Monday, April 21, 2008

A Party for the Girls

Today is my friend, Mrs. M.'s, 26th birthday. A ripe old age...sorry to give it away, Mrs. M! ;)

I had the bright idea to invite her over for a tete a tete birthday celebration. Well...Miss Evie and our doggies ended up joining us for the party which made for quite the entertaining crowd. I made Chicken Salad Contessa (one of Ina Garten's recipes) on big, buttery croissants, served it with crunchy chips, a pickle and sweet tomatoes.

It was one of those golden days that you are convinced is the very temperature heaven will be with a perfect breeze. I couldn't resist dining alfresco.

Since my attempt at chocolate Bavarian cream in little individual goblets flopped - it tasted okay but the consistency was dreadful, I hurried to a bakery and bought scones and called it a day. A minor setback, to be sure. Paired with fresh strawberries, we fared just fine.

And here is a picture of half the party:

Two of my favorite blondies. Loca, Mrs. M.'s sweet doggie, is waiting for her share of droppings from the table. If you look closely you can spot Teddy relaxing in the shade...

Happy Birthday Mrs. M! I hope you are putting your birthday gift to good use soon!

Chicken Salad Contessa
from the Barefoot Contessa

2 split (1 whole) chicken breasts, bone in, skin on (1 1/2 lbs)
Good olive oil
Salt and Pepper
1/2 cup pecan halves
1/2 cup walnut halves
1/2 cup good mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon leaves, divided
1 cup grapes, cut in 1/2
Lettuce leaves, for serving

Preheat oven to 350.

Place chicken breasts, skin side up, on a baking sheet and rub them with olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Set aside until cool.

When the chicken is cool, remove meat from the bones and discard the skin and bones. Cut the chicken into a 3/4 inch dice.

Meanwhile, place the pecans and walnuts on a separate sheet pan and toast in the oven for 7 to 8 minutes until golden. Set aside to cool.

For the dressing, mix together the mayonnaise, sour cream, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Fold in half the chopped tarragon leaves.

Place the diced chicken in a bowl, add the pecans, walnuts and grapes. Pour the dressing over the chicken and toss well. Sprinkle the remaining chopped tarragon leaves on top, and serve on a bed of lettuce leaves.


[not the] Best Blog Ever said...

That food you prepared would look delicious even if I weren't ravenously hungry, but since I am - it looks especially delightful. :)

Nicely done!

Mrs. B. said...

Thanks! It was really yummy and easy!

Sandy said...

Yummy, Yummy, Mrs. B!
I loved this post :)