So I made this yummy Salmon Chowder last night for our small group gathering, but I don't have the recipe as it was a do it as I go sort of thing. The greatest part to me was the pureed celery root, which if you've never tried it you truly must and this is the season to do it. Quick, go do it before time runs out.
Aside from the salmon chowder, I have to say that I love my small group and how it's made up. We are in this transition period. You know the transition of figuring out how to meet together, have adult conversations, while seven little monkeys all under the age of 3 are running, crying, & shouting around the house. Nonetheless, we're figuring out our rhythms and it just might be working.
We meet twice a month as a large group where we share dinner. I make the main dish and everyone brings something else to share. It's this beautiful meld of hospitality at it's finest. We see each other as we are, much like the dishes we bring. The food doesn't have to compliment one another, be exquisite, or honestly, it doesn't even have to taste the best. What it is is that we are simply taking time to breathe, love, & enjoy one another.
Our meal last night was salmon chowder (which I took inventory of what I had and threw it in the pot), leftover salad from the previous night and some corn thrown in on top, freshly picked blueberries with sliced strawberries, and sliced watermelon from the day before. Then, there's our group, a campus pastor, stay-at-home moms, linguist, financial advisor, nutritionist & physical trainer, baker & cook, horse instructor, engineering, & economist.
There is a realness and understanding that we don't have it together, that we might come grumpy and distraught, that marriage isn't easy when you have toddlers and babies, and we might even say some stupid, "why did I just say that?" sort of things. It's not perfect, it's not polished, and sometimes it's not always fun, but I would say that there is a mutual appreciation, respect, honesty & love, which permeates through our gatherings.
Here's something quick you can pull out with company, your family, or give to someone who needs it. It's a combination of sweet, tangy & crunchy.
Cabbage-Apple Salad (printable recipe)
This recipe is adapted from Epicurious
half of green cabbage, sliced thinly
2 apples, sliced thinly
1 cup chopped pecans
2 teaspoons butter
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
pinch of cayenne pepper
pinch of kosher salt
1/8 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
2 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
Put butter in a skillet over medium-high heat till melted. Add pecans and stir to coat them. Cook while stirring for about one minute. Add brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, cayenne & salt; stir till nuts are coated, about 1 minute. Transfer nuts to foil or parchment paper to cool.
Combine olive oil, rice vinegar, apple cider vinegar, & dijon mustard. Stir to combine & set aside.
Put your sliced cabbage & apples in a bowl. Add your nuts and pour dressing on top. Combine and serve.