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We just had what I call a wild and wonderful weekend of entertaining – we had friends over 4 days in a row – lots of fun cooking, excellent company and great conversation.
The fabulous ladies from book club helped get the festivities started. We met on Thursday night, and chatted, divulged, expressed, articulated, gabbed, shared, laughed long and laughed hard and even managed to talk about the book for about 3 minutes. It is an incredible group, and I very much look forward to our gatherings every month. My intention was to keep the menu light and fresh, with an eye to spring.

SMOKED TROUT HORSERADISH DIP

11.25 ounces of smoked trout
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream (I used reduced fat mayo and sour cream with good results)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
2 tablespoons horseradish, or to taste

Discard skin and any bones from trout. Stir mayonnaise, sour cream, dill and horseradish together. Gently mix in trout and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with bread.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from epicurious
www.epicurious.com › recipes & menus

 OATCAKES

110 grams of rolled oats
3/4 cup wholemeal flour
1/2 cup self-rising flour
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
110 grams of butter, chopped
1 large egg, beaten

Heat oven to 190 C.
Process oats to a fine but still grainy consistency. Mix with flours, brown sugar and salt. Rub in butter until mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
Lightly mix in egg and turn on to a surface dusted with flour. Knead briefly and shape into a ball. Roll out to 5mm thick and cut into rounds. Bake on trays 20 minutes. Cool.
Serve with assorted cheeses.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from New Zealand House and Garden
www.nzhouseandgarden.co.nz/entertaining.asp

EDAMAME BRUSCHETTA

Cut a baguette into slices, toast. In a food processor, blend 12 tablespoons of shelled edamame, 8 tablespoons of grated parmesan, 8 basil leaves, 2 tablespoons of water, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 2 teaspoons of sherry vinegar, until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Top each with chopped red bell pepper, and basil leaves.
Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Self Magazine
www.self.com/fooddiet/recipes

CREAMY LEMON NUT BARS

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 3/4 cups flour, divided
1/3 cup pecans, chopped
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
powdered sugar

Heat oven to 350F.
Line a 13 by 9 inch baking pan with foil, spray with cooking spray.
Mix butter, powdered sugar and vanilla in a large bowl. Gradually stir in 1 1/2 cups of the flour and pecans. Press dough firmly on bottom of prepared pan. Bake 15 minutes.
Beat cream cheese and sugar in medium bowl with electric mixer on high speed until well blended. Add remaining 1/4 cup flour and eggs, beat until blended.
Stir in lemon juice and peel. Pour over baked crust in pan. Bake 30 minutes or until set. Remove from oven, cool completely. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and cut into bars.
Enjoy!

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