Tuesday, 12 April 2011

L is for...

... Lychee Martinis and laverbread cakes, langoustine and lobster lasagna, liver loaf with lemon-dressed lambs lettuce, followed by a main course of lemon thyme-stuffed leg of lamb on lentils with lardons and leeks, a palate-cleanser of lemongrass and lavender lollipops, a pudding of lebkuchen-based lemon mousse served with lime sorbet, loganberry jelly, Limoncello jelly and loganberry coulis washed down with Limoncello. Next came the cheese course of Lincolnshire Poacher, Langres, Little Wallop and Livarot with linseed crackers,  followed by Lapsang Souchong truffles, Lamingtons and liquorice root.

L night played host to a wonderful mix of people, mostly with the surname Davies. One particular Davies (thanks Tom) was kind enough to bring his own "L" themed mixtapes. That's right, mixtapeS. Tom brought us two CDs and Richard had also made two, so their compilations pretty much covered the whole evening. Not only that, they managed, without any pre-planning, to have no cross-over at all. Good job, boys. The letter L is clearly absolutely rife in the world of music. We listened to the likes of The Last Poets, Lambchop, Luke Leighfield, Lipps, Inc, The Longpigs, Led Zeppelin and Liliput to name but a few, and they were just from Tom's collection. From Richard, Laibach, Like a Thief, Little Boots, Loki, The Libertines and Leonard Cohen  were just a handful from his L night music menu. We drank Labouré-Roi, Louis Latour Pinot Noir and Languedoc.

Lychee Martinis

Deliciously fragrant and refreshing, though make no mistake, these pack quite a punch.

measures are per person

1 measure Vermouth
2 measures Vodka
2 measures Lychee purée
Plenty of ice
1 fresh peeled lychee for each glass

Shake the purée, vodka and vermouth with the ice and strain into Martini glasses. Pop a fresh lychee into each glass. Drink up.

Laverbread cakes

Most of the laverbread cakes had been eaten before the photo was taken

Laverbread is a Welsh delicacy - which seemed appropriate given the quantity of Davies's at the table (though none of them were related to each other). Laverbread is puréed seaweed and I found some in Fortnum & Mason in a little tin which, like seemingly every ingredient I have ever purchased in F&M was just over £5.  A bit steep for a tiny tin that you could probably buy for 50p in Wales, but it was tasty enough that I didn't feel robbed of the extra £4.50. Richard made the laverbread cakes and this is how he did it:

4 oz/ 100 g lardons
1 tin of laverbread
4 oz/ 100 g oats, plus extra for coating
Salt and pepper

Fry the lardons in a frying pan in a splash of oil until the lardons are crisp. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and reserve the frying juices for later. Pop the bacon in a food processor with the laverbread and oats and blitz. Season and form into patties and roll in oats. Reheat the lardon fat and fry the laverbread cakes until nicely browned on both sides. Drain the cakes on some kitchen towel and serve.  

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