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Thursday, October 22, 2015

A Neat Manhattanfor Aunt Peggy

Margaret Malone Dyer 1919 - 2015

A very good woman just passed.  She was my aunt, my mom's older sister. She was strong, intelligent, caring woman and loved being around relatives. She graduated from Kent Teachers College, now Kent State University and had a long career in teaching. She had two daughters, grandchildren and great grandchildren who she loved unconditionally and like all grandmothers, hers were the brightest and cutest in the world! But she also held a place in her heart (and head) for her nieces and nephews and great nieces and great nephews that she saw  at least once a year for the past 32 (with the exception of just a few) at the Martin Lally Memorial Golf Outing. She was one of the non golfers, but faithful attendees and,  the winner of many Trivial Pursuit games. Many of us will come  together to  honor and memorialize her later this week.  I know she will be pleased and if she could, she would hold on to us, lean into our ear and  have a word of encouragement for each one of us.

I  had the privilege of sharing my love of cooking for, and hosting Aunt Peggy in all of my homes - Warren, West Chester, Ann Arbor, Richmond In, and in my current home. She graced our table at a few holiday feasts, weekend dinners, outdoor grills, and  parties.  She never expressed to me that she had a favorite dish,  but when asked on one visit,  several years ago, what she would like, she responded "Lasagna."  That was in my former life when I did not cook -  but the ex did, so there were  trips to three grocers, home made noodles, several kinds of meat, specialty cheeses and sauce-  a major production done to impress!  "All I wanted was a simple lasagna" she would reminisce and we would laugh about that high priced lasagna production!

She loved Manhattans - a neat Manhattan. She taught my spouse how to make one, she told him about al dente  pasta and,   told me to hang on to "this one" because he always cleaned up after every meal. Because many of our get togethers included conversation, appetizers and Manhattans for my mom and Aunt and wine for others, I chose to post an array of finger foods for this entry:

Skewered Caprese, variety of olives, watermelon, feta and arugula and prosciutto puffs.

So a clink of our glasses to Margaret Malone Dyer, my aunt Peggy!


Sunday, October 18, 2015

Roast Chicken and Mama Monpetet's potatoes

Hi friends, I am not quite back to celebrating each dinner- adapting recipes, sipping wine while cooking, or enjoying sharing a bottle of wine with my wonderful husband. It is a long story, that no doubt I will relay, but I will wait till I can pop that cork. I did, however  want to get back to my blog, so here is a meal from last year.

Aah, mmm, roasted chicken with garlic - Bistro style, I wish! It could be that chicken has grown tasteless or that our grocer does not get the freshest chickens. Or of course it could be the cook!

Anyhow my taste buds wanted me to try again.

First Course:  Sliced Tomatoes topped with fresh mozzarella, EVOO and basil leaf.

Entree: Roast Chicken: I purchased chicken breasts with the bones and skin. I placed a slivered garlic and a tad of butter under the skin of the two breasts and sprinkled with a small amount of sea salt and ground black pepper.  I poured melted butter and dried thyme over the breast and roasted at 375.

When done I removed chicken breasts from pan and set aside while I deglaced the pan with chicken broth and demi glace  I deboned the chicken and removed the skin shredded and poured the liquid over it to serve.

Side:  Mama Monpetet's Potatoes.  I have posted these previously, but aways worth repeating. First enjoyed them during an outdoor dinner in Southern France. Mushrooms, potatoes and onions diced and sautéed together.  Simply delicious!

Wine:  En Route Pinot Noir.  One of our favorites!