Wednesday, January 1, 2014

New Year's Eve Dinner For Two

My hubby and I haven't gone out on New Year's Eve since our son was 2 months old, which was 31 years ago! We have hosted a few New Year's Eve dinners but prefer to spend the evening with just the two of us.  We never see midnight, unless someone calls or nearby fireworks wake us up. Party poopers we may be!

This year I set us a table in front of the fireplace using silver, white and purple in the chargers, plates, napkins, candles, flowers and confetti. Just because we're eating in doesn't mean it can't be a nice experience.  It wasn't all fancy, though, as we were dressed in our flannel pj's. That might have taken the romanticism down a notch or two! But, that's one of the advantages of staying home, not having to get dressed up!

Our dinner started out with a simple iceberg lettuce wedge salad.  My hubby loves this type of salad.  I jazzed it up a little bit with some chopped tomatoes, boiled egg and crumbled bacon.
Our main dish was luscious and one I will make again, Lobster Pasta with Herbed Cream Sauce (recipe here). The original recipe called for live lobsters.  I have two problems with that. One, they are hard to come by in central California and, two, I don't have the heart to put a live lobster in a pot of boiling water.  Sorry, just cannot do that! Instead, I bought 3 lobster tails and steamed them before proceeding with the rest of the recipe.  This dish was so good, I can't imagine that using whole, live lobsters would make it any better.
Part of this recipe involves infusing the warm cream with herbs and the lobster shells, then straining.  The sauce is almost like a lobster bisque. Later, the pieces of pre-cooked lobster are added back to the sauce and mixed with the pasta.
We love fresh, homemade pasta but the process has always intimidated me. Why, I don't know, as it's really not that difficult.  Over the last few years I've made pasta more frequently and each time it gets easier and less intimidating.  I had no problems making the fettuccine.  In fact, it was going so easy that we were talking about what pasta we would make next (ravioli, in case you're interested!) I have a pasta attachment for my KitchenAid mixer which makes the process even easier.
The only problem with eating at home is there are no busboys or dishwashers to clean up the mess! So we took a break to do some dishes, clean the kitchen and let our meal digest before having dessert. It was worth the wait. I made Panna Cotta which, in Italian, means cooked cream (recipe here) and topped it with mixed berries.  It was light and airy, just enough of a sweet so that we knew we had dessert but didn't leave us feeling stuffed.
As a sign that this is a "real" event you can see that I failed to notice the charger had pasta spilled on it.  Oops! So, I won't be winning any photo awards!
It was nice to have a quiet evening at home.  We are both CPA's and about to get slammed with tax season.  Quiet dinners won't be happening again until after April 15.  Some nights we'll be lucky to even have dinner! So, we toasted to the new year knowing the next few months will be crazy but knowing we will make it to the end, we always do!

 I am linking up to Tablescape Thursday!

1 comment:

  1. It sounds like you had a lovely New Years Eve complete with a very special dinner. I think staying home on that evening is the perfect way to say both goodbye to one year and welcome to a new one. I love lobster so appreciate you sharing the link to the recipe. Wishing you a happy 2014! MM