With our feet firmly back on the ground in Toronto, we set about establishing our normal routine at home. It took the better part of a week to get everything going and to find those things that had stopped working in our absence. I am now hand watering the garden as we have sprung a leak in our tiny condo sized irrigation system and I am grilling and cooktop cooking as our oven decided to go into perpetual error mode. Thank goodness for electronics!

The good news was that we had invited friends for dinner, but there really was no requirement for either of these broken things, as it was a rainy day and I didn’t need the oven to cook this light and simple dinner for our get-together.

We had corresponded via text and email quite regularly while they felt the lockdown restrictions in Toronto and we enjoyed the sunshine and relative freedom on the Suncoast. We commiserated when things did not go well or there was a setback, and cheered when things were looking good.

Getting together after many months was pretty much the same as if we had never left. We greeted at the door, quickly opened a bottle of sparkling wine that they had brought on another occasion, and toasted our get together, to our health and to our good fortune at seeing each other again.

We sat at our kitchen counter trading stories, sipping wine and nibbling on crostini. The crostini was a little different as it was topped with fresh ricotta cheese and a mix of strawberries and baby plum tomatoes marinated in white balsamic vinegar and good olive oil.

Since we were having steamed lobster and Bloody Mary Linguini, I started a pot of water on the stove and stayed in the kitchen to serve our appetizer, which was my Truly Great Gazpacho Soup. This is the most delicious gazpacho ever. I have had this recipe for years, and every time I make it, I think this is the best I have ever tasted.

While we were having our appetizer, I reheated the bloody Mary sauce and I brought the water for the linguini to a boil, added the pasta, then I placed a cooling rack over the boiling water. Once steadily simmering, I placed the lobster tails on the rack. I had butterflied the lobster tails earlier and inserted a wooden skewer through the length of the lobster. This prevented the tails from curling up. I then covered the lobsters on the rack with an upside down sauté pan to capture the steam and cook the lobster.

The lobster and the pasta were done at about the same time, as were we with the appetizer. I plated dinner and we moved to our dining room table for the main course and dessert.


Bernard – Messard Cuvée de L’Ecusson

Sparkling Pinot Noir

Small Bites

Fresh Strawberry and Tomato Crostini


Truly Great Gazpacho Soup


Lobster Tail with Bloody Mary Linguini


Château Liot Sauternes

Eton Mess

Läderach Swiss Chocolate Truffles

This time, our friends brought us the delectable truffles, which I adore, and the Sauternes, another passion of mine and a great way to end a good meal. But, the best gift of all, was the gift of their friendship.


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