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For A Special Occasion

Hey everyone!  Long time no talk.  Sorry I have been out of touch for a while but there has been a lot going on around here.  I know what you’re thinking: it’s a pandemic, what could you possibly have going on?  Well, this…

Meet Reggie, the Mini Irish Goldendoodle.  I surprised the family with a puppy.  If you know me, this is truly shocking.  I am not a dog person.  But, since this is MY dog, I will love him.  Just look at that cute little face.  If you are a dog person, he has his own instagram page  (@reggie_reg_dog). Reggie is either asleep or a total spaz so that is taking up most of my time.  Even though the kids gave a presentation (before they knew the dog was already in the works) on how they would do EVERYTHING for a dog and I would even get to name it. Guess how much they do.  The bare minimum and only when forced.

But the best news of the last couple weeks is that we got to take a trip to go see my in-laws in Indy!  We got to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary together and it was marvelous!  We have been very slow and careful with our ease back into things because we wanted to stay healthy for this trip.  It was all worth it!

A lot of people have had celebrations during this pandemic: birthdays, graduations, proms, anniversaries, etc.  All of them are special and this is how we decided to commemorate our pandemic golden anniversary.  We planned a super fancy dinner.  We knew we would be staying in so we wanted to bring the restaurant experience to my in-laws.  Did I get enough pictures, of course not.  I was trying to enjoy the evening instead of document it.  But we will make due with what I’ve got.

First, we asked what kind of food they wanted to celebrate with.  They said either steak or seafood (so we chose both).  We asked what kind of cake they wanted (chocolate with chocolate gananche).  We decided on the rest of the menu ourselves by choosing things we thought they would love.

The girls got SUPER into this plan.  And after months of having nothing, it was great to have something fun to focus on.  They wanted to go all out on the restaurant theme.
“Mom!  We can make menus!”
“Mom! Can we wear aprons!”
“Mom! We need little note pads so we can take orders and they HAVE to fit  in our apron pockets.” (*I bought the note pads and forgot them at home. Thank goodness for Grandma having some at her house or I would be going straight to hell based on the looks I received.)
“WE NEED PLACE CARDS!” was a last minute addition of the highest import.
Then they discovered Grandma had bells in the dining room so we HAD to ring those between courses.

I don’t have pictures of their awesome homemade menus or place cards. Or how they set the table. Or the candles they kept trying to light hours before dinner started. But at least I have the memories and I was in the moment.

I am able to share the menu though! And you know what makes me happy, almost every single thing we served was either on this blog or in my cookbook. This is not something I just preach, this is something I practice. So if any of you have a special occasion coming up I hope this menu will inspire you.

Proscuitto Wrapped Pears

Boston Bibb Lettuce with Basil Green Goddess Dressing

Beef Tenderloin (p.88)
Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Potatoes

Black Cake with Chocolate Ganache (p.128)

And of course your beverage of choice (mine being champagne and wine).

It was a lovely evening that would have been great no matter what we had for dinner. It is the company that makes it special… but good food helps.

The next day was Father’s Day. We always celebrate with a steak sandwich. Being the obsessive person I am, I made sure we had enough tenderloin for both the anniversary dinner and the sandwich. Here it is in all its glory (and p.55 in your cookbook).

Hope everyone is doing well, staying healthy and hanging in there!  And I hope you all find things to celebrate even in these most unusual of times!


13 thoughts on “For A Special Occasion

  1. Emily
    It was absolutely perfect from beginning to end! We are so blessed to have you all in our lives. ❤️❤️

  2. I love this blog. I am teary seeing the first picture of Karen and Brian – priceless. Beautiful info all the way around. I am so proud of you and for all the effort you put in everything. Now I want that meal!

  3. Love all of this! I have made your ganache and it is hands down THE BEST cake topping! Thanks for the amazing recipe!

  4. Awesome. There’s nothing more valuable than shared time with Loved Ones…and you guys were Over the top. Of course, that is no surprise…. an Incredible family event. It is emotional for me, just seeing the post.
    Thank You for all your for sharing.

  5. Love all the pics, you are always on top of every aspect of whatever you are doing. Congrats to your in-laws. Reggie is adorable and will be so loved by the girls. Looks like a good decision. I’m sure your dad will love him too! Aunt Carol

  6. Wait.. wait.. a dog??? The gorgeous meal is expected because of who you are, but… the dog!!! It’s official you have to be number one in your girls eyes forever. Happy Anniversary to Mike’s parents. What wonderful people they are. Love you, Aunt Clare

    1. I know, I know! Hell has frozen over, pigs are flying and all other impossible references. He’s real cute though. Exhausting but cute. Love you!

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