Monday, April 11, 2011

A Thoughtful Dinner to Celebrate Several Incredible Women

 Over the years I think many of us have considered some kind of  grand gesture as a way acknowledge and thank the people who've enriched our lives in different ways, but very few have ever really followed through on the instinct. My friend Talley followed through this week-end and it was an admirable sight to see!
 Talley asked me to chef it up for her army of eight beloved friends.  She borrowed my dishes and  had a truly moving vision for her table scape.  She littered the custom made table with boldly colored napkins and inspirational quotes.  Each place card even contained a secret note for each woman explaining why Talley considered them to be inspiration in her life.  It isn't very often people are celebrated in that way and I can only imagine what receiving one of those letters felt like!
 The evening started with a little shortbread appetizer and some Prosecco with Rosemary-Blackberry Skewers.  While the ladies nibbled and sipped they participated in a little hands on cooking demonstration.  We made stock for Sarah, who graciously opened her lovely home to host the party, and turned another batch of stock into a delicious consomme for dinner!  They sliced Brussels Sprouts, made a carrot brunoise, and wrapped dumplings before heading into the dining room for their multiple course meal.

 To say I was busy in the kitchen would be an understatement, but the result of my efforts was pretty darn good (even by my stringent standards)! Personally I couldn't have made it through without Patty supporting me as service goddess, dish washer, cheer leader, and general oxygen!  

As for the menu...I retooled my Abstraction of a Garden by increasing the the amount of cheese and changing the greens to arugula; it still gorgeous to look at and is pretty close to perfect in flavor.  I followed with chicken consomme and was stunned by how a clear and intensely flavored broth could cause audible gasps of delight from diners. I guess it really is the simple things in life that can bring the most pleasure.
 They moved through dumplings and halibut and chicken mole before digging into the final dish featuring chocolate braised short ribs with cayenne marshmallow and graham crackers.  I look a little inspiration from Schwa on this one and honestly it was one of the biggest hits of the night!
 Patty and I poured the coffee, laid out some cheeses and muscat grapes and snuck out the back door. 
We didn't want to break the obvious spell that had been cast in the dining room!  Rumor has it these ladies sat at the table well past 2am!!
I was delighted beyond words to participate in such a memorable and meanigful evening.  It reminded me how important it should be to focus on the beautiful people who are a part of my life.

1 comment:

Talley said...

We can't thank you enough too...we are still talking about that dinner and though I had the vision of honoring the friends, the food was really what did the honoring...we are still in awe...thank you so much to yourself and Patti your wonder twin!

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