Saturday, April 14, 2007


Tonight's Menu

  • souvlaki-inspired pork kebabs
  • potato-artichoke salad
  • fruit salad
We had our annual Double Birthday Blowout today for DH and the boy child, whose birthdays are five days apart. It was windy and chilly but sunny enough to grill out, thank goodness!

For the kebabs, I combined a bunch of minced garlic, fresh lemon juice, fresh (not dried, but feel free to use that instead if you want) oregano, EVOO and freshly ground pepper and poured it over two pork tenderloins that had been cut into sizable chunks (I'd say about 1.5-inch or so cubes). I let it marinate for several hours in the fridge before assembling on skewers with yellow, orange and red bell peppers, onions and giant mushrooms. Just before grilling I brushed them with a bit more EVOO and sprinkled on a tiny bit of Jane's Krazy Salt. It took a while to get them done because of the freakin' 40 mph winds cooling down the grill, but they came out SUPER yummy.

The potato salad is my favorite summer salad from last year. It goes really well with any sort of grilled meat. Just cut some tiny red-skinned potatoes in half and simmer them in water until they're tender but not mushy. Let them cool, then toss in a bowl with halved cherry tomatoes, little balls of fresh mozzarella (use the cherry-tomato-sized balls, or larger balls cut in half or in wedges), and a jar of marinated artichoke hearts. The marinade from the artichoke hearts is your dressing, so you don't have to drain them, but if you like you can pour out the liquid into a little bowl or cup and then add it back in (so you don't accidentally use too much). Sprinkle on some freshly ground pepper and a chiffonade of fresh basil and refrigerate for at least a couple of hours before serving to let the flavors meld a bit.

The fruit salad is the same super-simple one I always make. Just combine halved strawberries, green grapes and a can of mandarin orange segments (you DO want to drain these) in a bowl. That's it -- no dressing, no sugar, just fruit. It makes for a really tasty combination of flavors and textures, and it's really pretty! Very refreshing with anything grilled or spicy.

This being a birthday celebration, we also had two kinds of cake for dessert. German chocolate (from a mix) for DH, and triple-layer brownie cake for the boy, who actually made his own cake from scratch with very little help from me! It's absolutely delicious, too. I'm too exhausted to dig up the recipe tonight, but I'll post it tomorrow, I promise!

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