The weather gods smiled (grinned!) upon us yesterday and There Was Sun. Lots of sun, in fact. So let’s hear a big woo hoo for the weather gods, yeah! Wow, a gorgeous day, perfect for chillin’ in the pool with Rudy& Ana and Stu & Debbie and (several, ahem) glasses of cold wine. It was so perfect, in fact, that I damn near forgot to make dinner! Three o’clock became almost-7:00 in what felt like 20 minutes.
So we emerged from the water and changed for dinner and made our way to the kitchen to snack on mini spinach-feta muffins, tasty with – yep – a glass of wine. (Recipe posted in comments, below.) And to scope out Rudy & Ana’s pics from their recent trip to Italy’s Amalfi Coast, the potential site of our next group trip. Paradise, man, we’d rent the home that Rudy & Ana just stayed in, on a cliff overlooking the Mediterranean. With a pool that is filled with sea water, pumped up the side of the cliff. Glorious, glorious, I hope we can make it work, I’ve never been to Italy, nor the Mediterranean, and that trip would be a very nice introduction, don’t you think?
So, back to Minnesota, ha. Dinner was simple – panzanella (bread salad) with roasted green beans and tomatoes, crispy prosciutto, shaved Parmesan, and a garlicky-capery dressing. And steaks, baby. Gorgeous New York strips that I stunningly stupidly overgrilled by a few (several) minutes, uuuuuugh, I’m still kicking myself. They were such nice steaks that they were tasty anyhow, but with every bite I couldn’t help thinking about how fabulous they would have been if I’d had one less glass of wine before dinner. Yeah. Ah, well, lesson learned.
And for dessert, we moved out onto the screen porch – where Debbie had graciously lit candles in my many pain-in-the-ass-but-pretty lanterns, sorry Deb! And thanks! – for round two of my Grandma Meyer’s Sour Cream Chocolate Cake with whipped cream and strawberries (I had baked the cake in two 9″ round pans on Thursday, served one half to Polly and Charlie on Friday, and the other half last night). Uff. We were all happily stuffed, and buzzy, and a little sunburned, which is a very good way to end an evening, I think. John and I were so happy and grateful to share a beautiful summer’s day with such lovely friends. From Napa to Minneapolis to perhaps the Amalfi Coast (I hope, I hope!), we sure do have a blast together.
(PS, the spinach-feta muffins make a delicious breakfast. Think I’ll have me another!)
And oh, Happy Father’s Day!!! Especially to my own dad, of course, father of three daughters and a son, and grandfather to two boys. Hey, the count is even! Three girls and three boys! Niiiice…
Hahaha, why thank you! A friend of mine was with me when I bought it, hmmm, wonder who it was? I keep meaning to thank her for fending off the wolves (aka other woman who wanted to buy that necklace). So thanks, wherever you are!
Little tough to keep the girls inside that dress - fine with John, not so fine with me, ha. Off to the tailor it goes for a little strap shortening...
Lookit you, Hot Momma! And I LOVE the necklace...;-)!!
Spinach-Feta Cocktail Muffins
Makes 24 mini-muffins (or 12 regular-sized muffins)
Delicious with wine. Would also be great with soup.
1 ½ c. all-purpose flour
½ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. dried dill weed
½ tsp. salt
¼ c. olive oil
½ c. sour cream
¼ c. milk
1 small clove garlic, minced
1 shallot, minced
4 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
4 oz. shredded cheddar
2 c. chopped spinach, stems removed
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Coat two non-stick mini-muffin pans (for 24 mini-muffins) with non-stick spray. In a small bowl, stir together flour, soda, dill weed, and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, olive oil, sour cream, and milk. Stir in garlic, shallot, cheeses, and spinach. Stir flour mixture into spinach-egg mixture until just combined. Spoon batter into prepared pans and bake for 12-15 minutes, until very lightly browned. Cool in the pans for a couple of minutes, then serve warm.