Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?

Madhava Ghosh, who blogs at walkingthefenceline, rolled into Alachua last nite with his family. As a small gesture of inter-blog relations, I invited him and his crew to dinner. It was supposed to be six in all, including his 5 year old grand-daughter, but in the end it was just Ghosh, his wonderful wife Vidya and their lovely son Tulasi. My kids were a bit bummed that the little girlie was a no show, but we all ended up having a terrific evening.

I got started cooking early in the day. I couldn’t figure out what to make so I just went ahead and cooked everything. Gluten kabobs, black bean soup, tossed salad, palak paneer, basmati rice, rolls (stuffed with radicchio, capers, sun-dried tomatoes, raisins, vegan sausage and ricotta), seitan roast, gravy, bread stuffing, potato pears, granola cookies and cheesecake. Maybe I went a little overboard….
I didn’t eat any of it, but I have to say, I would freaked out if someone served me all that stuff in one meal! If you ever have me over for dinner, I would be satisfied with soup and a salad. Or a sandwich and a salad. Or soup and a bread roll. Generally, I don’t like to eat more than two different things at one time. So I don’t know what possessed me to overburden my guests with such a hodgepodge onslaught of dishes.
Dear Ghosh and family…please forgive me for stuffing you guys!
While preparing the meal I realize I so love cooking. Just not cooking for money. It was a happy day from start to finish. My husband and I enjoyed preparing our home to welcome our guests and we had a great time meeting someone who we’ve only known online from his blog (and his limerick entries). And my husband was happy to have me overcook because, quite frankly, he likes having a fridge stuffed with eatables…especially cheesecake. And oh did he like this one! It was sweetened with sucanat, which paired nicely with the barley malt syrup in the crust and the liquor-like Anise Cherry Sauce it was topped with.

Since I was already in the kitchen I decided to turn out a bunch of Spicy Italian Vegan Sausage. It freezes well.


Earlier in the week I had an order for Pecan Pepita Granola Sweetened with Agave. I had some granola leftover so I decided to make cookies with it. These were super healthy but did not taste like “health cookies.”

The main ingredient…Pecan Pepita Granola.

In the middle of my cooking, Tulasi-priya stopped by to shop for some Christmas gifts before her and her husband hit the road for northward travels. Here she is sampling a granola cookie. She was into it, so I packed her up a few for her trip. Later that day she called me to tell me that these were the most delicious cookies! Thanks, Tulasi.

Stuffed rolls. These probably could be a meal in themselves. I should have made them smaller.

Potato pears (as we have so dubbed them in my family). I made breadcrumbs from homemade spelt bread. My husband loves these. He says they taste like hush puppies.

Ghosh! Here the guest of honor poses with the hostess gifts he brought us. Homemade quince jam, ghee and walnuts from trees he grew. Be still my heart!

Here is the recipe for the granola and the cookies. These are sure to make you strong as ox.
Granola Cookies

bake 375 10-12 minutes

¾ c butter
1 c brown sugar
½ sugar
1 tspn bake powder
¼ tspn bake soda
½ tspn cinnamon
¼ tspn cloves
1 tbspn yogurt
1 tspn vanilla extract
1 ¾ c flour
3 c granola

Pecan Pepita Granola Sweetened with Agave Nectar
4 c oats
1 c sunflower seeds
2 c puff rice
½ c sesame seed
¼ c oat bran
¼ c ground flaxseed
1 ¾ c pecans
½ c virgin coconut oil
1 c pepitas
1 ¼ c agave nectar
2 tspn vanilla
1 c raisins (to be added *after* granola is removed from oven)
Bake at 300 for one hour, stirring every 15-20 minutes to ensure even toasting. When granola cooled, mix in the raisins.

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3 Comments

Filed under cookies, recipes

3 responses to “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?

  1. Herc

    Ghosh is awesome. You must have had an amazing day. I miss the guy…-Erichttp://www.littleblackstar.com

  2. Devadeva Mirel

    yeah, we had an awesome time. the son is an utter sweetheart, vidya is so real and terrific and ghosh is a full of personality. we even played apples to apples together. i am really glad i got the opportunity to meet them all.

  3. Nityananda Chandra Das

    Your blogs make me want to visit Alachua, especially Walkable Alachua with bona fide ice cream. It makes me remember Sita Pati’s post about how we will know that Krishna consciousness is established when we have our own Kosher name and logo for foods. Bona Fide, Bueno Bhoga or something. 🙂 Haribol

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