Thursday, January 25, 2018

A Lasagna Potluck Party! (& Vegan Richa Winners!)

You all know how much I love a good potluck! And I also love lasagna almost more than anything else in the whole wide world! So, you know what's super cool, is when your friend invites you to a vegan potluck and tells you that she is going to make lasagna! And that's just what happened. My friend Connie invited us over for a special pot luck with several of her vegan pals. 

We had a super fun evening together and I got to meet several cool new people, and see a couple familiar friends who I really like. Lots of great food and fun conversation. I always enjoy the opportunity to meet new people, especially new vegan friends! For a proper potluck experience, we split up the various responsibilities of a complete meal - each of us brought something to make a whole feast. 

I think I might actually need a "Lasagna Lover" tshirt! 


For appetizers C. made some some amazing bell pepper spread - this was extremely delicious: rich and creamy. In truth, I am not always a super fan of red pepper spreads, but this was especially good and I ate a lot of it! It was served with some fancy crackers and fresh bread. We had a nice little cocktail hour before the lasagna was ready - chatting, enjoying this good stuff, and enjoying some good conversation too. 


Glorious Creation! 

Look at that lasagna!! Mmmm. Connie actually used my recipe for lasagna, which was extra fun! Unlike most foodie bloggers, I don't actually make up too many recipes. In fact, several of the component parts of my lasagna recipes are directly inspired by other recipes! So it was a real thrill to have someone else make a recipe that I shared! Also, bonus for me, I just happen to really love my own lasagna. Ha ha ha. It's very good, if I do say so myself. I usually make it for myself for my birthday and for Christmas. It was really a super fun and special treat to have my very favorite lasagna without even having to make it myself! 

I think I got super excited about the lasagna, because I neglected to take a picture of the beautiful salad that D brought to the party. I always love and appreciate a good salad as part of a big meal - it feels so good and balancing to have a whole heap of fresh salad on the plate along with all the other good stuff. There was also some great bread from a local bakery that L. brought - I don't often buy bread from that bakery, and it was so good! Perfect with the salad and lasagna. We ate like royalty! 

high fives!
Thanks Connie for a great lasagna and a great evening! ha ha! 


Mmmm... Peanut Butter Hazelnut Lover's Chocolate Tart
with Hazelnut Caramel Sauce

When we were doling out the responsibilities for the dinner, I jumped at the chance to bring dessert! I love making desserts, but I don't do it all that often anymore. What a fun opportunity to make something special and decadent. I've had my eye on the Peanut Butter Lover's Chocolate Tart from Oh She Glows Everyday for a while now. But peanut butter isn't really a very Italian flavor, to go along with our lasagna. So I tweaked it and used hazelnuts everywhere that the recipe called for peanuts - in the crust, in the ganache, in the caramel sauce, and in the garnish. Because hazelnuts and chocolate definitely is a classic Italian flavor combo! I even roasted a bunch of hazelnuts and made fresh roasted hazelnut butter in my Vitamix. I was a little embarrassed at how easy that was. ha ha. I guess there's a whole world of homemade nut butter awaiting me! 


slice of heaven

Gentle reader, this dessert was SO DARNED GOOD. I highly recommend it! I'll definitely make it again with the peanut combo because I bet that's pretty perfect too - though I was quite smitten with my hazelnut adaptation. I bought some cappucino ice cream to go with the tart, which was a great flavor combo. This tart is especially good straight out of the freezer, when it's pleasantly firm, but it's also good out of the fridge. It's super rich, velvety smooth, and 100% delicious. 


Champ! 

Bonus picture of Connie's adorable and awesome little doggie, Champ! I love him! He was a very gracious host and did an excellent job of making the rounds and spending time with all of the guests, so that we all felt special and all got a little quality time with his cuteness. What a good boy! 

Champ and Snoopy also support the Lasagna agenda.


WINNERS! 
Also! I used the random number generator to select two winners from my Vegan Richa giveaway - 
In the United States, @girlrunner will receive a copy of Richa's excellent new book Vegan Richa's Everyday Kitchen
Internationally, @Josiane will receive Richa's bonus recipe bundle
Hoorah! 

6 comments:

  1. I'm honored to be the subject of your blog post! I had such a fun time preparing the lasagna and hoped that I would do your recipe justice. It was a great night with great friends. And dear reader, Amey is right. Her dessert was dynamite!

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  2. That sounds like so much fun, and how lovely to get the lasagna made for you. It looks magnificent, and I would just like to dive right in!

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  3. That tart looks amazing! I wish I lived near you so I could become friends and eat all your yummy food lol

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  4. What a fun (and clearly delicious!) potluck feast you've had! It's been way too long since I last made lasagna; I've got to make it happen soon… And your tart sounds absolutely amazing. I bet you've gotten on all of your new friends' list of people to invite to their next potluck!

    And oh! What a sweet surprise to find out that I'm the lucky one who gets to receive Richa's recipe bundle - yay! Should I get in touch with her directly, or did you already pass my email along to Richa?

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  5. That lasagna looks epic! And the dessert you made sounds so good. I like the idea of the hazelnut-chocolate combo. I love peanut butter and chocolate together, but in a really rich dessert like that I sometimes find it to be too much. Sounds like a great potluck!

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  6. Anonymous10:49 AM

    Do you buy the hazelnuts at the farmersmarket? I find the ones from the store taste old and dusty, but then I'm really spoiled as I come from a region where hazelnuts grew and they tasted amazing.

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