|Coq a Vin in the making in a double-sized slow cooker.|
(great for making double meals and freezing half)
GOSH it's nice be be all fancy-pants once in a while, but realistically we can't put on that fascade all the time ..... so it's time to rethink.
|Green vegetables with almond|
flakes, butter and sesame seeds
I was thinking about this the other night as I was laying the table for 21 friends and family that were coming over for dinner. What to do with not enough matching dinner plates, matching chairs, matching cups and cutlery??......embrace the conundrum and just make it work, that's what. So this is what we did instead.
|Making do with what we have.|
We pushed three picnic tables together, laid them with a variety of white table clothes and white bed sheets, overlaid them with some random white curtain and tulle. We mixed up the plastic garden chairs with our two types of wooden chairs for a shabby chic look and decorated with candles in an odd assortment of glass jars. The cutlery was purposely mixed up so not one setting matched, the Christmas fairy lights were strung above the table, the gas patio heaters (bought new at 50% off) threw out delicious heat and the glassware in all its mismatched glory sparkled and shone. If it can't be perfect then let it be a tiny bit Bohemian.
|Finished overflowing pot of|
Coq a Vin
The food was all cooked from scratch - good nourishing tasty French recipes all served in mismatching pots and vessels. It is funny how a buffet seems to totally make up for the lack of perfection in other areas. We are slightly messy cooks but the produce is super fresh and the recipes well practiced....you know you have it right when guests sneak back for third helpings from the buffet table. That is one of the best feelings in the world.
|Boeuf bourguignon ready to put|
onto the buffet table
The chatter rises and falls up and down the long tables, the clinking of glasses ring out in happiness and bread is being used to unapologetically mop up delicious sauces. Candles flicker, smiles are traded, stories are tall, laughs are real and eyes are shining. Sighs of full stomachs and dismay over not being able to fit in another homemade creme patissiere filled vanity cake are heartfelt. They linger at the table not wanting it to end (or being too full to move).
|Sweet caramelised onion and|
Camembert tart with parsley
Nobody missed the mismatching table settings - not even the fancy folk. Nobody had to know that whole 'look' did not cost a penny.
|Friends and family tucking in with relish.|
Take care folks and stay nice.
|Potato bake x 2.|
A bland looking dish of which
not a sceric was left.