July 5, 2011

Ina… My Go-To Gal

I have had more people over to the new place for dinner in the past four weeks than in all of the past four years! It’s because I actually now have a functional kitchen, with a huge stove, lots of storage space and counters longer than 14 inches. It’s also because I have space to entertain, either in the back yard or at the dinner table. July 4th 004For simplicity’s sake, I’ve started using several of the same recipes, so that I can tweak them each time, and so prep work for each dinner will be easier.

One of the recipes that I am really having a lot of luck with, and which the Chefs liked, is Ina Garten’s Roasted Vegetable Torte. ina's torte It’s a simple dish, and since you prepare it ahead of time and chill it, there’s no last minute rush. It’s vegetarian, and vegan, and even pretty low-fat. Here’s the recipe. You can tinker with it pretty easily, and the image above has goat cheese between the layers. I added a little basil and may use a balsamic vinaigrette drizzle for the top of it.

I have a couple of Ina’s cookbooks, and just received her “Barefoot in Paris” book as a housewarming present. Barefoot-Contess-in-Paris1 It’s on my bedside table now, and I am reading a little bit at a time each night. Soon enough, it will migrate down to the kitchen, and I will start using it!

Tomorrow’s dinner guests are two long-time blog friends whom I will finally meet IRL. I am so excited for this and will be on pins and needles all day until they arrive. The dapper Mr. Toad of To The Manner Born, arrives from Mayberry, somewhere in the Mid-West, 100_0468 and the easiest and most elegant Chris, arrives from Richmond, family in tow.FetchACure-475x587 I just hope I am able to keep pace with these quick-witted, bright and charming gentlemen.

{For those of you who have known me for a long time, I swear the aliens have not taken over my body! I think I am finally getting back to being me.}


  1. Sounds delicious!! And I envy you with your upcoming guests! They are two of my favorite bloggers as well. Have a wonderful time!!

  2. Have a fabulous dinner Meg....they sound like pretty fabulous company....xv

  3. "I think I am finally getting back to being me."

    I know exactly what you're talking about, been there. Welcome back...

  4. You go, girl! INA ROCKS! That's for sure! What a nice dinner party! I read Chris every single day (and am surreptitiously trying to tweak the wardrobe of my sartorially-challenged spouse as a result!) but am unfamiliar with Mr. Toad. I would love to be a fly on the wall just to eavesdrop on what I am certain is going to be very entertaining dinner conversation. Can't wait for a full report. I know you will be a very gracious hostess and your meal will be excellent!

  5. Sounds like a perfect ticket with Ina's recipe, your gift for entertaining and a great guest list. I love everything Ina makes- she is so easy to listen to/watch also....my favorite cooking show.
    Have a wonderful time, Meg!

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  7. I too love Ina! Her cookbooks are my favorite because the recipies are not only good and simple but they turn out perfect every time.
    Barefoot in Paris is my all time favorite.

    So glad you are enjoying your new place.

  8. Next time it will work out. I'll send a keg down there instead since he can't make it.


  9. What a nice dinner party! Have a wonderful time!

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