Excellent festivities last night; the new year is very satisfactorily rung in. I was so busy having a good time I only snapped a few pictures.
I love New Year's Eve to be a bit crazy and over the top - glitter, yelling, lots of champagne and candles, funky flowers pinned on hats. I dressed the table with wild inspiration (my husband said: "that's interesting." But later he told me I'm fun to hang out with, so I forgive him).
Popping one of the champagne corks.
Preparing the Ethiopian feast, a perfect night for take out.
I've been looking for an occasion to use this recipe for years now. Everything finally clicked: a light, exotic, make-ahead dessert.
Dates with Cardamom (originally from Gourmet, but lots of changes)
I took one pound of dried dates, boiled strong coffee with 10 cardamom pods, 2 tsp. sugar, and 1/2 cinnamon stick. Then I marinated the dates for a few hours; drained the coffee off and boiled it until it was reduced by 1/3. Marinated the dates again. At dessert time, I spooned plain whole-milk yogurt into small dishes, and put a few dates on top. Truly a lovely combination.
No one was taking pictures at this point (2am) so all I have is a picture of the dates in progress.
Today, one more family gathering to take cookies to, and I knew I didn't have enough cookies or patience.
They made play dough cookies.
I made Spicy Sugar Cookies.