Bhel Puri

plateful

Last weekend we squeezed in another supper club get together. This one was a South Indian theme, so we had a nice spread of curries.

the spread

We served all the main dishes family style. There was rice, Goan shrimp curry, Keralan chicken, a pot of mixed vegetable curry with sweet potatoes, and our contribution, a coconut milk curry with cauliflower and fresh spinach. We also brought several chutneys, which were made for our appetizer, bhel puri, but also worked nicely with everything else. Continue reading

trashy goodness

at the table

Another month, another supper club. This time we explored the heights (or depths) of American cuisine with a trailer trash/church potluck theme. Some of this stuff I grew up with (in the form of Grange potlucks), some of it was new to me. Altogether it was an oddly successful dinner.

the centerpiece

It was a beautiful July evening, warm but not too hot and not too buggy. The table was set on the deck where we could watch the sunlight creep up the mountain across the lake. Continue reading

getting my bearings again

Sheesh, this has been a crazy month. It’s been so long since I’ve posted here I haven’t the slightest idea where to start. There was a trip to Orcas Island to scatter my grandparents’ ashes, immediately followed by a trip to Kansas City for a memorial service for my mother-in-law. A few great dinners with friends at which I took no pictures because it seemed too much like work, and a few meals cooked at home in between various outings. I definitely have some great stuff to post here but my brain doesn’t seem to working in a straight line (the 90 degree heat may have something to do with that). How about I start with our last supper club event?

Birch Bay

The theme was Tuscan family dinner. It was a lovely evening on Birch Bay, and we started with a bocce tournament, at which Jon and I stomped everyone until the very last game where we were soundly defeated. I have seldom met a sport better suited for playing while holding a glass of wine in one hand. The only downside of winning so many games is that we hardly had any opportunity to help eat the wonderful prosciutto and steamed artichokes that Jenise put out for antipasti. Continue reading

Rock the Casbah

the table is set

Another extremely wonderful supper club event! This time our theme was “Rock the Casbah!” which guaranteed that all of us had The Clash stuck in heads the entire previous week. And we got to eat a lot of amazing Moroccan food.

Continue reading

spice and daiquiris

sunset over Bellingham

It was Caribbean night at supper club. The day had started unpromisingly with a dense spring snowstorm, but by evening it was clear and almost warm. We ate and drank and admired the incredible view across Bellingham Bay.

Hemingway daiquiri

Jon mixed up a batch of Hemingway Daiquiris. I like classic daiquiris, but these are even better: tart, refreshing, and with a nice depth from maraschino and fresh grapefruit juice (recipe at the bottom of the post). Cocktail umbrellas were a must. Continue reading

Southern comfort

flowers

setting the table

mini biscuits

It was our turn to host supper club, and we chose a theme that we thought would be welcome during these cold gray winter days: Southern cooking.

biscuit with sausage

We kicked things off with an experimental cocktail called the “Deep South,” which was maybe a bit too sweet – rum, molasses, pineapple juice, and a little cherry-infused rye, with a squeeze of lime. We might not make that one again, but it was fun to stand around with mason jars full of rum, like a taste of summer. The drinks were accompanied by Linda’s wonderful tiny buttermilk-and-caramelized onion biscuits, slices of andouille sausage, homemade mustard and pickled watermelon rind with clementines. Continue reading

Peruvian supper club

supper club

I’m a little late getting these photos up, due to no particularly good reason, but all my other food photos are piling up behind so I’d better get these posted! The most recent meeting of our supper club was centered around Peruvian food, with a few other South American influences creeping in. It was a much smaller group for this one, but we still ate very well.

pisco sour

We started, of course, with Pisco Sours, made by Jon, mixed and shaken by hand. Thank goodness we remembered the existence of packaged pasteurized egg whites. We were lucky enough to find a really nice Pisco for this at an unexpectedly swell liquor store in Lynnwood, and they were perfect. Continue reading

street food party

Supper club is back, and we really had a great theme this time – street food! We could easily repeat this theme every year and have a completely different dinner.

borek//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

I made a variant of Turkish borek. This was the second version of borek that I’ve tried, from the cookbook Turquoise┬áby Greg Malouf (a beautiful and inspiring cookbook, btw, but somewhat undependable in the ingredient lists and index). Both used the same yogurt and butter rough puff pastry (yum), but the first batch had a filling of steamed squash, herbs and feta. It was good but very subtle, so for the actual supper club I made a lamb and pine nut filling (the same one I use for my lamb pizza) and it worked very well. These guys are dense and rich and kind of a lot of work but well worth playing around with. Continue reading

dim sum

barbecued pork

For Sunday lunch this weekend there was a small Supper Club get-together for dim sum. After two hours of dumplings, pork and Asian beer we were all ready to sleep the rest of the afternoon away. We started with char siu pork, which was made in a rotisserie and tasted great (and made me covetous of the rotisserie – why do I not have one of these?) There was some sinus-clearing hot mustard and a homemade plum sauce to go with it.

pork hum bao

I made my favorite hum bao recipe, stuffed with Sichuan-style pork and bean sprouts. We ate quite a lot of these.

lettuce wraps with rice and oyster mushrooms

There was a lettuce wrap filled with rice, oyster mushrooms and kimchi, with a black bean dipping sauce – a really nice, fresh presentation.

sticky rice (steamed in a banana leaf) and half a bao

And sticky rice with water chestnuts, steamed in banana leaves (this course was almost forgotten entirely, we had so much other food).

pork meatballs

I missed getting photos of the vegetable-tofu dumplings or the mushroom wontons, but there were also these lovely little spiced pork meatballs, coated in rice and steamed. They were fantastic – they made me wish I hadn’t eaten quite so many bao.

We’re going to have to do another dim sum party – we ate ourselves silly but barely scratched the surface of possible recipes. What shall we make next time?