Experimental Dinner Party

Last night we had four friends over for an experimental dinner party. We used recipes that we’d been wanting to try and lucky for us, everything turned out really well. This same group of friends hasn’t always been so lucky. A few years ago we tried making a roasted duck but the duck won and we ended up grabbing Delfina pizza down the street. At least it was a bittersweet ending for all involved.

Alex and I made the Barefoot Contessa Company Pot Roast which I’m already looking forward to reheating for dinner tonight and an Herbed Ricotta Dip with Spring Vegetables for an appetizer. The latter was a big winner in the last Leite’s evaluation round and I was eager to try it after reading all of the positive reviews. I made my own ricotta again and put together a colorful plate of veggies for dipping. The pot roast was easier than I expected. It just requires a lot of chopping for the vegetables and then some strong arms to rotate the roast in the pan while searing. It was done in less than 2 hours (recipe said 2.5 but I took it out of the fridge about an hour in advance so that might have been why) and produced a ton of gravy which we’ll use on some fresh pasta this week.

Mike and Wei made a “smashed potatoes” recipe from Cooks Illustrated that I’d love to try on my own sometime. Kristin and Jeremy brought over a lemon strawberry tart by David Leibowitz that we polished off in minutes. The rest of the evening was spent playing Catch Phrase which kept us laughing and crying until about 1am. Good fun all around!


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