Tag Archives: Eggplant
Which is why I haven’t posted any recipes recently! If you have been reading my little sporadic posts here and there, you know I’ve been busy coordinating a somewhat surprise party. I am pleased to report that it was a success!
What I really should have done was take a picture of each glorious dish. But, I didn’t. Bad blogger! In my defense, for someone with little planning experience, it was enough to just get things done, never mind thinking to record anything for posterity! But we all had fun, and that’s the point of these things, isn’t it?
I did not cook at all for this event. As fun as it is for me to play around in the kitchen, it’s more creative expression than anything else, and I didn’t want to put that kind of pressure on myself. Nor did I make the cake, but I did help design it. I love cake, but haven’t actually made one in forever, and my decorating skills can’t hold a candle to what I see in my head. So, I kept the pressure off and let the professionals do their thing.
…Ok, well, there was still pressure, because anytime you step outside of your comfort zone, you feel it, so, to have those areas under control helped a lot. The area I stressed the most over was people rsvping. It didn’t matter much to me what the rsvp was, just that people replied. This was a relatively small affair, for reasons of budget and personal sanity, so I wanted to come as close as I could to the intended guest list. Friends, please, don’t be that guest who needs to be chased down for a reply! Replies are needed to have enough food for everyone… to say nothing of my thoughts on just clicking a yes/no/maybe button.
In my inner circle of friends, everyone is reachable via email, and if you are invited, you reply promptly. But, for this event, I was inviting people further from my center. Apparently there are still people out there who don’t check email, who expect phone calls, to be chased down, or don’t feel the need to respond at all. I can (sort of) see flaking out on events at someone’s home, but for something offsite, where a head count is being provided for your benefit, it’s hard for me to see this as anything other than rude. But, that being said, once I wrangled the stray guests, and we all sat down, it was a very pleasant affair.
The surprise components stayed surprises!!! The location was originally a surprise, but I figured that would need to be revealed about a week in advance, and that was about when it happened. A surprise guest remained a surprise- an old friend from far away who actually was able to take a flight just to be there, and the gift, surprisingly and wonderfully, also remained a surprise.
The food was delightful. After emailing and calling several businesses, and receiving only a couple of replies, I decided to go with our favorite Italian restaurant. This turned out to be one of the best ideas I’d ever had. The chef and I agreed on multiple courses and finalized certain details, but there were still some terrific culinary surprises in store! Surprises are not always a good idea for people with food allergies, but everything presented was allergen-free. I could never possibly explain how freeing it felt to be able to eat everything in front of me!
Vegetarian antipasta: this was comprised of all sorts of delightful treats. There was something eggplant, something fennel, some great cheeses, including gouda, some beets, some olives, and some other things I’m surely forgetting.
Omnivores’ antipasta: Meat things wrapping cheese, meat things sliced, all Italian and probably great if you like that sort of thing. I don’t, but the guests loved it.
Appetizer: Cauliflower fritters and squash tortes. Oh hells yes!
Pasta: Papadello with lentils. I have no idea how they made this magic, but this was heaven!
Omnivores’ Main: Chicken Picatta. They liked this, too. Not many leftovers.
Vegetarians’ Main: Eggplant Parm. I love this, that’s why I chose it.
and then, the Cake!: I had the advantage of having sampled some when I ordered it, but the cake itself was fresh and even more delightful! It was chocolate with mocha icing, with fondant and sugar decorations. This was a huge hit! I wish there was more, but this was the first thing I finished off from the leftovers!
There were tons of leftovers, which we divvied up, but even so, I was eating party food for an entire week after, even with the guests’ full bellies! You can’t ask for more than that!
Have a great week!