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    RUTHXG   44,804
40,000-49,999 SparkPoints

A great meal for company!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Last night I feasted--a belated birthday dinner for me, at my house with my "creative group" of longtime women friends. I was in charge of the main course & veggies (by my choice), & the rest was supplied by my friends. I had planned to grill outdoors, but an unexpected thunderstorm nixed that (the rain was MUCH needed), so I switched to my oven's broiler. I thought I should share the menu, because it was a very simple meal that felt luxurious & included treats but did not stuff us.

MAIN COURSE: (cage-free humanely raised) chicken thighs, skinned/boned, larger bits of fat removed, brushed with Trader Joe's barbecue sauce, grilled under the broiler for 5 minutes on one side, 3-4 on the other.

VEGGIES: cherry tomatoes, sliced green/yellow/red sweet peppers, two small skinny eggplants peeled & sliced, tossed with a little extra virgin olive oil + dried thyme & oregano leaves + diced fresh chives, arranged on two cookie sheets with raised edges, set in the oven on a shelf below the chicken for about 8 minutes, then broiled for a few minutes, stirred in the middle of that time.

SALAD: leaf lettuce, sliced tomatoes, diced fresh parsley, a few sliced almonds, eaten with balsamic-citric dressing.

BEVERAGES: my friend brought champagne for my birthday, & we drank the bottle among four of us, so that was one treat--but we also drank cold water steeped with a few crushed sprigs of mint, stevia, & lemon verbena, all of which I have growing on my back porch; my friends just LOVED it, declared it the Best Water Ever! emoticon

DESSERT: amazing handmade chocolate mousse-raspberry concoctions brought by another friend--so you see, we actually had something quite decadent!

For me the chicken was a treat, as my housemate & I eat mostly legumes & nonfat cottage cheese & yogurt & occasional eggs for protein. And since we eat so frugally overall, an occasional splurge on deboned/humanely raised chicken can fit easily into our budget.

Roasted/broiled/grilled veggies with the EVOO & thyme/oregano (from last year's porch plantings!) tastes like a splurge but isn't. I actually picked out some of the sweet peppers from my neighborhood grocer's mark-down rack. Herbs are just a little touch that makes the veggies truly special.

Notice that we didn't have any high-carb food (potatoes, rice, pasta, bread, etc.) on the menu. Those foods are important to include in one's diet day to day, but omitting them from this meal left room for the rich dessert. And no one felt deprived.

And it's just so lovely to drink cold water with crushed mint/stevia/lemon verbena! I recommend that you grow your own herbs so you can have little luxuries like this often--0 calories! emoticon

Member Comments About This Blog Post:
NANASAMM 7/21/2012 6:44PM

    Happy belated birthday! Sounds wonderfully delicious. I love boneless, skinless chicken thighs and veggies. My son made chicken kabobs. Yummm

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MTULLY 7/21/2012 11:22AM

    What a fabulous way to celebrate your birthday! Nicely done!!!

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ANIHAKA 7/20/2012 4:12AM

    I came across your page on the Starfish team counting fibre & exercise. Will be using your idea of water plus lemon verbena as I heard that herb is good for bringing down blood pressure. Sounds like a great barbeque.


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EYES_ON_THEPRAZ 7/17/2012 12:15PM

    Yummmm! sounds like an awesome birthday feast!! emoticon

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CZARINA_TV 7/15/2012 1:51PM

    That sounds like a great birthday party! Happy birthday (again) Ruth!

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SUZBOISANNE 7/15/2012 5:52AM

    Happy Birthday to you, my friend. Sounds like you had a fabulous feast with friends you enjoy and vise-versa! May all your birthday wishes come true and your year sparkle and shine brightly. All the best!!! emoticon

Comment edited on: 7/15/2012 5:52:43 AM

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BABY_GIRL69 7/14/2012 6:08PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
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emoticon emoticon Happy Birthday Ruth!!

God bless & glad you enjoyed yourself!


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MOMFAN 7/14/2012 3:53PM

    emoticon emoticon

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RUNNERRACHEL 7/14/2012 3:53PM

    Wow, sounds so delicious! what a wonderful dinner! Thank you for sharing. My taste buds are imagining it all! Especially that water. Sounds so good. I'd love to try to make it.
And it's nice to read that you had a great birthday dinner with this group of friends!

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MACMOM57 7/14/2012 3:25PM

    Wow sounds like you had an awesome dinner. Happy Belated Birthday.

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