Birthdays are a big deal in our family. And since most of our family doesn’t live here, we often bestow our birthday love on our friends out here.
What this usually entails is this: a special dinner. Sometimes it’s a favorite meal. My husband, for example, always gets Alaskan king crab. When I was growing up, it was lobster. For others, it can range from their standard favorite to something new they would like to try. This is when things can get interesting.
Making a new dish can come with complications. Or, a.k.a., mistakes.
Take the time when I made a salty ice cream recipe. I, being a salt lover, got a little heavy handed with the seasoning. While it didn’t completely ruin the meal, we all needed a large glass of water when we finished.
Then there was the time my mom fixed a big celebration dinner with some kind of homemade chili. Not sure how much cayenne she added, but the entire table was sweating.
Now, we both take our “birthday experiment” dinners more carefully. I made a cake for a friend last week and followed his mother’s recipe to a tee. It turned out perfectly. The only addition I made (which he was skeptical about) was the addition of fresh whipped cream on the side. I went light on the added vanilla to ensure the flavor was not overwhelming. Complete success.
Next up it was my mother’s turn again. She was making a birthday dinner for our friend, Ellie. She planned a new meal, but luckily it had good instructions with it. It turned out perfectly. The funny part? Ellie didn’t think it sounded good, but never said anything. So when it turned out perfectly, she was very pleasantly surprised.
Mom got the following recipe from Bon Appetit. She made it as presented and it was delicious. My favorite part was the pistachio relish. This would be good simply with grilled chicken breasts to save time if you don’t want to make the entire meal.