better than home

I love cooking dinner over wine with friends…obviously. But I love doing it most with Olga. Olga has a bajillion cookbooks reaped from the sale table at Borders and has stacks and stacks of Food & Wine magazine. I’m visiting Olga in DC whom I haven’t seen for one whole year! And as she knows me very well, she went grocery shopping for the occasion. Olga is my food partner in crime. I often hear her saying “everything in moderation” as she orders sinful desserts.  She travels even more than I do, and I’d choose cooking, drinking, dancing, and chatting with her over a night on the town any day! And staying with her is better than being at home (if I had one).

In DC, we hit up some yummy restaurants (Hank’s Oyster Bar, Mama Ayeshas), but spent most of the time cooking.

One evening, we made vanilla sweet potatoes, portabello mushroom sandwiches, and watermelon salad.  I wanted to use this recipe for sweet potatoes, but made some alterations. Firstly, I changed the sweet potato recipe because whole milk was $1 cheaper than heavy cream, and I thought it would serve just as well (it did).  AND as Trader Joe’s only had bourbon vanilla extract (boohoo), we went with that.  Autumn is delicious.

As for the portobello burgers, we sliced the mushrooms (no longer burgers) and sauteed them till soft. We placed them on the soft and chewy ciabatta (good DC bakery anyone?) along with sliced tomatoes and a yummy mixture of one avocado smushed with some TJ wasabi mayonnaise.

The watermelon salad was simply chunks of watermelon, chopped basil, and goat cheese.

We finished everything, including the wine (TJ’s $5 Nero D’Avola, introduced by Anna) and all was delicious. The best part was the company.

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