First things first, I have to announce that I have finished one of my books already, last week in fact, I think this is a great achievement for the black sheep of book club.
Ok, so now about dinner... I must say that when the decision was made to change to each others' houses for book club, I was a little nervous. I am a perfectionist in the kitchen and really was not sure how I would ever be able to serve up a 3 course tasty meal, in-style and in-time.
The menu is always key, the simpler the better. I tend to over complicate things, that can be done in a much easier way. This time round, I went for a simple menu that was easy to pull together and obviously vegetarian all the way.
Starters - Steamed asparagus with homemade balsamic, honey and mustard sauce dribbled over them – yummy, so easy and totally healthy.
Mains – Brinjal, pesto & mozzarella stacks. These caused me some panic. Once I had prepared them I decided to place them in the warmer drawer till the clubbers arrived, when I checked on them the mozzarella had melted so much that the perfect stacks were now nothing more then leaning towers of pizza. It’s amazing what a little wooden stick can do – “the toothpick” came to the rescue.
Dessert - Chocolate file pastry cigars with vanilla ice cream and fresh berries.
These really turn heads at dinner parties, as they look so professional but so easy to make. Grab some filo pastry, take one sheet, measure to the size of chocolate piece you are going to be using (the mini top decks are the bomb) then place the chocolate on the edge of the filo and roll up like a spring roll remembering to fold in the sides. Seal with milk. These are really delicious – one prefect bite - warm melted chocolate oozing from the crispy pastry, textures are intertwining harmoniously and then cold contrasting ice cream creates the perfect finishing touch – a real highlight!!!
The evening went so well, drinks flowing, dogs licking feet and of course great books, great company and great conversation.