Saturday, November 29, 2008

Overflowing Cornucopia

The night before Thanksgiving is the very best night of the year to go out. I'd spent the past few days out at the river and felt relaxed, happy, and ready for the company of people again. Stella babysat for Robin and Will so it worked out for everyone and we could have a grown-up night out. Jessica joined us for dinner at the best kept secret restaurant in northwest Arkansas: Cafe Soleil. It's not an overly fancy or show-offy menu, but every single dish I've tried has been delicious. The prices are very good and the wine list is small but well-chosen.

We all had to try the ginger, carrot, apple, cream soup, which sounded intriguingly delicious. And it was. I had the portabello napoleon which was served with a thin layer of hummus on the bottom. See? Not too showy, but an interesting twist. It was also very good.

Afterwards it was on to Chelsea's where it was like a reunion there were so many old (err..I should say "lifelong" instead) friends. It's such a warm, good feeling to be around people you've known since childhood.

Sunshine and Robin

Amanda and Robin

Our table: Jessica, D., Amanda, & Robin

Jessica, most likely 'splaining something


I've got the crazy eyes and Amanda is up past her bedtime

Sister look

Patrick and Sara Ann looking cute

The night ended pretty late and the next morning came entirely too quickly.

You should know by now that I tend to go pie crazy at Thanksgiving. This year was no exception. I have too many favorites! I put off making the four pies until Thursday morning.

I love going to dinner at D.'s mom's house because she pays careful attention to an underappreciated course: hor d'oeuvres.
Here we have three kinds of cheese (havarti, sharp cheddar, and buttermilk blue cheese), pickled okra, pepperoncini, roasted red peppers, olives, pickles, artichoke hearts, marinated asparagus and wild mushrooms, and a seafood dip she called a "shrimp scampi crab dip".....YUMMM. We popped the cork on a bottle of Domane St. Michelle brut and dug in. It was all I could do to stop after one plate....but I had to pace myself.

The gorgeous table, halfway set

Stella, sitting strategically in front of the dressing.

Chocolate cream pie, the homemade custard filling justifying the shortcut pre-made crust

Oh mama....coconut cream pie. Whipped cream instead of meringue, mm mm MM

Burnt pecan pie. I blame the unfamiliar oven! I plucked out the blacker pecans. I renamed it "toasted pecan pie" to try to make myself feel better. Under a blanket of whipped cream it tasted fantastic.

Why mess with a classic? Pumpkin pie, made using the recipe on the can of pumpkin.

We girls gave ourselves manicures. I'm mad about those massive, gorgeous eyes.

After the monster meal and dessert (four pies? Why?)....we dragged ourselves off the couches and drove back to Fayetteville. We fought off the tryptophan coma (requiring the sheer will of a gladiator) and went over to Orion's house that night in hopes of maybe playing some cards or seeing old friends.
Julie and her long, long legs

Orion, keeper of the flame

Flamingo Julie, amused Orion

Every step you take, every move you make, Blue is watching you

And THAT was only the 24 hours between Wednesday and Thursday nights....

1 comment:

AMD said...

I, too, sit strategically close to dressing as often as I can.