Saturday, October 21, 2006


My friend, Joyce, (coincidence that we share the same first name) and former associate, contacted me suggesting it would be helpful, as well as fun, to exchange ideas, look for solutions to problems and solve cooking challenges. She quickly approached the plate with the first conumdrum:

Dear Gourmet Joyce:
I would like to “ask Joyce” about what I can serve for dinner on Saturday evening for a couple who are coming over. They invited us over for dinner a few weeks ago and I am reciprocating, but am having “cooking anxiety”. They have traveled the world extensively and they made some elaborate vegetarian dishes for us! I am not a cook – I am great at opening a bag of frozen food, toasting some frozen garlic bread, making a salad, and buying dessert from Fresh Market – plus serving enough wine or beer to keep their mind off dinner! What can a “non-cook” serve to these “gourmets”?
Thanks for any thoughts you have!!
Always not cooking,
“Anti-gourmet” Joyce S.

Unfortunately, my answer for 'easy' was a bit more ambitious than the writer intended, she informed me by return e-mail after receiving my suggestions. But she did say she would hunt down the ingredients, give the suggested dinner a whirl, and let us know about the results. I love people who rise to a challenge, don't you?

My suggestion was to wow the world traveled guests with the sophisticated yet simple roasted beet salad with goat cheese, (March Archives) then follow with a simple penne with home-made marinara sauce, (August Archives) purchased rolls and a nice red wine. The apple crumble with vanilla ice cream (September Archives) for dessert would put the meal over the top, reciprocating in kind with a meal that the best of cooks would appreciate.

So, Foodiefumblers, what say you? Was this too ambitious an undertaking for a professed non-cook? Let me hear from you and let's start a little spicy dialog! Comment below or send an email:

Joyce S, we hope dinner went well. Let us know what you decided to serve!

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