Helene Cooper is an amazing cook and entertainer…and author, writer, and so on. If we were not locked-down, this is what I would cook for Helene’s birthday! Some detractors might say she is a little too closely aligned with Ina Garten, a small bakery owner from New York. Regardless, she is a challenge to cook for, as Helene knows her way around the kitchen.
Happy Birthday Helene!
First Up, we would have a cool and refreshing cocktail to greet the guests. Since spring is popping, we would serve up a frozen basil vodka lemonade.
As guests arrive and start enjoying their drinks, we would serve tomato basil bruschetta. Helene’s birthday is off-season, so we would use colorful and tasty cherry tomatoes.
When the guests are seated we would have a few carpaccio boards out so there would be something to graze on while waiting for the appetizer.
Not to overdo the hits of basil, but our first course would be a few skillets of lemon butter sautéd clams.
The main course would be a few 4 pound spatchcocked lemon jalapeño herbed chickens, an amazing shared dish for a fun night with friends.
With plenty of food flowing, a simple and freshly roasted red pepper would be served with the check – no starches – as we wouldn’t want to take away from the grand finale.
Sweet Teensy, of course, would make a spectacular cake!