Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Unless you live under a rock then as a US resident, it would have been hard to miss all the publicity about Julia Child of late. First the release of her biography, then the disclosure of her war time activities and, most recently, the film about her which was timed to hit screens right around the date of her birthday. I am not American so she doesn't hold quite the same significance for me that she does for many but none the less I can certainly see the appeal. A few weeks ago one of the ladies in my book club decided to host a Julia Child's Birthday dinner party to which we were all asked to contribute a dish. This gastronomic orgy took place this past weekend and I don't think my waistline will forgive me for quite some time!
Here is our gracious host, Benjamin, who was assisted by his humans, Lisa and Chris. As you can see, he dressed appropriately. After a glass (or two) of perfectly chilled champagne we sat down to dinner.
For appetizers (there were three!) we had stuffed mushrooms, onion tart and a roquefort stuffed pastry.
Then an Amuse-bouche of scallop bouillabaisse
Followed by a wonderful creamy mushroom soup
Then to cleanse the palette, a raspberry sorbet
Now to be totally honest, I could have quite happily stopped there and been perfectly content with the delicious selection of flavours and textures I had enjoyed.
But we were only just getting warmed up!
So we bravely moved on to the entrees (four of them - groan!!) We managed to cover all bases, vegetarian - a spinach pastry with cheese sauce
and sides of herbed tomatoe and stuffed zucchini
A fish course, and here I have to blame the copious quantities of wine for missing a photo!
A white meat course - coq au vin
and a red meat course - beef bourguinon (this was our contribution) with garlic whipped potatoes
By now I felt in grave danger of exploding! But everyone had just excelled with their dishes and it would have seemed churlish not to try them all (that is my excuse anyway!)
We took a break for coffee and to loosen our belts (!) Before plunging into deserts (plural again!) First a peach clafouti
And then the killer chocolate mousse
There was a wonderful selection of cheeses too but I had to quit at this point because I had gorged far too much and could barely move
I think Julia would have been proud of all our culinary masterpieces, now I just need to run a marathon and climb Everest to burn off all the wonderful food I consumed - oh but it was so worth it!
Photo Credits - CJT (Quality varying with amount of alcohol consumed!)
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