So, I think I officially qualify as the World’s Worst Blogger. I haven’t written here since November. Ouch. That’s just harsh. And kind of sad as I LOVE my little blog and all the inspiring friends I’ve made through this space.
The past few months have been pretty crazy. I started a new job. Quit the new job (long story… it wasn’t the right place for me right now. I’m VERY happy about the change.) Moved from one side of my sparkling beautiful city to the other. Hosted lots of dinners, both for Mi Casa-Su Casa and just for random Wednesday nights with friends. And… well…
I got pregnant! Hurrah! Being pregnant is the most fun EVER, but combined with a new job, a house move and a busy social life, it can also be very draining. And that’s literally my only excuse for not posting here more often. But, since things have settled down a bit now, I’m hoping to be back to blogging far more often. And I’ve got LOTS to tell you about!
In my absence from this space we hosted a Mexican fiesta dinner that was one of the most fun, and most delicious, dinners yet! We had a hilarious, highly entertaining and hungry group of diners who tucked in to shrimp ceviche (which Andy had to taste-test for me since I can’t eat raw shrimp… sad), carnitas and a variety of salsas and a tres leches cake for dessert. We had a blast!
Our most recent dinner was something very different for Mi Casa-Su Casa. I had a new sous chef! Katie, the host of Local Sprouts, stepped in when Andy wasn’t available for the evening. A fellow American and lover of all things food, community and fun, Katie lent a New England flair to our typically Southern style meals. The menu was a combo of her Northern US roots and my Southern US food. If they’d had food this good in the 1800’s, I bet the Civil War could have been avoided!
Sadly, I have NO pictures from that night (we were really busy in the kitchen and usually Andy is the one who remembers to get some snaps) but the menu was:
Nibbles and cocktails on arrival: Old South Cheese Straws and Spiked Sweet Tea
Starter: Cream of Mushroom and Tarragon Soup with homemade bread
Main: Pork Chops smothered with Mushroom and Parmesan Stuffing, Mashed Potatoes with Apples, Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Gravy
Dessert: Bill’s Banana Puddin’ Pie
I had a blast working with Katie and hope to get a chance to do that again! I’m sure Andy wouldn’t mind another night off from washing piles of dishes!
And now… it’s your turn to get in on the fun! We’ve got three MCSC dinners scheduled for the next two months. Details are:
14 April at 1pm- Family Fun Sunday Lunch! Bring the kids! We’re doing a menu of family-friendly favourites for a group of parents with kids who like to eat! Only 2 seats left!
27 April at 7pm- Almost-Cinco-de-Mayo-Fiesta! Ok, it’s not QUITE Cinco de Mayo, but it’s close! We’re doing another Mexican menu so plan to bring your sombreros! 6 seats left.
25 May at 7pm- Old School Southern Menu! We’re going back to our roots with a menu full of family favourite recipes from the Deep South. 10 seats left.
I really hope to see some of y’all at these upcoming dinners. And in the meantime, how about a recipe for the amazing Tres Leches Cake from my friend Michelle?
Tres Leches Cake (serves 8-10)
For the cake:
1 cup sugar
5 large eggs, separated
1/3 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1-1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
For the Tres Leches Syrup:
1 can (12 oz) evaporated milk
1 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 cup heavy (or whipping) cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp light rum (or 2 Tbsp.brandy and nutmeg is Michele’s version)
Preheat oven to 350F or 180C.
Generously butter a 13 x 9-inch baking dish.
For the cake:
Beat 3/4 cup sugar and the egg yolks until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Fold in the milk, vanilla, flour and baking powder.
Beat the egg whites to soft peaks, adding the cream of tartar after 20 seconds. Gradually add the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and continue beating until the whites are glossy and firm, but not dry. Gently fold the whites into the yolk mixture. Pour this batter into the buttered baking dish.
Bake the cake until it feels firm and an inserted toothpick comes out clean, about 35 to 45 minutes (check your cake after about 25 minutes as mine cooked more quickly.)
Let the cake cool completely on a wire rack. Unmold unto a large, deep platter. Pierce the cake all over with a fork, taking care to not tear it up.
For the milk syrup:
Combine the evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk, cream, vanilla and rum in a mixing bowl. Whisk until well blended. Pour the syrup over the cake, spooning the overflow back on top, until it is all absorbed.
You can serve the cake as it is, or you can go a little crazy and top the cake with a layer of sweetened whipped cream and some fruit salsa, which is what we did at Mi Casa-Su Casa.