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Please enjoy my life journey filled with memories of business, pleasure, family, friends and of course food.

Monday, 1 August 2011

dinner party "the donna hay way"

Before our overseas trip, we purchased a dining suite off our friend Courtney's mum unfortunately we didnt have time to use. So i jumped at the chance to through a small dinner party when Horn was out at fight night last Saturday.

Struggling with a mild hangover from the Fabulous Fridays lunch the day before, i needed to plan a menu and write my shopping list. Once i had come up with something i phone my gal pal Jadee and asked her opinion she said "yeah good" haha. 

Next a lift from my brother to get my car (don't drink and drive kids) and then off to Ferry Road Markets and a place that i like to call heaven Wheel & Barrow. I will make any excuse to go in there but today i actually had a reason- i needed a white linen tablecloth to take the dinner party to the next level. Moments later and arms full i had a white linen table cloth, white block candle, scented melt for my burner, 8 wine glasses and two baking dishes- $240.00 later my Wheel and Barrow fix was fulfilled (p.s the table cloth was $90 can you believe that- $90 and it was too BIG, i used it anyway).

My doll of a hubby decided to take me out for lunch since it was GC Restaurant Week and every one had been telling us to go to Rocksalt Modern Dining check out my review here) still struggling with my hangover i accepted the invitation and said i need to be home by 2.30pm to prepare for my guests who were arriving at 7pm and of course Jadee who arrives an hour early all the time.

Now throwing dinner parties can get very x'y sometimes so i decided to charge the girls $20 each for a three course meal and if they were drinking to BYO. The shopping came to $127.00 which i am pretty impressed that i managed to feed 8 people for under $20pp. 

The Menu
First up, menu design (actually this wasn't first i forgot to do it until about 6.30pm but it doesn't make sense if i do it later). Of course the menu selection came from donna hays cook books and magazines. As it' still very cold at night i decided to do a yummy winter style menu.

The Dining Table
I was very proud of my table setting skills, and even thou the table cloth was $90 it added that wow factor when the girls arrived with the candle and mood lighting (very romantic for 8 girls haha).

Herb & Mozzarella Mushrooms with Garlic Toasts

Garlic Toasts
8 Thin Slices Baguette
Olive Oil for Brushing
Sea Salt & Cracked Pepper
1 Clove Garlic, Halved, For Rubbing

Herb & Mozzarella Mushrooms
40g Butter
400g Pine Mushrooms, Halved
2 Sprigs Rosemary
1/4 Cup Sage Leaves
250g Buffalo Mozzarella, Torn
the donna hay way:
Heat a char-grill pan or BBQ over high heat. Brush the bread with oil and sprinkle with s&p. Char-grill or BBQ the bread for 2-3 minutes or until golden. Rub with Garlic and set aside.

Melt the butter in a large non stick frying pan over high heat. Add the mushrooms, rosemary, sage, salt and pepper and cook for 5 minutes or until golden. Top with the mozzarella and place under a pre heated hot grill (broiler) for 2-3 minutes or until melted. Serve with garlic toasts. Serves 4.

Lady Dash says:
I used a BBQ to char-grill the bread and i left the rubbing of the garlic up to the individual. I couldn't find Pine Mushrooms so i used a mix of Flat Top and Swiss, I also used normal Mozzarella as the Buffalo was $16.95 per 120g and i needed 500g as i double the recipes and thats just ridiculous to spend $70 on cheese. The entree was absolutely my favourite dish of the night, it was cheesey, garlicy, hot with crusty bread what else could you possibly want on a winters night! There was some extreme garlic breath from the raw garlic we rubbed on the toasts but it was good very very good.

Lamb with Rosemary, Feta & Garlic
(Image before going into the oven)

1 Small Boned Leg Lamb, Trimmed
Sea Salt & Cracked Black Pepper
2 Heads Garlic, Cloves Separated and Skin On
8 Sprigs Rosemary
1 Tbs Olive Oil
350g Firm Feta, Thickly Sliced
the donna hay way:
Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Heat a large frying pan over high hear. Sprinkle both sides of the lamb generously with salt and pepper. Add to the pan and cook for 4 minutes each side or until well browned. Place the lamb in a baking dish lined with non-stick baking paper and toss with the garlic, rosemary and oil. Add the feta to the pan and bake for 25 minutes for medium or until cooked to your liking. To serve, slice the lamb and serve with the roasted feta and the garlic squeezed from its skin. Serves 4.

Lady Dash says:
I kind of cheated with the lamb and bought it already boned as thats way to much thinking for me to do, plus the lovely butcher chopped up the bones for Shazz and Darla my two doggies. Everybody loves a good roast and this was a roast with a twist- the salty pieces of Feta were a stand out for me. I doubled the recipe to feed 8 and i served with roast potatoes, pumpkin and green beans.

Cheat's Chocolate Fondant with Vanilla Mascarpone

the donna hay way:
Previous post:

Once again i cheated a little as i have made this dessert before, but everyone loves chocolate and it was easy to make a large quantity. Everyone was very very full at this stage but there were a few clean plates on the table- mixed feelings about the almond meal taste too!

For the Vanilla Mascarpone whisk together tub of Mascarpone, 1 Tbs of Vanilla Bean Paste and 1/4 Cup Light Cream.

I had the most amazing time hosting my first "posh" dinner party and i cannot wait for the next one. I think i did an good job but will definitely be upping the anti for the next one- new recipes, new techniques and no roasts...

1 comment:

  1. Oh it looked so lovely! Such a shame that I missed this one - will be in for next time for sure :) So glad it was a success!