One sunny Tweeting Afternoon last week led me to *meet* a lovely lady called Diane who was mentioning her new version of a supper club, right here in a very green Cambridgeshire.
Of course, I had to contact her and get on the guest list right away... Another Supper Club in Cambridge that didn't sound pompous or out of place - I had to go along!
Not only was she local to me for a change, it was being hosted on a farm in the middle of the Cambridgeshire countryside!.... Two HUGE bonus points for Miss Sue Flay!
A farm girl through and through, I was hooked before I even knew the twist on this concept.
The twist being that the hostess doesn't do all the cooking (I like her style!) and the guests are invited to bring along a dish every first Wednesday of the Month and add it to an array of random dishes to make up an entire sit-down meal.
I think it is a fantastic idea and I naturally dove straight into my dessert book selection, finally deciding on making a decadent and very rich Chocolate and Hazelnut Praline Tart to add to the mix.
It looked perfect before it left The Secluded Tea Party HQ.
On driving to the venue, in Mister Flay's larger-than-I-am-used-to car, I spun around a corner and saw my tart fly off the cake stand and into the footwell....OH MY GOD!!
I stopped, crazed and frantic, and ran around the car to save my creation... Which luckily had been wrapped up well, so it was just a little crumbly and limp by the time it reached the table. Just my luck... Clumsy as always!
On arrival I couldn't resist stopping for a moment to enjoy the beautiful sunset over the fields (I am a sucker for a beautiful sky scene!)....WOW!
I was greeted warmly by our gorgeous and smiley hostess for the evening, Diane, and 4 other guests all buzzing around the spacious kitchen putting their dishes in the oven to warm them up and generally just making themselves at home in this beautiful farm house.
It really helped to break the ice and it just felt like being with a group of friends settled in for the evening, it was a fantastic introduction to this concept.
We sat to eat at a large table in a room that had a very grand feel to it, with a large Stags Head watching over us all whilst we stared out at the huge sheep in the back garden and discussed the tasty options for these wooly farm friends!... Much to the charming farmers' dismay.
The hard working Farmer who lives and works on the farm joined us for dinner, and it turned out he knew the farmers from my previous life on my home farm, such a small world, I love it!
The dishes complimented each other very well, even though none of the guests knew what the others were making. We enjoyed Chicken Liver Mousse with Warm Crostini, Roast Pork with Crackling from Rolling Hill Farm, A Vegetable Chilli, Onion & Shallot Tart, Roast Vegetables, Eton Mess with our first Strawberries of the year, and of course, my now-limp Chocolate Tart.
We all finished with very full bellies and couldn't fit in a coffee or a cup of tea at the end, which is a shame, but the food was worth missing this formality.
It was great to meet some local food lovers and I was impressed to learn that the furthest traveling guests had popped over from Kettering and also London!... Impressive.
Diane should be very proud of her first event, it was so much fun, we had a great laugh and I will be at the second one most certainly!
Check out her website here, and get yourself on the guest list for the next one!
It will be a picnic theme in a secret Cambridge location this time, from what a little birdie tells me ; )
Miss Sue Flay