Its early on a Monday morning after an amazing weekend. Our kids are on Spring Break with their Papa Ron in Florida so we have been kid-free and making the most of it. If you read my earlier post you already know that we spent part of our weekend in Boulder dining with friends and skiing. Any other weekend that would have been enough for the highlight reel. But little did we know the best was yet to come!
Sunday dinner is special in this house and since we were kid-free we decided to invite two of our best friends over for dinner. Alex is the very first friend I made after moving to Colorado and she is French and stereotypically fussy about food and wine. I LOVE this about her. What I love even more is the fact that our husbands get along famously and act like a couple of goofy teenagers when they get together. We have enjoyed a lot of laughs over food and wine with our dear friends.
Lane has celiac disease so I have learned to be mindful of my menu when they join us for a meal. If you are unfamiliar with Celiac it requires vigilance against any form of gluten in the diet–wheat, rye and barley. Its amazing how many places gluten shows up when you start looking for it!
For Sunday Dinner we enjoyed cedar planked Salmon on the grill, steamed asparagus finished with sesame seeds and melted butter, oven roasted new potatoes with sweet onions and fresh rosemary. Alex brought a delicious gluten free apple cake that I served with Talenti Vanilla Bean Gelato.
The salmon was delicious but I cannot take credit for the recipe. It came from Allrecipes.com–
The oven roasted potatoes are one of my All-Star Go-To side dishes–chop red skinned new potatoes and a sweet onion. I roast them in my Le Creuset braiser in a 400 degree oven after tossing them in EVOO, kosher salt, cracked pepper and 2-3 fresh whole rosemary stalks. Roast them for about an hour.
As for steaming vegetables, I am a big fan of my microwave for this purpose. I cut off the bottom third of the asparagus stalks and discard. Then arrange the asparagus in a glass casserole dish in a layer and add 1-2 T. of water. Cover with microwave safe cling wrap making sure to vent a corner. Cook on High for 3-5 minutes depending upon how strong your microwave is and how crisp you like your asparagus. My microwave is new so 3 minutes did the trick. While still hot, sprinkle sesame seeds and drizzle some lemon juice with melted butter over the asparagus. Salt and pepper to taste.
I had made a special trip to the store to pick up French wine–a lovely bottle of white from Vouvray that I knew would impress my picky friend. I presented the bottle and she smiled and said “ah yes that is a nice wine.” JACKPOT! Then she said if it was OK she would just have some Pellegrino with a lime. We gathered on the deck to enjoy our pre-dinner drinks and a plate of cheese and uncured salami. Then they hit us with it……our dear friends are expecting their first baby next Fall! Well that explains the Pellegrino. What a way to end a most splendid weekend.