So Did We Eat Dinner on the "Groovy Retro Tablescape"?

I am joining Michael at "Design by Gollum" for Foodie Friday. Stop by and see all the awesome goodies people are making! And see the beautiful and easy St. Patty's Day cake Michael is showing us today! Beautiful!

So, yesterday was tablescaping day. I confess, we actually sit down and eat a meal at about 50% of my tablescapes. I am trying (keyword: trying!) to get my tablescape done on Saturday and then have a sit down pretty meal using the tablescape on Sundays.

Well, we did eat dinner at this tablescape. Woohoo! LOL If you are thinking Diann went fancy or schmancy, you might as well leave this post and go on to another! LOL I did the whole, "What do we have that I can make for dinner". There was no running out and buying any groceries. It was a "Well, see where this goes" kind of meal.

I did have to remove the little corner candles to make way for food.

To start out, I knew I wanted to make up some garlic herbed butter to go with a yummy loaf of cheese bread I had. I make herbed butters pretty regularly. We grow our own herbs and garlic so, we always have PLENTY of both on hand.

Making herbed butters are super easy and are so tasty! Here is what I used:

I am getting better at just making enough for two so, I used 2 tablespoons of butter (softened), one small clove of garlic, just a few drops of olive oil, sprinkle of salt and a pinch of herbs. The herbs are a dried mix Troy put together. He wrote a post about it back in the summer when he made it. To see what herbs are in this butter, just head over to this post.

Put everything but the butter into the mortar and pestle and grind together. Take out the garlic skin (way easier to do after you grind).

Scrap into the butter and mix.

I have a real weird obsession about butter looking pretty. LOL Even if it is just Troy and I, I like to mold the butter. So, I just grabbed a couple of measuring spoons and put the butter into them and popped them in the fridge.

Next I had a package of quick sale pork shoulder strips that I needed to cook. These are so not our favorite, but let's see what we can do with them.

I cut out as much of the fat as I could and got rid of the bones. I cut them into chunks, threw them into a stew pot. I added about 1 and 1/2 cups of white wine, splashed in some soy sauce and plum sauce, thyme, marjoram, rosemary, salt and pepper.

I put a lid on it and let it stew on medium heat for about an hour. I chopped up a green pepper, an onion and grabbed a can of pineapple chunks.

I drained the broth into a different pan and added the juice from one can of pineapple and about 1 tablespoon of cornstarch and whisked. Woohoo! Look at that action shot! LOL A little swirling action for ya!

Since I really like pineapple infused with the flavors and it really doesn't break down very quickly, I went ahead and dumped the pineapple chunks into the broth and let simmer for about 15 minutes.

Then I poured the broth back in with the meat, put a lid on and lowered the heat.

Got some rice cooking. This is my favorite rice!

Okay, since this was a retro tablescape, I wanted to have some kind of retro-ish ingredient to the meal. I had this recipe filed away for quite some time. It is for "Wedge Salad". I know, that is just a chunk of lettuce but, the recipe is for the dressing. I have always seen the Wedge Salad with Roquefort dressing. This recipe is for Roquefort dressing. However, all the dressing I have seen is the white creamy kind. This one is way different. This recipe is from 1916 from a book called, "Salads, Sandwiches and Chafing Dish Recipes" By Marion Harris Neil.

Here is the recipe:

1 clove garlic
1/4 teaspoonful dry mustard
1 saltspoonful salt
1 saltspoonful paprika
3 tablespoonfuls vinegar
Olive oil
3 tablespoonfuls Roquefort cheese
2 hard-cooked eggs
Place the lettuce wedge in a salad bowl which has been rubbed over with the cut clove of garlic. Mix together the mustard, salt, paprika, vinegar, and beat in olive oil until thick; then gradually add the cheeese and the hard-cooked yolks of eggs rubbed through a sieve. Pour over the lettuce and serve garnished with the whites of eggs."

Alrighty, I think I have all the ingredients. Oops, no dry mustard. Oh, and I had to look up what a "saltspoon" measurement was! LOL

But I have mustard seed!

Back comes the mortar and pestle. Remember a week or so ago, I posted about my "three or more" mortars and pestles? I bet y'all thought it was just some kind of odd collection. Nope, these suckers get used in this house on a regular basis! And that is also why I can bench press a small foreign car with my right arm! LOL

Another action shot. Not a good action shot! LOL When I am making a small amount of a dressing, I prefer to use a coffee mug. It just keeps everything neater.

Okay, wedge of lettuce, dressing and garnished with egg whites.

I think we are ready for dinner.

Bread is cut and on the table.

The little domes of herbed butter.

Some fresh sliced veggies. Also bought on quick sale so they needed to be eaten.

Pitcher of ice water and the bowl of rice.....check!

Fresh brewed coffee and tealight lit under pot.....check!

Tall cool glasses filled with ice cold apple sauce with a sprinkling of cinnamon....check!

The experiment mystery dinner in covered pot.....check

I threw the green peppers and onions in at the last minute and let them steam in the covered dish. I really do not like mushy green peppers.

Okay, now on to the tasting..........

And the dish was a success!! Yippee! Troy and I both really liked it. Next time however, I think I will add a few healthy shakes of red pepper seed to boost up a little "bite" to the dish. But, other than that, it turned out very tasty. The cheap meat was so juicy and fall-apart in your mouth tender.

The dressing? We both liked it. It is very different from a regular Roquefort dressing. But, when I make it again, I will cut the amount of dry mustard in half. It is VERY mustardy.

And last but, not least, a slice of New York style cheesecake with a little chocolate sauce drizzle.

Now where is the staff to clean up the mess?


Don't forget to join the party! My one year blogging party that is! This week's giveaway are these pair of beautiful Rooster charger/plates! Check it out here and enter!

And this week's "SURPRISE" Giveaway for a $10.00 Gas Gift Card (ends Friday night at midnight) on this post!!

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  1. Diann, this was fabulous! I can tell just from the pics that the meat was delicious and I loved that table yesterday!
    xoxo Pattie

  2. That sounds like a heavenly delicious meal. I will have to hunt down some clearance meat make a stew out of it too. Thanks for the great pictures and idea too.

  3. Oh that looks so yummy! I like how you showed such great action photos of your cooking. I will have to check out Troy's herb mix. After I win the greenhouse and grow my own! LOL....

  4. Wow Diann, everything looks so wonderful!


  5. I LOVE your gorgeous vintage table...the green glass is so festive!! Your meal also looks like a winner! I love those wedge salads...very diner-ish!


  6. This was a "Well, see where this goes kind of meal" ? We could use you at our house!!!! Our see where it goes kind of meals usually end up with mac-and-cheese as the main dish. LOL. It all looks beautiful, I am coming over to eat there ;)

  7. This was so much fun to read. Your tablescape was beautiful, and I loved the step-by-step for your recipe.

  8. Hi Diann...

    Wha a lucky Troy! You're such a good housecook §;-)

    I love cooking too. Love the way you presented your post. Precise & neat. Keep that good job and next? You're a recipe writer. I bet you can do it.

    Thanks a lot for coming to Stockholm and like your tour.

    Hope you come back again to more Stockholm not just my home without the entire city.

    Happy week-end, Lady Di *wink


Thank you for taking the time to comment! I love to hear your ideas. If you ask a question, I will answer it here in a comment back to you. Please check back! Thank you for visiting and have a wonderful day! Diann :)