Wednesday, 9 December 2009

A Persian Feast from the London Cooking Club

A couple of months ago Kels and I were invited to dinner at The London Foodie's home. We had met at the Wahaca Autumn Menu tasting and connected right away with each other. That meal was absolutely AMAZING and deserves it's own blog post (coming soon).

Over dinner we talked about doing a meet-up with each of us contributing a course -- kind of like an American-style pot-luck. Fast forward 8 weeks and our first gathering happened two weeks ago.

Three couples participated and in addition to the courses we chose we also added to the mezze and brought 2 bottles of wine to go with our dishes.

The theme, as the title says was Persian food. Most of the recipes came from The Food of Life cookbook with the exception of my mezze and the Persian Love Cake which came courtesy of Pikelet and Pie.

The menu was:

Fresh baked bread with black sesame seeds
Cheese and walnut dip
Aubergine dip
Lemon and garlic harissa spiced chicken wings
Chickpea, feta and red onion salad

Jeweled rice with roast Guinea Fowl

Lamb shanks with herb sauce

Persian Love Cake with yoghurt

We're planning another gathering in January with the theme being Scottish food in honour of Burns Night. I'm envisioning this cooking club growing into something along the lines of a Basque Txoko or gastronomic society. People meet regularly to plan and cook menus and then eat the results with family and friends. Many of them have multiple generations of members with waiting lists for new memberships. Only recently they have accepted female members. Some have their own dedicated meeting places and kitchens. Every January there's a big festival in San Sebastian where the various societies compete for a much coveted award for best meal.

I'm thinking a future venue that can accomodate more people might be the Underground Cookery School where some fellow food bloggers met up for Ghana Food Night this past August.

Here's a link to our facebook page. Please add your name to the fan list if you'd like to participate in future meet-ups. I'll be organising a planning meeting after the new year for the January meet-up and we'll take it from there.