Friday, December 16, 2005

Gabriel's Birthday Dinner

Tomorrow we celebrate Gabriel's 40th birthday with a 10 person dinner party. We're going Greek this time (Gabriel's half Greek) with a few Geneva touches. He is not big on deserts but he LOVES dark chocolate and once a year he eats a Napoleon (or as he calls it, a "mille feuilles"). So today I dropped the ball and decided to buy the puff pastry or "pate feuillete" rather than make it. Making it is very time consuming and I'd say it takes at least one complete failure before you get the hang of what to do. Maybe one day I'll tell you about that process.

Here's what's on Gabriel's Birthday menu: (recipes to follow in the next few days)

Pelion olives and roasted nuts
taramasalata (cod roe dip) with bread

Primo piatto: spanakopita (spinach pie)

Secondo piatto:
uvezzi (chunks of lamb shoulder in a casserole with orzo pasta and tomato-oregano sauce)
spezofai (Greek loukaniko sausage fried with onions and green peppers)

Traditional Napoleon with a filling of pastry cream and blackberry jam topped with sugar fondant
A Geneva "Marmitte": a *soup pot shaped dark chocolate container filled with marzipan vegetables

*The soup pot made of chocolate and the marzipan veggies symbolize an old myth. On December 12, 1605 the forces of Savoy tried to invade Geneva but and old lady at the edge of town heard them coming and dumped her huge pot of vegetable soup on the head of one of the soldiers thus sufficiently scaring the others and giving enough time for Geneva's army to prepare to repel the attack.


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