Dinner with Friends on the Lake

June 14th, 2010

The table on the porch was set and ready to go. We watched the weather report. Storms were popping up all over the mountains. This was an important dinner because my blogging friend Penny and her hubby Mr. Comforts of Home were expected. We had a cooler packed with a French Rose wine and appetizers to be enjoyed on the boat. All looked well when they arrived.

Penny and Penny ready to go for a boat ride.

The sun was shining and the lake was awash with boat traffic which made for a choppy ride.

We enjoyed our cocktails and appetizers. Penny and Mr. Comforts of Home were delightful and we really enjoy their company.

David loves to give people a tour of the lake and even though the skies became threatening suddenly, he had just one more thing to show us.

Even though we sped back to the cottage, we all got drenched. But you know what? It was fun. The rain did not last long, we dried off and David fired up the grill and soon dinner was ready.

The menu was Grilled Garlic Lime Pork Tenderloin with Red Onion Marmalade. Click here for the recipe. We also had my garden Southwestern Squash Casserole which I just recently posted, coleslaw, and Sweet Potato Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing. The sweet potato recipe came from Bobby Flay and has been a favorite of mine for a long time.
6 slices bacon, medium dice
1 red onion, finely sliced
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
4 large sweet potatoes, peeled, cooked and cut into 1-inch dice, kept warm
Salt and freshly ground pepper
4 green onions, finely sliced
1/4 cup chopped parsley
Heat pan over high heat. Add bacon and cook until just crisp. Remove bacon to drain on paper towels. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of the fat. Add onions and garlic and cook until soft. Remove pan from heat, add vinegar, olive oil, sugar and reserved bacon. Place the potatoes in a large bowl, pour the dressing over and season with salt and pepper. Fold in the green onions and parsley. Serve at room temperature.

Because it has been so hot and steamy lately, I decided to make a frozen dessert. What could be better than a Toasted Almond Mocha Ice Cream Tart redolent with coffee ice cream, Amaretto, chocolate and almonds. I love desserts that you can fix ahead of time. The recipe appeared in a 1992 issue of Gourmet.
For the crust:
1 1/4 cups chocolate wafer crumbs (about 25 wafers)
1 cup sliced blanched almonds, toasted lightly, cooled, and ground fine
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, melted
For the filling:
1/1/2 cups sliced blanched almonds, toasted lightly and cooled
3 1/2 tablespoons Amaretto
2 pints coffee ice cream, softened
4 ounces fine-quality bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine (about 1 cup)
1/4 cup sliced blanched almonds, toasted lightly and cooled
1 ounce fine-quality bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine or grated
Make the crust: In a bowl stir together witha fork the wafer crumbs, the almonds, and the butter until the mixture is combined well, pat the mixture onto the bottom and sides of an oiled 10-inch fluted tart pan with a removable rim, and freeze the crust for 30 minutes, or until it is firm.
Make the filling: In a food processor blend the almonds, scraping down the side occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until they form a nut butter, and with the motor running add the Amaretto. Add the ice cream and the chocolate and pulse the motor 6 to 8 times, or until the filling is smooth and combined well.
Transfer the filling to the crust, spreading it evenly. Garnish the top of the tart with the almonds and the chocolate and freeze the tart, uncovered, for 1 hour. Cover the tart with plastic wrap and freeze it overnight.

Penny brought me the most beautiful linen dish towels. She knows me well and these will look beautiful in my kitchen. They also brought us a fine bottle of French wine. Nothing could be finer than spending time with friends. Visit Penny’s blog for more pictures of our visit.

Printable recipe Sweet Potato Salad

14 responses to “Dinner with Friends on the Lake”

  1. I wandered over from The Comforts of Home. You live in a beautiful spot.

    I enjoy any discussion of food and if recipes are posted so much the better. I’ll be reading through your archives.


  2. Penny, we had the best time! It acutally was even fun getting rained on! Dinner was delightful, and I look forward to the next time we get together. I am glad you posted your recipes….they were great and I want to try them out!

  3. Big Dude says:

    Ah the good life – looks like a good meal and a good time even if you got a little damp. That’s why I have an old folks pontoon boat with a cover and side curtains – a lake outing is almost a guaranteed rain generator.

  4. It all looks so delicious and even more so after an afternoon on the lake.

  5. Karen says:

    Sounds like you had a great time. Coffee ice cream is a favorite – that tart looks so good! I think everybody should try potato salad with sweets… what a difference it makes!

  6. What a great day!

    Just checked out the pork loin recipe… on my list now

  7. Lyla says:

    Perfect! Thanks for a summer dessert I am sure to use and an evening on the lake with friends. You write so well, I feel as if I’m there. How nice that you and Penny2 have become such good friends through your blogs–the world is smaller and smaller thanks to the wonders of the Internet and a love of all things food.

  8. Bella says:

    What gorgeous towels! I just read about your excursion on Penny’s blog. 🙂 The sweet potato salad sounds divine. Glad you both had such a nice time.

  9. I can’t wait to try out your recipes. They all sound delicious!!! I printed them all out to add to my recipe file. Thanks so much. Love & blessings from NC!

  10. Oh my – things have been very busy at our house so I haven’t been by for a while. Oh my – what wonderful recipes I now have to try. We have our first vegetable garden this summer and we ate some yummy baby squash a couple nights ago. Thank you for sharing your casserole recipe and your dinner with friends so scrumptious! I’ll let you know how they turn out.

    Thank you so much!

  11. I am off to visit Lake Lure for the very first time tomorrow. I stumbled upon your blog via Comforts of Home after running a Lake Lure google blog search. After seeing these gorgeous photos (on both your blog and Comforts of Home) I can’t wait hop in the car and go!

  12. I just came from The Comforts of Home to say hello. Your dinner looks so delicious! Thank you for the recipes, and it’s good to meet you:>)

  13. Kitchen Rat says:

    Toasted + Almond + Mocha + Ice Cream + Tart = Decadence.

  14. Sounds like everyone had a great time. A little rain never hurt anything, especially with friends. You certainly made a great meal Penny.

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