Friday, May 15, 2009

Ladies' Lunch

By Millicent K. Brody

How long has it been since you’ve attended a ladies’ luncheon? Westfield resident Lisa Bleich opened her home to more than twenty guests who participated in the planning and preparation for The Westfield Symphony House Tour, which will take place Saturday, May 16.

An array of interesting dishes were tastefully set out on the island in her kitchen. The ladies were invited to gather their tableware and help themselves to a glorious selection of tasty treats. You may want to prepare the Leek Tart for dinner with a salad.

Carol Leone’s Refreshing Raspberry Tea

4 Celestial Seasoning Red Zinger Tea Bags
4 Regular Tea bags
6 Cups water
1/4 Cup sugar
2 cups juice drink: Ocean Spray White Cranberry or Strawberry
Sliced lemons for garnish

In a large saucepan, heat water to almost boiling. Remove from stove. Add all ingredients. Steep tea bags in water until you get strong tea. Remove. Stir in sugar and juice drinks. Let cool. Serve over ice. May also be placed in glass pitcher. Garnish with lemons.

Lisa Bleich’s Pasta Salad
The recipe was originally taken from Better Homes and Gardens Prize Tested Recipe contest. I adapted some of the measurements, but the recipe was originally submitted by Mary Ann Dell.

1 box medium sized pasta (shells, rotini, campanelle)
2 bunches fresh asparagus spears, bias-sliced, 1-inch pieces
4 bunches green onions thinly sliced
4 large navel, Cara Cara, and/or blood oranges
1 package feta cheese
1/3 C. fresh mint
4 Tbs. olive oil
2 Tbs. white wine vinegar
1 tsp. salt

Cook pasta according to package directions. Add asparagus the last 2 minutes of cooking. Drain. Rinse with cold water. Drain. Transfer pasta and asparagus to large serving bowl. Add green onions, mint, and feta cheese. Using a serrated knife, remove peel and white pith from three of the oranges. Halve orange lengthwise, then slice crosswise. Add to pasta mixture.

For dressing: From remaining orange, finely shred 3 teaspoons peel. In a screw-top jar or tupperware squeeze juice from 1-2 oranges. Add orange peel, olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Pour over pasta mixture; toss to combine. If too dry, make more dressing. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour or overnight. Toss before serving. Makes 10-12 servings.

Lee Corcorcan’s Delicious Leek Pie

6 leeks, white part chopped
1 prebaked pie crust (Try Trader Joe’s).
3 tsp. butter
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup half and half
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/3 lb. Gruyere cheese
1/4 lb. Parmesian cheese
salt and pepper to taste.

Heat oven to 375 degrees
Follow directions to prepare pie crust. Melt butter in saucepan.
Sauté leaks in 2 Tbs. butter and 1 Tbs. oil. until soft. (about 10 minutes). Remove from pan. Add 1/2 cup water, and 1/2 cup chicken broth. Stir to blend. Add cheese, half and half, salt and pepper. Blend all ingredients. Place leeks into the bottom of the pie crust. Cover with cheese and cream mixture. Bake for 30 minutes or until top is golden. Remove from oven. Allow to set for ten minutes. Slice into wedges and serve.

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