But first, I bring you the 3rd installment of The Wedding Story...
With the first full day of events impending, Giz and I headed to the Byward Market to stock up on supplies. We had about an hour to get a lot done. So, I was literally dragging Giz from place to place telling her to put the camera down and get a move on.
She did manage to sneak in a few shots.
Unlike the Farmer's Market, the stands at the Byward Market contain a lot of produce that is not local. This has led to quite a debate, locally. Including a petition. Last year, the addition of a colour-coding system was added to inform customers of the distance the produce has travelled to get to the market.
Red means Canadian.
Blue means imported.
Green means from within 100 kilometres of Ottawa.
Yellow means organic produce from anywhere.
There are still some problems with this system as the stickers are not always prominently displayed, produce from different regions are often sold in the same basket and there is the occasional mislabelling.
One of the main benefits of the market is that there are a bunch of small stores in the area that are there year round (even when the stands close for the winter).
There are two cheese stores very close to each other (I get the names confused). They're both good. I think the one we went to was The House of Cheese. Or, maybe it was International Cheese & Deli.
One of the best reasons to go to the market is to visit La Bottega, a store specializing in Italian food.
At this point, we were beyond late and I was stressing. So, Giz was very restricted in her picture taking. We picked up the remainder of what we needed and returned to the apartment to get the "day before" preparations under way.
Thankfully, I had a barrage of help Saturday morning to get everything done. Life is so much easier when other people do your work for you. I miss my entourage (sniff sniff).
Here are some shots from Saturday dinner (some are blurry -- there was just too much going on at once to take good shots).
Included a mix of cheddar, brie, smoked gouda, havarti and cranberry goat's cheese.
Orzo Caprese Salad (Melissa - you know I'm obsessed with this stuff)
I made the pesto without pine nuts because one of the guests is deathly allergic to nuts (slight challenge).
Not the most beautiful dish in the world -- but it was a big hit and super easy to make. We marinaded the salmon for 30 minutes with olive oil, lemon juice, dill, salt and pepper. HUGE HIT.
Here you can also see a bit of the green salad we served along with the baguette (some fresh, some made into crostini). Guests had an option of bruschetta or portabello tapinade.
Also a favourite, here's the spanikopita (easy to make ahead of time, freeze and warm up). You can also see Giz's towel cake in the background.
Make sure shortening and butter are at room temp. Mix them together to smooth out, add vanilla, then icing sugar (a little bit at a time to avoid a counter disaster). Add water as needed (depending on desired consistency).
This 3-tier stand was a wedding gift (from Giz, of course). The top layer is some leftover banana loaf and the other layers are the famous Blueberry Crumble Bars that everyone was making last year. I used a mix of blueberries and a saskatoon berries to make them.