This post will be short and sweet, just like the prep time for the dinner party I threw tonight. You see, a dear New York-by-way-of-Texas friend of mine is moving next week. What's that? Where, you ask? Oh, she's moving to Napa Valley. Yeah... that's right. We don't feel so bad for her. Instead, we feel bad for ourselves because we're going to miss her seeing her beautiful face, hearing her infectious laughs and listening to her puppy dog-Baxter stories more than she knows.
So, to celebrate/cry about her departure I had a couple of the girls over tonight for one last dinner from the kitchen-closet. The caveat here is that while earlier in the week I had dreams of baking a fresh baguette, pulling my own pasta, simmering a ragu and sending her off with a home-baked strawberry-rhoubarb pie, it all came down to 40 minutes of prep time and a fridge devoid of ingredients.
Luckily, with Real Simple on the brain (our 10th Anniversary event is in NYC at Grand Central tomorrow from 12-7pm ::shameless plug!::) I remembered an article in the back of the May issue and threw it in my purse as I dashed from the office at 5:40pm intent on meeting my guests on time at 7pm.
A quick stop to the grocery store and then I was home rolling pizza dough and layering ingredients. It's almost a joke how good the dinner turned out given the ease in which it was thrown together. In fact, I could kiss Sara Quessenberry and Kate Merker (our Food Editor's) for the brilliance of the article "10 Ideas for: Pizza Dough" and for making me look like a hero chef tonight.
It literally took me under 40 minutes to prep these two dishes, and that's including a slow 15 minutes thinly slicing the red potatoes since I still don't own a mandolin (I know, I know). And the girls loved them... bonus.
I'm off to bed but wanted to share my latest feels-like-I'm-cheating-cause-they're-so-damn-good dinner recipes. Give 'em a shot!
Potato and Rosemary Flat Bread
Shape the dough (1 pound whole-wheat pizza dough, at room temperature) into a large oval; place on a cornmeal-dusted baking sheet. In a large bowl, toss 2 thinly sliced red potatoes, 2 cloves sliced garlic, 2 tbsp. rosemary leaves, and 2 tbsp. olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Scatter evenly over the dough and bake at 425 F until golden brown, 25-30 minutes.
Salami and Spinach Stromboli
Shape the dough into a 12-by-15-inch rectangle. Top with 1/4-pound sliced salami, 4 cups fresh spinach, and 1/2-pound thinly sliced provolone. Working from a short end, roll up the dough. Place seam-side down on an oiled baking sheet; brush with olive oil. Bake at 425 F until golden brown, 25-30 minutes.