Think Spring

This time of the year can get so dreary.  I was so excited when my private party chose my "Spring" menu!  I designed this menu around my favorite spring vegetables.  Artichoke Cheese Squares, Herb Roasted Chicken with Pan Gravy, Spring Vegetable and Goat Cheese Tart, and Mason Jar Carrot Cake were the star recipes! We could all use a little "spring thinking", don't you think?

The Artichoke Cheese Squares is a fantastic recipe to make ahead of time.  You can serve it warm or at room temperature.  I shared my tip for bread crumbs...you don't need to buy bread crumbs at the store!  Take a few pieces of bread and freeze it.  When you need fresh bread crumbs, pull out the frozen bread and grate it as you would cheese.

Next, we prepared the chicken.  I love roasting a whole chicken.  First of all, you can't beat the price.  The trick is to season the inside of the chicken as you would the outside.  A combination of fresh herbs, lemons, and seasonings make for a delicious bird.

Mason Jar Carrot Cakes are an adorable spring treat!  This recipe is so simple -- all you need is a whisk.  No fancy KitchenAid mixers are required.  Fill the mason jars a little over halfway and bake!  Easy peasy.

Lastly, we grabbed our favorite green veggies for the Spring Vegetable and Goat Cheese Tart. You can make your own pie crust as I taught in my September Pie Workshop or use a refrigerated crust.  Sometimes it's nice to save yourself some time and use the store bought version. No shame!  This is another one of those recipes to stash that can be served warm or at room temperature.

After roasting the chicken, I whipped up a simple pan gravy that is to die for!  The caramelized onions, roasted carrots, and perfectly seasoned chicken is a staple in my house.

While my students enjoyed the roasted chicken, I finished the Mason Jar Carrot Cake!  A brown sugar cream cheese frosting is just the best on this recipe.  Top with a few chopped pecans and bon appetit! 

It was such a pleasure hosting your group!  I hope your families can enjoy these recipes all season long.  Cheers! XOXO Paula