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The Commemoration of the Dedication of the Basilica of St. Mary Major

What’s for supper? Vol. 42: In which I forget that fifty guests are coming

Simcha Fisher - published on 07/08/16

whats for supper aleteia



I had the worst time making a meal plan on Saturday. I struggled and sweated, crossed things out and switched things around, compared prices and looked up recipes and finally came up with a week’s worth of food without too much repetition, a few new dishes, and some wiggle room for busy days. Not bad!


The whole time, I was thinking, “This is a good week to try out a few complicated recipes, because next weekend I’ll be getting ready for the fourth of July, with fifty guests or so, and I’ll be too exhausted to do much. Phew, thank goodness the 4th isn’t this week.”

Well, you know how that worked out. So I hadda go back.

I treated myself to a whole new piece of paper.


Grilled ham and cheese, asparagus tart, strawberries, grilled bones. Yes.

I’m going to tell the whole stupid story, but I’m warning you, it’s stupid.

On Sunday, we were cleaning the house, fixing up the yard, and prepping food for tomorrow, so I wanted a quick, easy meal to throw together.

grilled bones

We were supposed to have savory ham sandwiches on Saturday, but I couldn’t find Hawaiian rolls, so I bought frozen rolls. Which the kids put into the freezer when I got home from shopping, so they were too hard to bake. Because this was the perfect time for them to realize that civilization really does depend on people putting things away. So I took them out again on Sunday, and . . . someone put them back in the freezer again. So I was reduced to making grilled ham and cheese, and then we also had strawberries that were being devoured by flies, and asparagus threatening to go rancid.

And, a ton of very meaty pork ribs. I had bought pretty much all the pork in the world for spiedies, realizing way too late that it would have been sufficiently delicious to just grill some pork ribs, rather than cutting the meat off bones, trimming it, cutting it in chunks, and then stringing it on skewers, which are just basically artificial bones. I was, by this time, in the same state of mind as Dave Barry’s wife, when he caught her opening boxes they had never opened from their last move, taking out the contents, and packing them into new boxes so they could move. Except with pork.

So that all went into the fridge, and then we had all these bones, and also tons of marinade, because I don’t know how to make enough of something; I must make outlandishly excessive multiples of everything.

garlic and lemon zest

Go ahead, make the “mother of ten children” joke. I can take it.

So we grilled those bones, and they were good.

The three-ingredient asparagus tart, I made purely out of spite, because I was hot and supper was already crazy late, and I was still mad about the freezer rolls. I don’t even know what fontina cheese is. I used mozzarella, colby jack, and parmesan, I think.

asparagus tart

So of course it was delicious. The whole freakin’ meal was delicious. Even the freaking ham sandwiches on regular bread.

ham and swiss

The cookout to end all cookouts!

Hamburgers, hot dogs, spiedies, veggie burgers, pasta salad, vegan pasta salad, vegan bean salad, potato salad, chips, pickles, watermelon, corn on the cob, enough beer to float an aircraft carrier, and enough cookies to make a young child’s mind pop like a piece of popcorn.


We also had ice cream but I pretended to forget about it, because I had forgotten to buy spoons.
We also had Dark and Stormies, which is my current favorite summer drink. The party got pretty wild at one point

juniper and dog

but things settled down when my father brought out the gross of sparklers and the fireworks


which we set off before it was even really dark, because we are old and tired and halfway dead. We read the Declaration of Independence, we drank beer, we jumped on the trampoline, played in the stream, poured sand on our heads, and laughed and chatted and had a magnificent time.


Leftovers to end all leftovers!

Actually there wasn’t all that much left over. There was my mother-in-law’s mixed bean salad, though, which I ate for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

bean salad

I don’t have the recipe yet, but my best guess is:

Chick peas
Black beans
Kidney beans
Roasted red pepper
Roasted corn
Red pepper flakes?
Lime juice?


Hostages; harsh browns

The kids made this while I died. I don’t even remember Wednesday. It was so hot.


Chicken fajitas with radish relish; corn chips; Flushies

Chicken, pepper, and onions with generic Mexicanish spices and sour cream on tortillas. This is the same dish I was unimpressed with last week; but I made it again because I was dying to try the pickled radish thing a few readers suggested.

We have a bumper crop of radishes in our pathetic little garden this year. It goes so nicely with our bumper crop of dislike for radishes. But they are so byoootiful, I love them anyway.


Gorgeous! I could just eat them up, if they didn’t taste so much like radishes.

I misplaced the actual recipe, so I just sliced a bunch of radishes up and mixed them with fresh lime juice, a little white vinegar, a little sugar, some chopped jalapenos, and some chopped cilantro, and then let it all sit for about half an hour. Kicky! Snappy! And most of all, byoootiful:

pickled radishes

They really were pretty good along with the chicken. Hot meat with cool, crunchy veggies is so nice in summer.

chicken and radishes

Oh, so the Flushies. I had a little temper tantrum at supper (something about how I have to beg and plead people to come sit down so they can do me the gracious favor of eating the food I’ve prepared for them), so my husband had me go lie down while he took all (all!) the kids out for those chipped ice drinks with red syrup in them that you get from the 7-11. You know, Flushies.



There’s some basil languishing in the garden. I think I’ll gather it up, mix it with pasta, and call it a week.

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