An indoor "BBQ" using the oven seemed to be the glaring alternative...
Ethan and I sorted through Food & Wines, Gourmets and Bon Appetits to find the best dishes to fit our interpretive BBQ needs and came up with a menu that did not disappoint.
We greeted our fellow feasters with a homemade fruit punch a la Ethan, and shortly afterwards Becca and Jason served the amuse of Margarita Watermelon and Lime Ice Pops to help combat the scorching inland sun - especially being that we were kept indoors without central air. The pops were the perfect bite to get us salivating for real food.
The group sat at the table to enjoy Elise and Philip's Fresh Corn Soup topped with Roasted Corn Guacamole. So refreshing! Next Becca and Jason served their Watermelon, Feta & Arugula Salad with Balsamic Glaze. (At the time we were still intimidated by their status as league commissioners and made sure to give them two dishes to satisfy their culinary demands.)
For the entree, Ethan and I made Honey Tamarind Baby Back Ribs with Asian Vegetable Slaw, which were complimented beautifully by Liz's Braised Collared Greens and Cara's Cheese Monger Mac and Cheese. Rick was sick in bed at home, so Cara came with tupperware in tow - especially due to the small fortune they spent on the international cheeses that accompanied their mac.
This meal was truly satisfying, comforting and as they say in culinary la-la-land - unctuous. However, the last component to this feast was a dessert that I still dream about to this day. Adam and Jen's Chocolate Chocolate-Chip Cookie and Strawberry Gelato Sandwiches. Why only have 1 chocolate when you can have 2?! These sandos were the proverbial icing on the cake to a fabulous meal, and possibly the culmination of my life as a foodie. You get it. I liked them. A lot.
As this was Liz's first feast, Jason decided post dinner to make her feel useful by spilling his wine all over my (new) dress and upholstered chair. In homage to Larry David, Liz spent the following hour utilizing the club-soda-and-salt method for stain removal, with moderate success. To this day, Ethan and I will treasure supper club every time we look at our maroon-ish beige chair with nothing but happy memories.
We finished off the evening with an exhilarating round of Chilean Scattegories, aka Celebrity, aka Charades and then passed out from our imminent food comas.