Picture the scene: Sunday afternoon, four of us around the table. Plates of spaghetti, olives marinating in their brine. Champagne fizzing out as we talk about house cats and a nephew’s christening and the problems we’re having finding a good plumber.
Picture this, too: Fifty degrees and rainy outside. The dogs’ paws soaking as they jump up to greet my family. Myself, sweaty from a hot stove and chasing my niece around the house. Eating bits of cake with my fingers and a second glass of champagne just because.
I had my family over for a Mother’s Day lunch. She’s always been my best friend, so I wanted to find a new way to tell her I love her.
What We Had
The salad looks a lot fussier than it was. I mixed a bed of greens in a dressing (blitzing some olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and a shallot in a processor), then topped with radishes, Granny Smith apples, goat cheese and walnuts. Seasoned a bit more and that’s it.
Spaghetti with homemade marinara, zucchini, and mushrooms
Green beans tossed in pesto and topped with goat cheese and walnuts, a la Nigella Lawson’s recipe in Nigellissima
A big tray made with whipped cream, creme patissiere (sub vanilla pudding - no really!), poundcake and soak it all in a flood of macerated strawberries. Top with basil and sparkling sugar