( WordPress, the blog hosting sight that I use to publish my blog, is hosting a “Daily blogging” challenge and I’m thinking I just may give this a try. I’m challenging myself to write a post a day. Not necessarily a long post, just ‘something’ every day this month, starting today. They offer a prompt and on days when I just don’t know what to write about I may take advantage of the ideas, like today….)
Boy do we love to host dinners! A big part of what we, as a couple enjoy about hosting dinners is, believe it or not, all the planning and Strategizing about what to serve, we enjoy the debate about what entree to prepare with what side dishes, and what appetizer to serve and then what to prepare for desert. Then Scott starts to research online for new and interesting recipes (not that he’s ever followed a recipe!, they serve as inspiration for him) One of our favorite ways to share a meal is to enjoy an array of Tapa’s, a variety of small dishes. We think It’s just good fun to experience several different small dishes instead of the traditional plate full of food. A Protein, a starch a vegetable, blah, blah, blah, how boring. Not boring to eat mind you because I’m most certainly a fan of all those ingredients that define a traditional dinner. But it’s not always, in our opinion, so fun to prepare the same thing, meal after meal. When we prepare a meal for our friends, it’s a gift really, and we like it to be special. In addition to finding and trying to prepare new and different foods.
My husband is the cook in our house and I’m the lowly sous chef. Well, not “lowly” just not at all interested in the actual ‘preparation’ of the food. We make a great team because my forte is in the table-scape! I love to set the table. Picking out the dishes, doing a centerpiece and creating a beautiful place to gather with people we like to spend time with. I get great pleasure in setting the stage, candles, flowers, you get the idea. Given the fact that my table is always ready for the meal way before the meal is ready to consume, I naturally make myself useful by doing any prep work the cook assigns to me while simultaneously cleaning up after him, of course. (eye roll here!) And may I add here….my man, while he CAN COOK, he’s exceedingly messy while he’s doing it! He leaves no pot or pan unused! As I roll my eyes during this part of my narrative I should add that, I jest, the entire process from menu planning to shopping, prepping, cooking and yes, even cleaning, when we’re working along side one another we’re enjoying our time together. Some couples enjoy jogging together or hiking or reading the paper in the morning over their coffee, but we cherish, cherish? Well, that sounds slightly dorky, okay, how bout, “thoroughly enjoy” preparing special meals for friends and creating a gathering and sharing our home. To us, this is good fun.
When a gathering at our dinner table is in the making we begin with the guest list. How many should we invite? We’ve found that, in our opinion, 6 to 8, people is a perfect sized gathering. Of course, if you are a reader who has known us from our Los Altos days then you may be familiar with our gigantic, blow out! Hollyween parties! Yea, that may have been a few more than 6 to 8 people. Believe it or not, they started out smaller and then through the years grew until the last one was close to 200 people! Whew!! While we enjoyed throwing those parties, I never really got to socialize with anyone as I would have liked to. That’s just wayyyyy too many people to actually sit down and enjoy entertaining, a different form of entertaining for certain. The more intimate gatherings are my cup of tea these days.
Given the fact that we’ve just made a major move to Panama and are just now, five months into it, getting settled, we’re only just getting back into the swing of entertaining. It’s a little different for us, given the fact that all the people we know so far are very new friends. And this house we’re renting isn’t exactly stocked with all the kitchen equipment we’re used to cooking with, so it’s an adventure preparing meals like we enjoy preparing. We’re slowly beginning to host small gatherings and have done it about three times so far. In order to continue hosting these small gatherings that we so enjoy, we’ve had to search out certain ingredients and even had to purchase a couple basic things like a cheesecake pan, measuring cups,mixing bowls, a hand mixer (Scott is jonesing for his Viking Mix-master!!) . It’s funny, you don’t realize how much you depend on certain little conveniences until you don’t have it. I don’t think I ever remember cutting up a boiled egg with a knife instead of using that handy little egg chopper! Ha! Most of the silly little gadgets and kitchen conveniences are easily found here in Panama, but we have a 40 foot container that we plan to ship out here and we already own all that good stuff and are trying to live without it now. It seems frivolous, and unnecessary to buy things that we know we already have.
I see, as I’m winding up my little essay, that I’ve veered terribly from the prompt! Oh well! That’s just too bad…hah! I just started writing and here’s what I ended up with. Writing about dinner and hosting a dinner , naturally lead me to talk about how and why we, as a couple , enjoy entertaining. I’m going with it! I soooo enjoy writing, it’s fun, therapeutic and just a new way for me to express myself. Please forgive any grammatical errors and limited vocabulary, I’m not a “writer”, I just enjoy writing.