What a perfectly lovely meal we had last night! I have to share, even though I forgot my camera…very stupid mistake, as dinner was at my mother’s and she is a fabulous cook with the most beautiful sense of charm and style you can imagine. Her platters and dinnerware, her table setting: all perfect.
France is my mother’s favourite country in the whole wide world and she and my step-father spent some years living there. They lived in a village in the South-West called Villereal. France has influenced my mother’s cooking, wine drinking and style I think. Always generous, charming hosts, they have brought a little bit of France to our gatherings en famille.
My step-sister and her husband were there. He works in Switzerland and is home for the holidays. Their daughter charmed us with a flute and violin recital. Tres European salon I thought to myself.
I am not really 100% sure why, but mum wanted me to make the main course. It is a recipe I won a competition in a magazine with, some years ago now: Thai Chicken Salad. Basically stir-fried chicken and bok-choy ( and a spoon-full of Tom Yum paste), mixed salad greens, spring onion, mint, coriander, rice noodle and blanched bean sprouts, it gets tossed with a sweetish chilli, lime, garlic dressing. Delicious! Anyway, I made it after taking my special floaty Christmas shirt off as I thought I might catch on fire at one point.
We served it in two large, white shallow bowls.
It was dessert that was the stand out in my opinion:
creme caramel on the most gorgeous Portmeirion platter you’ve ever seen, surrounded by prunes soaked in brandy.
tarte tatin picture perfect and served with cream
the most unbelievably beautiful huge stemmed glass filled with whole, peeled oranges in a spice, Cointreau syrup. Mum had left dome cinnamon quills and whole cloves in and it was just dazzling.
little home-made fruit mince tarts with a rich, buttery, shortcrust pastry.
They are having “drinks & nibbles” for friends tomorrow evening. We have said we’ll go. I think I might make some sausage rolls to take. If I do I will definitely take photos this time…