Saturday, October 03, 2015

Catering for a wedding near Banbury - Greek style meze and whole lamb roast

Dear James

I'm sorry it has taken a couple of weeks for us to contact you to say a HUGE thank you for the catering you provided for Sarah & James' tipi wedding at Old Manor Farm on the 12th September.  A few days after the wedding, the newlyweds returned to Grand Cayman and I have travelled back to Zambia with Rebekah and my two grandchildren for a 3 week stay.

Once again, Bensons pulled out the stops and provided a fantastic service and fabulous food, despite travelling considerably "off patch".  The theme of slate platters for the mezzes and desserts worked really well, as did the sharing of salads and meat on the tables, creating the friendly, casual feel which we had aimed for in the tipis.  We have never been able to fault the food you have created for our events, or others we have attended, and we will certainly contact you again should we be planning any further events (we have no more daughters, but maybe "big" birthdays will be the next event).

During the months of planning for the wedding we have received very prompt and friendly replies from Anton in response to our many queries, which has helped us enormously.  Thanks to you James for all your hard work behind the scenes, your trips to Stratford to discuss the details, and for tidying up so efficiently well into the night.  It made everything so much easier for us the following day or two when we had to clear the field.  And a special thanks to Julie and her colleague for the construction and dismantling of the catering tent on the Friday and Sunday.  

The whole day was truly magical and luckily the weather was great, despite a few dark clouds hovering as the Pimms and canapés emerged!  Thank you to all your team for playing such a large part in making it so perfect for Sarah and James.  

Very best wishes

Di, Sarah & James

From top left to right:
1 - Dolmas - homemade vine leaves. Had great fun rolling those - recipe from the Supper Club book. Luckily there's a Turkish food shop a few streets away which sells the leaves. Thought we'd made too many - but they all went!
2 - Chillis growing for stuffed chillis
3 - Falafel and cherry tomatoes - recipe from Ottoleghi - seriously one of the most popular things we served this summer at different events. Homemade falafel are about 10.3 million times better than shop brought ones!
4 - More dolmas with olives and caperberries in pesto marinade
5 - Garlic and thyme pitta crisps and homemade spicy bread sticks with homemade hoummous & tatziki
6 - Grilled halloumi with lime & capers - again, thought we'd cut way too much halloumi, but as soon as the plates went out, they came back empty, guests just couldn't get enough. Same thing happened with halloumi at other barbecues we served throughout the summer.
7 - Greek style meatballs
8 - Baba ganoush - burn those aubergines!
9 - Flavoured butter to go with bread rolls as the bride requested - we made Black olive, sun dried tomato & basil, horseradish & chive and chilli, lime & coriander.
10 - Whole lamb roast for main course served on platters with individual dauphinoise potato with salads served on the table: Beetroot, Rocket, Fennel Radish and Apple Salad with Cider Vinaigrette, Lebanese Salad, Roast Butternut Squash Salad with Pomegranate, Crispy Squash Seeds, Olives, Rocket and Walnut  
11 - Trio desserts: Lemon and raspberry meringue roulade (made at 2am that morning), shotglass of tirimisu and their wedding cake made by the bride's mother - always good when the wedding cake actually gets eaten!
12 - The next day was Mamma Benson's 70th birthday, and what better way to spend your birthday morning that help clearing up a wedding venue! I did take her out for lunch afterwards though! 

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