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Sunday, July 20, 2008

dinner spread, July Click entry included ...

dinner on friday was fun. i did a lot of the prep work the evening before so the only thing i really had to do was make the polenta and assemble the grapefruit salad, which was super easy.

Grapefruit, Red Onions and Basil Salad

  • two ripe grapefruits, either peeled or in my case, i cut out the slices, getting rid as much of the white membrane as possible.
  • half a small onion, sliced uber thin
  • sliced black olives
  • 5 basil leaves, chiffinade
  • 2 tbl extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbl balsamic vinegar
  • cracked black pepper and salt to taste

assemble the slices of grapefruit on plate, add the onions and black olives as wanted. drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper to taste.

big k put in a request for the cold cucumber avocado soup, and because my friend shawn has an aversion to most veggies, i had to have a meat dish. i made a beer braised spare ribs dish and a creamy polenta to soup up the juices. recipe follows:

Beer Braised Spare Ribs
  • spare ribs, i think i used about 2lbs
  • a bottle (12oz) of beer, i used Sam Adams Light
  • 2 whole gloves of garlic
  • ginger, i think i chopped up a good two tablespoons
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup of hoisin sauce, for the last 30 minutes of cooking
the morning of Big K's arrival, i put all the ingrediants (except for the hoisin sauce) in the crock pot, turned it on low and promptly forgot about it. when i got home that night, i popped the lid and poured out the majority of the liquid. i then put about a cup worth of hoisin sauce over the ribs, put the crock pot on warm and walked away. just as we were ready to eat, i made the poletna real quick, just from a box. it was a hit. both shawn and big k had never had polenta before and i think they're fans now. yay!

for dessert, i made coffee panna cotta. for the July edition of Click, the theme is coffee and/or tea. i'm a fan of coffee and sometimes tea. so i thought about it, i heart me some cà phê sữa đá but i was not about go buy the single-serving filter/brewer thinger. i just like the whole image: the thick condensed milk at the bottom of the glass and the strong black coffee slowly dripping over top it. yum. naturally, i added a few things, to make it extra special.

Strong Ass Coffee Panna Cotta
  • 1 packet of gelatin, half used for the cream layer and othe remaining half for the coffee layer
  • 1 cup of heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 cups of strong ass coffee (i just brewed some coffee in the morning and it was left over)
  • 2 tbls espresso vodka
  • 1 tbl kahlua
  • 5 tbl sugar
for the first layer, i gently heated up the cream and milk. i added 4 tbl sugar and when that dissolved, i added half the packet of gelatine, stirring constantly. took pan off the heat and just stirred til i basically got tired, about five minutes. i then added the espresso vodka. it needed a kick, trust me. pour it into the cups and refrigerate until set. repeat with the 2nd layer, except with strong ass coffee, add just 1 tbl of sugar and the kahlua. make sure the liquid is cool, so that when you pour it over top of the cream, it's not scorching hot and bascially melts it.

it was a nice ending to dinner and what a boost for the night out.


  1. looks so delicious. thanks for your entry.

  2. sweet. i noticed you used the pictobrowser! yay for flickr.

  3. Bee - thank you! i was so excited when i saw what the month's theme was. :)

    Becky - you just don't know how thrilled i was to finally figure out pictobrowser. thanks for your help. :)

  4. this was such a delicious meal! very filling w/out leaving me feeling heavy and sleepy! and you're right, i'm such the polenta fan now! it's on the list for this week's grocery stop.

  5. "How-do-you-do, just needed you to know I have extra your website to my Yahoo bookmarks due to your extraordinary blog site layout. But very seriously, I believe your web page has 1 with the freshest theme I've came across. It actually helps make reading your blog site a lot easier."

    Also welcome you!