The Good Enough Entertainer: Cooking with Rick Nichols — Part 2

Note from Steve: Not that many weeks ago I was not entirely sure what a blog was. That is to say, I am new to this. It seems as though many (most) people did not get yesterday’s blog. I have no idea why as I did what I usually do and it usually works.  If you missed yesterday’s blog you might consider reading it first.

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Scene 2. Past midnight. The anxiety I felt when I got my “Rick Nichol’s here” phone call has faded. Why? Because before I did anything else I made my plan by going through the seven steps included in Part 1 of At Home.

I started by going to my computer and printing out the planning tools included in At Home — the book — from At Home Online.

Step 1 is The Consultation. Answering the questions posed in The Consultation helped me understand both my aspirations and limitations — the things I needed to factor into my party plan…like I don’t have much time to pull this together, Rick needs to be out of here no later than 3 PM — 2:30 would be better (how am I supposed to know how good Rick is at food prep?), we both like green tomatoes. The result of going through The Consultation lead to my establishing my Party Parameters. (This will become very clear once you have the book and website. It is also what I plan to do on Thursday at the Free Library with an audience member.)

I went on to my Menu Plan, made my Schedule with an emphasis of doing as much ahead as I could. (Rick did not leave lots of do ahead time…but enough.)  I went through the book and selected my menu. I went to my computer and printed out all of the recipes from At Home Online. With my recipes in front of me I made my Shopping List. After one very efficient trip to my local Whole Foods, I had everything I needed. Luckily a stop last Sunday at Maple Acres Farm in Plymouth Meeting netted me the green tomatoes I needed.

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Back home, I unpacked and began the important step of Organizing Space. I have a very modest kitchen with little margin for disorder.  I ran and unloaded the dishwasher so that I could start with an empty dishwasher. I removed everything from the counters that Rick and I would not need.

I next reviewed my Tabletop Worksheet. I made little labels for what I needed so Christina could get the tableware, plates, bowls and platters together just by using the labels.  I reviewed my Bar & Beverage Worksheet put a bottle of Pinot Gris in the refrigerator.

Screen shot 2009-10-09 at 12.34.21 AMAs a final step, I used re-positionable labels — “my moveable prep” list for Rick and I. I love these labels and after my trusty kitchen tongs and favorite knife, re-positionable labels are my favorite party tool. I can post on the kitchen cabinets and on plates and platter and organize what I want to to when.

Here’s my menu for Cooking with Rick Nichols:

Dilly Beans
Crisp-Roasted Garlic Parsnips
Aromatic Red Lentil Dip
Za’atar Toasted Pita
Fried Green Tomatoes with Remoulade
Celery Root & Brussels Sprout Slaw
Pumpkin Pecan Praline Ice Cream with some shortbread cookies from Metropolitan Bakery
Rosemary Lemonade

Rick will be here in about 9 hours. Read about it here…first! (Sorry Rick.)

Note: Books ship today!!!!

1 Comment

Filed under At Home News, Entertaining at Home, Menus, Uncategorized

One response to “The Good Enough Entertainer: Cooking with Rick Nichols — Part 2

  1. Hi,

    Thank you for the great quality of your blog, each time i come here, i’m amazed.

    black hattitude.

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