When the lead news story was that Friday would be the busiest night of the year as Christmas party goers packed out bars and restaurants with their party poppers and silly string I was glad I'd taken the decision to move our meal for ten to a new exclusive restaurant, which offered a five-course meal for £5. Actually, I'd left it a bit late to book, by a couple of months, it would seem as there was definitely no room at any inn. So the executive decision was that I'd cook it myself and charge £5 to cover costs.
The Cafe Gnarlen Stripen opened for one night only. Named after the Maitre d', who is leaving his job and heading out to Switzerland where he will train as a ski instructor and grow a fluffy chin beard known as a gnarl stripe, the exclusive cafe also entertainment from the resident cat. We had a bran tub, bring a gift, get a gift, with Helen playing Santa, which we all thought she did rather well!
As usual with all matters catering, the whole volume and quantity thing was a bit of a challenge. But, as they say, every cloud……We've enjoyed turkey for the past two days and I've just made five litres of stock. Mmmm, I wonder what we'll have tomorrow?
Chilled melon with mango and vodka coulis
Roast Norfolk turkey with orange and rosemary and bacon spikes
Crispy lemon-roast potatoes
Honey-glazed roast parsnips
Brussels sprouts with pancetta
Wine-braised red cabbage
Fresh sage and onion stuffing
Cranberry and roast Clementine sauce
Figgy pudding with Cointreau ice cream
Champagne jelly with raspberries and cream
Coffee and mints