invited my regular group of RI friends for a homecooked dinner on 18.12.2014. this time we had 14pax = 5 couples + 4 guys.
i prepared mostly pre-cooked food that could be served buffet style, so we could all sit down & enjoy the food & conversation together.
planning was important. i intended several items which i cooked/made final preparations only when all the guests arrived – tagliata di manzo (angus striploin steak), dry wok prawns, pumpkin salad, fried rice.
in the end timing was quite well managed for dry wok prawns & fried rice. for the salad & the rockets/cherry tomatoes bed for tagliata di manzo, they were done too early & the rockets were soggy (unlike my recent lunch which was quite perfect).
#1 my wife’s pumpkin tofu salad was an excellent dish when i served during a recent lunch. this time it was a bit lacklustre. seasoning with sea salt, olive oil & balsamic were done too early. somehow pumpkin was not as sweet.
＃3 oven grilled miso salmon belly had been a favourite with my family (& friends also during recent lunches), and again a favourite this evening. :-)
#4 teriyaki cod was good as cod goes. it was very much less sweet (no sugar only mirin this time).
#5 6hr “sous vide” miso lamb shoulder chop. this was ok, very tender, lamb taste masked by miso.
#6 tagliata di manzo (using angus striploin). the bed of rockets & cherry tomatoes were mixed too early so a bit soggy. steak was medium rare & flavourful, but the angus striploin had a bit of tendon, not ideal.
#7 spicy belly pork 蒜泥白肉 was simply wonderful. it was slow-braised using cold crockpot on low almost 6 hrs to 79degC. belly was very tender & the sichuan 麻辣 chilli mix was excellent. :-)
#8 my dry wok prawns is of consistent good standard, charred & flavourful, taste of chilli padi & fish sauce.
my helper cooked the romaine lettuce, one of our favourite vegetable dish.
a friend brought a #11 chocolate ganache vanilla banana cake.
it was a lovely 2-layer vanilla cake with banana in between & covered with chocolate ganache – a really standout first attempt by him! :-)
#12 my no-bake tiramisu is now another crowd favourite. it was 1 of the easiest dessert to make.
a friend brought a #13 healthy peanut candy (held together by maltose instead of unhealthy sugar), it was nice.
i had a #14 pumpkin cheese cake on standby. i sensed that the friends wanted to try, so it was served & we managed to finish 1/2 the cake. it was ok but not as good as the one we had for our recent lunch.