A Stress-Free Dinner Party with La Belle Assiette

27 December, 2018
As you hit your late twenties, you start to consider things that you may not have necessarily considered in your younger years; you realise the importance of decent skincare, you no longer pick out a bottle of wine based on the alcohol percentage vs. price (well, maybe sometimes) and you swap house parties for dinner parties. Whilst I love a dinner party – because y'know, I love food and wine – I have never hosted one because believe it or not, I don't really enjoy cooking. I'm strictly an eating rather cooking kinda girl when it comes to my love for food!
However, I was recently offered to review a complimentary stress-free dinner party service from La Belle Assiette who send a private chef to your home to whip up a delicious three-course menu for you and your guests. Our dining table is currently balancing on two DVD cases and isn't in any fit shape to host dinner party guests but luckily Charlie was on hand to offer us her lovely little home for the evening. La Belle Assiette promise restaurant quality food in the comfort of your own home and whilst the chef takes care of the cooking, you can focus on the hosting and enjoying your own party.
Obviously, I required a specifically vegan-orientated meal for myself and my housemate, who was also a guest at the party, is gluten-intolerant. I chatted with our designated chef for the evening, Artan Hasa, beforehand about the menu and our dietary requirements. I was a little worried that asking for a three-course vegan and gluten-free meal would be a bit too much to ask for. Luckily, Artan was more than happy to accommodate to our needs and came up with a mouthwatering menu that had me eager for the dinner party weeks before it was due to take place.
On the evening, Artan arrived at Charlie's home around 6pm – an hour and  half before dinner was due to be served – and brought some of the necessary kitchen equipment and all of the ingredients with him. The only thing we really supplied was an endless stream of vegan-friendly wines, the cutlery and plates. Before the first course arrived, Artan presented to us a plate of gluten-free and vegan-friendly bread with oil and balsamic to begin our meal. Admittedly, I'm not usually a fan of gluten-free breads so tend to avoid them where possible but the bread on this particular occasion was soft and fluffy, and quite honestly, if I hadn't been told before, I'd never have known it was sans gluten.
Our first course was a pumpkin and avocado salad with apple, pomegranate, caramelised hazelnut, topped with a hazelnut & truffle dressing. As well as being a vibrant and beautifully presented dish, it was delicious and we had all cleaned our plates off before you knew it. The combination of flavours from the zesty apple to the earthy, bold truffle oil made it a truly exciting and unique dish that was the perfect start to the evening.

Now for our main course, Artan cooked us a completely vegan chilli with jasmine rice, avocado and tomato chutney salsa topped with a coriander cress. Chilli sin carne is usually a 'go to' for when I'm cooking at home as it's so easy to veganise (totally coining that word if it hasn't been coined already) but Artan's dish was far more impressive and flavoursome than anything that I could ever muster. Even our regular meat-eating guests couldn't stop gushing over how moreish and delicious it was! I would have easily indulged myself on an entire pot of it as it really was that good!

To finish the evening, we were served a deliciously sweet pear and pecan tarte tatin with Chantilly coconut cream and raspberries. Once again, we all indulged and devoured our dessert within moments as it was truly delicious! As someone who is not usually a fan of pears, I delightfully surprised just how much I enjoyed it and the coconut-based cream with hints of vanilla was just gorgeous.
Everyone in the party was impressed by every dish that Artan created and it was amazing to think that such beautifully presented dishes were created in Charlie's humble kitchen rather than a restaurant. It was so nice to experience such incredible food in a more homely and comfortable setting. Amazingly, Artan even left the kitchen spotless and washed up after himself meaning there's no end-of-the-evening chores to loom over you whilst you're enjoying the food.
La Belle Assiette offer a range of chef packages that start from just £39 per guest.
Book your own private chef experience over on the La Belle Assiette website here: https://labelleassiette.co.uk/

Disclaimer: I was offered a complimentary La Belle Assiette package in exchange for an honest review.

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