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Good Music, Food and Friends
March 14th, 2010 by

From left to right, Jay, Kenny, and "Little Kenny."

From left to right, Jay, Kenny, and "Little Kenny." Click on the photo to hear them play and sing.

This is what rootsliving is all about.

My friends Kenny and Katie recently hosted what we like to call a “hootenanny,” complete with guitar singing, food, and good friends. Kenny is a singer/songwriter and he, and my friend, Jay (who you might remember helped me out on the backyard makeover project) played guitar and sang, taking requests from the small audience in Kenny’s dining room.  Kenny’s 16-year-old son, “Little Kenny” also joined in for a few numbers, playing bass.

Katie is one of the best cooks I know. She made a slow-roasted roast beef (recipe below) for sandwiches with Boursin cheese and tomato. And everyone else brought one appetizer. I brought my AI (Asian-Italian) Chicken Wings.

Here are some of the food and musical highlights from that day:

Very simple and very tasty, this fig, goat cheese, and bread appetizer couldn't be any easier to make.

Very simple and very tasty, this fig, goat cheese, and bread appetizer couldn't be any easier to make.

Carol’s Cheesy Fig Delights

Ingredients/Shopping List:

  • French bread, cut up into small rounds
  • Fig jam
  • Goat Cheese

What she did:

Put jam and goat cheese in separate small bowls.

Put bread on a platter

Let guests make their own “delights” by spreading fig jam on bread and goat cheese on top.

This slow-roasted method produces a very tender, rare, roast beef.

This slow-roasted method produces a very tender, rare, roast beef.

Katie’s Roast Beef Sandwiches

Ingredients/Shopping List:

  • Boneless eye-round roast (3 1/2 to 4 1/2 pound)
  • Kosher salt (4 teaspoons)
  • Vegetable oil (2 tsp.)
  • Pepper (2 tsp.)
  • Boursin cheese (about 5 or 6 oz. or so; enough for as many sandwiches as you’re making)
  • Mayonnaise (about 5 or 6 oz.; just enough to make the Boursin cheese spreadable.)
  • French rolls (or any good Italian bread) (Katie got her rolls at Colarusso’s Bakery in Stoneham, Mass. and they were great!)
  • Tomato slices (enough for as many sandwiches as you’re making.)

What she did:

Sprinkle all sides of the roast with the salt. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 18-24 hours.

Pre-heat oven to 225 degrees.

Pat the roast dry with paper towels; rub with 2 tsp. of the oil and sprinkle all sides evenly with pepper.

Heat the remaining 1 tps. of oil in a skillet over medium heat and then sear the roast until brown on all sides (about 3-4 minutes per side.)

Transfer roast to a wire rack set in a rimmed baking sheet. Roast for about 20 minutes per pound (Katie’s 4.25 pound roast beef took 1 1/2 hours to cook).

Shut oven off and DO NOT OPEN OVEN FOR 30 MINUTES.

Put roast on carving board and let rest for 15 minutes before slicing.

Mix just enough mayo into the Boursin cheese to make the cheese spreadable (about half and half).

Put a slice of roast beef in the roll. Spread Boursin cheese mixture on top. Add a few slices of tomatoes.

(Note: If you’re having a party — or a hootenanny — you can put the roast beef slices, Boursin cheese spread, tomatoes, and rolls out on separate plates and let your guests make their own sandwiches.)

Find more recipes in the Food section.

(Note: If you’d like to print these recipes, click here or on the headline on this post and then use the print button at the bottom of the post. In other words, print from the “permalink” not from the homepage.)

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