Monday, October 24, 2011

A Challenge

Most challenging dinner party menu planning everr! 8 friends, all with various food restrictions. Ready for this?

-No Dairy -No Fruit
-No Sugar -No Grains -No Starch -No Shellfish
-No Nuts -No Chicken -No Beef -No Pork

I know. I thought about putting a huge bowl of spinach in the middle and passing out forks but of course that's not me. Truth be told, I love a challenge. Two of our friends were visiting from out of town, our mutual friend had introduced us as, Mary is YOU but in San Francisco! This girl loves food. I've always wanted to cook for her.

So the menu I designed had options for everyone.

-Brined Roasted Free Range Organic Local Chicken
-Local Provencal Style Chicken Sausage
-Roasted BC Sockeye Salmon

-Local Greens, Crispy Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus, Soft Boiled Eggs, Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, Vincotto (Balsamic Roasted Asparagus for no pork friend)

-Ratatouille (1/2 with Whole Wheat Panko Bread Crumbs and Feta, 1/2 without)

-Aged Cheddar, Butternut Squash and Kale Bread Pudding

-Truffled Mashed Potatoes

-Double Chocolate Lavender Sea Salt Ice Cream Sandwiches (No sugar, no fruit friends really can't be helped)

My awesome friend Son's helped me tie these. "You have to work fast before they melt, also I like the thicker pieces of rafia, not the scraggly ones!". "Yes Laura!". When a couple of our other friends showed up they were actually talking about ice cream sandwiches, ohh really I said, you like ice cream sandwiches? I'll keep that in mind...

Cheese factor, get ready.
Love, Heart and Soul. I truly believe these have to go into your cooking and I really do think you can taste it. 3am the night before I'm roasting off butternut squash, dicing shallots, sauteing kale and I'm happy. Tired! But happy. Why? Because I know who I'm feeding and I know how appreciative they are.

Ever wonder why the host waits till everyone gets their food? Of course to be polite, but we're also probably not that hungry after tasting and smelling it, while cooking it all day. Another reason is to sit back and watch your guests (hopefully!) enjoy themselves.

Last night? Silence (because food was being shoveled into mouths), the friend who says the bf neverr takes seconds and the friend who described my ice cream sandwich as this exquisite texture of crispy, soft and chewy and the perfect contrast of sweet and salty. I tried really hard not to smile. First time I ever met him, he knew nothing about me and said if it were possible, he would rather take a pill instead of eat real food. Knew I could change that.

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