Before we moved into our new house, I swore I would entertain more if I only had a larger kitchen to cook in and a nicer space to host my guests in. However, as of yet, I have not done it, really, though I did have a memorial lunch for my parents a couple of months ago.
I enjoy cooking, and like feeding guests. Sometimes I know I go way too far with the process, in fact, preparing fancy menus for weeks ahead of time. That turns the process into something stressful rather than enjoyable.
I decided to cook a dinner for a few friends from yoga. I had gotten a lovely new cookbook from the library--Purple Citrus and Perfume--mostly Turkish and other middle eastern dishes, mezzes, dips, and a few entrees. The book is so appetizing and interesting, even though there are lots of ingredients I would have a hard time gathering up.
After some thought, I settled on a menu including both a light lamb dish (pastries containing ground lamb, red pepper sauce, and pine nuts) and a vegetarian one (red lentil balls with pomegranite). However, I found these to be unpopular choices among my guests, so had to reshape the menu entirely. I am a little unsure about how the new choices will turn out, but I'm anxious to try them. I decided to do satsivi (Georgian chicken in walnut sauce), a Turkish rice pilaf with pistashios, and tomatoes with pomegranite and sumac, a middle eastern spice that tastes lemony when used in small amounts. I'll serve this with fresh lavash from the Persian market, a fresh baked flatbread that is so popular that the line stretches through the whole store sometimes. I plan to go early in the morning though, before the line grows so long.
I probably will just pick up some baklava or make a fruit crisp for dessert.