Thursday, May 19, 2011

Cooking Club: Easy Weeknight Meals

Image via Gingerella

Just over a week ago was our second Cooking Club dinner with a theme of ‘Easy Weeknight Meals’. Once again, I forgot to take photos. I know I promised after forgetting to take pics at our last one that I’d remember this time, but after busily preparing not only my own dish for the evening but also decorating the dining room, it was easy to do once again. Third time lucky at our June one I promise!!

I was a little disappointed the week before our get together as I had two cancellations. One of our girls had her baby four weeks early so she was of course excused. Another forgot to okay the date and organise a babysitter. I had visions of my only recently established Cooking Club falling apart. However, after Saturday night I was reassured. A table of five was fine and with Krystie (and bub) hopefully joining us again next month, our group will be perfect. I’ve decided that six is easier to set the table for, gives you a good number of new dishes to taste and means that we can all take part in the one conversation around the table. I would definitely recommend to anyone thinking of trying something similar to stick to a group of around six.

Our last dinner saw us enjoy:

- Roast Vegetable Pasta
- Thai Chicken Patties
- Spaghetti and Meatballs
- Chicken Pilaff
- Garlic Roast Lamb Cutlets

This was followed by my Apple Crumble for dessert and some after-dinner mints which I wrapped in small packages and placed on everyone’s side plate.

Once again, we had a ‘spot prize’ which this time was a goodie bag of handy gadgets (a julienne peeler, a teabag ‘squeezer’ and a palette knife) plus two mini cookbooks.

Here is the recipe for one of the yummy recipes from the night which my sister-in-law made:

Garlic Roast Lamb Cutlets

12 cloves garlic, peeled
6 x 170g King Edward or roasting potatoes, sliced
4 small zucchinis, halved lengthwise
1 tbsp rosemary leaves
2 tbsp olive oil
sea salt and cracked black pepper
8 double lamb cutlets trimmed
1½ cups chopped mint leaves
1½ tbsp seeded mustard
2½ tbsp honey

Preheat oven to 220°C. Place the garlic, potatoes, zucchinis, rosemary, oil, salt and pepper in a baking dish, toss to combine and roast for 25 minutes. While the vegetables are cooking, heat a frying pan over high heat and brown the lamb on all sides. To make the mustard mint sauce, place the mint, mustard and honey in a bowl and mix to combine. Place the lamb of top of the vegetables. Brush with some of the mint sauce and roast for a further 8-10 minutes or until the lamb is golden and the potatoes are soft. To serve, place the lamb and vegetables on serving plates and top with the remaining mint sauce.

(Serves 4)


  1. I'm glad it was a yummy evening even with the drop in numbers. and I can't wait to see pics of your June one (I can imagaine how you'd forget to take pics because once people arrive it's always hectic just chatting, organising, dishing up etc isn't it). So glad that you're happy with the numbers and inspired for the next one!

  2. Those lamb cutlets have my stomach grumbling! Yum!!
    I haven't had a dinner party in such a long time, and only have myself to blame. I think your group is a great idea, as I am the sort of person that is motivated with others, and don't like to pull out when I commit to something.
    Love that image by Gingerella!
    PS - Happy belated birthday to beautiful Grace, with the fairest eyelashes of them all! x

  3. Dont get disheartened I'm sure after the first few meets everyone will get more organised and you will have a stress free fun (and filling!) night. Such a great idea :)

  4. Such a lovely take on a dinner party. Great idea! I love that you all share the recipes too. Very handy!

    PS. Thanks for the lovely comment on my blog. I look forward to hearing more about your baby journey. It's been lovely to meet so many sweet Mama bloggers.

    PPS. You have a real gift for party planning!

  5. I love this idea of a cooking club. Though I think I would be too embarrassed to cook for others as I am a bit of a disaster when it comes to culinary skills!

  6. Just wanted to say how happy I am to have found your lovely blog!

    x claire

  7. It sounds like the evening went really well and you didn't need to stress at all! I agree, 6 sounds like a good number, plus there's less washing up to do. I always think of these things!

  8. Fantastic, Amanda - sounds like a great girls night in. The menu is right up my alley - so love a good lamb cutlet :)

  9. The dinner sounds so nice with 5 people! Yes, it is disappointing when you expect more people and they cancel because you work hard to prepare an entertain. I agree with you that 6 is a good number. I just went to a foodie night last night at my friends. We had 12 and personally it was too many. The group seems to keep getting bigger though. I'm intrigued by Thai Chicken Patties! Kaho

  10. Love the image you picked:))
    What a great idea a cooking club...would love to be part of one!
    I'll keep watching masterchef for now xo

  11. Mmm that sounds like a yummy night of delicious new dishes. All of the dishes sound really lovely, I especially like the way you cooked the lamb in your dish. I'm really enjoying your posts on your cooking club. Have a lovely weekend. xo

  12. Love your posts on Cooking Club Amanda! MC sent me your apple crumble recipe and I made it last night - it was divine, the perfect recipe!!

  13. I love that image you have used. I'd kill for one of those big round Le Crueset pots.........thanks for your message on my quilts, so sweet! I get most of my fabric online...send me your email and I will send you some links. xx


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