Lemon Roasted Prawns

IMG_6045Preparing a lunch the other day for visiting friends, I was wrapped up in a gluten-free, vegetarian, lactose intolerant, garlic-free menu preparation.  I really don’t mind being given parameters to cook from, as it simply narrows down the field of options.  Which is not a bad thing as it helps me to be creative.

Recently I read an article about Instinctos. I suggest you read up on it rather than me trying to explain it in any detail.  The basic premise is that an Instincto is guided by their sense of smell of raw foods, and when the right smell is found, they eat it.  As I have now found the hardest people to serve food to, I won’t complain again about someone’s life choices when it comes to food.

Here’s a very simple garlic-free recipe for prawns that I came up with for the meal.  The prawns were delicious, and I noticed more than one person sucking the cooked lemon away from the peel. Continue reading

Shaved Asparagus & Fennel Salad with Prawns

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Earlier this week, I prepared a dinner for six that I’d offered for our island’s annual fundraiser auction.  My original intent was for a homey 3-course dinner.  As the bidding kept going, and the price topped out at $400, I felt that I could do more.  My sister and I created a 6 course plated meal instead.

As I mulled over the menu, detailing it over and over again, I reminded myself that it was the end of August, and that the meal should speak to the time of year, when the evenings are cooler, the sun is set well before bedtime, and yet we are still desperate to hold on to some of the laziness that summer offers, even if just for a few more days. We’re looking forward to the arrival of fall meals, and eating them around the dining table, inside instead of out.

The meal started with a watermelon and heritage tomato amuse bouche, followed by this salad, moving to a chilled avocado bisque, followed by a plate with sautéed late summer vegetables and grilled chicken with fresh blueberry sauce, on to a plate with roasted mushrooms, shallots, and garlic with grilled strip loin and greens beans as we moved from late summer into fall, with the last dish being crème brûlée with pistachio meringues with an miniature fruit salad of early fall fruits.

Listening to the social chat of the guests, with the drawn out bits of silence as they tuck into the meal, is one of my favourite soundtracks, so easy to work away with it playing in the background. Continue reading