Monday, February 18, 2013

When Company Shows Up, Fast Snacks Do The Job

   If it hasn't been crazy enough around here, one of our best friends from LA showed up. He was doing some workat Pixar and so decided to come up to Sonoma for the long weekend. Any visit usually brings a wave of cooking, but since we've had our plate relatively full, the cooking morphed into eating out all over town and then inviting our local friends over to eat and drink late into the night at our house.

   The sudden influx of company seemed like the perfect opportunity to give a test run to some of the products that the good people at Saffron Road Food wanted me to try. I'm not a huge  night-time snacker, but when company comes for movie night or just plain whatever, I like to be able to throw some tasty stuff at them. Usually the way it works is I tell people to bring whatever they'd like to drink, I'll supply the food.

   Since the snacks are usually Indian even though this is Wine Country, the preferred beverage  for most of our guests is beer. In this case a very special beer only available for a brief period of time around here... the legendary Pliny the Elder from Russian River Brewing Company, Racer 5 from bear Republic Brewing and Red Tail Ale from Mendocino Brewing Company. There may have been other things too, but I was too busy preparing food and guzzling fizzy water to notice. I am after all the designated cook.

   I usually make everything from scratch so this evening of using prepared Indian snacks was a first for me. I must say Saffron Road made it pretty easy. I served three different bags of their Crunchy Chickpeas, Falafel, Wasabi and Bombay Spice. They're rated at different heats, roasted not fried, (big plus there) and Gluten Free. Yes, a gluten free snack food. You'll never miss your chips again.

   I sampled all three flavors and preferred the Bombay Spice, but that's just me. Needless to say, all three bowls of crunchies were quickly emptied. For the main event I opened a couple of boxes of their Tandoori Seasoned Chicken Nuggets. I preheated the oven, opened the box, popped the frozen nuggets on a cookie sheet and 15 minutes later we were eating chicken.

The chicken nuggets were made of lean breast meat. While everyone was chowing down on beer and chickpeas, I whipped up a couple of dips to compliment the flavor.  One was a Quick Tomato Chutney and the other a cooling Mango Curd

Both were fast and easy, links to the recipes are above.

Because I am a total glutton, I also couldn't resist making Momo to add to the table. In the name of ease however, I used wonton wrappers instead of making my own momo dough. It worked just great.

   So how did I Iike my first foray into using prepared frozen treats for entertaining guests? It was easy, tasty and simple. I liked the idea that while the main feature was not made by me, the dipping sauces were, which added an easy homemade touch. Will I be trying this again? I think that these products will make a nice addition to my larder/freezer. It's always great to have stuff around for company and I've learned that I don't always have to do everything myself. It's about time. Thanks Saffron Road for giving me a chance to entertain easily.

   Coming up next, my Super Bowl, Academy Awards watching food. Follow along on Twitter @kathygori


  1. I wouldn't by "stopping" by and momos get along real well,

  2. Your snacks and cold drink recognize my weekends with my friends.Loved it!!



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