A Special Feast for Allantide

Most of the time the things I cook for this blog get eaten at home or taken to friends, but yesterday was a special day. I cooked a supper for 40 people in aid of The Morrab Library (http://www.morrablibrary.org.uk)

We don't have a cooking kitchen at the Library so maybe it was a bit ambitious to serve this menu, especially as the Library sits in a tropical garden which is locked at dusk.

Canapes

Pea and garlic crostini, stuffed piquillo peppers, smoked salmon on pumpernickel, quails eggs with two salts, pickled garlic, spiced pumpkin and feta kebabs, ginger and soy mushrooms, Bloody Mary shots...

Venison and Cornish Beef Casserole or
Wild Mushroom Cassoulet

Home made walnut and onion bread
Autumn Leaf Salad

Deeply caramelised pears with ginger biscuits and clotted cream

Chilli chocolate truffles and coffee

Followed by ghost stories by candle light.

I live only a couple of hundred yards away so it seemed feasible to cook it all at home and run over with it to the Library, which is what we did. Several days of cooking for a couple of hours of eating - but very worth it.

We approached it like a military operation. We borrowed lots of casseroles, bread boards, salad bowls etc. The team were fantastic - Annabelle our Librarian didn't tell me I was crackers to have such a wild idea and kept me calm throughout. The wonderful Alex made all the decorations - including projecting the Bela Lugosi film 'White Zombie' onto the ceiling!

Madison dressed up and would have escorted the guests through the dark gardens - but the weather was dreadful! David made a potent punch, Jenni made truffles, my friend Chris came and helped with the cooking, Antonia, Llyn and Elaine provided the entertainment. My husband drove the meals on wheel round to the Library door. Alex, George and Madison served and cleared and Ros and Meg washed up.


We made a horseshoe of trestle tables in the reading room - so it was a real pop-up restaurant and we asked people to bring their own wine to keep the whole thing legal.

We sold out the tickets over 10 days before the event and in the end made over £600 in donations for the Library funds. What a result! So now I'm shattered (in a good way) and already thinking about what the menu can be for next time...once I've got the glue out of my hair which fixed on my Morticia style hair extension....

7 comments:

Gerry Snape said...

wonderful Liz! what a great place to have such a feast, surrounded by books. I'm loving these blogs about the popup restaurants that are happening around the country.

Choclette said...

Oh I love it Liz, you are fantastic. Wish I could have been there. A pop up restaurant in a library - well I couldn't approve more. And I love the way everyone pulls together on these occasions. Well done on raising £600, an excellent result.

Jo said...

Absolutely brilliant - very well done XXXX

Emmalene said...

Well done Liz- it looks fab! And I love the posts about Halloween too- I wonder if the Allan apple cross bobbing game was the inspiration for the apple bobbing we have now (wet faces instead of wax-burned ones??)

Oh, and I'm not superstitous or anything but I'm curious as to the man I'm going to marry...so it looks like I'll be spending an uncomfortable night with an Allan under my pillow. Chance would be a fine thing...

theundergroundrestaurant said...

Brilliant, love libraries! x

thingshelenlikes said...

And a splendid night it was too! I only have one good photo, but I'll email it to you. Photography lesson #387: People are not at their most attractive with mouths full of venison. I should have taken more before the food was served!

Charlie said...

I loved reading this Liz. What a fabulous looking evening and for such a great cause too.