Sunday, July 5, 2009

4th of July Good Eats & Music & Laughter

I have mentioned, several times, that my husband doesn't cook. Well, he does-- but his repertoire is very limited. He grills a great burger and he'll follow instructions on grilling-- as long as I give him a timer.

Craig surprised me by making this very delicious, and healthy salad, to bring to my brother's BBQ for the 4th of July. The recipe is posted at the very bottom of this page.

Before I share the recipe-- and I think it's worthy of being shared with all of you-- I have to say that I drew some interesting reactions from guests who met me for the first time. Someone asked why I was taking a picture of a salad. My brother's girlfriend, Susan, quickly explained that I'm a "Foodie" and I have a food blog.

Fred's friends took it in stride, and eventually started teasing me when it was time to eat dessert. I was asked if I had photographed it, before they started serving themselves. Can you fellow food bloggers relate to this?

My brother made his wonderful grilled shrimp. Fred butterflies the shrimp and marinates it in olive oil, lemon, garlic, herbs and salt and pepper.

He grilled these with sausages and some beef, for the carnivores...

But, I only had eyes for the shrimp ...

This tasted great with Craig's salad and the Garlic Cheese Bread that I made. I have a confession to make-- I did not make the Texas Sheet Cake, like I said I would. My brother said that they had plenty of desserts, and they were right. These were two of my favorites:

Pictured: a slice of "Avocado Pie and Gayle's Bakery Flag Tart"

Thanks, Ashley, for bring this beautiful tart from Gayle's Bakery--filled with pastry crema and fresh berries and whipped cream!
An interesting dessert that was brought by Ilene (if I'm spelling your name wrong, please email me and I'll fix it)... who made "Avocado Pie". Yes, that's right. Avocado Pie! How Californian is that? Truthfully, I had to pause and try to visualize what that could taste like. At first, I couldn't get past the thought of guacamole pie.

I tell you the truth-- it was delicious! It reminds me of key lime pie, but a lighter more chiffon texture to it. Ilene says she'll give me her top secret recipe, but I had to promise I would not post it. It's top secret. Sorry. Has anyone ever made this? So, here's a photo of it. I'll have to recreate this, because it was light and very refreshing.

My brother is a life-long musician and a darned good photographer. He's getting ready to market his private collection of photographs-- including the Monterey Pop Festival 1967 (yes, I was there). He has beautiful black and white photos of Janis Joplin, The Grateful Dead, Brian Jones (one of the original members of the Rolling Stones) and many famous musicians of the '60's, 70's and 80's.

Pictured: Craig and a few of Fred's own photographs. If you're a "Dead Head" then, you'll recognize Jerry Garcia on the lower left, Dizzy Gillespie.
I took a few shots of his small dining room that he has converted into his music equipment room. If you're a fan of groups like the Eagles, Fleetwood Mac, Doobie Brother, Moodly Blues-- and so many other groups-- Fred has all of his backstage passes mounted on the wall. There are so many. He has signed drum sticks from "The Who", a piece of Jimi Hendrix guitar, autographed... Rock & Roll memorabilia! This is truly, a bachelor musician's home.

Of course, a visit to my brother's house always ends up with his friends plugging in one of his vintage collection of guitars and the singing and music starts up. I've grown to love this. Pictured on the bottom right is Peter Cor, who has written several songs for Earth, Wind & Fire (and is very low key about telling you). He's from New York and I adore his infectious laugh and sense of humor.

Yes, I had a lot of fun. Susan and I got caught up in photographing each other!

I so would love to have that camera, but I think my brother would notice it was gone.
If you find yourself in Santa Cruz on July 26th for the "Wharf-toWharf race", keep your eyes peeled for his group "The Noisy Neighbors". Every year, there are dozens of bands who set up along the runner's route (which is right where my brother's house is"). If you like to hear true rock 'n roll, request any song and I guarantee they can play it. You never know which celebrity or studio musician will be playing music-- Santa Cruz is known for surfing, music and a lot of "earth muffins". It's an interesting place to visit.

Southwestern Bean Salad

My husband made this salad for a potluck BBQ. This ...

See Southwestern Bean Salad on Key Ingredient.

Enjoying Life,

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Monica H said...

Looks like you had a great time!

I have never heard of avocado pie, but I am definitely intrigued because I don't like them, but I want to try this. If we can't have the recipe, can we at least know what's in it? Does it taste like avocado at all?

Tht tart is so pretty!

Donna-FFW said...

Looks like one fabulous time.. That salad looks absolutely delicious. I will make it for my next function!! So colorful.

Ashley said...

Thanks for posting the photo's taken at the 4th of July BBQ. Not sure which was my favorite: all the delicious food, hanging with friends or the joyful sounds played in the music room! Together they made a fun & memorable afternoon.