One of my fondest memories from grad school is cooking a big spaghetti dinner (and eating it of course with lots of red wine) with my new classmates. So, at our (almost) yearly mini-reunion, I invited the group over to cook together. The guests arrived in the afternoon, I confessed that my only plan included the basil which was about to bolt in our garden, and that I was hoping that we could shop and cook together. We quickly decided on a simple pesto pasta with grilled vegetables and sausages, salad with oranges and walnuts and a peach berry pie. Then we set out to Whole Foods to buy our supplies, came back and divvied up the responsibilities (men: light fire and cook meat, women: bake and cook veggies!) and then started drinking and cooking and eating. It was soooo relaxing and fun and full of laughs and, I hope, more shared memories.
I’m not even including those recipes. The BASIL PESTO I posted a few weeks ago, and the veggies (squash, asparagus, radicchio) were just tossed in olive oil, salt and pepper and grilled in a basket. The salad was arugula, roughly de-pithed and chopped oranges, toasted walnuts and a simple vinaigrette. And the pie was all Cath – she was baking away while I was making the pesto (and drinking wine) so I missed that.
But my parents are also here, so we cooked a bit this weekend. The peaches are to die for so I had to make PEACH BERRY COBBLER. My mom can’t eat garlic but I have tons of herbs so I made a side dish of MIXED HERB PESTO WITH ROASTED VEGETABLES (AND MAYBE PASTA) to go with James’s lovely smoked chicken. And I made a weeknight meal of SPRING VEGETABLE PASTA WITH BACON (even the bacon did not tempt Audrey, alas) and finally, finally, made HOMEMADE GRANOLA BARS I was satisfied with. So, have at it and cook with some friends!