See what's on our table for Scarborough Fare

See what's on our table for Scarborough Fare

1/08/2011

All is calm, all is bright... and the dogs are hungry...


Since our family dining room table was completely covered by a disaster, Charles and I opted to have a nice intimate Christmas Eve dinner in the sun-room. He transformed it from the old, mostly enclosed pantry with little to no insulation and a doorway that led to the basement. Not quite complete, but it was the perfect spot, like a private cozy table for two at a restaurant. We were alone this Christmas with no one in the house but us and the "girls". It was quite strange, yet all the same enjoyable.


While I made dinner, three of the girls decided that being very close to the kitchen and table were the best spot in the house. From left to right we have Brandy, Dizzy, and Emily. Not sure where Smidgen was... but the fact that she's not here with the rest can only mean that she's off causing mischief.


I used milk glass objects to hold my plants at three different heights, a beautiful "orange" Amaryllis, and two poinsettias, one variegated fuchsia and white, and one pure white. (And I haven't slain them yet!) Of course, candles for dinner time. I enjoyed setting such a small table for two.


While our roast was finishing up in the oven, we enjoyed a huge platter of shrimp with homemade cocktail sauce. Yum! Don't be aghast, we did not eat the whole thing... really! (Not that we didn't try.) We had to save room for the other "good stuff". I made a small cucumber and red onion salad, which is probably not quite traditional food for this holiday season, but was so very light and refreshing. I just used some red wine vinegar, salt and pepper to season. Tasted like summer. We had a beautiful pull-apart bread (instead of potatoes or something heavy) along with our meal. (I realize now it is missing from the photos.)



Le piece De' resistance'! Compliments of my employers with their generous gift certificate, I was able to purchase this standing rib roast with only a few dollars out of my pocket. I smothered it with seasoning and crusted it with freshly ground black pepper. It was perfect. Our stomachs and souls were contented after this wonderful meal. Thank you Alice and Marybeth.

It was a very calm and blessed Christmas Eve.

Hugs,
Penny Sue

12/10/2010

A little us time and a little me time...

Last weekend when my hubby came home, while I was making dinner (a nice big pot of Navy Bean and Ham soup) I spotted my espresso pot... sitting so quietly on the stove-top. Hmmm. Haven't had espresso in a while. So, just before the hubs was due in the door I put on a pot.


My largest espresso pot. A great deal at Homegoods. Had to have it. It holds about 8-10 espresso size cups.


I found a bag of espresso ground coffee from a very well-known gift shop around my hometown. I freeze my coffee that doesn't get used for a while. The flavor is Snickerdoodle.


Don't you wish you could smell this?


Espresso anyone?

And earlier this week... a little me time.

Well, maybe some "we" time. Morning coffee and a little time with Betty Crocker Triple Berry Muffin (tops). Yeah, they're out of a bag mix, but sometimes a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do.

Hugs, Penny Sue

12/08/2010

OK, just shoot me now...

Well, Thanksgiving visits came and went and I never once reached for my camera. I guess I'll stick to smaller projects. My husband and I had Thanksgiving Dinner here at our house along with my Dad, our son and daughter-in-law (and grand daughter) and a friend of our son's, who was not able to go home from college to have Thanksgiving celebrations with his own family. We had such a good time. The only thing was we didn't sit down to eat until an hour later than we had hoped. But hey, this is only my second Thanksgiving dinner... and this time I told myself NO stress. Sometimes I get so caught up in sticking to such a tight schedule that I lose perspective and get tense and stressed out and then I know my family can sense that. So, I tried a NO stress approach. My husband saw a slip here and there, but for the most part, I think I did pretty good.

Apologies all around... and hugs too... Penny Sue

11/21/2010

Let's get the party started...

I am looking forward to having my family here for Thanksgiving dinner. This will be our first year to have it at our house. The family is getting too big for my sister to be able to accommodate everyone. So, my son, Chuck, daughter-in-law Colleen, and grand-daughter are coming. Also, a friend of my son, Tom, who is not able to go home from college for his Thanksgiving. We invited my brother-in-law Thomas, but he's not coming. It should be a good time with those who are going to be here. I'm looking forward to new traditions. I'll be sure to take lots of pictures. (I hope I remember this time!) :)

Hugs all around,
Penny Sue

10/15/2010

Barren Table...

My sincere apologies for not posting anything fun here, but my fun seems to be buried underneath all sorts of other "stuff". I'm working at digging it out. I've come across a few good recipes that I will share along the way, and hoping for some dinner guests... or even just family to visit soon. It's been a long, sad, and lonely summer. Not much to share in the way of gatherings. Usually our house is bustling with visitors, friends and family alike. This year, not so much. I'll have to work on that. Maybe I'll just take to inviting random friends over for dinner, or families from church. That would be fun. I love trying to do a theme night. Like Mexican with music to match, jazz with laid-back food, classical with comfort food or something like that. Of course, our church family is so full of wonderful cooks, I'll probably be intimidated. :)

Oh... I'll get there. My passion for cooking is still with me... I just haven't had anyone to cook for. My husband isn't home 5 days a week. When he does come home, I cook for an army and send it back with him to his brother's home where he lives during the work week. Whatever I don't send, I freeze.

A portion of my Bible Study on Hospitality (to share with you):

Hospitality: The Gift of Welcome.
Hospitality is the practice of welcoming, sheltering, and feeding - with no thought of personal gain-those who come to your door. Much more than elegant menus, elaborate table settings, or lavish entertainment-hospitality is sharing what we have and who we are with whomever God sends. Hospitality includes setting aside time for fellowship and being flexible in order to accommodate impromptu gatherings.

You can share your heart and life with others, even if the meal is simple and the setting is humble. The most important gift of welcome simply says I care,, I love you, and I have prepared a place for you.

Hospitality must begin at home. Christians are "through love to serve one another without grumbling, maintaining calmness and self-control".

My take on this whole hospitality thing is that although we expend physical energy and sacrifice to prepare a table to share... we are rewarded with meeting new people, making new friends, growing better friendships, and sharing each others thoughts from our hearts and souls.

Leaving you with these quotes -

"Laughter is brightest where food is best." Irish Proverb

"The company makes the feast." English Proverb



Chicken Marsala - One of my son's favorites.

Hugs all around,
Penny Sue