September 15, 2010

A Cocktail Cruise with Big Girls, Small Kitchen {Naptime Entertaining}

Pear and Gorgonzola Crostini

What’s Going on Today: Preparing for a fun cocktail cruise on the boat with Phoebe from Big Girls, Small Kitchen!

Naptime Goals: Make Guacamole, prepare Pear & Gorgonzola Crostini, chill wine.

Tonight’s Snack Menu: Ina’s Guacamole, Pear & Gorgonzola Crostini, Shrimp Lollipops from Phoebe!

Parenting Lesson of the Day: Tell them that Dora always wears a life jacket and they will, too.

One of my favorite parts of our August Vineyard vacation was the chance to catch up with old friends. As luck would have it, my pal Phoebe, one half of Big Girls, Small Kitchen (we missed you Cara!), spends her summers on the Vineyard, too. Since we like to make a point of catching up now and then, when I was there we planned for a mid-week cocktail cruise.

While my daughter napped that afternoon I whipped up a batch of Ina Garten’s Guacamole. Phoebe is a fan and friend of Ina’s, so it seemed like a fitting tribute to bring along a nice big bowl of her awesome guacamole recipe. With the guac in the fridge of the afternoon, my next step was making the Pear & Gorgonzola Crostini. Yes, I know, Phoebe is a fruit-hater, but I was determined to sway her just a little bit with this awesome appetizer. For the record, she did take a bit and declared it yummy, though I don’t think she’ll ever make a batch by her own volition.Shrimp Lollipops

Around 5pm we zipped my daughter into her life-jacket. I wish to say that was a simple one-two project, but it was not. We had to convince her to Dora and Olivia always wear life-jackets when they go on boat rides and she finally agreed that be “just like Dora!” (I swear, what we do to keep these kids safe?!) Phoebe arrived, bringing with her amazing Shrimp Lollipops and my husband captained our boat around Vineyard Haven harbor for a fun look at all the boats. Sadly, Phoebe could not stick around for dinner, a mussels feast the beat the band, but we had a wonderful cocktail hour. Nary a speck of food remained once we reached shore. Would you expect anything less? I can’t wait to make some of her lollipops, the recipe for which can be found here. I am already planning what I can make for our cruise in Summer ’11!

Guacamole

Recipe

Pear & Gorgonzola Crostini

Ingredients

1 baguette, cut into slices ¼″ thick
3 ripe pears, sliced thin
2 T. butter, unsalted
½ c. crumbled Gorgonzola

Instructions

Today’s Kitchen Tools: My favorite Chicago Metallic Jelly Roll Pan for toasting crostini, available on my Amazon Store!

1. Preheat oven to 400ºF. Line baguette slices on a baking sheet and toast for 10 minutes, or until bread is lightly golden brown.

2. Meanwhile, in a saute pan over medium-low heat melt the butter and add the pear slices. Stir the pears very gently with a wooden spoon for about 6-8 minutes, or until pears get softened but not too mushy. Remove from heat.

3. Place a pear slice on each toasted baguette slice and sprinkle with a generous pinch of Gorgonzola. Repeat until all toasts are covered. Return to the oven for 2-3 minutes, or until the cheese is slightly melted and a little brown on top. Serve.

Naptime Notes

Naptime Recipe Serving ideas

Sometimes I drizzle a touch of honey over the pear and cheese. It provides a nice sweet contrast to the tangy cheese. These can be made an hour or two ahead of time before you want to eat. Simply pop them in the oven right before you want to serve them for a quick reheat and they’ll be all set to serve.

Naptime Stopwatch

Making this appetizer takes a total of 20 minutes during naptime.

Naptime Reviews

To have a fruit-hater take a bite was extremely flattering. My daughter was not a fan of the blue cheese, but the rest of us chowed down! I’ve served these at parties too, they are always a hit.