All posts filed under: Party with a Pretty Dress

Back to the Beach – It’s all over except the dance.

… well, And the desserts,  and the midnight breakfast. But we’ll get to those at some point next week. The fridge is currently floating in wedding food and I’ll need to work through some of that before I do anything else. Okay, the last two of the dinner menu items… and a little something extra at the end. I had decided early on in the talks with the client that I’d do a grilled tofu for the vegan selection, ensuring that they could enjoy the same grilled type food that everyone else was getting, without making them feel too left out. The problem was the fish. The original thought for the pescatarian selection was  obviously to do fish. I played around with snapper… cod… tuna and by-and-large, they either weren’t going to hold up in a buffet situation (fish sitting around in a chafing dish watching it’s life’s juices just evaporate into thin gusty air), or they just didn’t end up tasting very good.. Fish: In order for it to hold onto that charcoal-y, smoky goodness …

Back to the Beach – Eggplant Parmesan

The Rehearsal Dinner The basic etiquette for invitations to the rehearsal dinner are: The Bride and Groom – easy… Check! Their respective Parents – okay… Check! Bridesmaids and spouses (slash) dates – Check and check! ditto for the Groomsmen – Big ol’ Check! and all  of the out-of-town guests – Ch * * … umm…   hmm… that’s everyone….. The original plan was to swanky up the covered area at the beach house with tivoli lights, checkered tablecloths, and chainti bottles and turn it into an Italian restaurant for the night – Serving up trays of Chicken Parm, Eggplant Parm, Heaping bowls of Pasta, Romaine Salad,  and a kind of Spumoni Trifle… when we were talking about 20 to 30 people. When the numbers for the wedding started growing, it became a scramble to figure out what to do with all those people, because – I could go ahead and cook for them, but it would have been a push, with my one helper, to have pulled it off without a hiccup. (You remember what the weather did …

Party with a Pretty Dress – A Balmy 38 Degrees

Welcome back! Some of you attended the event, so you know all this next stuff. but… for those of you that are just following along out of curiosity, Here… was the venue. Sa – weet!!, huh? and… that was the imagined response when we started planning the whole thing at the beach. 30 to 40 guests, me cooking everything on grills… … a beautiful evening complete with gentle breezes, lapping waves, and those slightly cooler temperatures that the Panhandle in Fall is known for. We didn’t get that. By late August, the numbers had confirmed at 82 guests (slightly larger than I anticipated) and beginning on the Wednesday before the wedding on Saturday, the wind picked up. By noon on Friday, we were at 20 mph winds (with gusts to 35) which made setting up the tent, essentially a large rectangle windsock, rather tricky. As the big bald head of the sun set across the torrent waves, the temperatures dipped to a balmy 38 degrees. I was getting kind of concerned. You see, I was the one that pushed …

Party with a Pretty Dress – Appetizers

We’re back for round 2 of the wedding menu. this time, it’s the appetizers. I generally consider appetizers and hors d’oeuvres that food that no one really eats because they all amped up from the ceremony and sun – and they really just want to dig into dinner…. but: a), It has to look nice in case there’s any photos taken and b), It has to taste good in case someone needs a little somthin-somethin to cut the voluminous amounts of wine they’ve consumed. and c), I still had dietary concerns to keep in mind – so additional friendly food just flushes out the menu. The recipes you see below will be slightly different that those at the reception… and I’ll explain why: I’ll be honest, I wasn’t happy at all with the original wrappers for the tuna or any of the gluten free crackers. It’s not their fault, but gluten free crispy things end up being a little odd texture-wise once they get moist. And, in general, they just aren’t all that exciting. The original idea for the …

Back to the Beach – Menu Set #1

I’ve tried to come up with a way to dole out the recipes for the Party with a Pretty Dress without it being just one long, never-ending disgorging of information. Since it was a buffet, to do everything justice, I’ve decided to break the dinner apart into three separate menus that can be reproduced as individual meals, or mixed and matched to suit your particular dietary needs. As some of you know, this party was unique in the sense that the majority of the party guests had some sort of dietary restriction. Whether it was lactose intolerance, casein allergies, Celiac (gluten allergies), pescatarian, vegetarian, or vegan. Developing a menu that would ensure that everyone would be able to enjoy a delicious celebratory dinner was paramount, and it took a great deal of trial and error to create a menu where no one felt they were being slighted. I think we did our job. I also want to thank Tracy and Ken for entrusting this event to me, and  having the faith (even with the hitches) that we would deliver. Dry Cured …