This weekend, let Mom sleep in (while you cook), then treat her to a leisurely lunch. From a bountiful antipasto tray to slow-cooked chicken with couscous, our Mediterranean-inspired menu is sure to impress.
We’ll also show you how to set a gorgeous table outdoors, with rich colors and natural materials to keep the mood casual. Pour mom a glass of crisp white wine, and raise a glass to the most important woman in the room.
For an outdoor celebration, opt for a simple striped table runner instead of a full tablecloth, allowing the natural texture of the table to show underneath and creating a natural feel. Woven chargers add rustic texture to each place setting and allow richly patterned dinnerware to pop.
Finally, don’t forget the touches that set a tone for the gathering. A live plant in a vibrant earthenware pot brings the spirit of spring to the table — and it doubles as a wine chiller on a different day.
This starter is as versatile as it is easy to assemble. Mix and match your favorite components — olives, caper berries, roasted peppers and seasoned nuts — and arrange in a condiment tray. This way guests can snack on them before the meal begins, but also pass them around the table as they dine.
|Shaved Fennel Salad with Citrus and Olives
Simple and fresh come together in this refreshing salad, which features just three ingredients: oranges, fennel and olives. Serve family-style in a large bowl.
|Lemon Couscous with Chickpeas, Red Peppers and Almonds
Instant couscous makes quick work of this Mediterranean-inspired side dish. For a beautiful and functional presentation, serve the chicken (below) on top of the couscous with a garnish of fresh bay leaves.
|Slow-Cooked Mediterranean Chicken
An impressive dinner is easy to pull off with our flavorful braising base, so no one has to spend hours in the kitchen. Just brown the chicken, add the braising base and simmer in a slow-cooker until fork-tender.
Cut thick slices of crusty bread, such as ciabatta, drizzle with olive oil and sear on an outdoor grill or grill pan. Once cool enough to handle, you can also rub the surface with a clove of garlic for extra flavor. Place in a rustic woven basket to pass around the table.
The refreshing taste of lemon is always welcome after a hearty, celebratory meal. In this recipe, crème fraîche contributes richness and a flavor reminiscent of cheesecake. Serve in individual compote bowls for an elegant touch.