The Gourmettes held its monthly dinner meeting for June at the home of Sue Rodgers. Diana Cross assisted as co-hostess. The evening's theme was Spanish cooking. Cocktails, appetizers and dinner were served outside on the Rodgers' deck. The dining table was set with multicolored poppy dinnerware on a purple jacquard tablecloth with several floral arrangements in complementary shades of pink and purple. Cocktails and appetizers were served on a similarly decorated side table.
The evening's appetizers prepared and served by Rose Spann were a variety of Tapas on Toast Points. Cross prepared White Sangria with Cantaloupe and Honey Dew Melons for the evening cocktail. For the soup course, Spanish Chorizo Soup was presented by Barb Shalkowski. Festive Green Salad with Manchengo Cheese and Walnuts by Eileen Small was served as the salad course. The entree selected by Rodgers was Pollo a la Catalana and was accompanied by Coliflor Gratinada prepared by Kathy Ehrheart. Spanish Rice was served by Pat Kaczar. A Spanish granacha wine was enjoyed with dinner. The meal concluded with a Fresh Fruit Trifle by Spann served with Spanish coffee.
The members chose two recipes to submit and share with OBSERVER readers:
Green Salad with Manchengo Cheese & Walnuts
One head of green or red lettuce
4 oz. sundried tomatoes in oil
4 oz. chopped walnuts
4 oz. grated manchengo cheese
Wash and dry lettuce, tear into pieces and arrange on large platter. Cut sundried tomatoes into strips, chop walnuts, grate cheese. Sprinkle tomatoes, walnuts and cheese over lettuce. Whisk together 2/3 cup olive oil, 1/3 cup rice wine vinegar. Pour over salad. Serves four.
Pollo a la Catalana (Chicken Catalan Style)
3 1/2 lbs. chicken, cut into pieces or 6 boneless chicken breasts, cut in half
12 oz. prunes
1 cup white raisins (8 oz.)
1 cup pine nuts
1 1/2 cups onions, chopped
3 ripe tomatoes, chopped
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup dry white wine
Salt and pepper to taste
Put prunes and raisins in a small sauce pan and cover with water. Place on stove on high heat for about 3 minutes or until water is hot to the touch. Remove from burner and soak for 15 to 20 minutes until plump.
Season chicken with salt and pepper. Pour a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large frying pan and brown chicken. Remove chicken from pan and place in a large stock pot.
Drain prunes and raisins. Saute prunes, raisins and pine nuts in frying pan 2-3 minutes, add onions and saute 5 minutes adding olive oil if necessary. Add tomatoes and cook for approximately 5-7 more minutes. Add chicken broth and wine to the frying pan with prunes, raisins, onion and tomatoes and simmer for 10 minutes.
Pour sauce over chicken in stock pot and simmer until chicken is cooked and tender. A few minutes before serving add 1/4 to 1/2 cup bread crumbs to thicken sauce to desired consistency.