Monday, January 26, 2009

A Private Chef For Your Valentines Dinner - Or Any Dinner Party For That Matter

I have mentioned before here that many top chefs will come your house - if the price is right..

Here is an example of a chef who specializes in this sort of work..

"Two years ago, I advertised a dinner special for two for Valentine's Day. It was for either fillet mignon or salmon with all the trimmings delivered on Valentine's Day with reheating instructions," he said.

"I only sold a few until the day before, when people started hearing about a big storm coming. I am doing the same deal again this year.

"Although the economy isn't quite what it used to be, Rock is still feeding people at private dinner parties and functions. Many might say that it sounds expensive to have a catered meal in their own home, but Rock states otherwise.

"People think that a personal chef is expensive, but that isn't true because I don't have the overhead that restaurants have," he said. "I just did a dinner party for four in Milford a few weeks ago and it didn't cost them anymore than it would have in a fine dining restaurant."
Water Gap chef offers personal, personalized service - - The Pocono Record

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Water Gap chef offers personal, personalized service - - The Pocono Record
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Friday, January 23, 2009

Barack and Michelle Obama: the night of the 10 inauguration balls - Telegraph

A bit self indulgent here but what the heck since it's an amazing (and about time) point in our history here on this planet! Here's the dinner party story by Becky Pugh :

"On Tuesday evening, euphoric after spending the day becoming the First Couple of the United States of America, Barack and Michelle Obama quick-stepped their way through 10 inaugural balls. Yes, that is 10 parties in one night. And, in welcome contrast to the early-to-bed and alcohol-free George W Bush, they appeared to enjoy every minute. How on earth did they manage it, you might ask. How did they keep their grins genuine and the blood flowing in their feet?

""Well, I don't think it's such a tough proposition. In fact, I think it's an appealing one. Admittedly, I've never notched up 10 in a night – I think five is my personal best, comprising two pre-dinner drinks parties, a dinner party, and two all-nighters after that – but I can imagine how it might be. You'd be blissfully non-committal at each of them, knowing you weren't there for the long haul. And you'd behave accordingly. Forced to be strict with yourself, you'd home in on the people you most wanted to talk to, and have brief but valuable conversations with them. You would get away without exchanging a single word with the bores and saddos with whom you usually feel obliged to engage on grounds of compassion.

The thought of the delights that lay ahead would be your fuel. Every time you began to feel jaded, you'd be on the hop again. Each party would bring with it new faces, new music, new canapés, new cocktails. Best of all, you'd be a longed for breath of fresh air at every one. Just as your fellow guests were running out of topics and tiring of the relentless jazz quartet, you'd make your entrance – a bright young thing, clearly so much in demand that you have time only to dip a toe into this particular gathering. Then you'd scintillate the revellers with stories you'd picked up at the previous party, before waltzing on to the next.

The travel between the soirées would be the one major snag for mortals like us. You would, in every likelihood, lose valuable time to signal failure on the Piccadilly line or never-ending roadworks. But, of course, that wasn't a consideration for the Obamas – they had their trusty motorcade to get them everywhere before the shiny presidential limo turned back into a pumpkin."

Barack and Michelle Obama: the night of the 10 inauguration bahells - Telegraph

Yay to Barack and Michelle!

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Monday, January 19, 2009

Example of a dinner party for a good cause..

This event took place in a town called Danvers..

Their ninth annual Empty Bowls Dinner Party was held recently and was open to the community with  all proceeds going to Haven from Hunger.

Guests could enjoy piping hot soup on a cold winter night while helping to raise funds for Haven from Hunger

Empty Bowls events have been organized by potters across the country as a creative way to use art for social action, according to ceramics teacher Dale Bryant, who introduced the idea to St. John’s in 1999. In addition to raising money through Empty Bowls, students from St. John’s prepare and serve meals at Haven from Hunger throughout the year.
Empty Bowls Dinner Party at St. John’s Prep - Georgetown, MA - Georgetown Record

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Friday, January 16, 2009

Dinner party in just an hour -

Invite your friends and family over to share your finest hour – creating this sumptuous four-course meal in a mere 60 minutes.

Menu for 6

To start




Time plan

Up to 1 hour ahead:

  • Prepare the grapefruit spritzer to the end of step 1.
  • Prepare the chickpea & olive dip to the end of step 2.

Up to 45 minutes ahead:

  • Prepare the prawn & cannellini bean salad to the end of step 2.
  • Prepare the chicken & pea risoni to the end of step 3.
  • Prepare the crisp wonton peach stacks to the end of step 2.

Just before serving the starter:

  • Continue the grapefruit spritzer from step 2.
  • Continue the chickpea & olive dip from step 3.

10 minutes before serving the entree:

  • Make the fig & ricotta toasties.

Just before serving the main:

  • Continue making the prawn & cannellini bean salad from step 3.
  • Continue making the chicken & pea risoni from step 4.

Just before serving dessert:

  • Continue making the crisp wonton peach stacks from step 3.


Australian Good Taste - March 2006, Page 64

Dinner party in an hour - Entertaining -

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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

A dinner party on ice

What an amazing dinner party .. or art installation this was:

"YOU'VE heard of a quiet dinner, but this is ridiculous.

Water officials were left "baffled" yesterday after a dinner table with a bottle of wine and two glasses were spotted – in the middle of a frozen lake.

The bizarre restaurant-style scene was discovered by stunned ramblers in the centre of Crowdy Reservoir on Bodmin Moor in Cornwall.A small dining table, covered with a tablecloth and a bottle of red wine and two glasses, had been placed on the frozen surface.

Officials from South West Water have issued a warning over the scene saying whoever set it up risked their lives crossing the unstable ice.

Eyewitness Jack Brady, 70, took several photographs and said it looked like "something off the Mary Celeste".He added: "It was totally bizarre. I always walk around the lake and I could see something out in the middle of the ice."I got a closer look and it was a table and full service. There was even a bottle of wine and glasses.

"I have no idea who set it up or whether they stayed and had their dinner or not. There was nobody about. It was like the Mary Celeste."After the incident, at Davidstow near Camelford in Cornwall, South West Water warned people not to walk on frozen reservoirs.

A spokesman said: "A table and chairs was set up near the centre of Crowdy Reservoir. It is impossible to tell how thick the ice really is."Anyone going out on the ice is clearly running the risk of serious injury and even death.

"Meanwhile, Devon and Cornwall Police reiterated warnings that people walking on frozen rivers and canals were risking their lives.The force responded after people were reported to be walking on the frozen canal at Bude, North Cornwall. It said the freeze was now starting to thaw out and it was "only a matter of time" before lives were put at risk.
A dinner party on ice

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Friday, January 9, 2009

Avoid post-holiday letdown with an easy dinner party - by Betty Rosbottom

Betty says:

"To avoid post-holiday letdown, my husband suggested that we have a few friends over for supper. All I needed was a quick and easy entreé, such as the pan-seared chicken breasts topped with tomato tapenade" - the recipe is found in the link..

Avoid post-holiday letdown with an easy dinner party

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Thursday, January 1, 2009

The Associated Press: There's a recession, but don't party like it

This article by Candice Choi offers some excellent suggestions on how "think creatively in the year ahead to play host to friends and family on a tightened budget." Here's an example of Candice's interview with Lizzie Post, an etiquette expert with The Emily Post Institute:

"Serving only appetizers or desserts is another way to keep spending in check. Setting time parameters might help gently drive the point home that you're not serving a meal.

For a cocktail gathering, the invitation might state the party will be from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m."The indication is that they go elsewhere for dinner after," Post said.If you're worried that a potluck screams "low budget," spruce it up with a theme. You could even make it a recession party and cap how much people spend on their dish. This might bring out your guests' inner "Top Chef" and give them a good conversation starter.
The Associated Press: There's a recession, but don't party like it

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