Dinner No 23 hosted by Lizzy: August 2015
My second attempt at an 8ate club meal and I was much less nervous and really enjoyed the planning the menu (although it did change last minute!) and throwing myself into a list of things I had never tried before. I have too many cook books and so many I haven’t used yet, so I picked all the recipes I made from these. A week on and feel positive about how it all went and tried 3 of the recipes again since.
Watermelon feta basil and balsamic cubes
Prosciutto, gorgonzola and pear wraps
Truffled mushroom crostini
I really enjoy making canapes, probably because I have a slight obsession with miniature things! These were a good size, a bite or two, not messy and not too fiddly to make. I think they were fresh and summery and selfishly flavours I love!
Caramelised fennel and Finocchiona pizzas
I havent made bread dough since i was a child so was very keen to give this a go. Making the pizza dough went smoothly and the caramelised fennel was tasty but unfortunately the pizzas weren’t thin enough (they kept rising because I made them before people arrived) a bit crispy and no where near enough mozzarella for me! Disappointed I made them again two days later with much more success. I discovered that they really need to be made at the time, rolled out, topped and cooked one at a time so not great for making in advance for a dinner party.
Ricotta lemon and mint ravioli with broad bean and hazelnut salad
I have never been brave enough to make pasta and although very time consuming to make enough ravioli for main courses, it was good fun! I really enjoyed the filling, the flavours were interesting and the pasta wasn’t to thick and luckily didn’t split. Podding and shelling broad beans however was much less fun, it was quite an nice accompaniment to the pasta but i’m not sure id do it by hand again! Very keen to try some other ravioli fillings now though.
Strawberry tart with strawberry ice cream
One of my favourite desserts and have never thought to make it! I found the recipe in one of the Tom Kerridge books I haven’t used yet, i think he is brilliant and he is from Wiltshire, so it was an obvious choice! Again I haven’t made pastry since school but actually it was fairly hassle free and i’m glad i made individual tarts, thought they looked neat and pretty on the plate. Creme Patissiere is one of the most delicious things and I thought it was a fairly convincing attempt. The strawberry glaze was a bit thick so not easy to paint on. I didnt buy an icecream churner so the ice cream wasn’t as smooth as it should have been but had an intense starwberry flavour. I was happy with these and would love to make them again (now i have the tins!)
Salted caramel brownies
Salted caramel has become a new obsession of mine so thought I had better try and make it! I really enjoyed these brownies, very sweet but had a good fudgy consistency and had cut to a very small petit four size to have with mint tea. I have made them agin this morning!
It was a fun night and so lovely to see everyone and meet some new faces. Really looking forward to the next one.