I’ve always dreamt of having a chef at home. To me cooking is an art and very few people can master it, unfortunately I’m not one of those. I’m really trying to enjoy my time in the kitchen by learning new recipes and trying different cooking methods.
When Fry’s family foods emailed asking if I would be interested in hosting a dinner party for 9 friends, why on earth would I say no?! This was an opportunity I would most probably get once in a lifetime! I quickly replied without even thinking about it and said a big YES! If you didn’t know, November is World Vegan month. Fry’s decided to use this opportunity to show people how vegetarian food can be tasty, healthy and pretty looking!
World Vegan Month is November every year, commemorating the coining of the term, ‘vegan’ and the founding of The Vegan Society in November 1944. You can read more about the history here.
“From small innovative beginnings in the Fry’s Family kitchen, Fry’s has become an international success. In an effort to seek vegetarian varieties Wally and Debbie Fry, both committed vegetarians, began making protein alternatives or meat analogues for their own consumption. In 1992, just one year later, these ideas formed the canvas for innovative discovery which led to the establishment of Fry Group Foods. Fry Group Foods is still owned and run, passionately, by the Fry’s Family and has grown in product and stature to where it is today.”
I’m not a vegetarian and I don’t think I will ever be but that doesn’t mean I wont eat a full course vegetarian meal. My biggest problem is getting flavors that work together. I knew this would be the perfect opportunity to learn from the best and get some tips.
Planning the dinner party was easy, my husband and I smsed (actually whatsapped) friends and found a few that were available on the date we set. I was super excited for this; I’ve never had a chef in my small kitchen before and I was so eager to eat vegetarian food (can you believe it?).
Everyone that attended wasn’t sure what was happening or why we were hosting this but we filled them in as soon as they arrived. A few of my friends were confused on how vegetarian food can be served as fine dining but by the end of the night they were sold!
Chef Pieter arrived first, it was an honour to meet a man who is so talented and clean in the kitchen. He started preparing and I was already impressed by his knife techniques and multitasking.
The kitchen was filled with a variety of ingredients which I never thought could be used together. The aroma of these flavours filled the house as my guests arrived eagerly waiting to learn more about Fry’s.While Chef Pieter was busy with the first course, we mingled and had a catch up session with friends we haven’t seen in ages. Kitana was super excited to have company over and she definitely used that to her advantage. My guests were taken to her playroom for some “high tea” before dinner was served.
I’ve never eaten Fry’s chicken strips before so it was something I was nervous about since I’m quite picky with taste. I loved that it wasn’t overwhelming to the palette! It was light and refreshing. I think this would be one of the easier dishes to make from the 3 we tasted. The pomegranate added flavour to all the dishes prepared.
Chef used the chicken style burgers for this dish. It was simple but yet sooo filling! Definitely my favorite from the night. It’s a dish I would have on a monday or friday if I’m really tired and don’t feeling like cooking a big meal. It’s healthy and tasty so why not?!
This was a spicy Thai curry using meat-free crispy prawns. Vije (My husband) really enjoyed this while it was my least favorite. It was a bit too spicy for me and that’s why the non Sri Lankan in the room didn’t like it. Once again the chef demonstrated you can cook healthy food with ingredients found in your kitchen.
By the end of the third course, everyone was too full to even think about dessert and decided to relax and laugh at Vije’s weird jokes instead of eating the “non healthy” (swiss roll) option which I provided for the night.
I want to compliment Chef Pieter for creating outstanding dishes and working exceptionally well in the kitchen. He definitely grabbed everyone’s attention in the room and it made the guys realise it isn’t that difficult to cook after all. Let’s hope Vije cooks one of these dishes for me.
To Fry’s Family Foods and the team, thank you for including me in this beautiful journey. It’s definitely one of the highlights for my first year of blogging and it’s a night I will never forget.
You created memories around the dinner table with a group of friends and now you’ve become a part of the family to everyone who indulged.
To my readers, you can download a free e-book from the Fry’s food website. The eCookbook has over 30 delicious meat free recipes using their products and has contributions from Debbie and Wally Fry as well as South Africa’s first MasterChef, Deena Naidoo.