After many a successful dinner party and drunkard guests singing your praises – “omg the dinner was ahh-maayyyzing”, “it’s sooo beauuuuutifull”… these sound bites can really start to go to your head. Especially if the obligatory post mortem Dine Girl twin drinks include more of the same self praising and bruised shoulders from patting ourselves on the back so much. “Our stuff is GOOD!!”, “it’s frikkin’ GOOOOOOD!!” (did anyone say it was bad that we needed to defend ourselves? surely not…) Of course we have had the occasional mishap and finger pointing disaster here and there, but with those experiences conveniently brushed under the carpet, our confidence was riding sky high. So much so, that we decided our skills were good enough to venture into more challenging waters: a formal cocktail party for 50 strangers.
We were asked to provide nibbles for some well heeled private equity lawyers at a private event. Being a dude heavy soirée, we figured ‘man friendly’ food would be our best option, and we were right. After all, barbarians do not have time to decipher frilly canapés while working the room discussing potential billion dollar deals.
The cold / room temp items were mini caprese bites, prosciutto with melon drizzled with balsamic glaze, caramelized onion tartlets, and smoked salmon sandwich bites. The hot items were mini italian meatballs with sunday gravy, mac and cheese bites, and the show stopping short rib sliders on toasted buttered mini brioche buns. For dessert, last minute brownies from Magnolia Bakery cut into bite size squares saved the day. (We won’t mention the pumpkin spice cake that ended up in the trash during prep!)
The prep work was way more time consuming than we imagined! An easy menu doesn’t necessarily mean the work itself is faster. Carefully rolling out 100+ mini meatballs using a melon baller was pretty arduous, and skewering up / seasoning all the bites was a bit of a snooze. But the little touches made a huge difference. We made sure every morsel was well seasoned with the best quality ingredients. Someone even commented how fresh the basil was that night. The empty trays returning back behind the curtain was a good indication that the party was in full swing.
Though we were not cooking directly for friends, the same amount of love and care, attention to detail went into this party as with any other Dine Girl dinner. It’s a strange feeling to not be a part of your own meal as we’re typically used to, but we felt confident that our little nibbles were making a good impression. And according to our excellent servers – the feedback was mostly positive, peppered with some smug, pompous indifference. But I guess that is to be expected when you have a room full of lawyers. The highlight of the night was when apparently there was almost sheer chaos and mutiny when the sliders went around, with one guest snipping that he had been overlooked! These guys were actually fighting over the food! Very proud back slapping self praise Dine Girl moment!
“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.”
Cheers to that!