French style Sunday lunch…..

makes you want to stay at the table a long time...

It’s one of the great traditions in France…a long leisurely Sunday afternoon lunch….several courses(none of which are necessarily heavy), with a little wine or champagne. It’s one of my favorite ways to entertain these days, and a group of friends and I switch it around who will host a gathering once a month or so.

This past Sunday my friend Libby had the déjeuner du Dimanche( spelling?) at her house….two soups, bread and cheese, a salad course, berries and shortbread for dessert. When I commented that the sweet potato bisque looked fabulous, she said, “Well, it’s from your cookbook, so it’s all on you!”

Sweet potato bisque and some great bread....killer lunch

She had made sweet potato bisque-recipe here– from the Marquesa Inn in Key West(from when I used to host Great Country Inns for the Learning Channel). But what the recipe above doesn’t add, which mine does, is to sprinkle chopped smoked salmon on top when you serve it. The combination of the salty salmon with the sweet of the potato bisque is heaven. Really, really good.

A little cheese after the soup....

She followed it with a board of different cheeses, and a fresh green salad, and along with the bread…it’s a totally satisfying lunch….and you can spend a couple of hours eating, and talking about life with friends…you don’t get home late(just in time for a Sunday nap-hollah!). Also key…not too much work for the host.

Fudgy, toffee brownies...honey, pleeze...

                                         BEST BROWNIES EVER??

And while the berries and shortbread for dessert were perfect, another friend had brought some brownies she made….so easy, and  possibly the best I’ve ever eaten, with a toffee layer in the middle.

 Here’s how she did it.  Make a batch of Ghiradelli brownie mix batter as per the directions…put half the batter in a prepared 8 inch square baking pan.

Symphony Toffe-Almond Bars....

On top put 2 Hershey’s Symphony chocolate bars and plop the rest of the batter on top…cook as directed. Seriously, the toffee made these brownies so divine, I can’t wait to make a batch!!

Bananagrams..lightening rounds of Scrabble!

That evening, my daughter was over for dinner, and we played Bananagrams, which my son and the lovely Jennifer(who are Scrabble freaks and take no prisoners) gave us for Christmas. I think they are hoping that playing these super-quick games of Scrabble will encourage us to play more often, so that we will get better at it and when we do play with them….it won’t be so much of  massacre.

Her last game...but not her best....

But guess who was the big winner last night(no not me!)…my sweet daughter, the new blogger, rocked it. I won one game, the hubby won one, and she won the rest. Seriously, the girl is good…but then she did always test really high in spatial reasoning things….unlike her Mother. Ok, let me go do some real work….check you later!


4 Responses

  1. Donna,

    The lunch sounds delish, but the brownies are definitely something I will have to make (love toffee). Question for you…what size Symphony bar? And just place the candy bars right on top of the batter or break them up first? Thanks!

    As always, love your blogs!!!


  2. just got back from the grocery store getting salad and ingredients for brownies(I know, I know)…but the bars are one size it seems…they’re pretty big. I think when you see them you’ll see they are perfect for the 8 inch pan…and she just puts them on top, no breaking up. How easy is that?

  3. Nice.

  4. Hi Donna,

    I have followed up on so many things you write about on your blog. I am dying to try the brownies but am having a hard time finding the Hershey’s Symphony bar. Any suggestions on where I can find it.

    Thank you, Margie

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