Monday, August 19, 2013

Sandwiches and Happy Hour for Kids

Glimmerglass Opera - inspiration for this week's column

sandwich from a loyal reader of this blog

My lunch inspired by your article... Just before the idea to sprinkle chopped pistachios over the tomatoes.  A basic BLT but with the addition of some home grown avocado,  a smear  of fresh pea puree on 1 side of  toasted home made bread.  Obviously the other toasted slice had a wisp of Hellmann's. 

 It was delicious! - Mr. Guy, The Peninsula House, Las Terrenas, D.R.
Not just sandwiches on my mind - although they do make eating a meal a convenient exercise - but also cocktails.
I refer to the time spent with the friends mentioned in my article.  I was happy to be their guest at the same time that their daughter, and grandchildren were also in residence.   Somewhere around 5:30 - 6 pm when there's a universal desire for an apertivo - a little preprandial cocktail, something to stimulate the appetite(should you need to be coaxed - or not).
I tried to explain the concept of happy hour to the kids, ages 5 - 10 - and talked about the Shirley Temples of my childhood and started to remember the ingredients for the cheerful, non-alcoholic cocktail named for an equally cheerful child movie star (MUCH older than I).   Grenadine is the addition that gave the drink its color and faint flavor.  Grenadine is made with pomegranates I said.  And that's when Rita, my host, said that she had some pomegranate molasses.  Then Tessa, the 8-year old, middle grandchild, and I created an eponymous cocktail for the minors in the group to enjoy.

Tessa thought that adding edible pea blossoms to the straw would identify the cocktail.  She was right. Her comment after her sip - "It tastes a little like Gummy Bears."  High praise, don't you think?

makes 1 drink - highball

1 teaspoon pomegranate molasses
a few splashes orange juice
lots of ice
2 - 3 sprigs fresh mint
sparkling water
a straw
edible pea blossoms for garnish

Add the pomegranate molasses to a highball glass.  Add the orange juice, ice and mint.  Pour in the sparkling water to fill the glass.  Stick a sweet pea blossom into one end of a straw.  Use the straw as a mixer, and stir/muddle all the ingredients together.  Sip.

Campari, soda and mint for the adults

Chicken-of-the-woods mushrooms which were harvested right after this photo was snapped - grilled with garlic and olive oil, garnished with freshly chopped garlic  - eaten with dinner.

SUSANSIMONSAYS:   another thing to do with what will soon become a surfeit of vine ripened tomatoes (isn't that the  way it goes - you wait and wait for them and all of a sudden there are mounds and mounds of them and not enough time to make everything you desire?).
I call this Pan Valenciano because that's what I understood it to be called when I ate it in Barcelona years ago.  I think that it's also called Pan Tomate. It's simple: Cut a baguette in half, lengthwise (or any bread); cut a very ripe tomato in half and squeeze and smear it on the bread; drizzle extra-virgin olive oil all over the bread and sprinkle with coarse sea salt.  Bake at 350 degrees F. until the bread is golden and appears crispy.  Eat with just about anything.

Allegra either fishing for frogs or eating some grass

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