The usual suspects: Rafe, Real, Bob, Ken

With the usual suspects

| What kind of a holiday would it be if you didn't get together with your friends and share food and drink?

For Memorial Day, the usual suspects assembled Chez Paul for the usual feasting and drinking. Now, a word about that drinking: I made a punch using a recipe from the Makers Mark ambassador collection that involved the zest and juice of lemons and an orange, sugar, green tea, and of course Makers Mark bourbon with my personal ambassador's label. It was delicious. However, I had to confess that I had put in only half as much bourbon as call for by the recipe for the simple reason that there was no more room in the pitcher! Although as an Ambassador I shouldn't say so, I really think the amount could have been cut again in half without deleterious effect.

When it came time for the usual feasting, we assembled all our favorite summer foods: rib-eye steak, thanks to Réal,  done to perfection on the grill; corn on the cob, slathered in butter; Bob's baked beans done in an honest-to-goodness bean pot; juicy ripe tomatoes from the garden; Paula Deen's red potato salad; and of course Rafe's guacamole with tortilla chip dippers. For dessert I resurrected a recipe that I first made back in the previous century when another group of suspects spent a weekend at Sea Ranch on the Sonoma County coast: Poires Belle Hélène. What's not to like about pears poached in wine, perched on a bed of vanilla ice-cream, accompanied by generous ladling of warm chocolate syrup?

Rafe's guacamole
Rafe's excellent guacamole
The steaks, ready for the grill
Real's steaks, seasoned and ready for the grill
Fresh tomatoes from the garden
A platter of tomatoes from the garden, drizzled with olive oil, sprinkled with salt, pepper, and a chiffonade of basil
Rafe on grill duty
Rafe doing honors at the grill
The plate
O-M-G!
Poire Belle Helene
Poire Belle Hélène cloaked in chocolate sauce, accompanied by vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, and an almond thin

Last updated on Apr 29, 2016

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