Monday, July 7, 2008

Summer salads

When we moved into our NY apartment (OMG, 3 YEARS AGO!) we held a house warming party and invited all our friends over to party with us. Even though we had very limited space, the party turned out to be a lot of fun, and everyone ended up partying until the wee hours.

Moving to Boston was exciting, but one of the things I was really thrilled about was throwing another house warming party. Having decided to push the party off until May, when we could use the patio, I had planned it in my head at least 37 times. This type of anticipation is a sure sign of disappointment, but everything went off a couple weekends ago without a hitch.

We had 15 people over, and although the forecast was for rain, it held off for the most part and people were able to enjoy the patio. My good friend SS came in from NY to be my assistant and I put her to work cooking and cleaning all day (she even did my bathroom!) and by the end we were both exhausted. It was well worth it though, and I think everyone enjoyed the food. We made,

Hamburgers & Chicken Sausage with Homemade BBQ sauce
Spicy Cole Slaw
Copper Pennies
Black Bean Salsa
Grilled Vidalia Onions
Green Salad
Red & White Sangria with Pineapple, White Peaches, Mangos and Pears

The star of the night was the BBQ sauce, which I keep raving about. The sangria was a close second though. I loved the cole slaw, which was a recipe I borrowed from Smitten Kitchen. The Copper Pennies made it feel like summer.

Copper Pennies are an old family recipe. My mom makes them year round and as a kid (ok really until I was 24) I wouldn't touch them. Then at Christmas a couple years ago my cousin forced me to try them and I realized they are AMAZING! So here is a quick one out of the family cook book.

Copper Pennies

3lbs. carrots
1 medium onion (diced)
1 small green pepper (diced)
4 stalks celery
1 can tomato soup
1/2 cup salad oil
1 cup sugar
3/4 cups vinegar
1t mustard
1T Worcestershire sauce
salt & pepper

- Slice and cook carrots until they just begin to soften.
- Mix the rest of the ingredients into a marinade.
- Add the carrots to the marinade and let them sit over night.
- Serve cold.

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