Saturday, November 21, 2009

Tastebud Quickies or How to Fake a Feast

Nothing would be more tiresome than eating and drinking if God had not made them a pleasure as well as a necessity.


It is terribly amusing to find my first challenge from Blog This: is a topic on quick-fix meals as I am the Queen of Takeaways and Mistress of easy entertaining. My darling husband loves to constantly tell the story of how in our first week of co-habitating we ate pizza four nights out of seven. It is his favourite dinner party anecdote.
What can I say in my defence? It was really GOOD pizza! And I could mention the fact that it covers all five food groups, just not in the proportions the biased medical fraternity recommends. Pfft, what do they know? But I won't.

Well, back to the topic at hand. My highest achievements in convenience cooking to date have to be the fake-outs I have created to:
  • make my life easier

  • allow me more time in the dining room and less in the kitchen missing out, and

  • keep my guests oblivious to my little cheats, continually praising my culinary skills.

Now, this is nothing so crass as purchasing takeaway and passing it off as my own creation, no. More like taking creative licence and utilising the advantages of slightly pre-prepared courses. I suppose I must now lift the veil a little on my counterfeiting ability for the sake of this challenge. I can only hope you will keep it to yourselves, not spread the word too much. Would hate for some of my previous guests to find I am not the blonde Nigella they thought I was. It would be so very distressing for them to find the Goddess of Domestic Bliss has soggy, clay feet hidden by her imitation Manolo Blahniks. Here goes...

I give to you my favourite entree, and I must admit, a tasty quick fix meal for one when life is rushing by:

Madmother's Famous Tomato & Celery Soup.


1 can Big Red Tomato Soup

1/2 stick of celery

1/4 onion

1 can of water

Dollop of cream

Fresh parsley

Serve with:

French Breadstick



Finely chop celery and onion, add to water in saucepan. Bring to boil, simmer for 5 minutes. Add soup, stir, bring to boil again, turn off heat.

Serve adding small dollop of cream, swirl with knife for visual effect, sprinkle small amount of finely chopped parsley for garnish. I usually lightly toasted a thinly sliced breadstick, and added a small dish of butter curls for additional impact. Oh, offered cracked pepper too, of course. Really fancy stuff, huh? Fooled 'em every time. And the taste? Bellissimo. (Sorry, slight flash back to pizza world).

Bon Appetit!


Andie said...

Yum! That tomato soup looks geat!

Mel said...

Oh yum! That sounds great, will definitely have to try this!

Bec Hem said...

oh yes! cracked pepper just makes EVERYTHING that much fancier, hey!! great recipe :)

Anonymous said...

Excellent! Love your work! Yes its nice to posh things up a bit with cracked pepper.

Nisha said...

The swirl of cream just adds the gour-met touch!

Madmother said...

Just call me "Phantom of the Kitchen"...

(Key: music of the night, swirling mists - no dear, that is not smoke, it is nearly impossible to burn soup, it is for atmosphere only - and I'll dig out my swish black cape)

Danni said...

That pizza and that soup look to die for, got me all hungry now!

Cate P said...

I also cheat as much as possible so I can spend more time with guests, drinking and laughing. I'll let you in on a best cheat was inviting a couple for dinner, then...*ring ring* "hello can I book a table for four please?" Bad me.
My mouth is watering now....

Alex said...

Ha ha, go the fancy cracked pepper!

We cheat at big parties by having red rooster do us several chickens and sides. Lazy? Yes sirree! Glad I found your blog.

Mrs Catch said...

A few garnishes go a long way, right? The soup sounds great!

EmmaK said...

Ooh this sounds absolutely scrummy. You make faking it sound so easy. Thanks for rewinding with me.