After reading my new blog, a good friend of mine asked for some help with throwing her very own dinner party...Here’s the spiel, take note, it might be your turn next.
Look, I won’t harp on about the big R, but needless to say everyone is looking for social outlets that don’t cost the earth, or in my case, anything. I will however make the exception for food. The real joy of food is sharing it. And what better way to share it than throwing a dinner party.
|This is me with some of my friends as a recent dinner party. |
They were well spoilt
DINNER PARTY RULEBOOK
For the Diners:
Dress up! Look the part, your host has made an huge effort, so show your gratitude by dressing as if you were heading out to a restaurant.
Bring more booze than you intend on consuming. Tis only fair, as you’ll probably drink more than you intend anyway.
It's good manners not to pick up your fork until the host is ready to pick up theirs, unless they tell you to belt on.
Providing the feast in question is worthy, give compliments
Pretend to help to clean up, even if it’s to bring in your plate. You don’t want to be seen to have too good a time whilst your host is breaking a sweat.
|Make an effort to impress your guests|
For the Host:
Plan your meal well in advance, if you’ve not cooked your dish before, give it a trial run and give yourself plenty of time on the day.
Don’t cook out of your depth. If you are used to having six pots on the go and can time everything perfectly, great! If not, choose a one pot dish that you can prepare in advance or at least can be assembled with relative ease at the last mintue.
Take time to dress your table and do it well. Polish your cutlery and your glasses in hot soapy water. (a dash of Vinegar brings them up super)
Make sure the bathroom that your guests will be using is inviting, clean and spa like. This can easily be achieved by rolling up a few facecloths and leaving them by the sink, lighting some candles or burn insence.
Make sure you are well presented and greet your guests like they are ultimate VIPs.
Enjoy yourself, soak up the inevitable compliements and don’t get too drunk.
|from Russia with love|
This is a crowd pleaser, and super duper easy. You could possibly have everything cooked in advance and keep it warm on a low heat, but it would be just as easy to have the ingredients prepared and cook when your guests arrive.
Splash of olive oil
700g of fillet beed cut into strips (this is pricy, I really think sirloin can be acceptable here, just bash it between two sheets of cling firm first)
2 boxes of wild mushrooms (you could use regular ones but this is to up your dinner party game)
2 shallots, finely diced
2 cloves of garlic crushed
2 heaped teapsoons of dijon mustard
2 heaped teaspoons of smoked paprika.
Zest of a lemon
a glug of brandy
fresh thyme (most recipes use parsley but the thyme is a wonderful compliment to the wild mushrooms.
one pint of cream, add in the juice of a lemon to instantly sour it. (‘sour’ cream is expensive!)
So get a good big wok or heavy based saucepan. Ad your garlic and chopped shallots. Cook on the tiniest heat, stirring occasionally so they don’t catch. Do this for about 5 mintues until the are completley translucent. Up the heat to full wack. Add the mushrooms and cook for a couple of minutes. Then add the beef, mustard, smoked paprika and lemon zest and cook on a hight head until nicely browned, but still pink in the middle. Add brandy and reduce. Stir in cream and bring to a simmer, turn down to a low heat and allow to simmer until the sauce slighty thickens. Add fresh thyme leaves at the last minute for a fragrent finish. Season to your liking.
Serve with boiled rice, tossed salsd and crusty bread.
Ps: it might be no harm to have clean sexy underwear in your drawers just in case your guests think it’s customary to have an ole root.....