Welcome to my Pom Wonderful Dinner Party!
You are cordially invited to the Virtual Version of my Pom Wonderful Dinner Party
Date: Now (actual real dinner party was held on Saturday, November 13, 2010)
Time: Whenever is convenient for you (actual real dinner party time 6:00 p.m. till...whenever the guests wanted to leave...which was sometime around midnight. I think. There were a lot of pomegranate cosmos floating around so exact times got a little hazy)
Location: Here (actual dinner party was at my house)
Guest List: Anyone who stumbles into my blog (actual guest list...I'm not much of a name dropper, but I have to say that Babette, the founder of BakeSpace.com did attend with the man in her life. There was a total of 11 people)
Prior to my grand event, Pom Wonderful sent me some goodies, which consisted of a whole *^%# load of the most amazing fresh pomegranates:
What a beauty! Which was only one of many. 44 to be exact! And they arrived in the cutest little crate like boxes too.
Pom Wonderful Juice and some gift bags for my guests (sorry, those were only for the real life guest....not you virtual folks).
As you can see by the mess on my table, I was working on my pomegranate center piece. I think this particular part of the party gave me the most anxiety. I had no clue what I would, could, wanted to do. After a series of texts and phone calls to one of my BakeSpace buds, Michele, who has a great blog called My Italian Grandmother (we'll talk more about her in a post next week....stay tuned cuz you're gonna wanna
Pom Wonderful sent me a cute little cutting board....(can never have enough cutting boards, let me tell ya!!)
And one more really fun treat....my Pom Wonderful Apron! (I think this is my favorite thing LOL)
How fun is THAT!!! And can you see how big those...Poms are?!
Ok, so you've had a preview of the before the scenes stuff (you should feel special because my real life guests didn't get to see that stuff!)
By the way....are you curious as to why I did all this? It's a contest. Pom Wonderful chose 100 people across the nation to put on a Pom Wonderful Dinner Party. They'll pick 10 winners. Good enough reason, isn't it? That's what I thought :)
Now for the menu....
Guests arrive and are greeted with a very tasty, very strong....knock you on your ass Pomegranate Cosmo
I used vodka, cointreau, Pomegranate and Blueberry Pom Wonderful Juice and (look at the bottom of the glass) pomegranate arils (aka seeds).
I'll follow up this post with the all the recipe in the next several days.
For an appetizer, they were served Pomegranate and Roasted Butternut Squash Bruschetta.
Here you have a homemade baguette (I used the master recipe from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day), toasted with garlic infused olive oil, with a goat cheese spread, topped with pomegranate roasted butternut squash, tomatoes, basil and of course pomegranate arils. The flavors came together and then exploded in different directions on the pallet. I had used the same roasted butternut squash as I did in the soup. This gave everyone a little hint of what was to come.
There was a choice of soup or salad (or both). For the salad we had fresh greens, pears, red onions, grape tomatoes, pomegranate arils and walnuts tossed with a special pomegranate molasses house dressing.
The soup was a fabulous vegetarian Pomegranate Roasted Butternut Squash Cream Soup served in fresh homemade bread bowls
Or in shot glasses for those who just wanted a taste but were saving room for the main course
For the main course, we had Cornish Game Hens with a sauce made with pomegranate juice and homemade pomegranate molasses, along side a simple dressing (sorry, no pomegranates in the dressing.....which was fine, since that was my least favorite dish of the night)
And le piece de resistance......
Pomegranate Cheese Cake
This is a basic cheesecake with a sour cream topping. The glaze consists of pomegranate juice, cointreau, orange peel and pomegranate arils. The sweet, sour and tart combination was magnificent.
Tell me if any of you have done this before....you have a big dinner with friends and lots of great food. You take a ton of pictures. Only to realize the following day that the pictures were only of the food. No people pictures. At all. I swear I had guests. Lots of drinking, eating and non-stop talking....the men in the background watching a fight on TV while the women talked about everything and anything. We had a fabulous time.
After dinner, we sat at the table as I demonstrated how to open a pomegranate. This was done after a couple of those Pomegranate Cosmos....which made it more entertaining. I thought about having the guests join in, but then I didn't want anyone to go home with juicy stains on their clothes. So they watched me cut off the crown and then sliced the pomegranate into wedges, using the white membrane as a guide....then I turned the wedges inside out over a bowl of water
(btw, if you do this under water, your chances of getting a juice squirt in the face or on the shirt is less likely to happen),
We then scooped out the floating membranes (the arils sink) and strained out the water and proceeded to nibble on pomegranate arils while we continued to chat away.
I thought I had a video of this happening...but I can't seem to find it. We'll just blame it on the cosmos. If I come across it, I'll add it in. How's that?
Did I mention that I found some pomegranate Jelly Belly Jelly Beans? I did!! There was straight pomegranate flavored ones and then pomegranate cosmo flavored ones. How fun and perfect is that?
I want to thank the people over at Pom Wonderful for allowing me to participate in this contest and giving me the tools to host such an awesome party. They were more then generous. I've played with their juices in the past and have been a big fan of their juices and teas for years, but I never stretched myself as much as I did with this party. I mean...pomegranate molasses? Yes, I made pomegranate molasses and it's a wonderful ingredient! I discovered for myself the versatility of the ever flavorful, nutritious pomegranate. Sweet and savory...it enhances some dishes and shines beyond expectations when needed.
They aren't just a fun food for messy kids. Pomegranates dress up very nicely. They're just as elegant as they are fun.
I hope you've enjoyed this little virtual version of my Pom Wonderful Dinner Party. Look for the recipe posts in the near future. They're worth making!