My sister Mirren had her 21st Birthday Party last Saturday night. Twenty one! Can you believe it? Our little bundle of joy who came into our lives so unexpectedly and knocked us all for six, is now all grown up.
Nearly 100 of Mirren’s friends and family gathered to celebrate at the old stomping ground of Attunga. It was cold. Man it was cold. But Dewy sorted us out with lots of fire bins to gather around.
The photos above were taken by Mirren’s friend Jacqui. Aren’t they great?
I wish I’d taken photos too but I was too busy being a mother hen and besides, my fingers were frozen. Lucky there was plenty of hot food to warm out bellies.
With the help of family and friends, we put together the biggest spread of hearty winter dishes you can imagine. There was Curried Chicken, Beef Stroganoff, Curried Sausages, Chicken Biryani, Meatballs in Tomato Sauce, Chicken Stroganoff, Fried Rice, Potato Bake, Apricot Chicken, Lasagne, Veggie Bake, Pesto Pasta, Impossible Casserole and roasted potatoes fresh from the camp oven. Can you think of anything better to warm the cockles on a cold Winter’s night at an outdoor 21st birthday party in the middle of July? Meanwhile my Moroccan Lamb was still heating in the kitchen in my $39 slow cooker from Kmart and it missed the whole show. Hahahaha!
It wasn’t funny at the time.
Look, I already had a slow cooker, a good Breville one. But in the days before the party I was struck down by a case of OCD (over caterer’s disease) and thought I needed another slow cooker because we weren’t going to have enough food and I needed to save the day. So I bought one for $39 from Kmart and cooked double batches of everything. Everything!
I cooked for days.
The Kmart slow cooker did the job (pictured above on the left). I cooked the Moroccan Lamb in it overnight on Thursday. But when it came time to reheat it on Saturday? Well, Kmart ssssllllooooowwwww cooker just didn’t pump out the heat like my dear old Breville! So my Morrocan Lamb just sat in the kitchen of the party venue, out of sight like a big sorry lump of cold lamb slop.
At least one of my Lasagne and a Veggie Bake was eaten! We probably didn’t need three of each though. Ha! Slight overkill. My kids and I ate Lasagne for lunch for the next five days running. We knocked off one of the Veggie Bakes one night with a ‘chicken kebab and pork chop mixed grill’ that Dewy whipped up on the barby, while I put my feet up and had a glass of wine.
I reckon I deserved it. Don’t you?
As for the Moroccan Lamb, we had (some of) it for tea another night through the week with rice and minted yoghurt and it was amazing! HOT EVEN. The left overs are now safely tucked away in the freezer alongside a double batch of Chicken Cacciatore that also was surplus to requirements. I know! But wait, there’s more.
I made two Chicken Biryani as well! Hahaha. My cousin Liss put me on to the recipe and it is a really tasty Indian dish. I just had to make it! One was eaten at the party. The other, I gave to a friend (not Judy).
She was most pleased.
But the question is, what was I thinking? That I was feeding the whole of the Australian Army? ON MY OWN? Without the help of my mother, sisters-in-law, aunts, cousins and friends?
SO much good food. I think I just grossly overestimated how much the revellers would eat.
Anyhoo, the good news is that I now have enough frozen meals to feed myself and dependent others for the next few weeks. And I don’t have to cook! I guess you reap what you sow.
Here are the links to the dishes I made. Many of which will make up the frozen dinner menu at Chateau De SRC HQ for the foreseeable future. 😉
Let me know if you have a crack at any of these. If you really want to please a crowd, try the hot artichoke dip as an appetizer. Trust me, it was a winner!
Do you suffer from (the other) OCD?
Any tips on cooking for a crowd?
Or catering doozies of your own to share?