It’s after midnight again, and my computer crashed literally seconds before I hit “publish”, losing about half my post. So you’ll have to settle for a more Coles’ Notes version.
Dinner was particularly brilliant tonight. A full turkey dinner for around 500 in the Great Hall of the JPL; a gala event, so fancy clothes, many courses and a lounge singer with a live band. I’m not sure how many long and round tables were set tonight – 50? All lit my candlelight and decorated with holiday bling. I sat between Michael Smith and Karl Lohnes; also around the table were Anna and Michael Olsen, Jeremy Parsons, Chris Standring, Elizabeth Baird and Emily Richards – hard to come up with a better group of people to eat dinner with, I think.
Quebec Foie Gras and Pigs in a Blanket
Tri-Colour Potato Chowder
Yukon, Purple and Sweet Potato with Alberta Duck Confit
The Festive Plate
Wild Boar Terrine and Caramelized Onion, Truffle Roasted Gambas,
Wild Salmon Tartar and Sesame Seeds
Free Range Turkey Carved to Your Liking
Garlic Roasted Mashed Potatoes, Market Vegetables
and Alberta Spring Whiskey Gravy
Granny Smith Spiced Apple Crumble Pie
Vanilla-Cinnamon Ice Cream and Tarragon Anglaise
The brilliant part was masterminded by the food and beverage team at JPL; after our amuse-bouche, soup and appetizer, they asked everyone to look under their coffee cups for a sticker, which would identify one person per table as Turkey Carver. They then brought those (around 50) guests into the kitchen, set them up with aprons, chefs’ hats and platters of turkeys and paraded them back out into the dining room, where they served up their masterfully pre-carved turkeys at their respective tables. With all the trimmings, of course. And even with 500 for dinner, the turkey wasn’t dried out.