Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta with Pomegranate

Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta
Pomegranate Syrup
Pomegranate Seeds
Mint Sprig

Sunken City Supper Club Menu

October 16th Menu

Polenta Cakes with Cambozola and Shrimp, Roasted Chile Oil
Date Bacon Bundles
Pea Crostini Two Ways: With Prosciutto or Pears

Oysters Rockefeller Soup

Grilled Squash, Wild Baby Arugula
Warm Marcona Almonds
Shaved French Etorki Cheese
Almond Oil Late Harvest Riesling Vinaigrette

Stout-Braised Short Ribs
Reginette Pasta, Gremolata
Horseradish Cream

Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta with Pomegranate

Your SCSC Hosts
Sally, Gail, and Lori Lynn

We hosted a big party this past Friday night outdoors on my patio: 24 people, 5 courses, live music. It was the debut of what we are calling the Sunken City Supper Club. A place to periodically mingle with friends and neighbors - to enjoy the camaraderie, great food, wine, and perhaps a little dancing to the awesome intimate jazz standards performed by Barry Anthony and Bill Ryan. Their band is called The Swing of Things.

Here's a sweet sample of their music when they play at The Sky Room in Long Beach with the entire band. Please click below to enjoy the tunes while reading the rest of the post, you'll immediately get the feel of our supper club event!

My friends Gail and Sally and I held three test kitchen dinners with my Brother Bill and Barry and Al to decide on the menu. Then we shopped and cooked and decorated for 4 days. It was a lot of work and a lot of fun.

Organizing the china, glass, and silver.

Rosemary from Gail's garden with roses from my garden.

Panna Cotta

I thought it might be neat to write about the dessert first.

After trying baked figs, puff pastry, apple crisp, mascarpone sorbet and other ideas in our test kitchen we decided on panna cotta with pomegranate. It was a huge hit!

In addition to trying recipes, we also tried out presentations. We had to be able to execute the dish for 24 guests and be able to get it to the tables in a timely manner, as well as have enough china and silver in my home to serve it uniformly.

Panna Cotta: We began by sprinkling 5 t. powdered gelatin over 6 T. cold water. Then 2/3 c. sugar and 1/8 t. salt are added to 5 c. heavy cream and 1 c. milk in a large pot. Cooked over medium heat to dissolve sugar. When bubbles appear on the edges the gelatin mixture is added, removed from heat, cooled slightly and add vanilla bean seeds from 2 pods. Pour into ramekins, cover, and chill over night. We made 2 batches for 24 servings.

To serve the panna cotta, run a knife around the edge, dip bottom of ramekin in hot water for 5 seconds, then invert onto a plate.

We doubled the usual amount of vanilla bean, which imparted a deep, rich, intense flavor to the "cooked cream." And the tart bright concentrated flavor of the pomegranate syrup was the perfect for our "Best of Fall" menu, the pomegranate seeds were like little jewels.

Sunken City Supper Club

Please stop by Taste With The Eyes in the next few days for more about Sunken City Supper Club event. Thank you to all our guests, it was such a pleasure having you here! Your enthusiasm, excitement, and participation made this event a super success. We hope to see you at the next supper club gathering soon.

Lastly a special thank you to my Brother Bill, and dear friends Gail and Sally, to fabulous musicians Barry and Bill, and extra helpers Al and Troy and Marlene. What a super team!