So long 2014. Happy New Year!

Happy New Year everyone!

This year I came up with a really inventive idea.

It turns out, it is actually an idea that already exists and loads of people I know have already done it before. But, it was inventive to me, as I created it on my own anyway! We decided that we would celebrate the new year of different time zones in the build up to our own!

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So, Charlie kicked things off with her Dubai-themed food at 8pm GMT (midnight in Dubai…geddit?!)

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/464/21761627/files/2015/01/img_9307.jpgWe had a type of tabbouleh, olives, couscous and lamb. All very similar to Greek food (much to Emily’s aggravation as she was up next!)

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Then came the real treat. It was as if we’d started our evening with the food most people chow down at the end of an evening.

Kebabs!

Apparently in Dubai it’s QUITE the speciality – particularly when loaded with chips. Yum!/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/464/21761627/files/2015/01/img_93131.jpg

 

Next up, 9pm, we had Clare. Now Clare had Russia and she did not take this task lightly…/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/464/21761627/files/2015/01/img_1437.jpg

Clare did an absolutely terrific job of making homemade meaty dumplings. She even made the pastry, which was absolutely delicious, all served up with sour cream.

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Unfortunately, Clare took the full Russia theme a little further than the others had done, and we were subjected to a brutal game of Vodka roulette. 4 shots of vodka, and 7 of water made it a very booze-fuelled hour!

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When we had had quite enough of vodka shots, Clare volunteered a new game. Unfortunately, as the name suggests, we couldn’t avoid this Russian spirit, as game 2 was “Vodka or Water”. It’s very simple and very, very horrible! You take a shot from the front of the line and then the next person has to guess if it is vodka or water. If they get it right, you get another shot. If they get it wrong, they’re up. Trouble is, with 20 shots of water and 20 of vodka, it’s a very quick way to promptly turn a civilised evening around!

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We were very pleased when the 10pm buzzer went off, and it was over to Emily for Greece. Fortunately she’d been unable to locate Ouzo in Asda so we were saved from another hour of danger-shots!

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Em served up filo & feta parcels, roasted lemon and garlic potatoes (cooked for over an hour, and utterly delicious), mango-chutney-marinaded chicken skewers, halloumi and quinoa balls. It really helped settle the vodka-stomachs!

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At 11pm, for our final hour before the big Twenty Fifteen, I put a French twist to my courses.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/464/21761627/files/2015/01/img_1440.jpgI served up festive brioche and melted brie. As it was my course, I have the recipe link! There were quite a few stages to the brioche, as is common with bread, but it left me little to do on the day but prove and bake it. Although not everyone remembers how good it was, it was one of my favourite things I’ve baked for ages, and could not recommend it enough!

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I served this up with a cocktail; French 75. Gin, champagne, sugar and lemon. Very simply, very classy, very nice.

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I had intended to serve this apple tart as dessert, but everyone was too stuffed to manage it, so I saved it for the rather challenging New Years Day! It is one of the most simple, yet delicious desserts I have cooked in ages. It’s literally just puff pastry with apples, sugar and cinnamon layered on top. That is it! Serve with cream or ice cream and you’ll have empty plates all around!/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/464/21761627/files/2015/01/img_9371.jpg

So that was our New Years celebrations!

I hope you all had a great time partying and here’s to 2015!

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