Goddess of Cake

Garden Party in August
September 1, 2009, 21:09
Filed under: Baking, Cooking | Tags: , , ,

I had a house warming party a couple of weekends before. I had ordered a good weather, and so the day was sunny and warm, with just a hint of autumn crisp in the air. We would be in out in the garden, since there was no way everyone would fit into my small apartment. Like always before a party, I once more decided that I shall never – ever organise a party again. This time it happened, when my hand held blender suddenly died and again, when my bike fell over fully loaded with groceries..


But when the guests started to arrive, I forgot all about the stress. Everything was just perfect: There was a surprise performance of childrens songs from a party next door and Bollywood dance show. A lot of  people brought something nice to eat, and a rare phenomenon happened: everything actually got eaten up, and the next morning there were just a few grapes left.

When the night fell I put little colourful lanterns hanging everywhere, and the sauna was very, very hot. A friend of mine brought an ancient gramophone, and close to midnight we went to dance on the street to the greatest hits from the swinging twenties, some walz, some tango and some charleston. It was magical.

Here is a couple of things that were on the menu that night.

Vegan Cashew Nut Cheese

I got my inspiration for this “cheese” from a recipe in Vegeterian Times, which I could not find in the recipe search anymore. It was a fair bit more complicated than this one, involving soaking the nuts for 24 hours, sieving them through a cheese cloth and baking the in the oven. So this is sort of a busy person’s vegan cheese.

about 40 balls

400 g cashew nut

200 g blanched almonds

1 dl shiro miso paste

1 dl tahini

1 dl lemon juice


30 g rose peppercorns

15 g black poppy seeds

vegan cheese bolls 3

I started the day before, and soaked the nuts and almonds in water overnight. The following day I drained off the liquid, and added the tahini, lemon juice, shiro miso paste and some salt, and blended the whole thing. At this stage, my hand held blender sadly died after serving me for four years. So I would heartily recommend some other type of blender for this purpose. When the paste was farely smooth, I rolled balls of it in my hands. Half of them I rolled in crushed rose peppercorns, and the other half in poppy seeds.

Berry Tartalettes with Halva

My mother gave me all these little metal tartalette forms that were used quite a lot when I was a child. It gave me such a vivid memory from the summer parties in my childhood, to fold and press the batter into the forms. I got my inspiration for this recipe from Inna Somersalo’s cookbook Yllin kyllin, and also Verrot from Honeysucklebeet seems to have made tartalettes recently.

berry tartalettes2

about 25 pieces

6 dl wheat flour

250 g margarine

1 dl sugar

2 tsp egg replacer

2 tbsp cold water


250 g soy yogurt

1 dl soy cream

1 tsp bourbon vanilla powder

100 g plain sesame halva

1 tsp grated lemon rind

1,5 dl sugar

fresh berries, about 4 dl

First I made the batter, which is basically just a normal pie crust. I mixed the dry ingredients in a bowl, folded in the margarine and last added the cold water. Then I put the dough in the fridge for 20 minutes or so. After that I pressed it into the tartalette forms. In order to keep the crust in place in the oven, I pressed a piece of baking parchment into each of the forms on top of the crust. It worked allright, but I think the best option is to fill the forms with dried peas (which can be used in the normal way afterwards!). I baked the tartalettes about 20 minutes in 200 °C. If you don’t use baking parchment or peas, the baking time is shorter. The tartalettes should be properly cooled down before attempting to remove them from the forms.

Then I made the filling. I whipped the soy cream, and then blended in the rest of the ingredients. If you are too lazy to properly crumble the halva, you can use a hand held blender. Then I removed the tartalettes from the forms, which requires a bit of concentration, since they fall apart easily, and filled the tartalettes with the mousse. On top I placed berries and leaves of lemon balm.

berry tartalettes3

After a serene and civilized start the party finally got quite wild. This is how my kitchen looked in the following morning. Luckily several guests had not been able to go home and one guest had so much fun that she decided to return in the morning, so we got the house cleaned in just a few hours. I learned a lesson too: sometimes it is good to ask for some help, even if it feels difficult. And sometimes, they might help you even if you don’t ask!

a guest


4 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Sorry about your handheld blender…Your “cheese” balls look so yummy and so do your tartelettes;so pretty!

Comment by Yaelian

Sounds like you had a great party – midnight dancing to a gramophone playing music from the swinging twenties? I hope that happens to me once in my life! And the food looks lovely (as always).

Comment by Angela

I’ll invite you for sure the next time, ok? 😉

Comment by goddessofcake

Kiitos juhlista! Halusin vielä sanoa, et tarjoilut oli mahtavat, jos ei tullut siinä hötäkässä tarpeeksi hehkutettua…

Comment by Laura

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: