Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Everything Old is New Again!

This past weekend, I had the most fun I've had in a long time, and I usually have a pretty good time wherever I go. Did I hit some great new restaurant? Find an awesome new ingredient? Make the pilgrimage to Wegman's? None of the above in fact. Instead, my friends and family threw a progressive dinner to celebrate my (insert big, but not too big important number here) birthday!

For those unfamiliar with the concept, a progressive dinner entails traveling from home to home and enjoying each course of a dinner at a separate location. The idea is to spread out the work and spread out the fun. The respective hosts can coordinate a theme or go off on their own, focusing on something special to them.

The first stop was Karen's house. Ohh la la do I love some good apps and a cocktail or two! There was a corn and avocado salsa (delicious), fancy green beans with dipping sauce (perfectly cooked), a lentil-goat cheese-lettuce wrap (healthy and tasty), and, my personal favorite, veggie summer rolls made by Courtney from The Kitchen Studio. They were so good, I started and couldn't put them down until they were all gone. Good thing it was my birthday, so I could be a little greedy :). Top it all off with an espresso martini, and you've got the start of a pretty fabulous night.

Now here's a tip for you: Don't have the money for a full bar but want more than just beer & wine? Choose a signature cocktail for the evening. You'll need to have the ingredients on hand for just one fancy drink, plus, you can make it in a large quantity and just shake with ice when ready to serve. It saves you a hassle and still looks great and adds something special. I'm thinking of serving Pumpkin Pie martinis for my next fall soiree.

But I digress...The next stop on our adventure? Michele's house, just down the street. We feasted on stuffed chicken breasts, roasted pork tenderloin, tortellini salad and more! Plus, there may have been a few more espresso martinis on hand, but my memory was starting to go a little by then.

After an hour or two, we paraded on to our final destination...my house! The furniture had been cleared for dancing, with a champagne toast and three different cakes from my favorite bakery in town, Proof! I think the Cherry-Hazelnut was my favorite, but you won't go wrong with any cake from this fabulous Patrick St. bakery.

A good time was truly had by all, and I absolutely had the best time ever. So, when you're considering your next party, why not talk to your friends and figure out a plan to share the work and the fun! Split the tasks, split the courses, have a wonderful time. And don't forget, if you're planning that signature cocktail, it's always best to be able to walk from place to place, or at the very least be sure to have a designated driver!

Don't forget to post your comments below. I'd love to know what you're thinking! Bon appetit!

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