Friday, December 20, 2013

Dinner with Friends

Two weekends ago Josh and I had plans to get together with friends at their house for dinner.  We hadn't seen them in a while (and not since I became vegan) so I gave our hosts a heads up about my diet change and asked if I could bring a vegan dish to share.  I thought it would make all of our lives easier because it can be hard for people who aren't used to it to figure out vegan entrées.  
I asked what they would be serving so I could try and make something complementary that everyone could enjoy.  When my friend said her husband had a great chili recipe that they would make, so I thought it would be perfect to also bring some vegan cornbread on the side.  Since I had only made vegan cornbread once before (before I was even vegan) and it had been a big failure, I decided to do a test run of this recipe the day before.  
The first batch I made had great texture and moisture but wasn't sweet enough in my opinion.  For the big get together I added extra sugar and maple syrup and subbed out vanilla almond milk for plain.  Batch number two was perfect.  And I think everyone enjoyed it.  Warm cornbread with Earth Balance - yum!

I also brought a main course to share that I thought would complement the chili - Mexican pasta salad.  I followed this recipe but tweaked the proportions and left out the black olives.  Does anyone actually like black olives anyway?  Though it was simple the pasta salad actually turned out great.  It was super easy to whip up and had enough going on to be an interesting main dish.  
Unfortunately, when we arrived our friends had decided to nix the chili and serve Indian food!  Oddly enough, everything still seem to go together pretty well.  And hey, if the food's good, who cares if it all follows the same theme?  All you really need is good friends and a few laughs for a great evening.  And if your friends go buy you Sticky Fingers vegan cupcakes for dessert, that doesn't hurt either!

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