Saturday, June 16, 2007

Party Food

So my neighbor had a party last night, and being the supernice person that she is, she invited me. It was a potluck and book-swapping, which sounds a lot more boring than it actually was. The invitation was for 730, and when I showed up at 745, I was told that they were on "European time", which apparently (and I am not kidding at all) means 2 to 3 hours late. So I went home, watched a few more people show up early (but only a few -- apparently most people were able to decode the secret arrival time properly) and knit for a while. (FO bag is almost done and I'm excited!) And then went back over, got happily tipsy (on a Brazilian drink called a caipirinha: ice cubes, lime juice, brown sugar, and lots of rum), and met a bunch of people, including a six-degrees-of-separation fellow Ohioan. And a random person who promised to go to the zoo with me. When it's not 10 billion degrees outside.

But anyhow, the point of this post is the food :) I'm a little potluck-shy, being a vegetarian and all, but most people brought stuff that I could eat. (Or brought wine.) And here's what I made.

Strawberry Cheesecake (I got the cheesecake recipe from a woman in my new SnB -- she got it from the Kraft website. The strawberries are all me.)

1 8-oz package cream cheese (low fat or fat free is fine)
1/3 cup of sugar
1 8-oz container of cool whip (low fat or fat free is fine), thawed (I microwaved it for 15 seconds)
1 premade graham cracker crust
1 lb strawberries, sliced very thinly (about 1/8" thick)

Let the cream cheese soften (mine sat on the counter for about 30 minutes in summer weather), and place in bowl with sugar. Using a hand mixer, beat for 3 -4 minutes, making sure that the cream cheese is whipped (you do not want "chunks" of cream cheese). (I left my hand mixer at home when I moved -- I did it in a food processor and it took about 30 seconds to mix.)

Add the container of cool whip and mix for a few minutes until everything is fluffy. (Again, about 30 seconds in the food processor.)

Spread a small amount of the cream cheese mixture onto the pie crust. Add one layer of sliced strawberries. Alternate cream cheese and strawberries, ending with cream cheese. Decorate the top with strawberries and refrigerate for a minimum of 3 hours. (This is really good, but it tends to ooze a little once it's cut -- and it also doesn't cut cleanly. So have a spoon nearby...)

Basil Bean Dip (modified from this recipe)

1 head garlic
1 15 oz can white beans, drained and rinsed
3 T oil (preferably olive, but I used canola)
2 1/2 tsp red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (this is spicy, you can use less if you'd like)
1/4 cup fresh basil (I never actually measure this)

Peel the garlic and slice the end off of each clove. Place the garlic into a saucepan of boiling water for 5 minutes, then remove from heat and drain. Place all ingredients except basil into a food processor and process until smooth. Adjust seasoning as desired. Slice the basil into strips as thin as possible and stir into the dip. (You can put the basil into the food processor with the other ingredients but then you often get big uneven pieces of basil.) Serve with chopped vegetables (carrots, red and yellow peppers, broccoli, cauliflower) and pita chips or bagel chips.


Blogger Cabbage said...

Bag? What bag?

Sunday, June 17, 2007 6:19:00 AM  

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