We invited some friends over for dinner on Saturday evening. I knew the weather would be great all day and planned to spend most of the day in the garden, not the kitchen. On Friday evening I prepared as much as I could.
I made the marinade for the flank steak, readied the Potato Splats, made the salad dressing, and set the table. Then I lit the candles just to see what it all would look like, and took a few photos. I used votive holders at every place to hold a few bluebells, a linen tablecloth and napkins, and ended up with mostly monochrome. Blue and white is a winning combination for me.
We had guests for dinner quite often while living in Ecuador. On one such occasion, as we sat down at the table with our children and our guests, our son, probably 8 or 9 at the time, said, "Oh, good. Company. That means we get dessert."
I found the recipe for this gluten and dairy free sorbet (since some of our guests can't have those ingredients) on Tartelette's blog. Do check it out. It's a berry sorbet that captures the very essence of summer. I made a few changes to the recipe; using frozen berries, and strawberries in place of the raspberries. I've done it with raspberries too, and prefer it that way. In fact, I've made this recipe at least three times in the past two months. And I plan on making it a lot more as summer arrives.
I have one of those hand-cranked ice cream makers that you place in the freezer for 8 hours before using. I purchased it at a thrift store about 8 years ago. This year, I'm just storing the thing in the freezer so it's handy at a moment's notice.
With everything that was done ahead, I spent the day in the garden and came in to shower at 3:00 and had plenty of time to prep the rest of the meal - roasted asparagus, carrots with onion butter, salad, plus the steak and potatoes.
Do you have guests for meals often? Do you make dessert? How do you prepare ahead?