Another holiday feast! As usual, some friends from the Buddhist centre decided to get together for a Christmas celebration on the 23rd. I was given the task of organising the food in the absence of the only chef that actually works as a chef. After a short meditation we were ready for some serious eating.
Imke brought delicious cheeses and crackers, Max brought smoked salmon and roast beef, Victor brought sliced turkey, Twii brought an excellent rosé wine.
Cheeses and crackers
Matt brought a leg of ham and baked dark chocolate brownies, which were slightly over-done but tasted good, with a nice coffee kick.
Angela made a mango and avocado salad with lettuce, bacon and mayo dressing, that was a perfect match for the seafood we had and the weather. So far all salads Angela has made for us have been divine and I like the fact that, like me, she likes to prepare something different each time.
Mango and avocado salad
Andrey made a Russian salad with potatoes, carrots, peas, ham and mayo. The salad was great, a bit different from the version my family makes, but hey! this was the real deal made by a real Russian.
Bonnie brought couscous with pumpkin, which she bought from Relish because she ran out of time to prepare her dish. It was ok, but I would have preferred the homemade couscous she was planning initially. She also brought a couple of bottles of sparkling wine.
Couscous with pumpkin
I prepared Thai marinated prawns, cooked in coconut oil, marinated with lime juice, fish sauce, brown sugar and green onions, and served with chopped coriander and mint. There should have been chilis in the marinade, but I put them in a separate bowl because some people don’t eat spicy food. I also brought the torronata I made the day before along with raspberries, strawberries and pistachios, and a seeded sourdough I got in the Central Baking Depot (very nice bread!).
Thai marinated prawns
Chili for the prawns
The weather was nice, not too hot, not too cold, so we ate outside. The only downside were the mosquitoes. Fucking mosquitoes. I’m allergic to their bites and by the time people started putting repellent on I thought it was already too late for me, so I just tried to relax. Now I’ve got huge red swollen spots on my ankles, feet, arms, and waist (where a gap between your t-shirt and pants forms when you’re sitting and your t-shirt is not long enough).
After stuffing ourselves with massive amounts of food (yes, I had seconds… but in my defence, I went to boxing class after work) we relaxed drinking wines (white sparkling, red sparkling, rosé). Then we had a present exchange, not in the form of Kris Kringle, but a much simpler one. Everyone brought a $20 gift and our names were put in a bag. The first person picked a name and gave that person the present they brought. Then the person given the present picked a name and so on. This way we kept the game short and avoided the stealing part, which some people hate. Believe it or not, Alvaro picked my name and I received The Buddha Book, which I really wanted.
Twii and Matt got chocolates and they decided to share them straight away. I was a bit concerned about people not having enough room for dessert but fortunately it didn’t happen. After a short while everybody was ready for dessert and we got officially stuffed.