We had dinner the other evening with two friends, Rick and Haley. It was an exquisite goodbye-summer-hello-fall affair that involved a lot of fruit, wine, and laughter. It was thoroughly enjoyable, partially because I am the one who makes dinner around here most often, so when someone else offers to cook for me it makes me really excited.
Not that I mind cooking dinner most evenings. I absolutely love it. I’d be totally lost without a kitchen to command. But still . . . there’s something magical about walking into a room where someone has already done all of the work and simply handing over the wine.
Haley and Rick happen to be wonderful cooks, producing something similar to this Moroccan Chicken and Couscous. It was so good. But what made it even better was the fact that we ate it outside, in a beautiful garden with a stone path, surrounded by tiki torches, around an outdoor fire pit.
Never mind that the fire pit exploded in the middle of our meal, sending us all diving for cover. The occurrence only added to the dramatic ambience, really. Fall may be here, but outdoor meals have only begun.
Oh, and I brought dessert along. I must say – I thought the chocolate swirl was a pretty divine addition to my mother’s famous cheesecake, but I might be partial.
Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake
- Half of this cheesecake filling and topping recipe, courtesy of Bona Vita.
- One graham cracker crust (no, sorry, I didn’t slave over my own. I’m not that brave yet.)
Once the cheesecake batter is completed, scoop out 1/3 cup and add two tbl. of cocoa powder. Stir energetically until the cheesecake has absorbed all of the chocolate and is a deep chocolate color. Pour the original batter into the crust. Swirl the 1/3 cup chocolate cheesecake lightly through the batter. Bake as directed.