A Catered Affair - 50th Birthday Party

In addition to unpacking boxes and setting up the new kitchen, we squeezed in a catered dinner party on Sunday evening for a group of 11 people to celebrate a 50th Birthday. The client wanted a classically elegant dinner and we worked to design a menu that merged late summer and early fall produce and flavors, and staying true to our cooking style, we added some creative twists along the way.

We started the evening out with some light refreshments - Honeyed Herb and Goat Cheese Stuffed Dates, Scallop Ceviche served atop Fried Plantain Chips and Oven Roasted Golden Tomatoes, Arugula Pesto and Whipped Lemon Ricotta Crostini (not pictured).

For the first course, we presented our diners with a warm Summer Corn Soup that was simmered for hours with herbs and packed with lots of sweet corn flavor. To finish the soup, we drizzled creme fraiche and dotted a vibrant homemade chili oil before topping it with a generous chunk of lobster tempura. (Unfortunately this picture was snapped before the lobster was placed on top.)

The star of our main course was a generous slice of Beef Wellington - tenderloin coated with a thin layer of duxelles (a finely chopped mixture of mushrooms and shallots sauteed in herbs and butter) before being wrapped with sheets of puff pastry and baked until golden brown on the outside. The Wellington was served alongside some duckfat roasted purple potatoes.

In the world of catering, there's always a twist or two along the way and I've learned to be prepared for the unexpected. In this case, we found out (after our Wellington had already been served) that one of our diners is vegetarian. Fortunately we had enough items on hand leftover from our apps and we were able to move quickly to throw together a vegetable wrapped puff pastry entree that we drizzled with leftover arugula pesto. For our final course, we ended with a warm apple crostata served with homemade sea salted caramel and spiced whipped cream.

After spending 10 hours on my feet in a hot kitchen, I've come to truly appreciate the whole art of catering an event. There's something so exhilarating about starting out with an email or phone call from a client and watching an event come to life through menu planning, hours of grocery shopping and prepping and there isn't much that is more satisfying than watching it all come together successfully and hearing that our clients are happy.


Elizabeth said...

Oh my gosh this meal looks fabulous. I want the lemon ricotta and the crostata

Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic said...

What a fantastic meal! Duckfat roasted purple potatoes?? Yes please! Everything looks beautiful and delicious, congrats!

Michelle Collins said...

This meal looks GREAT, and I love how quickly your improvised that vegetarian dish! Congrats on the new venture and new home!

The Small Boston Kitchen said...

Thanks!! We had a lot of fun with this menu. There's something so exciting about the start of a new season!

Mom said...

Kate and Richard!! This looks fabulous and I am so very proud of both of you!! Congratulations!! <3

Jen said...

You guys are awesome. The food looks amazing.

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