Monday, July 27, 2015

Polo Menu

I hadn't been to a polo match in three years, so back in the Spring I messaged my girlfriends about picking a date this summer to go together. We settled on a date, which happened to be the USA vs. Italy weekend (a big rivalry between the teams), and set about working on the menu, because as any polo goer will tell you, it's as much about what you wear and what you eat/drink as it is about watching the actual match.

I settled on bringing the following items: homemade pita chips with store-bought hummus, spinach, strawberry salad with balsamic dressing, and cucumber sandwiches. The girls took care of the drinks (rose and white wine) and chocolate crinkles and coconut macaroons from Sofra Bakery in Watertown.

I wanted to make easy things, recipes that I wouldn't have to slave away for. And also, it being a warm day, I wanted items that would be cool and refreshing to the palate. 

For the pita chips, I cut the pitas into eight slices, pulled them apart to be 1 layer, set them on a cookie sheet so that they weren't overlapping, sprayed them with PAM, sprinkled a little salt and stuck them in a 350 degree pre-warmed oven (I turned the oven off just before putting them in) for 8 minutes. I didn't want them to brown, just to dry out and be crispy.

Nemo was busy being a watch dog while I prepped all the food. And he gladly tested the pita chips to make sure they were crunchy enough. They met his approval.

Spinach salad:

The layers are as follows: spinach, sliced strawberries, crumbled bleu cheese (goat cheese would pair nicely with this except that one of the girls won't eat goat cheese so I made the switch - also Gorgonzola would be a nice cheese to use), sliced pecans, and homemade balsamic dressing.

For the dressing I used 2 parts Summer Peach White balsamic vinegar, 1 part olive oil, salt and pepper to taste, which traveled in a small jam jar. It complemented the strawberries and cheese nicely.

 Lastly, the cucumber sandwiches. I use a rosemary loaf, which made perfectly portioned small sandwiches. I spread veggie cream cheese on each slice, placed two thick cuke slices on every other piece and voila!

Newport Polo in Portsmouth Rhode Island is a fun way to spend a Saturday evening. The matches run June through September and you can purchase seats at the pavilion, general admission tickets (which mean you bring your own chairs, tents, food, etc., which we have always done), or a slot for your car to tailgate. And you can bring your dog so long as he or she is well-behaved. As I was dog sitting my beau Nemo, he tagged along. He was entranced by the polo ponies. I think he may have thought they were just big dogs, after all, most dogs are bigger than he.

People-watching is a big part of polo, seeing what other people are wearing and Saturday did not disappoint. Some people get decked out in fascinators, big floppy hats, fancy dresses, pastel khakis, seersucker suits, you name it. And so many people bring mini grills and go all out with the food. While it is nearly a two hour drive from Boston, if you have a free afternoon I highly recommend going. Go early so you can get a decent spot along the field because people claim spaces early. And don't forget to run out onto the field to stomp the divots!

Happy Eating!


1 comment

  1. I was so grateful to have our catered Chef Steph meal during this outing! As usual, everything you prepared was divine. I only wish we had gotten a photo of the ridiculous, neon, Hawaiian print shirt in front of us.


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