We’re so lucky that both of our kids live in Minneapolis and so we can see them for family-oriented holidays. So with Mother’s Day coming up, my son and son-in-law and I decided to prepare a dinner for our wives and the mothers of our children. My wife, being at least nominally the ‘grande dame’ of the family said she was in the mood for Mexican. My daughter and daughter-in-law thought that sounded good. So I went to work to find a creative menu to serve on Sunday night.
Guacamole & tortilla chips
For the guacamole, we stuck with a pretty standard combination. But we did innovate a little by adding a quarter cup of pomegranate seeds. They added a sweet, juicy character to the smooth, rich avocado.
I got the pomegranate seeds at Trader Joe’s. While I was there, I decided to check out their shrimp. As I was perusing their selection of frozen seafood, I saw a very intriguing item – frozen, cooked chucks of langostino tails. “Lobster flavor for the price of shrimp” the package bragged. I was intrigued, so I bought them and substituted them in the shrimp mango tacos.
Well, needless to say, this was the most unique part of the menu. My son-in-law, who’s a chef at Pairings, was fascinated by the langostino tails. I think he’s going to look into integrating them into some future dish at the restaurant. My wife and I remembered having langostinos on paella when we were in Spain. The flavor was good, maybe not quite the same as lobster. And the price was slightly higher than shrimp. But it was worth it.
The pasta salad is from Rick Bayless. His web site has a number of intriguing recipes. When my daughter and her husband lived in Chicago, we took them to one of Bayless’s restaurants – Topolobampo. Very good. I picked this recipe because I’ve already got a lot of vigorous growth on my chive plants. When I minced them for the salad, the scent of the fresh chives literally filled the kitchen. I thought this was a great recipe, and since it didn’t call for any fancy ingredients, it could be whipped up almost at any time.
So it was great having the whole family over and a lot of fun. This was a nice casual menu that the guys could prepare together without a lot of hassle.