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Monday, August 16, 2010

A 'hearty winter' tablenosh

The evening began with a 'winter warm up' aperitif, mulled wine... this seasoned mixture of red wine, oranges, lemons, cinnamon and cloves with a splash of cranberry juice simmered on my stove top and was there to greet the guests upon arrival.  Along with that there were some simple nibbles on the table, baked brie with apricot and almonds, sun-dried tomato pesto with crostini and then I served a delightful soup sampler as a surprise item, creamy pumpkin and corn. 
This nosh was no easy thing I must admit, timing was everything!  Thank goodness I had an awesome sidekick(Jen) for the evening to help me get it all just right.  The main dish needed to be timed to that it was coming out of the oven just as the guests were sitting down for the entree: a roasted beetroot, baby spinach and goats cheese salad with caramelized walnuts and a balsamic vinaigrette.  And just as the pies came out of the oven the self-saucing citrus pudding went in!

I was quite pleased with the main which was chicken leek and mushroom pies, with roasted parsnip and potato mash with a s side of green beans.  I think they were pretty good...well at least  I know my husband enjoyed his, as he has listed it as one of his favorites!

I must admit I was a little worried about the pudding, even though I had practiced the recipe last week, this time I had doubled the recipe and made it in a bit of a hurry!  But to my absolute delight it came out pretty darn perfect, in fact so much that Jen and I could not resist and enjoyed a bowl of our own in the lounge room while the guests ate theirs!  I am definitely loving the citrus recipes these days, this pudding is fabulous.

After dinner we finished off with Spicy Mead on ice, (this is a sweet liqueur made from honey) and some chocolate.  It was another delightful evening around the table, we even had one guest from Sweden.  
Next up is tablenosh amongst old friends in Los Angeles, can't wait! 
Leila & Jen


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