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Sunday 18 November 2012

Event: "Operations Hot" Party

by Simon Fernandez of ferdiesfoodlab    don't forget it's Movember
and Recipe: Classic Spanish Roast Almonds (at the bottom!)

I remember seeing a Green Peace campaign poster of a large Blue Whale as it crashed into the sea, enormous fins and body parting the sea, great waves swelling from it's landing in the water in a monumental and I hope pretty joyful gigantescan splash! The headline for the poster was "Against All Odds" !! Sometimes when I'm organising one of our social banquets it feels a little like that, I guess I get a real thrill (and a bunch of extra grey hairs, that's new greyer than normal hairs!!!) out of knowing that unless I have a "make it happen" attitude, then the chance of a catasrophic failure is ever present. It doesn't take many careless people in the mix to blow perfection (which is what we aim for) clean out of the water. BOOOM! Cheers mate! No, . . . .  thanks! Really, thanks for that!  Anyway, this week's banquet was a corker . . . .

Despite all the pieces falling into place rather later than is comfortable, fall into place they did!

You know somewhere along the line someone didn't get the primer email when they're overheard as they arrive saying "I had to google what a supper club was. . ."
Frankly that ain't a bad thing! Half the fun of the banquet is not quite knowing what to expect or who you are to going meet, the anticipation, the trepidation, and the gamble!

We also had a few Mo's about the room. Don't forget 2 free tickets are up for grabs for anyone who donates more than £10 to Movember details at the ferdiesfoodlab Mo Space check out the Movember blog, if you're going to do a Supper 'lip' Club you're going to need some essentials!!


~ the menu & flight for the evening ~

taken in the warm light of the banquet hall
salmon parfait forest w/ rosemary bread
(everyone was too polite to mention there aren't 2 r in forest) parfait cream infused with smoked salmon, a touch of white wine vinegar
is used to sharpen the parfait and accentuate the flavour of the salmon
served with a roast torn bread dressed with rosemary infused exrta virgin olive oil
Pairing: Caixas Albarino


bacon swirl & invisible tomato
smoked bacon, medium cheddar cheese, soft cheese, onion and hint of garlic, dressed w/ parsley and rolled in puff pastry
served w/ a tomato consomme infused with basil & seasoned with smoked salt and dressed with a pea shoot
Pairing: Catena Chardonnay


king crab & samphire
steamed over white wine, the white wine is reduced and mixed with cream and oysters to make the accompanying sauce
served with quartered baby plum tomatoes, basil and samphire
alternative sweeter sauce of pear champagne and vanilla is also served

Pairing: Santenay Coteaux Oliver

For the king crab: you simply can't taste the sea in the white sauce in this image, or the vanilla and the champagn blended with the sweet pear juice - problema! 2 sauces 1 wine! Hmmm re-think required! Luckily most folk went with one sauce!
sweet or salty!!!!


cambodian salad
core ingredients being red coss, grated celeriac with lemon, and chorizo,
the salad is mixed with a complex sauce containing palm sugar, fermented shrimp, lemon grass, lime & onion
& dressed with chilli, peanuts, garlic chives & lemon zest
Pairing: Yalumba Eden Valley


rack and black
seared rack of lamb roast w/ thyme, red wine and anchovies whole garlic
panko coated morcilla balls (black pudding, nutmeg, cinnamon, pine nuts, onion)
rosemary infused butternut squash puree - served w/ red wine and fermented garlic jus and dressed with purple stem chard
Pairing: Urbina Gran Reserva 1994

the black inthe rack and black - quenelled and yet to be panko-ed

millionaire cake
onto a clarified butter and chocolate crumb base are layered mascarpone creme fraiche and salted caramel topped with black olive ganache (milk & dark chocolate mixed with a black olive caramel)
and dusted with salted bread crumbs and roast pine nuts
served on a bed of bitter orange and thyme paste w/ orange syrup
Pairing: Elysium Black Muscat

salted lemon fudge & roast almonds
the soft fudge made and topped with white chocolate had salted lemon pieces running through it
the almonds are lightly roasted seasoned with smoked salt to accentuate the flavour of the nut
Pairing: Noble One De Bortoli

comments from our guests!! 
** One of our guests asked me "What drives you?",
"passion, pure passion!", I cannot tell a lie. It had been a smooth delivery and I was pleased with what we had put together. The reply, "Not many that can say that! It really shows in the food! Truly awesome, I think this is the best food I've had in London in over 2 years!" - I was very touched : )

** "It was nice everyone was moving about between courses - because everyone's eating the same thing it made it really easy to swap places and socialise!
I think this was helped in part by the fact that everyone had signed up to the paired flight of wine - ferdie

** Las almedras y la morcilla tio, perfecto, todo fue fabuloso, y para tanta gente a la misma vez! Alucinante. Guay hombre!
"the roast almonds and the morcilla, dude, perfect, everything was fabulous, and for so many people at the same time! Impressive. Cool man! "

** "This was not a 'serious dessrt', you know what I mean? It wasn't overpowerinlgy [SIC] sweet, subtle and tatsed great!!

On Movember:
It breaks all the rules, but what about a monkey tail? It grows out of a side burn along your chin and up onto your lip!!! : )

how to book

classic roast almonds recipe:
roast the almonds 200C 4mins

whip an egg white to soft peaks
Let the almonds cool (this stops the egg white cooking on contact) mix 1 tbsp of whipped white per 300g of nuts, and coat them, spread them on a roasting tin and salt with . .

some smoked salt!

Toss the nuts to coat them and roast for another 2-3 mins again at 200C - classic Spanish tapa! Leave them to cool a little then serve.

Great with a beer on a sunny day, or as a nibble at the end of a night!! None of them ever come back!

lots of love 

ferdie : )


  1. The food was absolutely amazing, I didn't eat most of the next day as I was so full! Would love to come to another food lab in the future.

  2. And you'd be supper welcome Pete!! :) Juice lettuce know when you fancy coming along :)

    Thanks by the way for your comments, I'm very flatered, and I'm glad you had fun!! Team on were Ollie, Joy, Anna & Ian (who has his own supper club called: The Candle Stick Maker I'm not going to lie to you he's got giant marshmallows!!! ;)


How To Book / Attend

How To Book / Attend
Fancy getting stuck in? Click on the image above and to see how : ) . . . hope to see you soon.

More Techniques, Basics and Corker Recipes

More Techniques, Basics and Corker Recipes
If there's something you've tried at ferdiesfoodlab or a technique you want to know about drop us a line at and I'll put up a post about it!!


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