It was a celebration that almost didn't happen. Thursday night while D was at church, I called L to the table for her bedtime snack. "My tummy hurts," she informed me. "I need medicine." I was skeptical, gave her some gas drops, and ten minutes later, she barfed. It was a long night. By the end of the day Friday, however, she was doing better, so we decided to go ahead and have our Easter gathering--nothing big, just D's parents.
Since I didn't know until the day before that we were actually going to be having company, I cast about for inspiration and fortunately found some sitting on my desk, in the form of the not-yet-read issue of Bon Appetit. I've spent a lot of time lately trash-talking them, so I should put in a good word here; their recent issues seem to have resolved the layout and photography problems that just about had me ready to cancel my subscription, so I have hope that the overly-precious tone will follow. At the very least, they saved my behind for this holiday, since I was able to lift almost the entire menu.
Since we were planning to eat around 3 p.m., I made the menu's two appetizers as a sort of light lunch:
Mini Crab-Cakes -- Yummy, but I halved the recipe and didn't have quite as much crab as I really should have in the mix. I would make these again, with more attention to the proportions.
Asparagus and Mushroom Tarts -- Fabulous. Will definitely repeat these next time I have a good excuse, and guests who like mushrooms.
Instead of the lamb they suggested--I've never made it, and as it turned out my mother-in-law isn't really fond of it--I made a ham, but did serve the two sides they provided:
Garland of Spring Vegetables--Considering how simple this was, it was really, really good.
Saffon-Scented Couscous with Pine Nuts--Another easy standout.
For dessert, I once again went my own way. I had been thinking about this raspberry tiramisu-sort of thing, as a break after relatively heavy meal, but I had also been hankering after cheesecake lately, and I wanted to make something that would really stand out. So Double-Decker Raspberry and White Chocolate Cheesecake it was.
It was a wonderful meal, I think--one of the best I've done in a long time. We colored Easter eggs, the kids ran around a lot and got baskets of toys from their grandparents, and I managed not to stress myself out over anything at all for a change.
Sunday morning, L got out of bed and threw up again. But at least we had Saturday.