Last month, I posted a delicious five course sample menu for Spring Equinox, and since May Day is also a spring festival, many of those recipes would work wonderfully well for this holiday too. I chose, however, to shift the focus to a more romantic theme.
May is the time animals are attracting their mates; birdsong is all about; even the flowers are dazzling the bumblebees with their vivid hues. Historically, May is one of the most popular months for marriage, and one of the most recognizable symbols of this day is the Maypole, which is often thought to be a symbol of fertility. With all of this in mind and with the continued effort to connect with the energy of the season, please enjoy the following five-course, romance-inspired menu (my guests sure did!):
(Click on the name of the dish for the linked recipe, if available)
First Course: Soup
This was a delicious starter to whet the appetite and stimulate digestion. I used prepared beef broth rather than homemade (as the recipe suggests). I also eliminated the bread and topped with a touch of freshly grated parmesan to create a lighter opening to this meal.
Optional pairing: Beaujolais
Second Course: Bread
I chose to make loaves as opposed to muffins, and I did not use the optional cherries as they were seasonally inappropriate. This gluten-free recipe has an interesting texture, very moist and almost custardy; though the consistency was a bit unexpected, it was delicious and most welcome! I served the bread heated alongside warm, whipped cream cheese. Even the youngest guests gave this one a big thumbs up!!
Optional pairing: pinot grigio
Third Course: Salad
I used honeydew melon and Italian prosciutto, and alongside, I served a very basic but beautiful edible flower salad.
I simply cut up two heads of Boston Lettuce and purchased edible flowers from Whole Foods. I gently separated and added the petals to the lettuce along with fresh raspberries, and I drizzled the melon skewer dressing over the salad as well.
Optional Pairing: Dry Riesling
Fourth Course: Main
“Filet Mignon with Mushroom-Wine Sauce of Love” Another Recipe Courtesy of DivineDinnerParty.com (an amazingly wonderful resource!) This recipe, though a tad fussy, was an enormous hit! I highly recommend it!
Scalloped Potatoes: My favorite scalloped potato recipe comes from the classic Fannie Farmer Cookbook, an invaluable resource thoroughly worth its price! I am sure many other free versions are available online. Also, using a food processor makes slicing large quantities of potatoes a snap!!
Optional Pairing: Pinot Noir
Fifth Course: Dessert
I used an alternate version of Nutella – no matter, however, just as advertised, this mousse tasted amazing!!
Optional Pairing: Port