Here’s to Friends
by Dan Shafer
It used to be a short walk down the street to connect. When we moved to Portland, we left some great friends in Seattle. Thankfully only a few hours separate us and we relish every opportunity to come together and share a meal. Dan, Jared and I decided to bring three families (6 adults and 7 children) together at a state park situated almost exactly equidistant from both places.
After throwing ideas back and forth about the menu, we decided that for the main course we’d do a crab boil and we’d bring a leafy green salad and grilled asparagus along side. For dessert we went with a state park staple, s’mores. There are few of us in the group who like to steer clear of gluten. We wanted to bring a tasty gluten free option for dessert, so we called up our favorite gluten free bakery, New Cascadia Traditional™, and picked up a gorgeous Mocha Chocolate espresso cake. We’d like to share some images from that day as well as some of the recipes we used.
Time with friends around a table is salve that soothes. To good friends.
- Bring 6 qts water to boil in a large canning pot
- Add 1/4 c. Old Bay seasoning
- Add the following, in this order: 5 ears corn, shucked, broken in half 10 yukon gold potatoes, small to medium size, cut in half 1 lb kielbasa sausage, cut into 3/4″ slices on the bias 2 2-lb dungeness crabs, live
- Put the lid on, and wait for the pot to come back to a boil. Then start an 8-minute timer. After 8 minutes, check a potato. If it isn’t done, leave the whole pot on another could minutes until the potatoes are finished cooking.
- Strain off the liquid (can be reserved for another pot-full if you’re feeding a crowd) and pour out all the food on a newspaper-covered table. Serve with a melted stick of butter for dipping. You’ll need bibs, nutcrackers, pliers, and skewers on hand as well.
- 5 lemons, sliced into 1/4″ rounds
- 5 sprigs fresh herbs (rosemary, thyme, or mint)
- 3/4 c. sugar 1.5 qt water
- Put sliced lemons, herbs, and sugar into a pitcher.
- Crush with a wooden spoon (or mojito baton if you have one) to squeeze out the juice and begin to dissolve the sugar. Spend awhile at it, you want to get all the flavors mixing together.
- When you get tired and the lemon mixture is really juicy, top with water. Sparkling water also works great.
- Strain into a mason jar over ice and enjoy with a paper straw.
(originally posted on Dan’s Urban Farmer’s Almanac)
Jared’s Lemony Garlicky Mustardy Salad Dressing
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
- ¼ Lemon Juice
- 1 Cup Neutral Oil (Canola, Grape Seed, Etc)
- 1 Cup Olive Oil
- Salt to taste – preferably Kosher
- Ground Black Pepper to taste
- In a medium mixing bowl with a whisk combine mustards, garlic and lemon juice.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- While whisking vigorously slowly drizzle in Neutral Oil to form an emulsification. After the bond develops increase the rate of pouring in the oil. If the mixture becomes very thick add a splash of water to thin.
- While whisking vigorously drizzle in Olive Oil.
- Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
- Add a minced shallot to step 1
- Whisk in a bunch of minced chives in step 5