Preparing for the Solstice

zucchini bread from summer, pulled from the freezer and heated up and topped with homemade pear preserves from the Portland Fruit Tree Project harvest….YUM…

This Monday will mark eleven years since my first Solstice Party so many years ago in Seattle. An idea to bring people together from all walks of my life on a day that marks new beginnings rather than conventional religion or materialistic seasons. I mix cocktails, I serve hors d’oeauvres, I turn up the music, and open my home to friends from all my worlds.

Last year was tragic in that the snow, even in all its beauty, prevented anyone from venturing out. So this year, despite all my plans to be low key, I am turning it up a notch in my preparations. No, not glitzy crap, I mean just extra efforts in the kitchen to tantalize the tastebuds of my dear friends. Here’s what’s on the menu thus far…and yes, everything is homemade (I can’t think of anything worse than a Safeway party tray).

Drinks:
* hot toddies ala Kathy Madison – ginger infused fresh cider from the farmer’s market mixed with Maker’s Mark bourbon that has had cinnamon sticks soaking in it for the past week
* grasshopper martinis
* lots and lots of vino
* maybe a little champagne

Appetizers:
* spanakopita triangles with french feta
* caprese stuffed cherry tomatoes with basil from the garden
* roasted sweet potato paprika wedges
* hot artichoke dip with fresh dungeness crab
* garam masala deviled eggs
* marinated button mushrooms
* peppered smoked salmon from the farmer’s market

Desserts:
* lemon kulfi
* peppermint semisweet truffles
* pumpkin bittersweet truffles
* gingersnaps
* tiramisu

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