After all the partying of the holiday season, we are now well and truly into detox/diet mode! I should have began this healthy kick start ten days ago myself, but I had one final event in my holiday calendar that was pulling me from going full blown Diet Diva.
That event was the opening of Barriers, an art exhibition in the CIT Wandesford Quay Gallery in Cork city last night. This was the 3rd year that Art Group 7, a collective group of art educators/artists from diverse backgrounds showcased their paintings in Cork City.
I'm very proud to say that two of the artists are my sister Tracy and her husband Daniel Sexton, who are both not only fantastic teachers and are also unbelievably talented artists. The night didn't disappoint. Though I'm not a very well educated in all things art (my sister would call my artistically challenged, as did my first year art teacher), I found each and every piece exhibited both beautiful and thought provoking. Certain paintings in particular had me mesmerised, and these thoughts were echoed by the other visitors to the gallery last night.
There was a great turnout and plenty of wine and food to go around.....which brings me to the food aspect. I was delighted to be asked for the 2nd year to provide the catering for the dessert portion of the event.
I love making canapes, and all things miniature. I am quite used to this as I host tea parties regularly. As I was making the canapes in Killarney and not in Cork, and also I was unable to attend the opening until an hour into the proceedings, I needed to provide canapes that required absolutely no prep work and that were tray ready from my house. Hence I decided on little mini tartlets filled with a variety of tasty fillings, also my mini Victoria sponges would travel well as would my mini caramel buttercream mini cakes.
Here's a brief outlook on the food that hit the trays in the CIT Wandesford Quay Gallery last night.
There was a mini drama with the mini tarts as I usually buy pre made pastry cases. However on Wednesday when I set about to do the shopping for the canapes, the cases were discontinued in the shop in town and I couldn't source them anywhere locally.
I actually ended up baking over 120 mini pastry cases myself using shop bought shortcrust pastry. I made these over two days but they kept very well in an airtight container,so they were as fresh as the day they were baked on Friday.
In the mini tarts were a simple combination of shop bought ingredients.
- Lemon Curd and Dark Chocolate
- Salted Caramel, Dark Chocolate and Toasted Hazelnuts
- Raspberry Sauce and White Chocolate
- Lemon Curd and Meringue Pies
I made approx 100 mini buns. I then decided to turn half of them into mini victoria sponges (freshly whipped cream and raspberry sauce) and the other half into caramel buttercream sandwiches. I used Carnation caramel, butter and icing sugar to make these cute little buns. I will blog the recipe in full in the next couple of days.
My chocolate truffles were a total accident and a kitchen rescue on some white chocolate and cranberry fudge that didn't work out so well. Never one to waste food, I decided my too soft a fudge could be rolled into balls and coated in chocolate and thus be saved and probably turned out to be something completely special in it's own right.
So there you have it, completely anti January food. It's the weekend so I'm allowed talk about calorific food on 'cheat days'.
Anyone in the Cork area, get down the the CIT Wandesford Quay Gallery to check out Art Group 7's best exhibition yet. You have until the 17th of January to pop into the gallery.
In the meantime, keep an eye on the blog and facebook page for some healthy, low fat January recipes!!!