Tuesday, July 19, 2011

This Wednesday we had our friend Tanya over for dinner for her birthday. It was a small party of ten people. I wanted it to be a memorable night for her, but at the same time knew that I was short on time. So here are some of my quick fixes for the night.
The menu for the evening was mainly Spanish with a few other infusions Julio Iglesis keeping us company from the iPod. 
Sundried Tomato and Basil Pesto
Roasted Red Peppers
Mini Breadsticks and Crackers
Mixed Spanish Olives
Queso Manchego with Membrillo (A hard Spanish cheese served with a quine jam)
Pata Cabra (Spanish semi-soft goat cheese)
Jamón Serrano (Cured Spanish ham)
The first two on the list were home made and the rest store bought. A combination such as this is always great to work around because there is a personal touch to your entertainment without leaving you in the kitchen for a day and with aching feet by the time your guests arrive! 
I eyeballed the Sundried Tomato and Basil Pesto– so here is the general recipe!
In a food processor or blender, blend 
1 cup sundried tomatoes, 1 cup basil, 1/2 bulb garlic, peeled and 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil. Taste and season accordingly.
It turned out great and was quite the pleaser in the crowd.
Roasting a pepper is easy. Wash and dry a large red pepper.
Broil it in the oven for 20 minutes, turning the sides every 5 minutes.
The skin will char and that is what we are looking for.
Remove it from the oven when it is charred all over and either put it in a brown paper bag and shut it tightly or in a bowl tightly covered with plastic wrap. This will steam the pepper.
Once cooled, about 15 minutes, remove the skin of the pepper with your hands. It comes off and takes only a minute or two to remove the skin. This job can be slightly messy so do it over a sink.
Remove the seeds, slice into strips.
I drizzled this with olive oil, balsamic vinegar and then seasoned it with salt and pepper. Serve it simple and delicious.
Blend the balance with feta cheese and you now have a Roasted Red Pepper and Feta Cheese Dip!

No comments:

Post a Comment