In order to (hopefully, partially) make up for my lack of posts lately, I went all out for the Memorial Day holiday by making (at least) one recipe from each of the Barefoot Contessa cookbooks.
First, we had Pan-Fried Onion Dip (Barefoot Contessa Cookbook). I foolishly did not follow the instructions to serve at room temperature (I served it cold), so it was a little stiff, but still delicious.
Then, the adult beverage of the evening, pomegranate cosmopolitans (Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics). I’m not much of a drinker, but my husband isn’t above drinking froufrou drinks, and neither are our friends. What can I say? We have good friends. However, whichever friend helped me take this photo had already obviously had a few of this lovely concoction, as evidenced by the grilling tools and paper towels in the background. Classy, we are.
Then, the main event!
Green salad with creamy mustard vinaigrette (Barefoot Contessa Family Style), which will certainly be repeated when our greens start arriving in CSA boxes next week:
Maple Baked Beans (Barefoot Contessa at Home), which will also be repeated, but next time I’ll actually cook them for the entire cooking time instead of trying to cheat. They were still good, but probably a little more al dente than baked beans should be. I also used Great Northern beans instead of kidney beans and the slow cooker instead of the oven. I can’t stomach leaving on the oven all day in warm weather when the slow cooker works beautifully.
Niman Ranch Burgers with Caramelized Onions (Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics). These spoke for themselves, and now I’m tempted to put caramelized onions on everything. If the cheese offends you, know that I’m from Wisconsin and I can’t help it.
Chocolate Chunk Cookies (Barefoot Contessa Parties!). I confess to slightly modifying this recipe (adding a little shortening and a lot of brown sugar) to imitate a friend’s recipe. They were addictive. (Tray by IKEA.)
Mango Sorbet (Barefoot in Paris). This was great plain, but it was really incredible in smoothies later in the week. I found peeled, seeded mangos at Costco.
Our friends brought fresh berries, which rounded out the meal nicely, and along with the onion dip I served lightly steamed green vegetables with hummus. Eating this meal on our screen porch really set the scene for the summer – we can’t wait to do it again!