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Old 08-29-2006, 08:33 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by callie
fryboy - that's MY idea of a wonderful hostess gift...but as you'll see in my other post, the husband doesn't drink alcohol. what do YOU think? should i include some wine or champagne? would it offend him?
That's really hard to say -- if he doesn't drink because he's an alcoholic, it might offend. BUT, if she has offered wine to you when he's around, obviously it's not a problem -- although it seems to me that a gift should be something both could enjoy.

I'd stick with things they do NOT have to serve right away -- that's just rude, IMHO -- and give them somethintg they can save to enjoy later. A basket of gourmet goodies, perhaps -- maple syrup, good soy sauce (tamari), exotic mustards, wild hot sauces, capers, good nuts, etc.

Do you have a Trader Joe's nearby? Buy all the goodies you think are too expensive and put them in a basket with a big bow.
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Old 08-29-2006, 08:39 PM   #12
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fryboy, that's great advice! Thanks...I think he IS an alcoholic, but we drink around him often and he seems OK with it. He seems happy that mrs. and i get together for "girl talk" and champagne occasionally. i don't want to exclude him, though. thanks for your imput. i don't want to offend anyone!
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Old 08-30-2006, 05:38 AM   #13
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I always find a cake that keeps well, presented well wrapped in foil and then deoratively with a not attached saying that it will taste good for a few days, is always well recieved. I make a lemon and almond cake, because I think everybody likes lemon and almond and its good for breakfast with espresso, with tea in the afternoon or with thick cream and berries for a pudding. That way they can fit it in whatever social engagements they might have!

I think the basket is a lovely idea, and my opinion on alcohol is that under the circumstances it would be best to leave it out....what a bout a lovely cordial, like elderflorwer instead? If you visit me ever alcohol is great!
I think adding something homemade, cake/biscuits/jam anything! makes for a special and thoughtful touch to a deli basket.
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Old 08-30-2006, 06:28 AM   #14
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I vote for a nice basket. hope you have a great evening :)
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Old 08-30-2006, 09:44 AM   #15
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Thank you, lulu and kimbaby! I like the idea of a small cake...maybe i'll pursue that, and I'll go to Sweet Peas and see what I can find there.

lulu, would you share your lemon and almond cake recipe?

I appreciate everyone's help!!
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Old 08-30-2006, 10:34 AM   #16
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Of course, Callie,

Its a sort of simplified, but other wise fairly unaltered Nigella Lawson cake, I made a mistake in the order mixing it and upped the quanity of almond essence and added the lemon oil. It does well with out the lemon oil too, but I like mine with a bang.

I usually make in in an 8 inch tin... oven 180 decgrees C you'll need to convert for Farenheit! You need to line the tine with greaseproof paper and very lightly butter the paper.

Cream butter (225 grams) with sugar (225gs) I use golden caster sugar (NOT brown sugar, unrefined golden) but I am sure white would work as well. Add 4 eggs and 50 grams sifted plain flour and mix. Also add 225 grams ground almonds, 1 tsp almond essence, lemon oil to taste and the juice and grated rinds of two large lemons.

Then put the batter in and cover with a piece of either paper or foil because it burns otherwise, and then bake! I check mine after 40 minutes, but sometimes takes longer. I like it JUST done if it is for keeping as it dries little and goes kind of marzipanny inside....mmmmm.


I am intermittantly trying to fiddle with this to make a cake that is two and a half times bigger, because I have a beautiful patterned cake tin that would suit it, but I have had no luck yet, but as a standard round cake tin cake I think it is pretty fail safe! EVERY BODY LOVES IT
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Old 08-30-2006, 11:43 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Constance
I don't know about your friends, Callie, but anyone who comes through my door with a bottle of good Asti Spumante (Italian champagne) really knows how to put a smile on my face. And if they bring chocolates, Kim is a happy camper.
Lawdy, that man loves chocolate.
I was thinking a bottle of wine would be good, especially if you know of a particular kind they like. Asti is great at my house!
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Old 08-30-2006, 12:10 PM   #18
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Callie, you mentioned that the neighbours are with you only during the summer months, which means they will be going away soon?
Then maybe some local specialty for them to take away with, I am not sure what they might be from your area, but for example, if there are some nice summer fruits growing in your area, homemade jam etc.?
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Old 08-30-2006, 01:06 PM   #19
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Callie, I usually bring cake, dessert or appetizers. Even if the hostess has a dessert planned, a variety is always welcome; and what isn't eaten at the table, can be put away for them to indulge in later. If you're pressed for time, try the nearest, most decadent bakery or ice cream chain you can find .

How about an ice cream cake? Or, go with the classics like, strawberry shortcake, chocolate eclairs, carrot cake, cheesecake. (Are you getting hungry yet?) If you're close to a Marie Callender's, their pies are heavenly -- and quite a selection, they have. (Around Thanksgiving, as I recall, I saw a sour cream apple pie, that's on my list to try.) If you want to go all out, take along a gallon or so, of two different flavors of ice cream to go with the pie.

If they're coffee-drinkers, how about chocolate covered coffee beans, or any exotic flavored beans that please your senses. Have a wonderful time.
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Old 08-30-2006, 01:16 PM   #20
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How about an ice cream cake?
I vote for Cold Stone ice cream cake! Always - and I mean always - a hit!
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