“We’re running like a well oiled machine”
After the success of the first Salamander Supper Club (Italian Night) it was an obvious decision to continue along a similar vain. We quizzed diners upon exiting for opinions on what our second night should be and there were two clear favourites, Spanish and Thai. Being another Med country, Spain was quickly discarded but Thailand was an exciting choice. I wasn’t too well versed with Thai cuisine. Sure, I had made the odd curry from a shop bought paste but not much more than that. If we were going to do it, we were going to do it right; homemade everything!
From the off Joe championed a chicken satay starter and sent me recipes to try out. They were delicious. The issue with the starter was a simple one, we had already decided to do a red curry for mains and so a Thai satay with coconut milk would potentially cause a coconut overload especially as it was also being used in the dessert. I settled on an amalgamation of different types of satay sauces with a good glug of sriracha for a little kick. It worked well, even if the portion was a little on the large size, value for money and all that. Joe’s cucumber and carrot with wonderful lime and chilli dressing provided the perfect bed for the skewers. Starter done!
I learnt my lesson from our first supper club, have EVERYTHING prepped and ready to go. With chicken providing the protein for the starter we needed something else for the main. I love a beef curry especially when the beef is slow cooked and tender. I went with brisket as it is a well flavoured cut that turns perfectly tender after a slow cook. I roasted it off for 4-5 hours before chopping and adding to the curry sauce. The red curry paste provided an interesting journey but after numerous attempts with a little less lemongrass here and a little more cloves there it was good to go. The heat factor was a biggest issue, how do you keep everyone happy?! I settled on quite a mild curry with a little chilli for garnish incase anybody wanted it hotter. The rice was the slightly sticky Thai jasmine rice.
The dessert provided a little bone of contention. I wanted to serve a traditional Thai tapioca but Joe, rightly, pointed out that it’s not for everyone and probably about half of those attending wouldn’t enjoy the texture. I am a bit more optomistic about this after seeing all the empty plates coming back but it was definitely the right decision. It was joined on the plate by a homemade mango sorbet, that didn’t fully set despite 11 hours in the freezer and a slice of Salamander’s delicious mango and lime cake. The evening was rounded out with a cup of Salamander coffee (or tea).
Huge thanks are again due to Ali and Shane for all the help in the kitchen, Sarah for the wonderful waitressing, Matthew Joyce for the beautiful guitar playing and of course Joe, for everything!
Again we used local suppliers where possible:
- Free Range Chicken Breasts from Quarrymount Meats, Co. Laois
- Beef Brisket from Nolan’s of Kilcullen
- Asian supplies from Klare Asia Shop, Newbridge
The next Salamander Supper Club will be announced shortly, please keep an eye on the facebook page.