Let’s start off with one of my New Year resolutions, learning a guitar song once a month. I bought a guitar a couple of years ago and I have only learnt how to play two songs the whole way through- bad isn’t it?– ( Johnny Cash – Hurt and Frank Turner – I Still Believe). I’m too lazy to learn whole songs. However, I’d love to play whole songs so this New Years Resolution will be a way to give me focus. The song for the month is Biffy Clyro – Who’s got a match?. They are an amazing rock band and this is one of their easier songs to play on guitar. I have to apologise to any hardcore fans of the band as I only became a fan of them when they became successful with Puzzle. I’m still better than “fans” who became fans after some X-factor winner covered one of their songs. I have seen them play four times and ‘is a problem because everything dies’ live is so so so good live. So Who’s got a match is the song!
So…the first dinner party my girlfriend and I hosted (a true step in being adults) was adventurous. Cooking started at 1pm and didn’t stop until 6pm when the guests came. There were 2 guests at the dinner party. We started with a cocktail – Cosmopolitan. It was a lovely sophisticated start to the meal and we got to use cocktail glasses (COCKTAIL GLASSES! – Christmas presents :D). This was a success and Cosmopolitan will be a future recipe! After a few minutes of small talk, we decided to serve the Amuse Bouche (Yes we had an Amuse Bouche!). It was butternut squash soup with prawns (recipe is on FADHoppers). We had this with a bottle of white wine (A bottle of wine doesn’t last long between 4). Conversation flowed more as the wine flowed and we started to cook the Starter – Scallops, Chorizo and red pepper (Recipe is on FADHoppers). This was a huge success and my favourite course of the dinner party.
Then we had the pallet cleanser – Lemon Sorbet with a shot of Limencello (Recipe below). This was delicious also and our pallets were cleansed. By the end of the pallet cleanser we had finished the second bottle of white wine. Once the main was cooked, we served it – Tomato and Garlic crust Beef with Fondant Potatoes in a red wine jus. This went wrong. You could not taste the crust, the fondant potatoes exploded and the beef was overcooked – utter failure. We had a bottle of red wine with it – error mixing wine? This was my first night drinking ever a sufficient amount of red wine. We started to converse with the next bottle of red wine but then went onto card drinking games with wine – bad idea. Soon we were out of wine (3 bottles of white and 3 bottles of red), fairly drunk and had the great idea of going to Tesco for more alcohol – 2nd bad idea. Two more bottles of wine were bought – One was drank and the other put in the freezer and found days later. Vodka shots were also drunk – 3rd bad idea- making one of our guests pass out. Alcohol continued and I argued with my other friend – 4th bad idea – , which resulted in him storming out and the end of the night. The only redeeming feature about the downfall of the party was not drinking dry sherry- friend’s suggestion.
At some point we did have dessert which was Chocolate cake– lovely but very rich and probably won’t feature on FADHoppers -. Due to the amount of alcohol consumed it was completely overlooked and barely touched.
The next day was a lot of washing up and hangovers!
The pallet cleanser – lemon sorbet – could rival any Italian Gelato. I made it with the Christmas present my wonderful girlfriend got me, an ice cream maker! If you want an ice cream maker, my one and only advice is to read the instructions a day or two before you want to make the ice cream or sorbet – mine said to freeze the tub for at least 12 hours. In the future lots of ice creams and sorbets will be made
Serves : 8
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time : 10 minutes plus churning and freezing time
200g caster sugar
300ml lemon juice
3 tbsp vodka
Add the caster sugar and water in a small saucepan over a medium-low heat.
Stir until the sugar has completely dissolved.
Bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes (without stirring) until a thin syrup has formed.
Leave to cool.
Stir in the lemon juice and the vodka.
Pour the lemon mixture into an ice cream maker and turn into sorbet following the ice cream maker instructions.