by Debra on October 25, 2010

Musical pairing – Perfect Day by Lady Antebellum

Sundays were always what my mother called, ‘Big Meal’ or ‘Big Meat’ days and always included a pot roast, chicken, ham or a meatloaf;  that meant that there would be leftovers to stretch into the next week for lunches and/or a new creation using those leftovers for supper.  I remember my entire family sitting around the rectangular-shaped dining room table in a teeny-tiny house in Walla Walla – no TV, no phone calls allowed (back in the day when phones actually hung on a wall . . .) Dad at one end, mom at the other end, me and one sister on the side nearest the wall and my brother and baby sister across – we were all sandwiched into a space about  10′ by 8′ . . . wow, now that I think about it, it’s a wonder we didn’t kill one another!

My mother canned as much from our vegetable garden as possible and what we didn’t grow, she bought from the local farmers and preserved; those jars would be opened and added to that Sunday table as well.   We talked about our day, what was happening with our friends and what homework needed to be finished by the next morning; in other words, we connected.  Some Sundays we’d head over to my grandparents’ home and have supper there; I always looked forward to those Sundays in particular because it usually meant pot roast with mashed potatoes and ‘grandma’s good gravy.’  It wasn’t until years later that my mother told me it was her gravy, not grandma’s . . . oops . . .

The Professor and I have hosted Sunday Suppers too but its been a while so this past Sunday we joined a few fellow bloggers to participate in a virtual ‘Sunday Supper’ and everyone made dishes from Pam Anderson’s new book, Perfect One-Dish Dinners.  This has become one of my favorite cookbooks on my shelf and especially for those times when company’s coming, why?  Because Pam has written this cookbook with complete menus: appetizers, mains, soups/salads and desserts – no more figuring out ‘what-goes-with-what’ because it’s all there – familiar American dishes, some with a global twist but all recipes use ingredients you’ll probably have on hand or have no trouble finding at your local grocery – she’s even given wine suggestions which has been a great help to moi.

These lovely little Crispy Potato Bites with Smoked Salmon, Sour Cream and Chives were an absolute snap to make, taking about 15 minutes from start to finish and a terrific appetizer for the rest of this meal:  Blue Cheese-Stuffed Beef Tenderloin with Port Sauce, a beautiful green salad with pomegranate, grapefruit and red onion and a Vanilla-Raspberry Trifle for dessert – wouldn’t that make a delicious holiday celebration? Or how about Cassoulet-Style Italian Sausages and White Beans, Tamale Pie, Spicy Chicken Enchiladas Verde, Fresh Tomato-Basil Bread Soup or Casear Salad Flatbread Pizza – we’ve made all of these recipes – easy for every day and perfect to serve friends and family.

What about you?  Do you have memories about Sunday Suppers?

SMITH BITES NOTE: Although these are listed as an appetizer, we’ve had them for breakfast (anything with hash brown potato is fair game, right?) and I think they’d be pretty terrific on a brunch table.  Leave the smoked salmon off and you have a vegetarian version of a mock potato latke!
You can also catch Pam and her lovely daughters Maggy and Sharon over at Three Many Cooks and be sure to check out some of the other dishes that were made during our virtual ‘Sunday Supper!’