Monday, August 02, 2010

The Best Kind of Evenings

Sometimes you just get really lucky on a Sunday evening, that's what happened to me here. Don't you just love dinner parties where you get to show up, sip, relax, indulge, marvel, and generally just enjoy a really special moment? Those moments where you realize you are probably taking part in the most enchanting meal happening in your entire town at the moment? And all you have to do is sit and take it all in? Those moments always require a great host or hostess. My friend Mallory is pretty much the queen of hostessing delightful dinners. She takes such pleasure in it and is also very good at it. This is where I get lucky being her friend. I wanted to post some of the moments from this Sunday Evening Dinner to inspire you and get you reminded or turned on to the greatness that is the Dinner Party.

To create a truly special dinner, styling and decorating your table especially is really key in my opinion. Mallory is passionate about tablescapes like none other I know. These extra touches and really add atmosphere and charm! Don't you just love the moss runner?

No soiree is complete without a good drink. Even it's virgin, there are a lot of dazzling beverages out there that don't involve alcohol. I make them at home quite often actually. But when socializing, I happen to be a fan of the slightly amped-up options. This was a lemon and berry concoction of some kind. I go absolutely nuts for straws with polka dots. They make drinking a beverage oh-so-fun.

A little bite to start things off is certainly a good idea. In this instance, Mo fried up some cornichon and served them with a mustard sauce. These came with mixed reviews but as you will soon see, I loved them.

The fancy little cornichon were very crunchy to begin with, but when you dredge them in flour, egg, and breadcrumbs they develop this irresistible crispy coating. Salty, briny, oh my.

The main course can be ultra fancy and complicated, or as simple and perfect as slow-roasted pork shoulder which we all know usually turns into succulent, saucy BBQ pulled pork, which Mallory heaped a homemade burger bun. She picked them up from a local, gourmet burger joint Fiamma Burger downtown, they make them fresh daily. She also made a fabulous slaw to accompany them along with store-bought extra-salted sweet potato fries. Ina Garten always emphasizes the importance of not making every single thing from scratch when entertaining and after plenty of rebellion of my own to that theory, I've wizened up and heeded those words. You never want to be so exhausted and sick of being in the kitchen by the time your guests arrive! They will feel it!

I wasn't able to nab a shot of the the dessert fully plated but I did get a picture of the little homemade shortbread numbers Mallory made to go with fresh fruit, ice cream, and vanilla whipped cream! I'm a major sucker for scones and these little biscuits were like scones, sugar cookies, biscuits, and shortbread all rolled into one heavenly vessel. I know that Mallory has the recipe on her blog and referred to it recently.

Here is our adorable hostess in all of her charming glory!

Ending the evening around a fire doesn't hurt either...
Thanks, Mo! xx

Happy summer entertaining and eating, friends...


missmallory said...

my goodness! this had me smiling and blushing all at once. . . what a lovely post, such kind words! It's wonderful to hear, and I needed something so special after the week I've had! Thank you dear friend, you are truly one of my soulmates and I'm blessed to have you in my world!


missmallory said...

I must add, that I am not superior to you in the entertaining department my sweet. you inspire me more than you'll ever know!

RachelleLouise said...

Mo, I'm so glad you enjoyed this one! The truth is, there are practically a dozen or more soirees just like this one that you have lavished on folks and that I could write about! I've never known anyone who can create such magic and do it so well and so passionately! To know you is to be under your spell, my dear! : ) I guess we'll just have to agree that we inspire each other like crazy. I suppose that's not such a bad thing! xoxo