Ok. So we saw Dreamgirls last Friday. Jennifer Hudson, she is the Vanessa Williams of American Idol, parlaying a defeat into an incandescent victory that spells out long term success. While everyone and their brother seems to be trashing the pseudo-Motown soundtrack, I can stop singing the title track and "I am Changing." While I was prepared for Jennifer Hudson to be great, I wasn't prepared for her to kick the role's ass and serve it for toast and ensure than any iteration of Effie would be a pale imitation of Jennifer Hudson's performance. Luckily, the bench runs deep with the guy playing C.C., Effie's brother giving a textured, nuanced performance that grounded the movie and the totally surprising Eddie Murphy who USED his charisma and schtick as opposed to relying on it for the whole performance. As everyone and their brother also noted, you gotta feel bad for Beyonce, who was push to the side of the movie. She was a supporting actress in Dreamgirls. I'm not sure if it was her insistence that Deena be portrayed as an ineffectual wimp and therefore, not a villian or it was just hte screenplay. But she and her managers should have put a little more Diana Ross into the story to make her a charismatic bitchy diva as opposed to a simpering victim. And Jamie Foxx can't sing. But somehow those two weak performances don't detract from the overall movie.
For the rest of the weekend, we spent it at Spyrogyra's beach house in Rehoboth. Rehoboth was surprisingly packed as the shops and the outlets were filled with people. It looked like everyone else had the same idea as we did. In the Giant on Route 1, we saw many other groups of folks buying ingredients for similar, multi-course meals that we were planning for the weekend. Saturday night we made s'mores. I am incredibly meticulous about my s'mores. There is not burning flaming marshmallow for me. There is a slow roasting to a golden brown color with the chocolate and graham cracker laying near the fire to melt the chocolate. The result is a yummy oozing concoction. But J did one better and decided to soak the marshmallow in whiskey to see if it would flambe. The marshmallow didn't flabe but somehow kept the outside from burning and liquefied the inside. This resulted in what can only be referred to as a marshmallow shooter. We soon we all soaking marshmallows in whiskey and some folks even started to poke holes in the marshmallows for better absorption.
The two big group meals we were planning for were New Year's Eve Dinner and New Year's Day Brunch. Here's the menus:
- Gorgonzola and Honey toasts topped with bosc pears
- Grilled shrimp with cocktail sauce (nothing beats shrimp marinated in just garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper)
- Ribeye steaks with steak sauce
- Roast beef with horseradish
- creamed spinach
- roasted brussell sprouts
- cider glazed carrots and sugar snap peas
- mashed potatoes
*One note about the massive quantities of food we served. It made getting drunk impossible. We all were drinking a lot but were nowhere near drunk because the massive slabs of meat were soaking up all the alcohol.
- smoked salmon and goat cheese fritatta
- applewood smoked bacon
- seafood Newburg**
- blackeyed peas
- Banana bread muffins (muched on during brunch prep)
- Waffles with pear compote
**A note of caution. Don't allow a person who can drink Axl Rose under the table gauage whether there's enough sherry in the Newburg. I was getting tipsy from the soup!