a little party

last friday,
we had a little party
after a fan-tastic dinner out
with our supper club.

(by the way,
if you are ever in denver,
this place
is known among
the top 10 sushi places
in the country!
however, if you are with non-sushi lovers
like myself -
i know, GASP! -
then, i highly reccomend
this place!
it is across the street from sushi den,
same owners
same chefs
same daily fish orders from japan,
BUT they also have a creative,
and delicious menu of world fusion,
non-sea-derived tapas that is

after dinner,
we came back to our house
for what i promised to be
a simple dessert and coffee.
the promise was actually just made to myself,
as i had a full week leading up to the party.

but as herb exclaimed
(with a very heart-warming sense of pride and appreciation),
i just don't know how to entertain simply!
it is true.
i can't.
i love it so much!
when you can make a stuffed brie dish
and add a fancy cocktail
for just a "little" more effort,
it seems like a crime not too!

so a simple dessert
(fresh berries in chocolate cups
with a dollup of fresh whipped cream)
turned into quite a little show!

here are some details:

The above is actually quite easy!
Fresh figs with blue cheese and proscuitto.
Slice your figs in half
place a small chunk of blue cheese on top of each half
wrap in a ribbon of proscuitto (fancy itallian ham found in most delis)
place on the grill or under the broiler
(always my choice in 9 degree weather!)
for just a few minutes
until ham begins to crisp!

and there you have a fancy-looking
(but oh, so easy)
dessert for all of the low-carb eaters out there!

and finally,
brie stuffed with brandied cranberries, almonds, and apricots:

roughly chop an 1/8 of a cup of dried apricots

toast almonds in pan
melt 1 Tbs of butter in pan
add apricots and 1/8 cup dried cranberries
allow to carmelize for a few minutes
add brandy (less than 1/4 cup)
allow to simmer until most of the liquid
has evaporated.

slice open a wheel of brie cheese
place half of fruit mixture on top
of one half of the cheese.
place the other half on top
and spread the remainder of the
fruit mixture on top.
wrap in a pre-made sheet of
puff pastry.

bake at 375 until pastry has cooked
and is a golden brown (15-20 minutes)


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