A Happy New Year

Now that our revels are ended, I’m slowly growing tired of wishing “Happy New Year” to all and sundry all day long, desperately trying to remember whom I have wished and whom I haven’t and probably getting it wrong, wishing the same, by now exasperated person eight times, I am looking forward to the time when good manners allow me to ignore the fact that it’s a happy new year and just get on with my usual grumpy “G’morning”. Saying all that, it has been a good start of the year for Eddie and me.

For the first time in almost 20 years, we welcomed the new year at home in the company of good friends. Of course I had to go a little mad on the food. Apart from a long board of cold cuts, a platter of cheeses provided by our friend Jane, as well as a bowl of caviar plus blinis and all the trimmings, deftly put together by Corinne (friend), I made:

2 loaves of bread Pumpkin & Sunflower Seed Bread The Incomparable Toast
Pâté de Campagne Pâté de Campagne – Rustic Pork Pâté
Terrine de Foie Gras
Baked Fish Pie with Rough Puff Crust (somewhat failed)
Macédoine de Legumes (Vegetable Salad)
Oeufs à la Russe façon du Chef (more on that later)
Apricot Tart
Rhubarb Pie Rhubarb Tart

All of that for 7 people, so you can imagine that there was quite a bit left over. I am going to share all the recipes with you over the next few weeks, which means that I will have to cook the fish pie again and take my time to make the pastry, which although delicious was somewhat soaked. I just didn’t give it the time it deserved, so it refused to stretch and instead of nicely puffing up over the steaming pie, it cracked and got flooded with cream sauce. Not a good look! Talking of not a good look, I still don’t seem to manage to compose the face quick enough to get a picture in which I don’t look like a complete village idiot.

There’s another picture that I captioned “Old People Dancing”, but I deleted it in case it frightens the children. Those flowers, by the way, are bought cheaply at the wholesalers and arranged without much talent by me. It goes to show that if you buy enough of them, they will look good no matter what you do to them.

I will leave you with a picture of our table ravished rather than ravishing and a promise of posting the first recipe day after tomorrow. Fabulous Fish Pie coming up next week.

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