Mid January Birthday Party
Keith, Celebrating a Steeler’s Playoff win and 40 years with appetizers and single malt scotches!
I have to admit when Alison proposed pairing food with scotch I was thrilled. Second only to vino, single malts have a special place in my heart! And when she told me the line-up I was floored, this regional diversity and flavors were great to work with. check out my pairings:
Macallan 12 yr – Chanterelle, madeira, phyllo triangles
Talisker 10 yr – Ginger, sambal shrimp potsticker with tamari
Oban 14 yr – Lime, cilantro crab cake with sriracha aioli
Balvenie 12 yr – Smoked pulled pork wellington with honey sherry barbecue
Lagavulin 16 yr – Sliced beef tenderloin sliders with horseradish aioli, dijon and caramelized onion
Also had a great line-up of cheese, I found a Whiskey Cheddar! along with Cabot private Stock, St. Andre, Danish Blue, Spanish Goat, Manchego and a Comte organic cow’s milk from France. Dried fruit go great with scotch so figs and dried cherry accompanied with fresh grapes and strawberries
And with football on the early docket I made Buffalo chicken sausage with deviled blue cheese on baguette.
The past Tuesday I catered an office party for the Center for Social Development and Education at the University of Massachusetts Boston. The staff holiday party was at a beautiful house in Roslindale. The second floor was ideal for entertaining with Dining and Living rooms to keep guests flowing with and open kitchen. The fare was typical New England holiday party but I had a blast with the cheese platters and added my touch to each traditional dish. Check out the menu.
On Saturday night I had the opportunity to do a dinner for a small surprise 40th birthday party. It was a great time. The hostess chose a menu featuring beef tenderloin with a black cod option for the non-red meat eaters in attendance. We started with 2 passed hors d’oeuvres, and presented the dinner buffet-style with the tenderloin carved to serve. The hosts were fantastic to work with and it was a great evening. The complete menu is located on the sample menus page.
Aside from the private chef events featured on this website, I work full time as an executive chef at Harvard University. One of the major perks of my job is that I frequently get to cook for really interesting people. This week, there was a small dinner hosted for Condoleeza Rice, and instead of choosing from our established menu, I was asked to create a unique one for the event. I was given some guidelines – the host wanted the menu inspired by 5 words: healthy, funky, spicy, plantain, and ribs. I had a lot of fun creating the menu! I posted the complete details in the sample menus section.
- Salad Course
I was asked to come up with a menu that was “Healthy,” “Spicy” and “Funky” using “Plantains” and “Ribs.”
The Dinner was for twelve and was following a speaking engagement for former Secretary of State Condaleezza Rice hosted by Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr.
The first course was Frisee Salad with Roasted Bosc Pears, Grape Tomatoes, Shaved Manchego Cheese, Spiced Pecans and Ginger Carrot Vinaigrette.
The second course was Pomegranate Barbecued Quail wth Gorgonzola Cream and Pomegranate Seeds paired with a Shaved Fennel, Celery Leaf & Clementine Salad and Citrus Herb Vinaigrette.
I really enjoy cooking for friends, and this weekend I was able to help our good friends Jenna and Steve celebrate the Baptism of their second son, Walter. They had a lovely small gathering of friends and family at their home in West Roxbury. It was a late afternoon buffet-style dinner featuring a choice of chicken or beef with wild mushroom sauce. The complete menu is posted in the sample menus. Jenna provided the dessert herself, and her dark chocolate cake with orange cream was amazing! I’m really glad I was able to contribute to their celebration – congratulations, Walter!
This party was a lot of fun from my perspective – I was given free reign to create a menu. Most people have an idea of at least what type of food they want, and often they request specific dishes. But for Marc’s 40th birthday party, all I knew was the number of guests and that the host wanted the guests to have a full dinner – so if it was going to be appetizers, they should be hearty enough make a meal. I decided to go with a Spanish/tapas theme and a combination of chilled and hot dishes put out on a staggered time table so that people could graze throughout the evening. I added this menu to my sample menus, so you can get the details of the little plates there.