There is nothing I enjoy more, than making a huge meal and sitting around a table with friends, having great conversation, and laughing. I am always inviting people over for dinner. I do enjoy my alone time, but I also know that making a lovely meal is far less rewarding, if you sit down to eat it by yourself.
Sunday night I had some friends from Oakland over. I made pesto lamb chops, and garlic rosemary red potatoes. We talked about restaurants we have tried or want to try, and discussed making the perfect burger. The conversation never once went to poop or fart stories, which for some reason always seems to happen when I have people over (I may or may not be the one who instigates these conversations).
Monday night I made a lamb sandwich with some of the leftovers, then had some blueberry waffles for dessert. Tuesday night I made spice rubbed ahi tuna, and oven roasted cauliflower for my friend Ally and myself. Have you gone over and checked out her food blog yet? If you like food blogs, you should check it out: A Girl and Her Fork.
I think of all my leisure activities, sitting around sharing snacks is my favorite. Food somehow has the ability to bring people together. I used to have themed dinner parties, and I think I need to get back in to it. I did a bacon dinner party, a party where everything had to be in balls, a fondue party, an unfortunate looking food party, and quite a few more. I think my next will be a mid-century food party. All foods that were popular in the '50s and '60s. I was considering doing a glamour shots 80s party. People would bring foods popular in the 80s (think sushi and cocaine. Okay, just sushi), and I provide a back drop, props, and Aqua Net. We take horrible pictures of you eating said food. I think it would be worth having to get all that crap out of your hair the next day.
I have yet to have my first bbq at the new house. Probably because I personally do not grill food. Not that I don't think grilled food is delicious, it's just that cooking outside messes with all of my sensibilities. So if I ever have a bbq, someone else will have to man the grill. I think this is a weird thing to have to do at your own party, but I'm considering doing it anyways. Perhaps some time in July.
There is something about everyone sitting around with plates on their laps, laughing and talking with their mouths full, that makes me forget if even for a moment, about being frightened they may drop some of that food on the ground. I used to have a really hard time having large groups in my home, so I forced myself to do it more often. I only had a break down once, when about 30 people came over for a ghetto gourmet party, and we were supposed to be out back. People kept hovering around in the house and it was FAR too many people inside, and I finally freaked out and yelled, "This is an outdoor party. Everybody out!" I now realize that was my fault as I should've just had signs leading people through the gate, straight to the backyard, and put the food out there. It's also really hard for me to leave food outside. I'm working on it.
Note: a ghetto gourmet party is where you take something simple from your childhood and elevate it to gourmet standards, or you make something truly horrible that looks kind of gourmet. We had: hot dog empanadas, smoked gouda and chorizo stuffed jalapenos, a casserole consisting of pancake batter, American cheese, chicken nuggets, and french fries, and many more foods that made me laugh. Oh, the rosemary browned butter Rice Krispie treats were a favorite.
Sharing a meal is just one of the ways that I try and break out of my shell and do more things that involve others. It is so easy for me to get off of work, go home, put on pj's and completely lock out the outside world. I want to avoid being the hermit it would be so easy for me to become. Dinner parties are the one way I can open my home to friends with minimal stress, and have a good time.
Happy picture of the day: this sign made me crack up for so many reasons. First of all, that an underwear drive is an actual charitable event. Secondly, the way this is worded made me say, "Underwear driving is unsafe as it is, but now they're driving IN THE LOBBY? Everyone should probably avoid the lobby 'til May 2nd."