I promise I will get back to the Leith story and how I started Tabbi Eats, but last Saturday I created and hosted my first supper club. This is a concept that I have been toying with for some time, a chance to demonstrate that healthy food doesn’t mean a tasteless pile of kale and do so in good company. The long term plan is to create a series of these events where people can eat delicious healthy food in a fun and comfortable setting.
First of, I gave myself a week to prepare and created a Whatsapp group. To make the test marginally safer than poisoning a group of complete strangers I decided my friends should probably be my first victims. I was, I confess, nervous about creating the event and felt like musician stepping on-stage for the first time and I was also touched that every single person that I invited wanted to come along.
Next was the menu, what if they didn’t like it? what if it was in fact too healthy? Would they all just leave in favour of the chicken cottage down the road? Pushing my concerns aside I took a moment, calmed myself down and got paper and pen.
LET’S DO THIS!
Obviously, the food was going to be healthy, but as I’m Persian I thought I would put a twist on proceedings and combine healthy food with Persian cuisine (I swear this is not a mutually exclusive combination). After much thought, the menu went as follows:
Star shaped puff pastry with goat’s cheese, Italian herbs and honey
Slices of cucumber, with a soft cheese, basil and truffle oil topping
Spicy hummus and baby carrots
Kuku on a bed of salad with walnuts and lime dressing
Tabbi Eats marinaded chicken, with roast sweet peppers and harissa quinoa
Lemon mousse with almond slices
Once I had the menu set, I was beyond excited, I guess it was a little crazy to invent dishes for the evening but what could go wrong!? Thankfully, in the end nothing did (at least not seriously). I did not leave enough time to prep and so towards the end everything got frantic but the whole event was pulled off by the skin of my teeth. The hummus was delicious and spicy, the puff pastry was light and crispy with smooth goat’s cheese and the lemon mousse was suitably light and flavoured.
I hadn’t shared the menu with my guests beforehand so the entire evening was a surprise, I loved hearing them coo over what was on the table and ask “what have you put in this dip?” or “how is this made?”
It was also really interesting to hear the chatter amongst some friends who are in couples, I overheard a conversation that went “you never eat greens at home!” the response being “well this is really nice so I like it”. This mercifully did not start a full-on row but I think it opened up the possibility that healthy food does not have to be dull or tasteless and that was the whole motivation of the evening.
I was so happy that everyone loved the evening, the food and the conversation. Would I do it again, most definitely yes, will I have to change a few things, most definitely.
So, what did we learn.
1. People won’t touch a seedlip non-alcholic G&T if there is either real gin or a beer available. Especially some of the guys, who found the idea of a G&T with no G a disturbing concept.
2. Prep work is a real thing, one does have to do it.
3. Maybe next time I practice the dishes at least 3 times before hand so I’m not flying by the seat of my pants.
With these clear learnings in mind, the Tabbi Eats supper clubs will continue.