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A Birthday Party to Remember

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This past weekend we helped a family celebrate the big 6-0 with a totally lavish menu.
At the end of December I received a call from a friendly woman wanting information on our personal chef services for a small dinner party in late January. Her husband was going to be celebrating his 60th birthday, her adult children were planning on coming home for the weekend, and she wanted a nice meal for the birthday boy and family to enjoy in their new home. I always start the food conversation by asking about allergies, food intolerances and food dislikes. Then I ask about favorite foods and any special dishes that we might include in the meal.  This client made my job so easy. She knew exactly what she wanted me to prepare – all her husband’s favorites: family style fried calamari appetizer; jambalaya as a first plated course; an entree of beef tenderloin filet with bordelaise sauce topped with a garlic butter piggyback lobster tail (yes, please!), whipped potatoes, and roasted carrots & asparagus with shallots; and a chocolate birthday cake with chocolate fudge frosting. She also wanted to add a server for the evening so I could focus on cooking and have extra hands for getting food to the dining room. (So nice for me and them!)
This was one of those evenings when it felt like the food angels were sprinkling around extra love and caring. I am my own worst critic. I drive home from jobs with an after action report going through my head, noting what went right, what went wrong, what I can do differently next time to improve, etc. My drive home from this job was all smiles and positive reflections. I wouldn’t have changed a thing, except remembering where I’d stashed my car keys in the hustle and bustle of arriving on site instead of having to dig through all the bags in the dark driveway. 😉
And now, excuse me while I go buy ingredients to make myself this exact meal. I can’t stop thinking about the small seasoning check tastes I had that just left me craving more.
Actually, next weekend I’ll be making calamari again as part of a Valentine/Birthday combination dinner for 6 guests. Can’t wait!
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