes, even the children. Please don't fret about Clay. Hon, I've been there! I've read so many blog posts about him, and it was nice to get to spend some time with him. Daughter got to play with him some too, and she enjoyed that. Hope Mark didn't talk your ear off with stories of his wilder days. :)

Your cider was fantastic. It's so hard to spike drinks in a passable way, taste-wise, but you nailed it. I had two cups. And your pork! Oh my ... it really was perfect, not dry at all and just the right mix of flavor with the veggies mixed in. Yum, yum, yum!

Thank you so much for hosting this. I hate that Stacey and Drew couldn't come, but we'll definitely rope them in next time. And I don't mind hosting, regardless of whether we're in Clinton or Byram. And I might even make another batch of biscuits. :)

Nicole Bradshaw said...

You are SO SWEET to say so, but he was TERRIBLE.

But I'm really beginning to think it's not his fault, because he may still be sick. He horked twice yesterday, poor little guy. Gotta figure out what's going on there . . .