Our New York Cousin came for dinner at the weekend & we’re classing him as our first ever New York guest (sorry visitors who’ve stayed & I’ve cooked) because he arrived, buzzed, ate, chatted & left all on one night.
So with our limited food supply, very limited pot/plate/dish & glass supply, none of our recipes & some uncertainty about the easy location & identification of ingredients we might need, we did wonder a while about what to cook. Settled on a simple menu that had the chance of being impressive & that didn’t require recipes. Cousin is like 6 foot trillion tall & made the point that he didn’t get to be that tall being a fussy eater so we didn’t have to worry about the meal being anything other than an Orange Kitchen one-pot special!
Canapes with pate & caramelised onions
Spinach lasagne & salad greens
White chocolate mousse with summer berries
So off we went on a very hot day to a sweltering Union Square (into the middle of a protest on the Arizona law change to challenge anyone suspected of being an illegal immigrant) to get our ingredients – of most concern to locate & identify (not because we didn’t think it existed, just a recognition/name thing when it came to packaging) were ricotta & gelatin, & of next concern re pack size were frozen spinach & mozzarella (there is SO much frozen stuff & cheese ‘stuff’ here that those items had the chance to be troublesome). However, we got everything we needed & even saw Mario Batali signing books in the crowded Union Square. Thought he might notice us because I had our orange Moore Wilson’s bag, but he didn’t!
Then we cooked all afternoon in our glass house with one rest stop to Fika for afternoon tea. All went well: no oven dish but the onions caramelised nicely in 2 Pyrex dishes (which then had to be recycled for the lasagne), not much spinach was lost down the plug hole after draining in the giant-holed colander (no sieve), The Mister still has all his fingers after slicing the mozzarella with a blunt knife & I made a make-shift whisk out of one of the beaters from the electric beater!
Turned out we did need one recipe, for the white chocolate mousse – iPad to the rescue! Lucky I’m such a clean cook though & there were no splatters!
Bit of a dilemma when it came to what to serve the mousse in – we found some great shaped plastic cups in the cupboard, a bit like the glass parfait glasses in the original recipes – but with these being plastic we worried Cousin might think we’d just bought ready-made ones, so chose the lady’s tea party floral teacups instead!
The Mister did a fine job assembling & presenting the canapes – the caramelised onions were delicious.
Was *very* impressed to see actual layers in the lasagne – our dish at home is solid so we never get to see this. Not bad!
The mousse definitely looked handmade & impressed Cousin so much he prompted me to photographically document the evidence – voila!