The last two days have been a whirlwind of spontaneous fun. While visiting my grandma for her birthday yesterday, Dave got a call that our two friends from Wauwatosa unexpectedly had the weekend off and asked if it was a good weekend to visit. We practically shouted from Green Bay “Yes!” We haven’t seen them in almost a year and have been trying to plan a visit for months now.
We invited Dan and Emily back over and went to the grocery store for supplies. On the menu: marinated chicken, watermelon salad, corn on the cob, and brussel sprout and chicken pizza.
While Dave worked his magic cutting up the whole chicken, I set to work on the watermelon salad. I made this last summer and loved the interesting combination of flavors.
- 1/4 watermelon, cubed
- 4 oz feta cheese
- 1 small red onion, diced
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Using Alton’s trick (after Dave showed me), I cut the rind off the outside with our electric knife.
Then finished slicing and dicing with a butcher knife. It has been such a long time since I’ve had watermelon–I ate quite a bit while I was cutting it up. Mmm. Tastes like summer.
I cried, per usual, while I was cutting the onion.
If I was smart, I would have left the watermelon cubed on the bottom, then layered it with the feta and red onion and drizzled it with balsamic to make a prettier composition.
Instead I shook it all up together, making it look not quite as pretty. But appearances can be deceiving–this is a wonderful summer salad.
Topped with a homemade tomato sauce made with diced tomatoes, minced garlic, basil, oregano, fennel, and red pepper flakes.
Then topped with a sauteed yellow onion and three minced garlic cloves.
And finished off with the brussels sprouts and mushrooms.
Em prepped the zucchini and portabella appetizers, and we headed outside to our tiny patio to enjoy the beautiful evening.
It was so much fun hanging outside on the porch with Gaelic Storm music streaming from inside. We finally headed inside to eat at about 9:00pm.
Corn on the cob, pizza, watermelon salad.
The pizza, finished off with a shredded grilled chicken breast and a few ounces of Parmesan cheese.
Maybe it was the company. Maybe it was the beer. Or maybe the food really was just that good. But my plate of food tasted like everything that is awesome about summer. I didn’t even mind getting corn stuck in my teeth.
We spent the rest of the evening inside playing a great game Tess and Jake brought called Wits & Wagers, listening to music, and talking. Several beverages were also consumed.
The girls were all in bed by 1:00am, but the guys were up til 4:30am. Still, we were all up, dressed, and ready to eat again by 11:30 this morning.
We headed to the Mustard Seed cafe for a breakfast and lunch combo. The food here is so amazing, I couldn’t help but take photos of everyone’s meals.
I ordered the Harvest Panini, a housemade grilled zucchini walnut bread with sliced apples, cranberry chutney, and provolone cheese (I asked them to hold the shaved turkey). Served with the side of the day, which turned out to be a cold and tasty vegetable salad and some fresh pineapple and cantaloupe.
Dave got Shrimp and Grits, which he just claimed he will have dreams about tonight. I snagged a bite and it was so creamy and delicious! I would love to try my hand at making shrimp grits sometime.
Tess ordered the Bananas Foster French Toast, which I decided would make a fantastic birthday breakfast….
Jake ordered the Peasant Omelet, always a good breakfast choice after a night of revelry.
Em ordered the Cajun Scramble but was even more in love with her side of Cinnamon Raisin toast.
And Dan got the Huevos Rancheros, another recipe on my to-make list.
We spent ten minutes inhaling our delicious food–I was loving my Harvest Panini sandwich. I knew I could have eaten the whole thing, but I wanted to do yoga later so I saved half of it. Always better to exercise on a not-full stomach.
We said goodbye to our friends with plans to meet up again this summer. Bob Harper is calling my name, so I’m going to do some warrior yoga, then relax and watch a movie with Dave. Ah, weekends.