Thursday, April 2, 2009

Bachanalia Report

I am grateful that my first hitch as Chief Cook and Bottlewasher (aka food coordinator) for the event went off without any major hitches. About 850 people attended the concert (which ran from 5-11 p.m.), we fed about 150-200 of them over a 6-hour period, and we didn't run out of anything, except corn muffins--we are in the south, you know--and wine. I bought 11 bottles, which we poured in 4 oz. servings for a donation (because the church has no liquor license), and it was gone by 8:45 p.m. Yikes! But it turned out not to be a problem. We are Episcopalian, after all. There was a cache of chardonnay chilling in the church kitchen fridge and a whole cabinet full of merlot in the basement. So I conducted a little wine raid, and the volunteer coordinator's husband did a wine run for me. All in all, we sold 15 regular bottles of wine, and 1 1/2 large bottles of wine. So next year, if I'm asked to do this again (and I think that's highly likely), I will buy more wine to start with.

I bought 8 bottles of the Red Diamond merlot, because it's so good and so inexpensive, and 3 bottles of Tin Roof sauvignon blanc, because I don't like chardonnay, dammit. The Red Diamond was a huge success. We actually had folks asking us where we got it.

We served red chili, white chili (my recipe), and minestrone (vegetarian selection), with a selection of bread, all of which was donated by Publix and Provence, except for the corn muffins, which were baked by parish members. I baked 3 dozen, myself. We also had a selection of desserts, some of which were donated by Publix and Provence, and some of which were baked by parishioners. I made a four nut cake (recipe below), which was very popular. I really thought the red chili would go like hot cakes, but the white chili was clearly the favorite. I've had several requests from parish members for the recipe. I have to admit that it is a very good recipe and fairly simple to assemble.

The minestrone was also a hit, and a lot of folks were pleased we had a vegetarian option. I'm trying to get the recipe for it from Robert, whose recipes we used for both the minestrone and the red chili (also an excellent recipe). For Movie Night on Saturday, I made a recipe of the red chili to spoon over baked potatoes, and my fellow movie watchers seemed to like it.

Anyway, here's the cake recipe. It's verra easy.

Four Nut Cake
One box yellow cake mix
One small package instant vanilla pudding
1/4 cup oil
4 eggs
1 cup pecans
1 cup walnuts
1 cup almonds
1 cup coconut

Mix together by hand and spoon into a greased and floured bundt pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour and 10-15 minutes. If you have a dark pan (like I do), decrease the temperature to 300 degrees. Let sit in pan for 2 or 3 minutes and turn out onto a cookie rack to cool.

You can use any combination of nuts that you like. I used pistachios, instead of almonds, for the cake I made for Movie Night, and that worked, as well.

1 comment:

Kanani said...

How fun! We are looking for an Episcopalian church in Savannah. A fun one. Maybe you know of one!

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