We were supposed to attend a barbecue at our friends Lou and Dan’s place yesterday at 3PM, but when we got home from the shops around lunch time I felt like crap and didn’t think I’d be up to any kind of socialising. Jac suggested I have a sleep and see how I felt. At this stage I still thought I had bad hay fever rather than a cold, so I wasn’t thinking about passing on germs or anything like that – I was just worried about feeling well enough to go. I do often sleep off a bad hay fever attack in preference to hitting the antihistamines, and this time I conked out for a couple of hours. When I woke up, Pixel was on my knees and Billy Lee was next to my head and while I was all warm and comfy I still felt yucky and didn’t really want to go to the barbie. I felt bad about that though, because I knew Jac would be disappointed if I didn’t go (I always joke about having to accompany her to social dos as her trophy wife – hahaha). In the end (remember, I wasn’t thinking about being germy) I decided I’d go. After all, it’s been quite a while since we’d seen Lou and Dan, and they always put on fantastic barbies (if you’re new to the site and don’t know about Lou and Dan, see the very last FAQ here). :)
There were quite a number of people I didn’t know at the barbie, and so I felt a little shy taking photos. I just didn’t feel like having to explain myself. Luckily there were enough people there who did know about my site and my food photography, and THEY did the explaining, without me saying anything! This was a rather spectacular platter of nibblies – starting from the white nibblies, moving clockwise: cubes of fetta, salami, twiggy sticks, olives, more salami, marinated mushrooms, marinated and stuffed vine leaves. In the centre: semi-dried tomatoes. The tomatoes were the best – juicy and delicious. I must’ve had six or seven of those.
There were a couple of bowls of assorted lollies – enjoyed by little kids and big kids alike.
One of the best features of a Lou and Dan barbie is the excellent array of salads. Here’s a rice salad, made by Dan’s sister – her speciality, I was told. I ate loads of it – my favourite bits in it were the cashews and the wee currants.
This was a Greek salad, with fetta and olives.
This one is often served up at dos we attend – a crispy noodle salad, with flaked almonds, and a sesame oil dressing.
A specialty of Lou and Dan, a Thai beef salad, with sliced rare beef, with lots of chilli.
There was also a potato salad, with finely diced ham.
A selection of bread rolls, very important to have when there’s sausages and tomato sauce to put in them!
We also enjoyed a sweet potato bake:
And a potato bake with a little sweet potato in it:
I’m still learning how to take photos with my camera in challenging situations, such as the low light smoky environment in Dan’s barbie shed :). Although I think in general the new camera takes better photos than the old one, the old camera’s flash photos were better than the new camera’s. Still, I’m having great fun learning about the new camera’s capabilities, limitations and little speccy tricks. Here’s a vegetarian’s nightmare on the barbie:
It was BYO meat – you can see someone’s chicken satays there, and lots of steak and chops. Sausages had been cooked first and whisked off for the hungry children to devour. The silver foil packages you can see right at the back contain Jac’s and my barramundi fillets – which Jac seasoned lightly with salt and pepper and topped with just a little butter. They were left to cook in the foil on the barbie for ten minutes. We also had a few lamb chops – I’d been in the mood for a barbecued lamb chop – in this photo they are flaming away, as the fat from the chops hit the fire.
Our chops – a little blackened but very tasty.
The fish was beautiful – we’ll definitely have to eat more fish cooked in this way, I can’t believe how simple and quick it was. We’d bought the fish fresh from a fishmonger’s in the morning. Maybe that’s what we ought to do on Saturdays as a rule – buy fresh fish from the fishmonger’s when we’re at the shops on Saturday morning and have fish for dinner on Saturday night.
I started with my chops with a selection of salads and a serving of sweet potato bake. And then I dug into my fish and had more salad. And then more potato bake. And then more salad. See why I didn’t think I had a cold? Actually, it developed overnight from a bit of head blockage and sniffling to a full-blown nose-blowing, hoiking (just read the word out loud to yourself, I think the sound of it is self explanatory), blocked head achey cold. But then although my snot rag is still um, heavily occupied, I think I’m already much better this afternoon than I was when I woke up this morning. See? I’m smiling! :)
As dessert and birthday “cake”, there were two magnificent pavlovas. The meringue bases had been made by Lou’s mum. To serve, Lou applied lots of cream, chocolate (broken up Cadbury Flake bars, actually!), and fresh strawberries and kiwi fruit.
Happy Birthday to Dan!
I can’t wait for summer to come. Bring on summer, and bring on the summer barbie!