Sunday, December 6, 2015
Right Ho Jeeves!
We had a lovely night on Friday at my monthly Books & Bakes salon. We had read P.G. Wodehouse's novel Right Ho Jeeves, and because several of the attendees were die-hard Wodehouse lovers and the rest of us had never cracked one open, it was a lively discussion with lots of laughs. My friend Allen had just returned from a nine-month stint at the Cordon Bleu in Paris, so he cooked our traditional French meal. His husband Craig brought wine, as did several of the other guests, and between the champagne cocktails, the rich food and French whites and reds, we were all pretty happy by the end of the evening. I bought Christmas crackers given the British setting and made placecards for each person with the name of a character from the book. It was easy to go all out when someone was making all the food.
Here's Allen preparing something:
Here's Oliver peeling pearl onions, a thankless task that he did in tears.
Here's the Green Bean Soup, my favorite dish, and one plated so beautifully in Allen's interesting soup bowls:
Here's the main course: Breast of Chicken Agnes Sorel (you can read the scandalous story about her in my previous post) with rice and wild mushrooms, glazed butternut squash, carrots and pearl onions:
I know the quality of that photo is poor, but those are asparagus sprigs on top of the chicken, and the sauce is a traditional Madeira. Everything was delicious and cooked perfectly! I felt blasted back into my days as a commis at Lespinasse in New York City where I worked for nearly two years doing ridiculous high end food for an insane chef. Allen is the total opposite!
I did make the dessert -- a Cranberry and Raspberry Vacherin. It's basically two discs of meringue, layered with whipped cream and a compote of fresh raspberries and cranberries. It's tart and sweet and crunchy and soft, all at once, and is one of my most favorite holiday desserts:
Reader, how was your weekend?