My New Year’s Eve menu was developed during a pleasurably drunken afternoon with Matt Day, who runs an Italian cookery school and represents Mumm champagne. I’m glad he told me all the technical stuff at the beginning. By the third bottle it was like devising a menu with Noel Fielding while embarking on a three day LSD bender; fantastical matches which turned out to be not so practical for real life.
Matt: “I know, why don’t you give an ostrich egg to each guest and make them eat fondue out of it”
Me: “Genius!” Peers at glass, wonders how much 30 Ostrich eggs would cost “What am I drinking now? Hic!”
Matt: “Yeah and give each table a big sparkly hammer so that they can smash the gingerbread house to pieces at the end of the meal”
This last suggestion has been taken on board however and I spent three days making a village, or perhaps a favela, of gingerbread houses. It wasn’t easy. My advice: straight walls, light roofs, proper right angles, make construction less jerry-built. Also you will need far more icing sugar to stick it all together than you can possibly imagine. Buy at least five boxes. You will spend a good deal of time holding things together with your fingers waiting for the icing to dry and propping up the walls with different height tin cans and glasses.
Matt suggested matches from an uber scientific ‘gaschromatograph’ machine as to what foods go best with Mumm champagne. This is the resulting menu:
we made a gingerbread copy of our Parish church the other year- it took 2 weeks!! We had to throw it away rather than eat as we had it on display for so long!!
What a fantastic labour of love – I particularly like the chocolate fingers on the roof. Impressive stuff!
Love the gingerbread houses, though making them completely by hand is quite the challenge… Sounds like a delicious menu and a fun time coming up with it too.. Happy New Year!
Well done, lovely houses. Always impressed with those that make them – I just admire from a distance. Hope all goes well.
Happy New Year
Gin and Crumpets
That menu looks so good and the gingerbread houses look incredible. There will be gingerbread flying everywhere once people start on them with their hammers, if they can bear to (and I bet they can).
Jean at The Delightful Repast
Kerstin, I know it's off-topic for this post, but just wanted to say my next trip to England MUST be timed to attend your underground restaurant! (I've always known The English can cook–my mother was a world-class cook.)
Oh what fun! I love the houses and what champagne. Good work 🙂
I missed a couple of mumm sessions with the chromatograph thingy as IU was away. Shame as it appealed to the scientist, and er drinker in me 😉
Thanks for the comments everyone!
I think next time I will do gingerbread council flats, a gingerbread DSS office, gingerbread Lidl, gingerbread crack hos!
Niamh: it was totally worth going, very interesting day.