If the divine creator has taken pains to give us delicious and exquisite things to eat, the least we can do is prepare them well and serve them with ceremony.
~ Fernand Point
At my friends’ wedding a few weeks ago, a few of us came up with the idea of having a dinner party sometime. And it happened tonight! In a way that these well-intentioned “we should do…” discussions often never lead to. :-)
Thank God for the power of words, and super friends.
We had an amazing dinner party tonight. 10 of us for dinner, 4 of us to cook (Tim, Matt, Claire, myself). Nice, modern, sleek apartment kitchen to cook in & lounge to dine in (thanks Tim!).
7 dishes were cooked and served, all from the cookbook – 1 repeat (gotta stop repeating the oven-baked fish) and 6 new attempts.
Oven-Baked Fish with Tomato & Parsley – Page 105 (repeat)
#18 Chicken, Coconut & Cashew Nut Curry – Page 352
#19 Rice with butter & lemon – Page 356
#20 Carrot Salad with Cardamom, Ginger & Lemon – Page 357
#21 Prawns with Lemon, Peri Peri, Garlic & Feta – Page 102
#22 Lachmajou – Page 159 (topping only, as I have made pitta before)
#23 Lemon Creme Brulee – Page 262
We all did bits and pieces of everything, but I admit I stayed FAR away from the creme brulee, because the recipe was just a little intimidating… so full credit for the wonderfulness of this goes to Tim and Claire (the only thing I dared to do was separate some eggs for the 16 egg yolks required). Matt made the fish tonight, and it looked better than the picture – I certainly did not manage this in my last two attempts of the recipe!
Getting rid of prawn excrement for around 1kg of prawns was probably the most tedious part of the entire cooking process for me. Above is a picture of a prawn sitting perched on the grater…
We decided on who would do what pretty quickly, and then it was a flurry of chopping, frying, whisking, etc…
So it all went well, and time went by fast but not too quickly. And there were moments of relaxation, spilling a few things on the cookbook, laughing, feeling tired… and eating of course. All things necessary for life.
I feel like I want to write so much, about the sound of my friends’ voices and laughter, the sunset outside the window, the way the pools of rainwater splashed the car windows from the ground as we drove through town today, my fear of making creme brulee, the way it felt crumbling feta between my fingers (onto the prawns), the nice focus this cookbook project brings, the way I feel like my friends support my madness of cooking through a book…
About the earthquake that’s happened in Haiti, about the world at large, about the way it makes me feel alive each time I drink plain water, about the seductive nature of cooking, about the great satisfaction I find in feeding people…
About art, psychology, womanhood, books, walking, nature, dreams, thoughts…
But it is getting quite late… and this post already looks so long.
I am gratified to have received a few comments, online and in-person, about this blog – and to see on the blog stats page that I have around 20 readers on average daily!
I was going to share my (slightly modified) version of Tessa’s prawns… but I think I might fall asleep here on my laptop, sitting on the ground – so better roll into bed…
Good night! And have a splendid Sunday.
PS. Re last post, the milk tart turned out OK. :-) Almost like Dan’s.