Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Breakfast for dinner party

The table settings I made for 'breakfast in bed'  at the dinner table...

If you're looking for ideas for a future dinner party or creating your very own food club/gourmet club with a group of friends, here's an idea for you -- a breakfast-in-bed theme! Most people I know love breakfast food. So I feel like you have a pretty fair shot at causing happiness when you serve breakfast for dinner :)

Matt and I hosted Gourmet Club at our house last month. The group, which consists of six couples, tries to meet 5-6 times a year. The couples take turns hosting at their homes. The host couple plans everything (the theme, menu, drinks and decor) and makes the main dish + provides all of the drinks. The rest of the couples bring the other courses (appetizer, salad, dessert, etc).

It's a huge undertaking, planning everything and pulling it off successfully, but it's lots of fun and totally worth it!

The last time we hosted was way back in October 2013 (I was pregnant with Chloe and couldn't drink the champagne....not that I remember that detail...). The theme we chose then was Julia Child recipes and you can see photos from it here.

The theme we chose this time was "Breakfast In Bed". I especially love breakfast food (french toast, bacon, donuts, cheesy eggs...I could go on and on) and Matt likes making breakfast. So we thought it'd be fun to incorporate breakfast into our gourmet dinner :)

The menu was a bit tough to decide on because we wanted to 1) make breakfast foods but still have it feel like 'dinner' 2) have six courses that melded well with a mixture or savory & sweet (we asked ourselves - what salad do we make for breakfast? do we need a seafood dish for breakfast?) 3) still have it feel 'gourmet' enough (how do we put a gourmet twist on pancakes?) and 4) make the mood/decor/ambience feel like we were eating true breakfast-in-bed style!

After perusing cookbooks and pinning a hundred things on Pinterest, we set the menu and sent the invitation out. We also required people to wear their pajamas, which added a touch of fun to it!

Here's the MENU we planned. I found all of these recipes online:

Course 1 - Appetizer - a twist on jelly donuts 

Course 2 - Soup - a twist on the bloody mary 

Course 3 - Salad - a twist on fruit and granola 

Course 4 - Seafood - a twist on lox, pancakes and eggs

Course 5 - Main Course - a twist on bacon, potatoes and french toast 

Course 6 - Dessert - a twist on cinnamon rolls

I didn't get many photos of the actual food because I was so busy serving drinks, making food and socializing, but I did get a few photos before the party started of the table that I decorated all by myself!

I wanted to give the table a 'breakfast in bed' feeling and also had to set up spots for TWELVE people to sit! Our dining room table only seats 8 comfortable, so we had to borrow tables from friends and create one large square table to accommodate everyone.

That's twelve sets of plates/bowls/dessert plates/etc and twelve settings of wine glasses/water glasses/etc. Twelve cloth napkins to fold, mini flower vases to fill and silverware sets. Luckily I have extra sets of silverware from Matt's grandma, extra glassware from our wedding yet and a mom that graciously let me borrow more plates!

The table-for-twelve squeezed into our dining room.

I bought flowers from the grocery store and collected sticks from our yard and put them in an antique wooden box as the centerpiece.

Tea set ready in case anyone wanted tea.

For namecards I rolled up pages of crossword puzzles and added everyones names.
I thought the crossword puzzle added a 'breakfast in bed' touch.

I also added some fresh flowers to everyone's setting (that's breakfast-in-beddy, right?!)
And I ordered inexpensive paper trays and mini salt&pepper shakers online.

For easy, simple and rustic decor I used old mason jars and tea light candles all over the table.

Glasses ready for gazpacho soup.

Appetizer plates, dessert plates and martini glasses - check!

Cooking a pot of meyer lemon & vanilla bean marmalade to serve alongside our french toast.

And the aftermath of a fun evening...

A sources list, in case you're wondering about anything:

Paper trays --
Mini salt & pepper shakers --
Beige table cloth -- I pinned together two huge IKEA curtains
White dinner plates -- Pier 1 Imports or Crate&Barrel
White cotton cloth napkins -- Homegoods
Napkin rings -- Pier 1 Imports
Forks/knives/spoons -- antique, vintage or Target!
Aqua colored french water glasses -- Pottery Barn
Floral & mustard table runner -- World Market
Tea set -- Pier 1 Imports
Tea spoons & plates -- thrifted and handed down from family
Orange tray -- Hobby Lobby
Mason jars -- antique/handed down from family
Gazpacho glasses (actually punch glasses) -- Crate&Barrel
Wine glasses -- WilliamsSonoma, Target or Pier 1 Imports
Martini glasses -- borrowed from people, so I'm not sure!
Doilies -- vintage from my mom or Matt's grandma
Wine corks -- drunk people

I wanted to mention which of these recipes the group seemed to like the most: I think the consensus was that the Avocado & Oat Crouton Salad and the Cinnamon Roll Cake were the evening's faves.

And lastly, a montage of embarrassing photos of us all in our jammies (and the yummy teeny tiny quail eggs we ate)...

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