did a 6pax homecooked sit-down dinner for my close friends on 9.7.2015.^^
had been doing the buffet style (which is still the more logistically optimised) for larger group of friends. since my helper is away back in philippines for 1 month break, it was easier to do a small group of 6pax, which allows me to pick dishes to be served course by course.
my first course was #1 flamed squid in spinach veloute. i flamed the squid, then fried in butter. when serving i heat up the veloute, plated the sauce, added the flamed squid & topped with a coriander branch. 🙂
this was the best for the evening. everyone loved the bbq flavour. i was a bit worried it might be overcooked but squid turned out just nice, succulent, not rubbery. veloute was excellent very tasty, and plating did make a big difference! 🙂
i should have insisted to plate the second course #2 chicken ballotine, head cheese terrine (猪头冻) & ragout of pig’s ear on toast. my friends were extremely helpful & wanted to lessen the effort for me.
all 3 were my quite new experimental dishes. i am planning to do them at the next larger dinner on 6.8.2015.
1. the ragout of pig’s ears was excellent, best of the trio. this i recreated with my own recipe modelling after the signature dish at the fabulous lunch @ Dinner by Heston Blumenthal.
2. the pig’s head meat was excellent too. the jelly, gelatine was awesome. the meat & skin were ok, but head cheese is harder to prepare than belly or trotters, so though i did scrap the skin to remove the hairs, they were not thoroughly removed. i will have to decide which meat to use for this dish.
3. the chicken ballotine was poor though. basically i had over-steamed the meat, so it was “old” and not so tasty & bouncy. the successful ones i did were here.
i mixed some rockets & cherry tomatoes salad to go with tapas dish. again i think the dish would be much better presented if i plated it myself. this i plan to do at the next dinner. 🙂
the #3 carrot soup was very smooth & tasty. it was done with 2 carrots, and lots of vegetables for tasty soup base – 1 stalk leek, 1 red pepper, 1 yellow onions, and the leftover spinach stems (from the spinach veloute).
i added some brandy so there was a good slight liquor flavour.
i was worried that the sharp carrot taste was too strong, but my friends did not feel so.
one friend thought it was too creamy. i think overall it was a very good smooth & tasty soup, and looked lovely too.^^
i had some #4 calamari & oyster fritters to go with the soup. this was troublesome to do as i had to do the deep frying at the time i am serving the soup. i am going to skip this dish the next time. 🙂
i think my calamari was not dry enough when i prepare the batter. also because it was rushed when i first started deep-frying the first piece, the oil was not hot enough.
also the oyster did not taste the best this evening, not quite sure why.
the #5 prawns to go with fungi linguine were excellent though, very nicely done, fresh, bouncy, good flavours.
looked just perfect.
& tasted wonderful.
my friends made very good plating for this dish.
i intend to plate it myself the next round though, for 10pax on 6.8.2015. my helper would be back then. 🙂
the #6 squid ink risotto was kind of a small disaster. haha! 🙂
i used 5 ink pouches from 5 small/medium squid but they had very little ink.
a friend took the trouble to go to 3 super marts to get for me last minute additional squids, but still with 5 more ink pouches, it didn’t do enough for my squid ink risotto.
also this dish was rushed because the extra squid ink came only when friends arrived for dinner, it was out of sequence with my usual preparation timing & steps & took a long time doing it after serving the #5 course.
i was lazy to go chinatown to buy the large flat cuttlefish which has lots of ink. so sometimes have to improve decision making. it may appear troublesome to do, but it is a lot more troublesome not doing it.
i bought 1 2kg maoshanwang猫山王 + 2 D-24 durians for the evening (unfortunately we gobbled it up before taking photos). the D-24 were pretty good, but maoshanwang猫山王 was crazy, so creamy, tasty, very small seeds & lots of seeds for 2kg.
i had a tofu cheese cake just for backup. anyway we decided not to eat it & 3 friends each carried a piece back home. it’s a cake they all like anyway.
a friend brought angkukueh, & others brought cherries & lychees. 🙂
while there were hiccups it did not diminish any of the fun. overall the dishes were pretty good or ok & everyone had a good time! ^^