Tuesday, December 22, 2009

End of Year Christmas Daze

I have to admit that I have been in a food coma for much of the last two weeks. I have been eating non-stop. Lots of party food, breakfasts, lunches and dinners out. I don't think I have had a proper home cooked meal in a week. I don't want to harp on about it, because I know you all know, but the end of the year is so tiring. The temp heats up, the food is overly abundant, the drinks flow every night of the week. To top this off I have been travelling with work both last week and the week before and so have had little time to blog.

Usually I seem to manage but there have been so many other things to worry about i.e having parties, going to parties, Christmas shopping, the 8 hour drive home to my family home, Christmas Day menu planning, party for tonight planning which still isn't complete. Which comes to why I have the time to blog now. Procrastination! Ah ha.... Tonight's party..... 20 people for a casual Christmas party in my family home- sounds like fun? Yep! But I am so disorganised it is not even funny!! Eek- had better get to work...

After I tell you about the fantastic Christmas Party my friends and I had in Brisbane. Knowing it is such a busy time of year, I wisely decided to outsource the cooking... GASP... I know, but seriously, being stuck in the kitchen is no fun.

Sally Lynch from Tastetrekkers (www.tastetrekkers.com.au) agreed to the task- 12 people @$40 per head. The other criteria was to be Christmassy without being too Christmassy and to take into consideration that some of the guests are more traditional eaters and some of the guests like extravagant food. Gee- complicated and contradictory much?! Oh.. I also wanted to have some stuff that could be served cold....

Sal provided me with a menu to choose from and then I decided on exactly what I wanted. She did a fantastic job of catering to my weird requests and we had enough food to feed at least 16-18 people!!! We got to talking and Sal has been in the food industry for a long time and her experience shows. The food was fantastic and although my photos will not do it justice, you will be able to get a good idea of what was on offer. The guests at the party repeatedly told me how much they loved the food and kept thanking me for organising, so really, this thanks and praise should be passed onto Sal. From the menu Sal gave me, I tried to incorporate traditional (for my family- so may be a little weird) elements of Christmas i.e. Duck, Chicken, Prawn and crab and then the rest of the choices were made because they looked so Yum!

The Menu:
Asian Style Duck Rice paper rolls with yellow bean sauce

Prawn & herb mayo mini po boys

Crispy crab and noodle balls with a lime chilli dipper

Crostini with wild mushrooms and Persian feta

Crispy Chicken Pieces with lime salt

Thai Beef salad with holy basil & green mango tartlets

Stuffed mini chorizo sausages with cheese & herbs with an apricot glaze.

Sorry- have no piccys of these babies but they were delicious. In fact I ate about 6 of them!~

Glazed and Baked Ham with assorted mustard and chutneys, salad and crusty breads.

The crostini with wild mushrooms and persian feta was the favourite of the day and the glaze on the ham was delicious. I can also tell you that nothing went to waste because everyone enjoyed the food so much. I particularly loved the lime salt, and we used the excess to rim the martini glasses. I actually have some ham frozen because we did not even get to eating it, but I did put it to good use in the few days after the party.

Sal had all the food labelled and packed in containers with instructions to heat if required. I was really happy and everything was so easy.

We also had some fab cocktail concoctions using vanilla vodka, lychee liqueur, vodka, bacardi, chamboard and a whole heap of mixers like cranberry, mint, passionfruit, lime, ginger. We even used the leftover lime salt to rim the martini glasses for some kick to the cocktails. Luckily we all lined our stomachs well with Sal's Chrissy feast.

Have you been in an end of year daze too? Do you do all your own catering for Christmas parties?? If not, who do you employ and have you been happy with them?

Now... time to get to planning Christmas Day Menu- eek Grocery Shopping is chaos this time of year. The next post may just have to wait for another week! Sigh...

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Safe New Year. Thanks for reading and I hope to hear from you all (via comments!) early in the new year. There will be some changes happening to this blog in the new year, so stay tuned for those too. What are you guys doing/eating/drinking for christmas?

So far I'm thinking of grilled whole prawns with garlic and coriander, scallops in the half shell (not sure what to dress then with yet, oysters with pickled ginger and lime, kung pao chicken and the rest is yet to come. Happy Holidays!

Signing off. xx

4 fabulous comments:

mademoiselle délicieuse said...

Only just finished planning and shopping for my Christmas Day lunch today. Usually do a pre-Christmas get-together for friends but that fell by the wayside this year amidst other plans. Perhaps I'll do a New Year's Eve thing instead.

Merry Christmas, Gastronomy Gal! Have really enjoyed getting to know your blog this year =)

Ellie said...

Lovely blog you have here. Glad to discover your blog. Happy holiday!

Lorraine @NotQuiteNigella said...

Good idea to outsource it! Otherwise it gets too stressful and that's no good. Looks like a good selection of food too! :)

SOL's view said...

I love reading your blog - the food always looks divine. Christmas menu this year was a little more complex than usual. I actually cooked. Roast pork, roast duck and jacket potatoes. The rest was garden salad and pasta salad. :)

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