The Weekly Newsletter
Menus and Stories for February 14 - 19 , 2005

Monday is Valentine's Day!!!
Isn't love grand? (We think so!)

It is not too late for you to decide to have dinner at home with your Valentine. Call today (Saturday) or, if you're not reading this note until Monday, call as early as you can and we'll see if we can help make your evening lovely. (I mean, wouldn't you rather just stay home with your sweetheart? I know I would.)

Here's our special meal for this special evening:

At the start:
Traditional Shrimp Cocktail with our own Dipping Sauce

The dinner:
Chicken Marsala with Button Mushrooms
Dilled Dutch-style Noodles with Browned Butter
Pencil-thin Asparagus with Lemon
Parker House Rolls

The Salad:
Hearts of Romaine with our own Blue Cheese Dressing
(or our Vinaigrette if you prefer)

The Dessert - oh my!
Chocolate Gran Marnier Tiramisu
with Gran Marnier Candied Orange Peel
and a dusting of Cocoa

The price for this meal will be 21.50.

Dinners will be presented in our reheatable containers and will be ready for you to pick up between 4:30 and 6:00 (which is when we close.)

Ka-bloom, our next-door-neighbors, will have plenty of roses for you last minute shoppers. (They brought us the beauties in the picture - and are the ones who supply us with our lovely table flowers and plants. Lucky us!)

Handmade Jellies
For anyone who has ever visited Hediard, the remarkable food emporium in Paris, these will bring back lovely memories. They are, after all, a source for handmde fruit jellies.

Well, a couple in New Hampshire has figured out how to take flower essences, from their own garden in some cases, and is making these elegant squares.

Bring home a sleeve of these aromatic sweets for your love. Say Cupid suggested them.

The nightly dinners for the week (Call 252-1500 to order)
Dinners-to-go are available Monday through Friday.

Here's how it works:
Just call us in the morning and we'll take your order for that night's meal. Then come back between 4:30 and 6:00 to pick up your dinner - all ready in a heatable container. Simple, yes?

Monday February 14 Valentineís Day Special
Tuesday February 15 Beef and Butternut Pot Pie 10.00
Wednesday February 16 Pork Tenderloin au Poivre11.25
Thursday February 17 Garlic Roasted Chicken with Sage Gravy 9.75
Friday February 18 Zesty Wild Salmon with Zucchini Basil Succotash 12.00

Laurey's (yum!) Catering and Gourmet to Go

The Casserole of the Week
Casseroles are made each Wednesday.
Call to order on Tuesday if you can.
Orders will be ready on Wednesday between 4:30 and 6:00.

Order a full pan for 9 (or so) or a half pan for 4 or 5.

Wednesday, February 16
Pasta Shells stuffed with Prosciutto, Salami, and Olives
served with our own, made-right-here Marinara Sauce

Full pan: 34.00
Half pan: 17.00

How 'bout some chocolate?
These chocolate-covered espresso beans will NOT induce sleep (but who needs to sleep on Valentine's evening, right?)

...don't forget the sparkle...
Our staff worked with the winemakers at the Biltmore Estate to create the blend for this sparkling wine. The grapes are all grown in North Carolina and the recipe is all ours (well, with a lot of help from Bernard, that is.)

Keep the bottle. Make it into a lamp. (Okay don't - it was just a thought...)

I CAN say that this wine will be a nice accompaniment to the evening, whether you keep the bottle or not.

Waiting for the dinners
Our resident MFA does it again. Karen spread out in our Garden Room and gave each Valentine's Dinner-to-go bag her special touch. (Emily and Maurie and I thought Karen was having too much fun so three of you will get bags painted by one of us...)

Hey, who says there's no future in a Fine Art degree?

By the way - we DO have a talented staff, as you keep hearing me say. We've decided to show off a bit, and are going to have a staff art show at the end of April. We who customarily stay behind the counters, stoves, and desks, are going to step out just a bit. You can bet that we are polishing our tools, framing our paintings, sanding our sculptures, and trying to figure out how to make blown-glass in time for the show. (Fun, huh?)

A Note from Laurey
February 12, 2005

Hi there,

Gosh I love the sun! This is our second weekend of gentle temperatures, blue skies, and spring feeling. I have been getting out into the yard, clearing out that accumulated debris, and getting ready for the new. I even have my first round poison ivy Ė which is NOT the best part about garden work. Even more than new pencils and notebooks in the fall, I love the promise of a garden in the early spring.

I had a fun week. Iíve found a place to play at glass-blowing here. Iím trying to keep it light, trying to allow myself the klutziness that comes with being a beginner. Itís actually a refreshingly freeing place to be.

At the end of my week long class I had started to learn to work on my own with what is called a blow-hose assembly. This contraption allows a person to manipulate the glass with the right hand and turn the blow pipe with the left hand AND inflate the piece at the same time. Alternatively, a glass blower needs to have an assistant to stand by, ready to blow into the pipe as the molten glass is manipulated. When youíre really good, it is possible to shape the glass quickly with the right hand, keep the pipe moving with the left hand and then give quick puffs into the end of the pipe, inflating the piece. If you stop turning the pipe during this process, the still-fluid, not-yet-formed vessel simply gives in to the gravitational pull and slumps off! So you have to turn, shape, blow, and heat constantly. It is not easy to keep these three things going all at the same time. Oh, and if your creation gets too cold during this time, it will crack and explode, so every so often you have to stand up, pick the pipe off the workbench, take it to the ďglory holeĒ and heat it up so that the glass softens and is malleable enough that you can take it back to the bench and turn, shape, etc. It is quite a dance.

So two weeks ago I spent one hour trying to bring myself back to the place Iíd gotten to at the end of my class. I was marginally successful. It was tricky getting used to the new set up and the new tools, but I realized I was not starting at zero so that was a comfort. I used the studio ownerís blow hose assembly, since mine had not yet arrived in the mail.

But this week I chose to work without the assembly, since itís owner had a bad cold. Iíve made it this far this year without the flu or a cold so I opted not to share. But that meant I had to either work with an assistant (and there was none available) or I had to figure out how to do the dance of the three jobs all by myself. And, while I was very clumsy, I did manage to make some things that are not half bad.

In truth, I can see a fairly dramatic improvement. I still canít make things quickly (Iíll say!) nor can I yet make what I have in my imagination. But I can see that it will be possible at some point, so thatís pretty exciting. This past week I made three little vases. Theyíre kind of funny little things. They lack symmetry and they are not big. But they are thin, which was one thing I was working on. I have a small bowl I made at school and it probably weighs more than a pound (yipes!) My new little vase is pleasantly light and even has a hint of grace about it. Joy!

One unexpected treat about this new diversion is that it demands total concentration. There is no room for concern about anything. It is not the time to worry about catering orders or wobbly tables or broken mixers. All those things fly away as I step up to the crucible. I slide open the door, dip in the pipe and get carried away. What a simply wonderful thing this is, and how lucky I am to be able to immerse myself in it.

Um, in the unpleasant event that your Valentine is, well, off your list, how about a pack of this? Smiling is better than not, right?

Contact Info:
Laurey's (yum!) Catering
Gourmet-to-Go (and to stay!)
67 Biltmore Avenue
Asheville, NC 28801


Monday - Friday 10:00 - 6:00 pm
Saturday 10:00 - 4:00 pm

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