The Easter bunny is here...
Wot the? Totally random I know, and you definitely do not want to bump into this creepy bunny holding a knife, waving at you in the woods.
I love how my friends are just as random as me. In July, we invited a few friends to celebrate Christmas in July at a farmstead in Portland and it was a wonderful weekend of food, friends and laughter. We had an absolute ball, so much so we organised the next get together right there and then. The Coogeeboys immediately put their hands up to have their holiday house at Wisemans Ferry as the next venue. Since we already had Christmas in July, it will only fit to have another random festival on another random month, hence Easter in September. Why not?
Me and The Pom thought it would be funny to rock up at the party through the back door in full bunny suits and try to scare our friends. But my scare tactic only lasted few seconds before I started giggling inside the rabbit head and bumping into things as I couldn't see at all! Oh well, I had my fun when it lasted and glad everyone appreciated our little effort.
Whenever we organise a get together like this, there will be emails back and forth for weeks, trying to plan in advance who and what food to bring to the party. Funny how we still always end up with excess food supply, well not that I am complaning.
I kept the rabbit theme going and decided to contribute two rabbit dishes. I bought two rabbits and turned them into rabbit and pistachio terrine and also rabbit rillettes. However, we stupidly left the rillettes in the fridge and totally forgot to bring along with us to the party. What a douche!
Thank god my rabbit terrine saved the day. We kept the Saturday lunch simple, snacking on cheeses, terrine and some macaroni and cheese. But of course that's not all, there's always desserts to keep those sweet tooth happy.
The Coogeeboys' home made caramel eggs was decadently sweet, half chocolate egg shell was filled with gooey caramel covered in buttery crumbs. I think I had a couple of these caramel eggs more than I should. The Monkeyboy is notorious with his sweet treats and he spoiled us with cake pops, rich chocolate cake balls coated in dark chocolate on a stick but they were as BIG as the size of a tennis ball! It was quite funny to see the cake pops slowly slipping down the skewers because they couldn't support the weight of the cake!
I was really looking forward to dinner as The Department and Wingdingo had been preparing the lamb in a slow cooker since afternoon and it smelled amazing. The slow cooked lamb was incredibly tender and juicy, soaked up all the melting fat made the flavour even more intense.
You simply can't beat slow cooked meat, roasted potatoes and pumpkins and minted green peas on a winter night. Oh, and don't forget a glass of red to accompany the meat. We were actually quite sensible this time with the food and didn't over catering. But it was a whole different story when comes to dessert.
The Pom volunteered to make a Simnel Cake. I've made one last year and totally bastardised it with my own twist (typical me). But this time The Pom followed a traditional recipe, a cake packed with dried fruit mix and layered with marzipan, topped with marzipan, and then garnished with marzipan balls! The cake felt heavy but surprisingly light and soft inside, I think is because the fruit we used in the cake and not because the cake is dense.
The Monkeyboy had another dessert up his sleeves and presented us a mole chocolate tart! It was as deadly as it looked, insanely rich chocolate ganache filled the tart base, with a hint of burning sensation on the back of my throat from the chilli powder. A few of us accidentlally inhaled and choked on the cocoa powder sprinkled on top, told you it was deadly!
And my only sweet contribution was a pandan chiffon cake. I pretty much followed a reliable sponge cake recipe and just added the pandan essense in it. Unfortunately I don't have a bundt tin and resolved to using a springform tin, the end result wasn't ideal and it shrunk almost half of its original size. Nevertheless, I was happy with the flavour and the softness of it.
Eating frenzy continued on Easter Sunday. We tried not to cook and just finishing up the leftovers from the day before. We also had some Guinness batter left over from making deep fried battered mushrooms the previous night and decided to use it all up by deep frying anything that we could put our hands on, from onion rings to Mars bar.
Wingdingo had also prepared some Greek red-dyed Easter eggs for a game of Tsougrisma. The Chinese culture also consider eggs as the birth or a new start, and usually we have the red egg and ginger party on the baby's first month birthday. We usually just used red food colouring to dye the eggs, so I was amazed and fascinated when Wingdingo told me that the eggs were actually dyed with brown onion skins. He used the skin peels from about 14 onions and just boiled the eggs with it and the result was evenly dyed shiny red eggs! How nifty!
Tsougrisma is simply a game to crack your opponent's red egg. We took turns to crack each other egg, but The Department seemed to pick the strongest egg and cracked every single one of us. It is believed that the player who successfully cracks the eggs of the other players will have good luck during the year.
Then we also had a round of Easter eggs hunt, inside the house! The Department and Wingdingo also managed to find chocolate easter eggs in a shop, in mid September! Expiry date is questionable, but best not to know.
More chocolate? Why not! The Coogeeboys had made a chocolate egg pinata!
We all had a go at cracking the giant chocolate egg with a hammer! Not even sure how much chocolate he used to make the egg, but it took us a few attempts to crack it open, revealing more chocolate babies inside!
So much food, so much randomness.
And guess what, The Pom and I will be the next host for the next party this coming weekend at our holiday home! Can you guess what our next party theme will be? ;)
I'll give you a hint, undies are optional.