Empty Nest

happy birthday, daddy!

My parents have lived in the very same house all my life. I love it. It’s really the definition of home.

I now live in D.C., my brother just moved back home post-college but is planning on moving out in the fall, and my sister is currently home for the summer until she goes back to school. So it’s really just Mom, Dad and Slugger, our lhasa apso.

Well, that clearly leads to needing a brand new, gourmet kitchen and a game room filled with a bar, poker table, pool table that turns into a ping pong table, shuffle board table and a flat screen HDTV, right? I told my parents, if they spring for the Kegerater, I’m moving home.

Regardless, after months of deciding on granite counter tops and back splashes and light fixtures and bar stools, we were finally able to use the kitchen and make a big family dinner in time for my dad’s birthday. With a new Wegmans up the street, my brother and I browsed the enormous super market and decided on mahi mahi (steak for my fish hating mom,) mashed potatoes and an assortment of veggies. I credit the whole fam for making this meal such a success.

Recipes and Game Room pics post-jump

Citrus-Jamaican Jerk Mahi Mahi
with grilled vegetables and mashed potatoes

Create a marinade of lemon zest and juice, lime zest and juice, scallions, garlic, Jamaican Jerk spice, evoo and S&P for the fish.

dad on grill grilled in a basket

Marinate red bell pepper strips, rings of red onion, asparagus spears and portabella mushrooms in evoo, balsalmic vinegar and S&P.

Throw on the grill.

mashing those mashers
(notice the strain on his face)

My brother, SAG, and Dad were on the mashers. I know my dad’s trick is to cook the potatoes in a pressure cooker and then use a hand-held (re: manual) masher and just add some butter, milk (whatever is on hand), salt and a bit of pepper.

SAG working the stove

SAG and Dad also made wilted spinach with minced garlic, lemon juice and capers. I strongly disagreed with my dad throwing in the capers, but he snuck them in there when I wasn’t looking.

Sher on guac

Top the fish with a dollop of homemade guacamole.


Game Room:

the room sandy shuffle board

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