One Month Anniversary Dinner

Happy Three Month Anniversary to my wonderful husband! I guess newlyweds can't get around without being asked "how's married life?" That question has certainly been asked and my response is that I love being married to Patrick!

After our first month of being married I wanted to do something extra special. I planned a menu to use with our Waterford Brocade fine china that may have been a bit too ambitious. I set out to recreate our reception brunch. Patrick remarked that I should've saved this for our one year anniversary... but I'll probably just do it again then! As you read the post most of the recipe titles are hyperlinked to the original website.

September 10, 2013

August 10, 2013
September 10, 2013
Bloody Mary Shrimp Shooters
Sweet & Savory Shrimp Cocktail
Pimento Cheese Sliders
with Fried Green Tomatoes
Pimento Cheese Sliders
with Sun-Dried Tomatoes
Mini tarts with Mascarpone, Asparagus, & Ham
Mini tarts with Mascarpone, Asparagus, & Ham

First Course
August 10, 2013 & September 10, 2013
Mixed Greens Salad
with Sweet Tea Vinaigrette

Second Course
August 10, 2013 & September 10, 2013
Lemon Orzo, Peas, and Parmesan Stuffed Chicken
Garlic Green Beans
Macaroni and Cheese

Third Course
August 10, 2013
September 10, 2013
Tiered Wedding Cake
Vanilla Cake with Buttercream Frosting
& Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Red Velvet Cake
Sandwich Cookies
with Cream Cheese Filling

I was fancy enough to print this for the table (like Patrick said, much too ambitious for the one month anniversary). The one month menu was inspired from the wedding brunch. I didn't feel like I needed to copy everything exactly the way it was which gave me more flexibility in planning the menu.

Table Setting

After setting the table with our china and stemware I chose to decorate with felt flowers. I made these felt flowers with a few crafty friends for our rehearsal dinner. It's nice to be able to keep a remembrance of our wedding weekend.


Shrimp cocktail by Giada de Laurentiis
2 tablespoons olive oil                             1 pound jumbo shrimp, peeled, tail left on, deveined
1 tablespoon herbes de Provence            Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/4 cups plain yogurt                            2 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard          1 1/2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon turmeric                                 1/4 cup freshly chopped basil leaves

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp and herbes de Provence. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until the shrimp are pink and cooked through, about 2 minutes each side.

In a small bowl, mix together the yogurt, mayonnaise, mustard, maple syrup, turmeric, and basil until smooth. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Place the yogurt mixture in a dipping bowl.

Pimento cheese by kath eats real food slider with sun-dried tomatoes
8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese (about 2.5 c. grated)      4 ounce jar of pimentos
1/8 tsp kosher salt                                                         10 grinds pepper
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper                                                 1 tsp lemon juice
1/4 cup Greek yogurt                                    

Grate your cheese by hand or in a food processor. Drain pimentos well and chop, if necessary. Add to mixture. Add seasonings. Add lemon juice. Toss to mix through. Add yogurt and mash until cheese comes together into a dip and serve!

2 puff pastry sheets                                          30 g butter
1 onion, finely chopped                                    200 g ham, sliced
3 teaspoons Dijon mustard                               250 g mascarpone cheese
2 bunches asparagus, trimmed, halved              1 egg, slightly beaten
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shaved          

Melt butter in frypan and cook onion for 3 - 4 minutes. Finely chop ham in food processor.
Add onion, mustard and mascarpone and pulse to combine. Season to taste.
Spread mixture within pastry border on each square. Top with asparagus spears. Brush pastry borders with beaten egg. Bake 20 - 25 minutes till pastry is golden. Serve topped with parmesan.


Mixed greens salad with Sweet tea vinaigrette
1 cup sweetened tea                     1/4 tsp Dijon mustard
2 Tbsp cider vinegar                     pinch of salt
1/4 tsp honey                                6 Tbsp canola oil

Bring tea to a boil in a saucepan over medium-low heat; reduce heat to low, and simmer 9 to 10 minutes or until reduced to 1/3 cup. Remove from heat; cool 20 minutes. Whisk in vinegar, honey, Dijon mustard, and salt. Whisk in canola oil in a slow, steady stream.


Lemon orzo peas and parmesan stuffed chicken
Unfortunately I don't have a handy-dandy recipe for you here... I made this one up! I figured the entree title was obvious enough in what I needed to do. However I was a little concerned with making sure the chicken was properly cooked. I emailed myself the notes below for a similar stuffed chicken breasts recipe and followed that.
   For the orzo stuffing: boil 1/2 cup orzo in chicken stock. In the last minute or so of cooking add a small package of frozen peas. Once tender, drain and to the pot add the zest of one lemon and parmesan (however much you want for desired cheesiness level). I probably did about 1/4 cup.
   Slice the chicken breasts through the middle to create a pocket for the orzo mixture. Spoon the mixture in. I made two chicken breasts (we split one for the dinner and each had the other half of the second chicken breast as leftovers).
   Then “Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken breasts; cook until browned on one side, about 2 minutes. Place the chicken, browned-side up, on the prepared baking sheet. Bake until the chicken is no longer pink in the center or until an instant-read thermometer registers 170°F, about 20 minutes.”

Garlic green beans
   These are fairly simple and we make them a lot (see this post). For garlic green beans, I add minced garlic to then pan before the green beans then saute until the green beans are tender.

1/2 pound elbow macaroni                         3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour                                     1 tablespoon powdered mustard
3 cups milk                                                 1/2 cup yellow onion, finely diced
1 bay leaf                                                   1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 large egg                                                 12 ounces sharp cheddar, shredded
1 teaspoon kosher salt                                Fresh black pepper
3 tablespoons butter                                    1 cup panko bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta to al dente.

While the pasta is cooking, in a separate pot, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and mustard and keep it moving for about five minutes. Make sure it's free of lumps. Stir in the milk, onion, bay leaf, and paprika. Simmer for ten minutes and remove the bay leaf.

Temper in the egg. Stir in 3/4 of the cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Fold the macaroni into the mix and pour into a 2-quart casserole dish. Top with remaining cheese.

Melt the butter in a saute pan and toss the bread crumbs to coat. Top the macaroni with the bread crumbs. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and rest for five minutes before serving.


Red velvet sandwich cookies by That Winsome Girl blog
18.25 oz box red velvet cake mix              2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup canola oil                                     2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 oz cream cheese, room temp                 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp
1 teaspoon milk (I used half-and-half)      1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups powdered sugar, sifted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

To make the cookies, mix sift together the cake mix and flour, then stir in the eggs and oil.  Scoop* cookies onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Bake for 8-10 minutes in the preheated oven, rotating the sheet halfway through, or until the tops look cracked and the cookies have set.  Cool on the pan for a minute or two, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely before filling.

To make the filling, begin by beating together the cream cheese and butter until light and well combined.  Mix in the vanilla and milk, then beat in the powdered sugar until the mixture is completely smooth.  Using an offset spatula (or a pastry bag fitted with a large round tip), spread 1-2 tablespoons of filling onto the center of a cookie.  Top with a second cookie and press together until the filling reaches the edges of the cookies.  Serve immediately or refrigerate (if refrigerating, remove the cookies 1 hour before serving to allow the filling to come to room temperature).

*I used a 3 tablespoon cookie scoop which yielded 7 very large bakery-style sandwich cookies.  For smaller cookies, I suggest using a 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoon scoop.

Here's to many more anniversary dinners!

1 comment:

  1. I am so glad you are back with the blogging. I love reading about your meals. You really did go all out with copying the wedding meal. l am impressed!

    Love the flowers.

    Mike, I can't wait to start seeing some of your comments!