Tuesday, May 15, 2012

A Big Happy Graduation Lunch


A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to surprise Clara-she thought it was a Mother's Day celebration. In fact, it was her own graduation party she helped prepare for!

Sixteen people eating, right after church. And the meal had to be gluten-free, and we had some other odd dietary things going on.


A giant fruit salad was a good starting place. A canteloupe, a honeydew melon, two boxes of strawberries, two of raspberries, one of blueberries, a quart of dewberries. A lime juice and honey dressing.


Mexican is good for gluten-free. We faked it with a giant platter of rice topped with black beans and then cilantro. A platter of flank steak broiled, sliced thin, and drizzled with chimichurri sauce. Another of chicken breasts, the same. Tortillas, guacamole, chips. All done the day before.


Flowers from the garden. Flan and fallen chocolate souffle to follow.


And grandparents everywhere! My stepfather Dan and my father beside Clara. Sweet for her, sweet for us.

14 comments:

seashoreknits said...

What a nice surprise! The table and flowers look so inviting and spring-like. Thank you so much for sharing the menu, Anna - I love when you do that. The food all sounds delicious and perfect! You noted that most of it was prepared the day before - does this mean the meats and rice dish were then served cold (or room temperature) or did you re-heat everything just before serving? Sorry for what may seem like a silly question, but as someone who has very little experience cooking for large groups, I am curious about these sorts of details - just in case I ever have the happy opportunity. Thank you for sharing, and congrats to Clara again on her graduation!

Lilian said...

What a lovely surprise and how fitting that she should be decked out in clothes once destined for the kitchen.

Anonymous said...

This is really sweet, Anna. I like that you were able to pull off a genuine surprise for Clara...what fun! :o)

Brenda

Sheila said...

Congratulations Clara!

Rose said...

Congratulations Clara and my very best wishes for the future. And congrats Anna on pulling it off.

Mrs.Rabe said...

Lovely!

Sarah said...

Looks like a great graduation celebration! Also, I found your menus very helpful as we frequently feed gluten-free friends/relatives around here too.

Anna said...

I did reheat the rice and beans in the microwave, but decided to serve the meats cold. Our microwave is a bit pokey.

Lisa said...

Oh, I so enjoyed this new view of your home. Sounds like a perfect party.

Lisateresa

Farrah said...

That's so great! I hope she had a wonderful time! As a step-parent, I enjoyed hearing that the biological and step parents are able to be in the same room.

Anonymous said...

Lovely post! A friend sent me the link to your site because I have been looking for a hutch much like the one(s) in your picture. I'm wondering where you purchased yours, or whether they were a wonderful resale shop find, not to be repeated! Thanks!

Lisa

Anna said...

Sadly, the china cabinet is a very old find. Glad you like it! I painted the natural pine white this winter, which was a little scary. But I love it!

Polly said...

What a lovely graduation party. I love how you tricked her into helping prepare for it--so sneaky! Congrats to Clara!

Pam said...

Congratulations, Clara!

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