Monday, April 12, 2010

Art of the Table and Killing Two Birds with One Stone

every year All Occasion Party Rental takes part in the Art of the Table fundraiser for the Carriage House. this year it returned to the Fort Wayne Country Club, after one year at Parkview Field (which, for some reason, folks did not like as well). the theme Kelli picked this year was Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives.
everyone usually does over-the-top "elegant" tables. we always like to just have fun. yes, i made that A-MAZING sign.

the gifts for whomever sits at our table for the luncheon tomorrow were autographed copies of Guy Fieri's cookbooks.

we owe a special thanks to our friends at Don Hall's Restaurants for supplying some finishing touches (the fry baskets-thanks Sam and Jake, and the upright napkin holders-thanks Cindy and the staff of the Tavern!)

some other tables being set up in the ballroom

of course Vera Bradley had a lovely table

tonight i poached some chicken to have for the week. i did this a few weeks ago, as well, and after talking to Erin (my go-to for bouncing cooking ideas back and fourth) i saved the poaching liquid, as to use as stock since it had good flavor. tonight i decided to have another go at it and make some stock with some GREAT flavor (thus the two birds with one stone-poached chicken AND stock. get it? do ya?). started with a classic mirepoix (onions, carrots, celery-the base for many a French soup or stew) and added some fresh parsley (made a run to the parents house after work to get it) and thyme from the garden, and a few smashed cloves of garlic.

placed the chicken breasts in the pan, covered with water, added the flavoring, a bit of pepper, and brought the pot to a boil.

let it simmer for about 2 or 3 minutes

then turned off the flame and let sit for 30 minutes

all done! the stock has a lighter flavor than if you actually made chicken stock and let it simmer for hours, but is quite good to use to cook rice or make a lighter summer soup.

and some juicy, FLAVORFUL, perfectly poached chicken.

as always, long before the rewards of fresh veggies, the garden supplies plenty of inspiration for using the (too many) containers I've collected. this is a modern delftware tulipiere-cobalt blue, though it looks black in the pic-filled with Darwin hybrids from the cutting garden.

some of the more specialized tulips (therefore i pick less) in the hallway

this is my current favorite-muscari and hyacinths on the bedside table. smells wonderful. i need to make a note to plant many more hyacinths this fall-maybe a row in the cutting garden so i can be merciless. (also-I've found the perfect color for the bedroom-HEATH MSL212. or maybe ASH BARK MSL211. shoot.)

and the stem of hellebore i picked, sitting on my desk.

1 comment:

  1. the chicken was tres flavorful? that's awesome... i'll have to try it!

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