Don’t Hang the DJs

On April 5, 2014 by battenburgbelle

Finally, only two and a half months after the event, I had my lovely birthday Speakeasy DJs round for a thank you dinner.

The Cathy-Lics

The Cathy-Lics spinning the tunes

At the Naughty Habits Speakeasy Foxtrot Fanny, aka Jenny, played some 78s, followed by her gentleman caller, DJ Jaybird Slim, with some 50s and 60s tunes and we finished up with a foot stomping set from Angus and Clive or, for this event only, the Cathy-Lics – thank you to them for keeping with the Naughty Habits@the Nunnery brand.

They all played great music and it was a pleasure to entice them round for food by way of a thank you. A challenge as well, what with the vegetarian, the dairy intolerant and the hardcore meat eaters.

Herb pie

Herb pie

So, in between feverish preparations for the Muswell Hill and District Horticultural Society Spring Show cooking contest (more about that anon), I did a little platter of bits and pieces to start with, including some proscuitto to sneak in a small meat course. Turned my back for a moment and they were gone, so no photos of that.

I need to do some more appeasing of the Jaybird. He kindly offered to be runner for Jenny and I if we needed any emergency provisions. I requested a beetroot and a sweet potato (for reasons that will become apparent at some point) and he most kindly got off his bus and popped into Planet Organic. He thought his efforts were to assist with dinner and he was slightly put out to discover that in fact I was after suff I had left off the list for the Horti Soc madness. And as he will find out soon enough, they are entirely decorative and in no way essential to anything. Whoops.

Sweet potato salad

Sweet potato salad

Dinner was an Ottolenghi herb pie, with a variety non-cow cheeses. I love the way it looks like a big squashy pillow, but I wasn’t too happy with the soggy bottom of the filo pastry. Note to self: just make Bertinet pastry, it works every time. But I did like the herby, cheesy, lemony filling. I served it with a beetroot salad and a wonderful sweet potato based salad, based on recipe in a lovely book I also received for the long since passed birthday. It’s from a great little café in Crouch End, called Coffee Cake. In my interpretation, you peel and chop three or four sweet potatoes, toss them in some olive oil, salt and pepper, runny honey and cumin seeds; roast them for about 20 minutes; when they’ve cooled down, you mix them up with some chopped up baby tomatoes, pistachios, sultanas, whatever herbs are knocking about in the fridge; add a mustardy, garlicky dressing (Jenny – I can be more specific if you like…); finish off with a few dollops of yoghurt (sheep’s yoghurt on this occasion).

Dessert was some little chocolate puddings, which I thought were slightly over cooked but seemed to go down well amongst the guests.

Little chocolate pudding

Little chocolate pudding

It was really good to see them all and it was a very jolly evening, but by dessert time I was already getting mildly distracted by the prospect of my Horti Soc preparations, so I made my guests each a herbal tea and sent them on their merry way.

3 Responses to “Don’t Hang the DJs”

  • Grandma Battenburg

    Is “left off the shopping list” a* euphemism for “burnt the first lot”?

    *or should this be an – I think not?

  • battenburgbelle

    Dammit – I forgot I’d told you that…

  • Ha ha – the Jaybyrd LOVED helping us both. He rolled up his sleeves and did about 6 batches of washing up at my place. What a lovely man.

    All your dinner dishes were amazing but I especially liked the sweet potato salad. It’s making me hungry right now thinking about it. I will definitely have a go at that.

    You were very kind to add all of this in to the mix the very night before the Horticultural Society madness gripped us both. Perhaps I should invite you all to dinner on the Thursday before the Summer Show. It’s only fair!

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