Friday, May 30, 2014

not your typical Memorial Day

Every year, on Memorial Day, I have a dinner party.  At that dinner party, I honor the people that I love, who have died.  I have done this for many years.  I cook the food of my grandmothers.  I think of my dear friend Leo.

This year I did nothing for Mark's birthday.  I mean, literally NOTHING, other than saying a weak "happy birthday", because I just wasn't feeling well enough.

He went to some comedy shows the next week, but still.

So when he asked to have a party with his friends, I said SURE!

I had been dying to impress his foodie friend for ages, with a chicken gallantine, so this was a great opportunity.

Besides, our social lives over the years have been dominated by my friends and my preferences.

The problem with this plan?  I have been feeling like complete dogmeat... but that is where my people came to the rescue.  An old friend, a professional chef, who I had recently, in a moment of nostalgia reconnected with on Facebook, and a newer friend from People's Coop, came and cooked their asses off (mostly in the form of grinding a shitload of meat by hand, and even sharpening my knives- Thank you Victor, you totally rule!) We wound up having a beautiful day, cooking and laughing, and boning whole birds.

The results were pretty awesome- I wound up blowing the doors off with a country pork pate with pistachios , a chicken liver mousse and the gallantine.
The day of the event Mark got nervous and bought a giant ham.
We were meated up, yo!

I also made a special cocktail, an herby vodka lemonaide, which was a big hit (see case in point: my friends drink wine.  They are strictly wine drinkers, but this crowd burned through a lot of cocktails and beer!).

We had three tables going.  Had this been my thing, everyone would have been in one room, at one table, but I bit my tongue, because I was just the facilitator, man! 

Gallantine with garlic mayonnaise! Lentil pate with walnuts, roast potatoes, country pork pate.  One of our friends brought their father along.  A charming man in his 70's who was impressed by the Charcuterie... "My grandfather had a meatshop, before becoming a minister.  My other grandfather was a farmer.  I grew up with amazing cooks in my family.  I grew up with hunters, and gardeners and people that made things" Is what I told him when he asked how I knew how to do "all of this".  All of this is just what we do.  Not trying to be cute.  It is just a thing.  I cannot imagine opening a can, I said.  That would just be weird.  That would just not be good. 

dancing lady

He invited the softball team families!

30 napkins

30 cupcakes


Rolf and Victor grinding 7 pounds of meat, and fighting sinew, they were rock stars!

Cheesecake as a sheetcake, you say that 10 times fast!

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