Bastille Day (July 14, 2012)

The Event

Not that we’re French, but Bastille Day is as good an excuse as any to have a dinner in the grotto. This was our first outdoor dinner of the year and the weather was just perfect. And, amazingly enough, the tiki lights were still working! Having an iPod dock is also really great. Long playlists give just the right amount of background music that you don’t have to continually change CDs. All in all, a lovely evening was had by all.


  • Mixed nuts
  • Brie en croute: Partial recipe from a friend (Fatima) combined partial recipe from The Best Make-Ahead. The brie is cut in half and spread with apricot preserves, than wrapped in puff pastry.
  • Grilled roast pork tenderloin with a mustard-rosemary spice rub
  • Sauteed corn with bacon
  • Broccoli slaw with a mayo-balsamic vinaigrette dressing
  • “Patriotic Poke Cake” from Cook’s Country


  • Red Fred Johanson
  • Mary Sander
  • Kelly Condon
  • Jeanne Park
  • Les Baker

Food Notes

  • I used Dufour puff pastry, which is an all-butter puff pastry (as opposed to Pepperidge Farm) for the Brie en croute. Definitely worth it. The buttery pastry tastes so much better!
  • Everyone loved the pork tenderloin, so once again it was a hit! Brining is definitely the key to keeping it moist.
  • I sauteed the corn in bacon fat. Very decadent and very delicious.
  • The cake was not as light and airy as the one other time I made it. I think my baking powder may have lost its oomph. The cake layers weren’t as high as the last time. Admittedly, density could also have been a result of using all the blueberry and strawberry sauce, which I didn’t the first time. It’s probably a combination of both reasons. So, while this cake is very good, the first one was better in terms of lighter cake.

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