Sunday, May 18, 2008

The "Thank You" Dinner

A quick post before I head out to spend a few days with the kids.

Friday night was considered a success. We were a bit concerned when we first got to the building for the dinner, no one was there! We had made arrangements for folks to set up tables and chairs while we worked prepping the meal, but no one came until 15 minutes prior to the dinner's scheduled time!

So a couple of us kept working the kitchen and the other two set up the dining room.
We had a group of really great young adults come to help serve and work in the kitchen, but he folks who were supposed to set up never made it.

As far as the tartlets went, well it was interesting. No one really understood exactly what I had planned on bringing although I thought I had explained it clearly. Small buttery tart shells, somewhere gloriously between a butter cookie and the perfect flaky pie crust, 1.5 inch - about a two bite for women, one bite for guys, filled with a variety of four flavours. Try as I may, I couldn't get them to visualize it.

Then I began to prep the tartlets. I could tell by the looks that some were worried that they might be too small, "just a taste of dessert" would be fine. Eventually however, once they tasted them...oh my heck.

The main guy at the event, the head honcho as it were, I know he was a little surprised. Before the dinner started he asked us if he should announce anything about the dinner. Our RS president ran through the menu once more.

French bread with rosemary olive oil and balsamic vinegar

Fresh baby greens with Gorgonzola, cranberries, almonds and raspberry vinaigrette

Roast loin of pork

Apple walnut dressing

Steamed broccoli

Fresh pineapple, grilled to caramelize

Tartlets, chocolate ganache, fresh strawberry, lemon curd, nutmeg vanilla with fresh banana, each topped with fresh whipped cream.

His response was: "Oh so we're not supposed to eat those as an appetizer?" um, no.

Then he explains that he told half of the guest to be there at 6, the other half at 6:30, so could we hold dinner for a half an hour? We did, however the broccoli that was steamed to perfection became funky and we had to toss it and redo a whole new batch. ugh. But all went well.

The roast was very tender and juicy, and the pineapple was sooo good! The dressing was not only fragrent, but had a great crunch with the apples and walnuts, yummy!

Then came the tarts. One man whispered to his wife that he wasn't going to even try them, he didn't want to eat store bought. Then someone informed him that they had been made from scratch, from the shells to the whipped cream. He tried on, and then another and then another until his wife made him stop. They were such a hit! Another man said he was originally disappointed because the dinner was so great he was looking forward to a big dessert to match, but after tasting each of the four tartlets, decided their richness and flavour was more than satisfying and wanted us to give his wife the recipe.

The kids who helped out were all going crazy. One young man said he was going to have all the meetings at our house from now on...he wanted more and figured I could just make them all the time. It was a toss up which was the favourite, I think it depended on who you talked with. Chocolate was in the lead until everyone ate the lemon, then the banana took a turn and strawberry seemed to win a few arguments as well. Then the kitchen staff got crazy and began to mix two at once. Strawberry banana, chocolate banana, chocolate strawberry, it was nuts.

All in all the night went well. Our kitchen staff was probably the best we have ever had. The kitchen was in a continual state of cleaning which meant we were only there a few minutes after the event ended and we got to go home as well! It was great!

So THANKS to Chronicler and her amazing tart shells! It made the evening perfect!

add to sk*rt


chronicler said...

Very nice to read all went well. I am glad I could help make the dinner a success!

chronicler said...

oh and, recipes! I would love the recipe for the porkloin and the stuffing. mmmm.

AbbyDawn said...

Sounds fabulous! I wish my ward would do something so nice! Glad you were able to WOW them with the tarts!

S'mee said...

Thanks Sis, seriously, EVERYONE raved about the tarts!

Abbydawn, thanks, yeah, our stake is pretty good about this kind of stuff. Our seminary/institute covers four stakes so we it was fun to see everyone we normally miss.

Red said...

mmmmmmmMMMMMMMmmmmmmmmm.... yummy! Sounds like it was amazing :-D

ERIN said...

yum! everything sounds so good! i wish i was in attendance. maybe you'll post your recipes...?

S'mee said...

Recipes coming!

Thanks ladies!