Archive for the ‘entertaining’ Category
We had the genius idea to have a dumpling themed dinner party last week and had to act quick due to impending vacations and travels. The usual suspects arrived at my apt around 7pm to start whippin’ up dinner. We didn’t eat until about 10pm! Of course, the star of the show were pork and chicken dumplings (we ended up with about 80). The filling is made of lean ground pork, tiger shrimp, garlic, green onions, and soy sauce. We made half a batch with ginger and half a batch without. They cooked really quickly after a quick swim in boiling water (wo)manned by the other Joann (toJ) and Jen Lui.
The result was a mountain of delicious dumplings. Everyone made their own dipping sauce – from the simple (plain ol’ white vinegar) to the hot (lots of sriracha) to the creative (sesame oil, soy sauce, garlic, sriracha).
To compliment dinner we had mongolian beef (?) and pork bone and daikon soup courtesy of Chef Lee and toJ, respectively. The mongolian beef was saucy and spicy. Not what we were expecting from the recipe but good nonetheless.
The pork bone and daikon soup was simple and light. It won me over with the cilantro garnish.
I tried my hand at Japanese Cheesecake (yes, again) and this time from a new recipe. I actually really liked this one. I kinda forced it out of the oven so it shrank quite a bit. Remember, Japanese Cheesecake is actually just a souffle in disguise. Next time I’ll be more gentle and let it rest in the oven for an hour or so. The texture was slightly wet (undercooked) but really nice and fluffy. The lemon juice added a nice kick and while this recipe called for less cream cheese than previous ones, it had the cream cheesiest taste of all of my attempts. If you’d like to try it out, the recipe can be found here.
We also had 3 varieties of ice cream mochi which helped end the evening with magazine reading, Britney bashing, and a classic episode of TLC’s What Not to Wear. My kind of evening.
Where’s dinner party numero uno you ask? Um, still on my other laptop. Whoops. In any case, the pictures from last week’s party are too good to keep on the back burner. With gratitude to Chez Lee, I present to you our fancy shmancy dinner. Photos courtesy of the other Joann.
To start us off, a nice cheese plate of non-stinky cheese. Brie, parmesan, something with walnuts, and something with herbs that I coulda swore tasted vaguely of goat cheese. Props to Chez Lee for the classy cheese instruments.
Salad ala Julia with ham, bacon, mushrooms, and other good stuff.
The main event of roasted pork rubbed with a blend of 13 herbs and spices. Okay, not really 13 herbs and spices (I think thats KFC’s original recipe fried chicken) but it WAS rubbed with oregano + oregano’s friends which means it was delicious and roasted to perfection.
Side dishes! Toasted cheese bread. Toasted HOT cheese bread since it was sprinkled with cayenne pepper.
Oh man this creamed corn was a winner. Corn, heavy cream, butter, parmesan cheese, cracked black pepper, a gillion calories.
Asparagus lightly sauteed in olive oil with a generous helping of minced garlic.
So what was my contribution to the meal? Dessert!
It was rainy when I visited NYC last year. Too rainy to wait in the line for Serendipity 3 and their famous frozen hot chocolate. We tried to squeeze inside but that didn’t work out either. Luckily, Girls Night In at JenLui’s last weekend included tasty peach champagne (thanks Trader Joe’s), chicken salad, and frozen hot chocolate that Lizzie whipped up. It was decadent and realy, really bad for you in all the best ways. The bottom of the cup was drizzled with caramel sauce and the whole shebang was topped with fresh whipped cream (straight from JenLui’s industrial KitchenAid).