Private Party – The 50th Birthday

September 16, 2009 at 5:44 pm (Uncategorized)

As any cork person knows, certain Italian words are great to say in a cork accent. The accent, for those who are not familiar, ‘starts at the bottom and goes up to the top’, in terms of pitch. So words like gnocchi, have great comic potential. Tis far from gnocchi I was brought up, gnocchi come in for your dinner and leave that cat alone etc, etc..So its not hard to understand why the catering shop assistant didn’t understand what the hell I was looking for when I asked for a passatutto, in my best cork accent. I did mimes. ‘A potato ricer’ he suggested helpfully ‘no, a passatutto’ I said holding onto those vowels for dear life. I much prefer the word passatutto, potato ricer sounds so…well…functional..

Why, the guests asked did you make the gnocchi yourself, when you could have just bought it? A pertinent question. Well, because I really wanted to burn my fingers with hot potatoes and spend a few hours trying to decide which way to passatut!

My first time tea smoking, I wonder if you can tea smoke other things besides fish. It’s a great way to burn the arse off your good kitchen stainless steel cooking trays, but it gave off a beautiful aroma, I used lapsang souchong and some twig tea for balance.

It was a night of firsts, first time doing a charlotte, first time gnocchi, first time granita (another brilliant Italian word), first time forgetting to put salt and pepper on the table…it was also my first time doing a dinner for all friends, payment is a bit awkward, thinking of ways to make it less painless.

The marinated Shimeji’s with walnut and tahini dressing…

The chocolate pear tart is one of my stable dishes, when I want to go that extra furlong. I can’t eat it myself, too much butter and sugar but it always goes down a treat. I found the recipe ages ago in a magazine and my thumb leafed copy is soon to be replaced by the book that’s its from, Florentines, A Tuscan Feast. Who knew…

The night finished with the guests getting intimate with the curtains…very caravaggio..

and the dog…


Pomegranate Fizz

Starters: Marinated shimeji and chestnut mushrooms in walnut and tahini yoghurt dressing.

Mains: Tea smoked salmon fillets with pickled cucumber salad.

Vegetarian option – a Charlotte of cheese’s with pine nuts, and roasted tomatoes on wilted greens and puy lentils with basil oil.

Feta, spinach and pine nut salad with sumac. Homemade gnocchi.

Strawberry Granita.

Dessert: Chocolate pear tart.

Tea, coffee and biscotti.



  1. Puge said,

    Finger licking good food, and I also licked the plate! And that tart! I would walk a million miles….Jezebel surpassed herself. A grateful guest..

  2. Fast Forward said,

    KJ – hi… I am Fast (a member of the Food Group that Gavin told you about). He notified us about LSC today. I've been reading your blog and I put in a vote for the vegan dinner approach! I imagine that you will eventually cater for all the above depending on the request.One piece of info about the money. My wife operates a yoga studio here in NYC and she refuses to deal with the money. From an early stage she allowed everyone to understand that after class/instruction or appointment the client simply leaves the money in a certain place. Eg: if you have a bowl by the door, they could put it there. it's foolproof. After you have given so much – nobody is going to stiff you with under-paying (or not) and you don't have to deal with the moolah.Maybe you can try it out one night . . .. in your case maybe a 'change box' could be a good idea too . . . . Keep me posted on your blog postings . . .

  3. The Kitchen Jezebel said,

    Thank you Fast! Apologies I only saw this comment today, I havent had time to update my blog for ages….good idea re the moolah, generally people buy tickets beforehand but its a bit tricky with friends…I meant to ask people to put any dosh in the tabernacle (its actually some sort of thai cupboard) but forgot! I cant find out how to email you directly so hope you gte this, I also signed up to your blog..looks fantastic…love the idea…rather like radical works of art in strange places…or at elast thats my take…best KJ

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