3 Course Holiday Dinner

Since it was a holiday, we had planned for lots to eat, and we had plenty of time. So we decided to prepare all the engredients first. The thought was, it would relax the cooking some. What we didn't realize, that when you do this, you cook your dinner twice. First in your head while chopping. Then in the pot while watching. All along you are increasingly getting hungrier and hungrier.

Here is what we prepared.
For the Parsley Cream Soup:
- butter
- half a big onion, chopped
- 2 big potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 500 ml vegetable broth
- 350 ml milk
- 1 bushel of parsley, leaves plugged
- salt, pepper
- half a nutmeg
- juice from half a lemon
- 250g mushrooms, cut small
olive oil
- 100 ml whipping cream, whipped stiff

For the Tarragon Chicken:
- olive oil
- about 2 lb of various chicken parts
- 1 carrot, roughly chopped
- 1 stick of celery, chopped
- half a big onion, chopped
- 150g mushrooms, cut small
- white wine
- a handful of thyme, tied up
- 5 bay leaves
- 500 ml vegetable broth
- salt and pepper
- 2 tbls flour
- a chunk of butter
- juice of one lemon
- a small carton of cream and 2 egg yolks stirred together
a small pile of tarragon, chopped

For the Rice:
- a chunk of butter
- a couple chunks of garlic, cut small
- three cups water
- salt
one and half cups brown rice

For the Chopped Salad:
- a bunch of different lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, peppers, radishes, avocado, all washed and chopped
- olive oil, red wine vinegar, mustard, salt, pepper, stirred for the dressing

For the Apple Cakes:
- 2 eggs5 tbls sugar, a little salt, 100 ml milk, and 1 cup flour, all mixed up smooth
- 1 tbls sesame seeds
- honey
- 4 apples, cored, peeled, sliced, and sprinkled with the juice of one lemon
- vegetable oil
- vanilla ice cream

For Papa's nerves:

- one cold beer

First Lena fried up the chicken pieces in olive oil - nice and brown - and removed them from the pan.

We wiped out  the pan with a rag and tossed in more oil  and the celery, carrots, and onion.

While they were sauteing,

Lena warmed the chunk of butter for the rice with the minced garlic, added the water,

and when it was boiling, half a table spoon salt and the rice. We let it boil up again and then turned it down to the lowest setting and forgot about it till it was time to eat.

We returned our attention to the vegetables, added the mushrooms, and sauted them five more minutes.

Then Lena poured in a little bit of white wine.

At that point Lucy took over stirring until the wine was a good bit absorbed.

Lena returned the chicken to the pan and

added the thyme, bay leaves, salt, pepper,

and broth. We covered it and let it cook for 45 minutes till the meat was falling off the bones.

Now  there was the time for the soup. We started with the butter, and onions, cooking them for five minutes.

Then we added the potatoes for a few more minutes.

Followed by the broth

and milk.

After about 20 minutes we added the parsley,

lemon juice,

and grated nutmeg. At this point we fried up the mushrooms in a small pan with the oil and some salt and pepper.

Then we whizzed up the soup with a blender.

Before serving we stirred in the whipped cream and whizzed it up one more time. We served the mushrooms and a few parsley leaves separately for everybody to add them to the soup at their will.

To serve the chicken we took it and the veggies out of the broth and juices and kept them warm in a serving dish. Then we melted the butter and added the flour and enough of the reserved broth for a good sauce.

Then we added the lemon juice, the eggs and cream, and the tarragon. Before serving we also added the dressing to the salad.
Now we were were ready for course one and two.

Mhhhhhhhhhhhh. Delicious. There was something for everybody's taste.

After we were sufficiently stuffed, we took a break to clean up the table and the kitchen in order to slowly start considering desert.

When we were ready again for more food, we heated up the sesame seeds

and then the honey to get it nicely warm and runny.

We heated up the oil, ran the apple slices through the dough and fried them  up. We kept them warm in the oven till all were done.

Lily served the apple cakes with vanilla ice cream, drizzled with the sesame honey. Lena and Lily liked them so much they booked marked them for their birthdays. We all had big smiles and happy tummies.