Lest you think it’s all goat cheese and olive tapenade for the younger set around here, let me describe Nick’s choices for his second birthday meal. We had a moment of gustatory hope when he said he wanted “pink fish” aka salmon, but after considering that for a day, he retrenched to hot dogs. All natural kosher hot dogs of course. I neglected to defrost them in the flurry of birthday excitement in the morning, so here they are simmering in hot water to hasten thawing:
After thawing, we put them on the grill to develop just the right degree of crunch on the skin. A real hot dog needs to put up a bit of resistance before you get to all that sausage-y softness. (True confessions: I snuck a couple of burgers made with grass-fed beef and portabello and stilton on the grill for the adults. Nick didn’t notice).
To accompany the dogs, or sauccisons as I like to call them, Nick requested his favorite Mac and Cheese. This is a little intensive to prepare, but nothing but the best for my boy on his birthday:
(True Confession 2: This is supposedly cooked up for Nick at our house but a box disappears way faster than a two year old could get through it. It really is quite creamy and delicious. )
There were a few other dishes along the way — some tomato salad for the adults, some corn on the cob from the farm share cut off the cob for one who’ s not quite adept at cob handling yet, a splash of lemonade in a sippy cup, a splash of merlot for the elders, a bit of baguette. Here’s the feast, assembled:
I think I plated it wrong. It would have looked better on green.
Nick ate it with some enthusiasm, although none of his trademark “mmmmmms.” Naomi gave it a thumbs-up. All the boy really wanted for his birthday was a cake and a candle. He got those. He was happy. And lest you think we totally let our standards slip, there was homemade vanilla ice cream made with vanilla beans. Mmmmmmm.