|My 'Taco Pot Pie' w/Toppings|
It was the college gang's* latest themed-dinner get-together and since this one just happened to be today, we did a Mexican theme, which I think we may have done before because I've had Deb's enchiladas before, but it didn't matter because everything was just delicious. One of our top five efforts, really. Along with the enchiladas, Deb did appetizers and sangria. Q made both a green salad and a grilled shrimp & mango salad and Mary made a super-delish pineapple souffle and slow-cooked pulled pork.
Uncle P made two new recipes: a beautifully colorful variation on rice and beans that included diced tri-color bell peppers & fresh cilantro and something that the recipe I based it on called "Creamy Taco Casserole." After making my personal adjustments to the recipe (which were minor and mostly cosmetic), it ended up being something (while truly very delicious) that wasn't creamy in the least, which is why I was so glad that I offered some toppings (tomatoes, green onion, sour cream & crushed Artisan corn chips) and am officially re-naming it Taco Pot Pie (though it's really almost a taco lasagna). I'm making it again for the Day Job's party on Monday, so I'm glad it worked. If you want my recipes, ask and they shall be yours.
Everything was flavorful and well-seasoned without being too spicy to enjoy it and the combination of dishes was superb; each dish complimenting and working with the others in happily surprising ways to create (you should forgive me) Mexican Umami. Most of us had seconds of almost everything. Then, after a bit of conversation came dessert: Q's cinnamon shortbread-like cookies and a chocolate layer cake. While there were lots of left-overs, not a single person left that table hungry. We've been doing these dinners for a very long and have a list we keep adding to (we just added "A Journey Through Time" which would require genuine period or era recipes) and hopefully will never finish. We always have a great time, whether the food is a win or a fail (and when they fail, they fail spectacularly - though there have been more wins than fails, thankfully). Tonight's Cinco de Mayo dinner was a major win.
*After all these years, I've decided we need a group name. So I think I'm having a contest or something. The person who submits the best name for our group will win... something. What you need to know - these are people who know me better than most of my relatives. Our goal is to create a cohesive themed dinner using recipes we've never tried before. Our rules are flexible. The food is simply a bonus and an excuse to spend time with one another. I hope you are lucky enough to have friends in your life like the ones I have in mine.
Enjoy the rest of your weekend! Submit your suggestion and/or ask for my recipes in "Comments."