Okay, I have been dangling the proverbial carrot in front of you for a while so thought I would reveal what was on the menu this past Saturday evening while entertaining some dear friends of GFM. I said I was going to make it a gluten free evening and by George did I ever succeed (with none of my guests the wiser).
To start we had a presentation of hors d’oeuvres that included: Prosciutto and cornichon-wrapped dates (two different items); caramelized onion hummus, sundried tomato and feta dip; olive and onion tapenade; artichoke and feta dip; and artichoke tapenade. We also had a delectable cheese presentation that included: a wonderfully gooey Brie, a five country English cheddar, a mild herbed chevre; a fantastic New York State aged cheddar; and a wonderfully mild Dutch goat’s milk cheese that was simply out of this world. Accompanying this smorgasbord was a selection of crisps, crackers, and biscuits (of which 90% were GF options). Now how do you prevent cross-contamination? Cocktail plates my darlings. This allows each guest to safely choose the item they would like without having to dip into the communal vessel – which in and of itself is a very good thing. There was other fringe nibbles circulating throughout the evening but I think I captured the main foci above. Moving on to dinner…
After what seemed like a never-ending bacchanal of hors d’oeuvres and cocktails we retired to the dining room where chilled plates adorned with fresh mozzarella sandwiched between organic tomatoes and basil with a bit of my famous vinaigrette drizzled atop awaited (I promise to reveal this recipe one day). And people, for the love of (insert your deity of choice) please, please, please chill your salad plates. There is nothing worse than a nicely chilled salad placed atop a warm plate – this is July people but the rule applies all year round.
The main course was a delectable gluten free chicken cordon bleu paired with a porcini mushroom risotto and flash steamed broccoli tossed with a bit of olive oil, red onion and grape tomatoes. During dinner the wine flowed and the conversation was engaging. Perhaps the story of the evening was a friend sharing a story of grocery shopping with a well-known royal socialite who, for insurance reasons, decided to throw a small fortune of jewels into a shopping bag and proceed to wheel it around in their cart while navigating the aisles – too much! I do not think I ever mentioned that my other half is in fact not American – so there will always be comical antidotes working their way into my posts – I apologize now. After we finished the main course we retired to the living room for aperitifs prior to dessert.
Fully satiated, a relatively simple dessert of pure vanilla ice cream crowned with a GF Dulce de Leche sauce rounded out what turned into a 7-hour feast. Everyone truly enjoyed themselves and so did their hosts.