Crab with Cilantro and Lime and Casual Dinner for the Mayor?

Hi everyone and please click on the title of this post to read more. I am welling up with pride after just returning from the All Children’s Playground in Montclair. It is a playground that my organization, Parents Who Rock, (www.parentswhorock.com) helped build by helping to raise $150,000.00 last year. It is finally finished and there were many families having a great time there today, despite the frigid weather. We worked very hard with music performances to raise money to help build this playground for typical children and children and adults with special needs and it paid off. Go play outside there!

Speaking of fundraising, I was in the fortunate position this past weekend of throwing a dinner party for ten couples as a fundraiser to raise funds for Parents Who Rock’s latest cause, Little Kids Rock www.littlekidsrock.org. We raised $2,000.00 by serving a great meal, having a donated musical performance by a musician named Scott E. Moore, and by asking our Mayor, Jerry Fried to be the guest of honor, as well as the founder of Little Kids Rock, David Wish.

Now, I was blown away by the fact that we could raise that kind of money by serving dinner. The dinner was really good, if I may say so myself, but by no means a black tie, gourmet eating experience. For me, it was a great example of using what we have and what we know best in order to do our best. I am not a formal person and did not want to have a formal affair. It would not have felt comfortable and it probably would not have turned out well. It was family style and I even used paper plates for dessert.

Many people are intimidated by throwing dinner parties because of the expectations others have for a great evening but, often times, it is the expectations we have of ourselves that keep us from engaging in what many believe to be one of the most intimate and gratifying forms of social entertainment. There are many of us who feel we would love to be the hostess- with- the- mostest but would not dare or simply feel elevated stress at the thought of it. Many of us, however, feel obligated to throw dinner parties, feeling a need to reciprocate after numerous invitations by others, but can’t bring ourselves to do it. By not reciprocating , we run the risk of social isolation from not being gracious to those who invited us. So stressful!

For those of us who do not cook much, it may seem overwhelming to make so many dishes but a dinner party need not have all made-from-scratch dishes. For example, olives, cheese, nuts and dried fruit can be delicious appetizers with zero cooking involved. Buying the apps can allow us the time and energy we need to prepare some tasty dishes for the actual meal. The truth is,noone really cares in the end what was made from scratch if it is delicious but it may be nice to give of ourselves by preparing the food with our own loving hands. Why is this? Who knows, but we all know how much it is appreciated when people take the time to prepare us food out of their own kitchens.

The bottom line is that what is really important is the friends and family we bring to our home to have a fabulous and memorable evening, sometimes for a good cause. Email me if YOU would like to host a party, any kind of party, to help raise money for Little Kids Rock in Montclair. Even if you raise $100.00, it is a great contribution for a great cause!

Here’s one of the appetizers I served and I hope you like it!

Crab with lime and Cilantro:

16 oz. lump crab meat
5 TBS good mayonnaise , 2 TBS finely chopped cilantro
3 tsp lime zest
juice of 1/2 lime
2 pinches Kosher salt
Asian chili sauce or tobasco

Mix all ingredients except chili sauce until combined, chill for a few hours and serve on crackers or plantain chips. Top with a few drops of chili sauce. Yummmmmm!

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2 Responses

  1. What a wonderful setting – firesides are so enchanting and quiet. Loved what you wrote about bringing family and friends together for a simple meal – it is firstly about the interaction between us, and the food is just the medium to bring us together.

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