Saturday, 31 August 2013

Brunch & Co Event #22 - Brunch & Co with special guest chef Darren Farr!!

So what an awesome event we had here today at Brunch & Co!!  Our friend Darren Farr (fuzzychef@instagram), who's a professional executive chef, took over the stoves and whipped up an amazing feast of tasty & unique dishes. Quite frankly I'm not sure how we'll be able to top it other than by having Darren do another brunch event again in the future!
Louise & Darren
To decorate our table I had a go at making honeycomb which was fun, though a bit messy!

Homemade honeycomb
For starters, we indulged in Darren's home cured charcuterie consisting of slices of cured duck breast,  porchetta di testa (deboned pigs head rolled with herbs & cured), beef carpaccio with a yuzu dressing, pots of decadent pork rillettes, punchy cured slices of pumpkin served with a homemade labne, purple pickled eggs served with a Japanese spicy sprinkle & an amazing selection of artisan breads made by Joy from The Bread Project (...a fantastic bakery  We had the pleasure of enjoying this first course with a lovely glass of champagne courtesy of Darren who supplied us with a magnum of Veuve Clicquot - thanks so much Darren!

Pickled eggs, labne & pickled pumpkin at the front & Joy's amazing bread

Darren's amazing beef tenderloin carpaccio

Delicious slices of Porchetta di Testa & pot of pork rillettes

Darren's own cured duck breast

For the main course we indulged in Darren's homemade corned beef, which melted in the mouth, along with buttery mash potatoes topped with grated fresh black truffles brought over from Australia - so special! Darren also made a delicious baked organic cauliflower dish and some stir fried purple kale, all served up with lovely bottles of Barton & Guestier wines - Chardonnay and a Chateuneuf du Pape Syrah & Grenache blend.

Darren's amazing corned beef with truffle mash potatoes
Amazing baked organic cauliflower
We then served up a lychee & coconut sorbet as a palate cleanser whilst being entertained by our special guest barista Pav, from a cafe called Sarnies (136 Telok Ayer St), who made coffees featuring their own specially roasted Ethiopian Conga coffee beans.

Pav working his barista magic!
After a tummy break & a seat swap, Brunch & Co was back in charge of the kitchen serving up our final course of a deconstructed lemon tart served with candied lemon zest & a limoncello granita.  This dessert was inspired by an episode of the TV program "MasterChef Australia" in which Dan Hong, a Sydney based celebrity chef, is put up against a contestant to make the best three course meal with the key ingredient being lemons.  His dessert for this challenge was a deconstructed lemon tart which had the judges swooning so much that watching them eat it made my mouth water - I was determined to have a go at recreating it!

Deconstructed lemon tart - Brunch & Co style!
A HUGE thank you to Darren for working so hard to prepare such an amazing brunch today - it was such a treat!!  Thanks also to Joy from the Bread Project for the amazing bread (each of our guests today got to go home with a beautiful Bread Project baguette!) & to Ben & Pav from Sarnies for the fantastic coffee & barista'ing!

Finally a heartfelt thanks to each of our wonderful guests today for being part of such a happy & delicious brunch - until next time!!

Lots of love,
Mark & Louise xx

Sunday, 4 August 2013

Brunch & Co Event #21 - Hee Kong's Surprise Birthday Brunch!

We've been busy little bees at Brunch & Co lately with brunches scheduled over the last couple of weekends as well as a very special catering event for the lovely Kate from Kate Porter Yoga last Friday evening. Phew!!  The upcoming long weekend to celebrate both Hari Raya Puasa (celebration of the end of Ramadan fasting) as well as Singapore's National Day could not come at a better time!

This weekend's brunch was arranged by Sherry for a surprise birthday celebration for her husband Hee Kong - he certainly had a shock when he entered to find a bunch of his friends waiting for him!

Hee Kong arriving and about to be pounced on by Bear Hug David
As Hee Kong spent his childhood in Melbourne and enjoys Aussie cuisine, we decided to indulge in some of his favourite dishes (as advised by Sherry)!  We also decorated the table with a series of bespoke "Melbourne Landmark" napkins & lamington cookies.

To start, we served 63 degree soft boiled eggs with croque monsieur toast soldiers - these crispy little fingers were filled with parma ham and slathered with melted butter & dijon mustard and sprinkled with shredded gruyere cheese before getting a toasting in the oven - totally delish!

We then moved onto the main course of our take on the quintessential Aussie Meat Pie.  We took our inspiration from the recipe for a "Humble Beef Pie" from the Bourke St Bakery cookbook - absolutely delicious with big chunks of tender beef covered in a tomatoey gravy....

Alongside the pies, we served up a big dish of buttery mash potatoes seasoned with truffle salt and some French Beans drizzled with olive oil & a sprinkle of lemon zest.

The finale was Heston Blumenthal's pot plant Tiramisu topped with homemade chocolate "soil".

We had such a fun time preparing & serving up today's meal to such a lovely group of brunchers - we hope you all had a fun & yummy time!

Happy Birthday Hee Kong!

Louise & Mark xx