Gardening, Cooking and Decorating on the Prairie of Kansas

Welcome to Linderhof, our 1920's home on the prairie, where there's usually something in the oven, flowers in the garden for tabletops and herbs in the garden for cooking. Where, when company comes, the teapot is always on and there are cookies and cakes to share in the larder.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Luncheon Guests for Administrative Assistant's Day

Back in the day, they were called "Secretaries" -- and way back in the day they were male!    But today they're not secretaries but "Administrative Assistant's" and they are a valuable member of any business for it is they who keeps the business running smoothly.

And I should know, for early in my career, I was first a Secretary and then a Legal Secretary.    It was I who keep the office running smoothly.    And that was in the day before computers!     Perfect typing skills were important as a legal secretary for on important legal documents "erasures" were not allowed!

And so, I was glad to welcome friend Joyce and her staff for an Administrative Assistant's Day luncheon at Linderhof.

For her, and her girls . . .

The dining room table set with a damask cloth . . .

Fresh flowers from the garden -- all in yellow and white -- roses and honeysuckle.

Napkins of yellow damask in silver napkin rings, a menu for each place, and my blue and white Spode.

A pretty table for some really special women!

And the menu?

Creamy basil and tomato soup.    The basil from the pinchings of my basil plants to be planted in the herb garden.    The secret of the soup is buttermilk which makes for a creamy soup but a soup with a tart tang.

A quiche of ham and asparagus and green onion and lots of cheese.

All lined up on the island and ready to go to the table.    A salad of mixed baby greens with Linderhof vinaigrette and corn madelines -- rosemary corn made lines.  

And for dessert?

Warm chocolate molten cake topped with whipped cream ( to which I added a smudge of Grand Marnier) and a garden pansy.

It was a fun luncheon and a great afternoon.    One of the "girls" was an old old friend -- husband Jim had hired her when he managed the McDonald's in the town 20 miles east of us -- when she was just 16!   We hadn't seen her in a long time and it was fun to make a connection again!  

The chocolate molten cake is chocolate decadence but so easy to make!     If you've ever sailed on a Carnival ship, you've had their Chocolate Melting Cake for dessert -- it's the same cake!  


4 squares unsweetened chocolate
1/2 c. butter
2 eggs
2 egg yolks
1 cup powdered sugar
6 T. flour

Preheat oven to 425.    Spray custard cups with Pam and set aside.    Melt butter and chocolate in microwave for 1 minute.    Stir to make sure chocolate is melted.     Add eggs and egg yolks.    Stir in powdered sugar.    Add flour.     Divide batter among the four custard cups.     Bake 13 to 17 minutes until the top is done and the cake pulls away from the sides.    Upturn onto a dessert plate (the cake should plop out) and serve with whipped cream or ice cream.   (Some melting of the cream will occur).  

It's Thursday and I'm joining Susan at Between Naps On the Porch for Tablescape Thursday.    I wonder how many "Administrative Assistant" tables there will be today!

And I'm joining Cuisine Kathleen for Let's Dish.

And I'm joining Miz Helen for Full Plate Thursday!


Meredith said...

What a lovely table. I love your Spode and that menu looks heavenly. There is a French Bistro Chain here that sells Tomato Basil soup. My mom gave me a basil plant, so I just might have to make my own!

PAT said...

A delicious table, Martha!

podso said...

How nice of you to have these ladies (I assume) over for such a special lunch. The corn lines ?? must be corn meal muffins? I think my mother had a form to make them like that ...

Pretty table!

kitty@ Kitty's Kozy Kitchen said...

Martha, what a delightful and special luncheon you planned for your guests. The soup, the quiche and the dessert look so delicious. I love you blue and white dishes, too. I've made chocolate molten cake, too, and love them.

Martha said...

Podso -- thanks for catching that -- it was late last night when I posted (and I had had a busy day) -- the computer doesn't like madelines -- so they separated the words! I've fixed it!

Allison said...

It was a wonderful luncheon! We all throughly enjoyed it!! Thank you for having us!!!

Scribbler said...

This looks great! I have been meaning to tell you something -- and keep forgetting -- sometimes I have trouble accessing your blog. I don't know if this is a blogger glitch or what.

I too was a legal secretary for some years, back when I was a single mother -- I don't miss all that work, do you?

Rowan said...

What a wonderful menu - especially the dessert. I shall be trying that recipe!

On Crooked Creek said...

What a wonderful way to express gratitude for Administrative Assistants! ( I now fall in that category!) I'm sure these ladies felt greatly appreciated at your lovely table! The menu looks divine, indeed!

Blondie's Journal said...

Hurray for you for celebrating these wonderful Administration Assistants...I was a Legal Assistant for many, many years and it was very hard, stressful work!

Your table looks beautiful as always and your menu delightful. Thank you for the recipe. I would really love to have the recipe for your soup, the buttermilk sounds interesting!


Barbara said...

How wonderful to celebrate such hard working people! I am sure they felt very pampered by your lovely table and that scrumptious food. I love tomato basil soup. That is a good tip!

Michelle said...

Hi Martha!

Stopping by to catch, your recipes look fantastic! I need to cook some good food this weekend...we've been busy staining a deck and working in the garden...and eating sandwiches!
Take care,

Miz Helen said...

Hi Martha,
I would love to have been a guest for you lovely luncheon. Your table looks beautiful, your guest must have felt so special. Your recipes look amazing and I can't wait to try some of them. Hope you have a great week end and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
Come Back Soon!
Miz Helen

Kathleen said...

Lovely table Martha, and lunch looks delicious! A good legal secynis hard to find !
Thanks for linking up to Let 's Dish!