I don't know what or why it is, but dinner parties at my place seem to get a little out of control. Something about the laid back atmosphere, close quarters, and the continuous eating and drinking that just keeps going and going and going to the point of ridiculousness. Even when gone into with good intentions (à la Sunday Night Dinners) my guests and I don't stand a chance. I blame it on the wine shop that delivers. 100% THEIR fault.
That said, some friends and I attempted to have a "normal" family dinner last night. Some pasta, some salad, some wine (ok, copious amounts of wine) and of course, good company. And while you may or may not want to take entertaining advice from me now, I can tell you that a good time is always had by all. I really, really encourage you to have your friends over to share a meal. To help you cook. To share stories. To laugh, laugh, laugh. Because when it comes down to it, there's nothing more rewarding or satisfying than feeding and sharing with the ones you love.
So what'd we nosh on? A simple bruschetta to start: seeded and diced campari tomatoes, fresh basil, garlic, balsamic, olive oil, salt and pepper spooned onto fresh Amy's Bread baguette slices. Then a huge HUGE pot of penne with a roasted red pepper and tomato cream sauce with chicken and tons of torn basil. Parmesan aggressively added in at the end and it was a creamy, gooey, cheesy pot of comfort and coziness. Then to brighten things up, a simple salad of razor thin slices of fennel and red onion, supremed oranges, and arugula was delicately dressed with a citrusy vinaigrette: orange marmalade (yup), dijon, garlic, white balsamic, and olive oil. Bright, fresh, sweet, and happy. A perfect light week night meal in and of itself with a piece of crusty, crunchy bread to sop up the remains.
And while the wine consumption may or may not have gotten borderline inappropriate, I think we can all say that the night was quite yummy, much needed, and of course, hilarious.