Saturday, October 25, 2008

Brad's Birthday Party

Our friend Brad celebrated his 50th birthday tonight with a great party -- he made his favorite vegetarian chili, and we played games. Luckily Alice taught me Cranium, one of the games last weekend. Our team got really easy questions, like "What famous painter kept his journal in mirror writing?" -- how could I, wearing my Mona Lisa socks, miss that one! When I played with Alice she had to draw a toilet. That exact question was asked in our game last night, too -- but it was for all the teams, so three people had to draw it with eyes closed.

Above you can see the huge pot of chili on the stove in Brad and Diane's kitchen. Other guests brought kabobs, salad, and pastry from Zingerman's bakery. (It turns out they make a fabulous lemon tart!) My contribution to the potluck supper part of the party was cornbread.

The recipe:
Spicy Cornbread

½ C. chopped peppers *
1 to 1½ C. scallions or onions, chopped
1½ C. yellow cornmeal
¾ tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt — optional
1 can corn
1½ C. milk OR 12 oz plain yogurt or kefir
3 eggs, beaten well
¾ lb. grated cheese such as cheddar
2 Tb butter (plus more for greasing pan)
4 Tb. vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350˚ and generously butter an 11 by 13 inch baking pan. Remove stems, seeds, & pith and chop the peppers. Heat the 2 Tb. butter in a skillet and brown chopped onion and peppers lightly. Drain canned corn thoroughly. Reserve 1/2 of the cheese for topping.

Mix dry ingredients. Add milk, oil, eggs, corn, and half of cheese and mix. Quickly mix in the vegetables and butter from the skillet. Pour mixture into greased baking pan. Top with other half of cheese. Place in 350˚ oven and bake for 40 minutes. May be served warm or at room temperature.

* Peppers can be one of the following three options:
- 3 or 4 fresh hot peppers such as jalapenos, depending on how hot you want it
- a mixture of fresh jalapenos and sweet peppers to make ½ cup
- a small can of Old El Paso peppers.

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