When my kids gave me a humongous 70th birthday party, over a year ago, my friends Fran and Gayla gave me a plaque that read "Happy Birthday to Judy Alter, Leader of the Front Porch Wine Drinking, World Problem Solving, Three Women in Publishing." The three women gathered again tonight, though it was too cold for dinner on the porch. Still we had a merry time, with lots of wine. I had meant to serve halibut but I had a dream the other night about choucroute garnie and decided I'd serve a choucroute paltter. The wonderful thing about our gatherings is that they hang around the kitchen while I cook. I had made a crustless apple pie and a casserole of the spinach I'd burned last night--okay, the part I didn't burn and you couldn't taste it. So tonight I made sauerkraut with chicken broth, white wine, onion, cloves, peppercorns, junier berries, and bit of brown surgar. I boiled fingerling potatoes until they were soft and put them in a skillet with onion, shallot and olive oil, and smashed them, stirring often until they browned. I boiled and then grilled sausages--two lamb, one chicken with apple, and one spinach/feta, then cut them up in chunks and served around the sauerkraut with the spinach and potatoes. Apple pie for dessert. We drank too much wine, talked about all the people we know, and had a lovely time. Off to bed soon, but tomorrow I'll fix a big brunch, and I think Jacob and Jordan will join us. Fran and Gayla brought a special bright Halloween cookie for Jacob.
Jacob woke up this morning crying hysterically--wouldn't let me touch his diaper, his pjs which were wet. He screamed that he didn't want me to turn on my TV or the kitchen light--I ignored him, turned on the TV and light, took him milk and turned on his TV, and went to brush my teeth. Pretty soon I heard, "Juju? I'm not crying any more." And there he was, sunny as always. We had lots of fun before his parents came to pick him up. After that the day was grocery, cooking, lunch, reading, nap--and then Gayla and Fran were here. A really nice day!