Few, if any Colleges in Cambridge, can boast of sharing the best of their Fellow’s grub with the rest of their student body; that is of course unless the College in question is Pembroke! For many years now we have served both students and Fellows the same menus, with High Table, Formal, and Buttery meals being replicated on both ends of Hall.
However, once a term, even Pembroke treats it’s Fellowship to an ‘extra-special’ Parlour Evening dinner, one worthy of inviting spouses, partners and fellow Heads of House. This special evening is fully-booked far in advance and requires military style precision when concocting menus, seating plans, flower orders and the wine selection.Last Friday, we hosted this term's Parlour evening dinner with forty-six Fellows and guests being treated to some extra-special food, not shared with Friday's Formal Hall diners!
We began the dinner with a blanquette of canellini beans, garnished with truffle oil and foie gras. This very special soup was served as an amuse bouche, and presented in a small coffee cup.
Vegetarians received a white asparagus, artichoke and tomato salad, garnished with hazelnut and grape dressing.
Vegetarians were served a pea, herb, spinach and mushroom risotto.
For dessert, we served chocolate and star anise flavoured truffle cake with candied fennel and fennel ice cream. This unique recipe is from Dessert by David Everitt-Mathias.
After dinner, the Fellow's retired to the Parlour for cheese, dessert fruit, Port, Claret, coffee and petit fours.