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Off to the races! Dinner club does the Derby

This past Saturday our dinner club met for a Kentucky Derby Day Dinner.  Hubby and I stepped up to the plate with our Derby Day attire with a new hat, Julia Roberts inspired dress and the bow tie and Seersucker Jacket to finish off the look. 

All the ladies came with their hats and their folding money for a little race time bet.

Even the guys found their Derby Day Hats!

Too bad he didn’t get a chance to ride!
But enough about the attire, our dinner was a selection of courses that would typically would be served in the Kentucky area. 
Appetizers were Kentucky Hot Browns and Paula Deen’s Benedictine sandwiches sandwiches.  This was followed with Kentucky Burgoo and spring Panzanella. 
Our dinner contribution was dessert.  A pretty easy toppings to go over coffee ice cream.  And it wouldn’t be a Derby Day party without a Mint Julep.  Too strong for me, I switched to wine.

Irish Coffee Sundaes with Caramel Whiskey Sauce

Ingredients

For coffee nut crisp:

  • 1 large egg white
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon instant coffee granules, crushed
  • 1 cup walnut pieces (3 1/2 ounces), coarsely chopped if desired

Preheat oven to 325°F with rack in middle. Line a rimmed sheet pan with a nonstick baking liner, or line it with foil and lightly oil foil.

Whisk egg white with sugar, coffee powder, and a pinch of salt in a bowl until blended. Stir in walnuts until coated. Spread mixture into a 10- by 8-inch rectangle in pan.

Bake until crisp is dry to the touch, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer pan to a rack to cool completely.

Loosen crisp with a metal spatula and break into small pieces.

For sauce:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 6 Tablespoons Irish whiskey
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt 
  • 2 pints good-quality coffee ice cream
Make sauce:

Bring sugar and water to a boil in a 2-quart heavy saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Boil without stirring, but washing down any sugar crystals with a brush dipped in cold water, until syrup begins to turn golden, about 5 minutes. Continue to boil, swirling pan occasionally, until syrup is a deep golden caramel.

Remove pan from heat and carefully add whiskey, cream, and salt (mixture will bubble up and steam and caramel will harden).

Return pan to heat and simmer, stirring, until caramel is dissolved and sauce is smooth. Cool to warm.

Serve sauce over scoops of coffee ice cream then sprinkle with walnut crisp.

Cooks’ notes: •Crisp can be made 4 days ahead and kept in an airtight container at room temperature. (Watch out, though; it’s so delicious, you will be hard—pressed to resist devouring all of it before your guests arrive!)
•Sauce can be made 4 days ahead and chilled, covered. Re-warm to serve. Any leftover sauce will keep, chilled, at least 1 week.

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