Monday, March 12, 2007

When Friends Raise the Hosting Bar Soooo HIGH......

I've always kinda thought I was a good host, but I could never get around to hosting those elegant sit down dinners, where people are served course by course. While mentally, I've tried to create that scenario many a time, somehow when it came to execution, I just didn't have the tenacity or energy to see it through. So, usually mealers at my place end up with a semi buffet. Actually, not semi, 100% buffet.

So, when friend living in chic gated community invited us for intimate sit down dinner of 10, I was eagerly looking forward to it. I was instructed to bring a pavlova, which flustered me a little, as I've never really made one before, and a half hearted attempt a while back resulted in a meringue cake, more than pavlova. I had NO idea how absurdly priced passion fruit are. Sigh, the price of passion. I was frantically sms-ing Masak Masak aka Boolicious for alternatives. She told me to check out Justlife in Ikano. She was right. Each passion fruit in Cold Storage cost RM6.20, whereas it cost RM1.90 in Justlife, although it's a local version, and probably less pulp.

Anyway, this is my first attempt at Pavlova. As I didn't want to botch it up, I did not dare reduce too much sugar, so it was SICKLY sweet....anticipating this, I made a layer of lemon curd and sandwiched it underneath the Meringue Nest, which actually helped somewhat combat the diabetes inducing Meringue.



Starters, yup, STARTERS, was this lovely teriyaki tenderloin, on a bed of mash, with grilled oysters. The texture of the beef was perfect. Very tender, and doneness just right. I had just been watching Delia's How to Cook before dinner, and was salivating at her shot of Mash with Steak!!!! Wow, talk about visualisation and NLP!!!

Next was this Cappucino Mushroom Soup. Actually it's a good idea to serve soup in cups. I love drinking soup. As in drinking drinking, not sipping it from a spoon.


For the mains, we had the Coq Au Vin, with roasted potatoes and grilled vegetables. Alas, I got the breast, which somewhat reduced my enjoyment a bit of that dish, but it was very tasty nevertheless. Again, bizarrely enough, I had been perusing the cordon bleu cookbook earlier and thought, hmm, the Coq Au Vin sounds quite nice.


Dessert was this dark chocolate (Lindt no less) mousse. The chef had us guessing what ingredients went into the mousse, as it wasn't usual cream or egg. Turns out it was tofu. I suspect the bitter chocolate might not have gone down well with some, although I loved it.

Ah, what a lovely dinner!!!

23 comments:

Tummythoz said...

Dint d other guests find it odd that u photographed every dish? Thot u quite shy-1?

fatboybakes said...

aiya, with friends, of course not shy lar.

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

How artistic!
Btw, do u make pavlova for sale ar? Must be delicious, what with all that sugar and all. Thoughts of Disney's Toontown come to mind...:-)

wmw said...

Really chic dinner...you have got to have that in you too. ChicFatBoyBakes? Since you're not in the fat category, how about just ChicBoyBakes?

smallertoe said...

wow! amazing frens u have. all dat for just the price of a pavlova!

v small guys can oni look! 2 much man!

boo_licious said...

I always wanted to host one of those posh sit down dinners too but somehow when we throw our parties, it's the help yourself to the food at the side type of party. Pavlova looks very good and at least yrs did not crack like mine did the last time I made it.

Btw, did you like the duck confit and lamb shank from HTC? That's the same stuff they also have at their new place. Didn't try it as we ate their posh beef stew instead but heard the other table say their lamb shank is very nice.

fatboybakes said...

lemongrass, aitelyu ah, if i HAVE to make that particular pavlova for sale, its gonna cost an arm and a leg, to deliberately put ppl off....aitelyu, the ingredients are SOOO expensive... that's if you want to use all those colorful imported fruits la. i guess if we did a mango, papaya, rambutan, lychee pavlova... can la... you want? i intend to HALF the sugar the next time.

wmw, awww, you so kind... whaddaya mean not in the fat category?!!! my dear, did you leave your white stick somewhere?

smaller toe, you can invite me for dinner too, and i'll bring a pavlova....

boolicious, i LOVED the duck confit and lamb shank...at HTC. and if you look closely, my pavlova did crack on one side, but only after i loaded it with too much stuffing.

i cant wait to try the new cuisine studio. groan, so many places to try, so little stomach space. (like paprika's title). high up on my list of are max, the outlets in KL hilton, (coz i just got the card, except for senses), that new italian place on yap kwan seng, and not to mention that endless array of hawker food that is featured in floggers blogs.

boo_licious said...

Ah sassorosso is also on my radar for places to try. Heard that it's not bad per friends who ate there already. I have been eating too much italian hence I decided cuisine studio was a better bet. The Hilton card is good, that's why we usually eat at Chynna most of the time.

We also got a bottle of the Monin syrup - now someone is happy mixing drinks with his soda water at home.

team BSG said...

luckily our namesake is BSG 4 v really know not what ??? ...ppssst

its better v talk 2 you while u r in Pangkor( dun forget 16 degrees steep east wing ) where simplicity is king.....truly

of course u( & them) can beg 2 disagree...
hehehe

snowie said...

ok, attempting to comment for the 4th time...

HALF the sugar in a pav? if you do so, please report on results... i was told without the full amount of sugar, it won't puff up so much and just be low discs. Have yet to try, but like you, i find the recipe amounts of sugar in pavs way way too sweet... hence hardly ever make them.

p/s: nigella's chocolate pav is really good (still too sweet, but not as bad as a regular one)

Melting Wok said...

hey fb, on the beef tenderloin steak, that baked oyster looked like its been stuffed with panko breading ? what's that thing on the left - looks like stuffed cream cheese baked ?

boo_licious said...

I agree with snowie - Nigella's choc pavlova is divine. So light and not so sweet becoz of the bittersweet choc inside it.

Jackson said...

goshh......im really out dated!!! I dun even know what is Pavlova!!!

MeiyeN said...

da pavlova looks good... ready to sell it yet? :D

Rasa Malaysia said...

How was Pangkor? Did you manage to call the Pangkor see foo?

UnkaLeong said...

Spill the bean's man, Pangkor Rendezvous?

fatboybakes said...

boo, is monin cheaper at gourmandines than at village grocer?

boo& snowie - hmm, must try nigella's choc pavlova. is there bitter chocolate in the meringue itself? oh, talking about sweetness, did i mention that it is a really sensitive topic with french chefs...CANNOT CANNOT CANNOT say the pastries are too sweet and ask if can reduce sugar. they go ballistic, and say it is better to eat one teenie weenie slice of unadulterated french pastry/cake than one humongous slice of commercial cake. which is true...

jackson, education is a lifelong process. FYI, In 1935, the chef of the Hotel Esplanade in Perth, Western Australia, Herbert Sachse, created the pavlova to celebrate the visit of the great Russian ballerina, Anna Pavlova. Whilst it has been suggested this dessert was created in New Zealand, it has become recognized as a popular Australian dish.

mei yen, yeah, if you're prepared to pay RM80 and above...hahahaha

RM and unka, pangkor was with the kids and inlaws.... the only thing to spill was milk...

Allan Yap & Nigel A. Skelchy said...

Very French with the exception of the Teri Beef at the beginning. Wow! Looks like you guys ROLLED out of there! ;-)

Nigel

fatboybakes said...

nigel, it wasnt teri beef per se, though the sauce resembled teri beef. well, i certainly rolled out of there but for different reasons. i think the one bottle of bubbly and another bottle of white, single handedly consumed by moi, did the trick... (in ensuring i rolled out)

i was at a funeral the next morn, but didnt dare go near the crematorium lest i set something on fire with my breath.

Audrey Cooks said...

Hey I suddenly got a brillant idea! Think! Think! Allan and Nigel would be the best ppl to organise the next Malaysian Foodie Get-together at classy sit down thingy? What say you all??? Sorry Allan and Nigel, couldn't resist thinking aloud!

btw... my hosting is down for the moment.

Paprika said...

The last time I hosted a dinner party, I nearly threw my back out. Never cook Thai or anything Asian since it requires insane amount of prep work! Your chocolate truffle cake is deeeeewineeeee!! I am savouring the last quarter. In fact, think i will go have some now. Mmmmmmm........

fatboybakes said...

paprika, thanks dahlink for you compliments.

i agree with you, no thai or asian for sit down dinners...all that pounding of spices, i reckon asian cuisine is one of the most labour intensive ones. so, no maid, no asian dinners.

audrey, you know the fler personally right? what a good suggestion. they may even have the venue. and yes, i noticed your wordpress is down.

Audrey Cooks said...

Well FBB, I know who they are but I don't think they really know who I am lah! Ppl so famous, me? house wife only lah!