Wednesday, November 07, 2012


The long-term reader of this blog, who no doubt reads it while propped up in bed at the Home for the Criminally Undiscriminating, will know that every November I host a series of dinner parties called Serendipity Dinners. The process is simple: I invite everyone I know to come to dinner on one or more Fridays in November. They get to choose which one(s). They don’t know who else is coming, and I don’t know, until 24 hours beforehand, how many there will be. Sometimes there’s three or four, sometimes thirteen or fourteen.

And just to make things more difficult, I have to produce three courses that I either haven’t cooked before, or a I haven’t made in years, or which didn’t exist until I dreamt them up.

Basically I’m a cross between a chef, a masochist and an idiot.

The first dinner for 2012 was last Friday, attended by myself and four friends. Entrée was a roasted pumpkin, sage and apple cider soup. Main course was the retro classic Salade Nicoise. Dessert was an old-school tiramisu.

The soup was very good; possibly a little too thick but the flavours were great and I didn’t hear any complaints. The Salade Nicoise was surprisingly filling… and surprisingly expensive, given that the only fresh tuna I could find was $36 a kilo sashimi-grade yellow fin. But it was delicious, and lovely to look at, with the bright green beans, bright red tomatoes, glossy black olives, glossy white egg and the subtler pinks, browns and greys of the tuna and the baby potatoes. The tiramisu was a bit of a disappointment, and not simply because I had to drive to three different supermarkets to find one that stocked marscapone. The marscapone and cream mixture was a little too dense, and I used brandy rather than coffee liqueur so the coffee flavour was not as intense as it should have been. But that didn't seem to stop us devouring it all.

Now I just have to come up with more brilliant ideas for this Friday. Sigh.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

No pictures?

5:06 PM  

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