The lovely white, silver-embossed invitation states that we are invited to my cousin’s for dinner and that she is dreaming of a white Christmas. I assume Cugina (about the only Italian word I remember from all those months of study before a trip to Italy – female cousin) is referring to the sprinkling of snow that we receive on the eve of the party.
My Cugina’s house is not only decorated in gorgeous white roses, ribbons, snow people, feathers and baubles, but everything we eat and drink turns out to be white. (OK, maybe I do spoil it with my penchant for red wine.)
First, we sip on White Cosmopolitans, which for some reason lend an even merrier atmosphere to the already congenial evening.
My cousin and her husband are not only related, but my cugina is also one of my best friends, someone who knows me so well because she was there as I grew, made mistakes, changed, and sought my dreams. Another couple is also related: my husband’s brother and his wife. Again, we are blessed because we really like them as well as love them, enjoy their company and their unconditional love. The fourth couple is relatively new to us, but it seems as though we have always had their love and friendship in our lives. White Cosmopolitans only make me happier to be here!
Cugina has referred to the repast as a “tasting dinner”. We soon understand what she means.
Every serving is a small sampling of a rich, delicious, flavourful treat. Even if you wanted to, you couldn’t eat an entire plate of each delicacy, because they are so laden with taste and sumptuousness that you’d explode from too much pleasure.
Placed on white dishes or bowls, each fantastic entrée is a visual as well as an aromatic and scrumptious delight. Here, in order, are the delicacies we savour:
Sundried Tomato/Brie phyllo bundles
Cream of Cauliflower Soup
Carmelized Onion Tart
Scallops with Parsnip PureeSwiss Fondue/Breadsticks
Chicken Pops/Peach Sauce
White Mac and Cheese
As if that weren’t enough, we are led into the living room afterward to an array of glass dishes that display sweet desserts that are beyond description.
Clementine Shortbread Sandwiches
Peanut Butter/White Chocolate Balls
White Chocolate Fudge
Iced Almond Cookies
Sugar Cookie Christmas Trees
Peppermint Stick Cookies
White Candy Jars.
I shovel in as many as my already-stuffed tummy will allow, but I wish there were two of me. (Which there might be in the morning.) In addition, my glass has never been empty all night long, which could account for the slight headache and dehydration the next day.
My Cugina is a wonder. Plus forever I will be able to say that I didn’t just dream of a white Christmas; I ate one.