On Saturday night we attended a Mardi Gras-themed masquerade ball benefitting the Junior League of Nashville. It was held at the relatively new and glittering Omni Hotel in downtown Nashville. When one of your best friends in the whole world is on the planning committee for it and she asks if you want to attend, you say YES. At least I do… I love a good reason to dress up and support a wonderful cause that a friend is a part of as well. I also love to attend parties like this to get ideas and fresh inspiration for my own parties and dinners. Here are some pictures from the event, and the dinner menu follows:
My friend and her committee selected the purple table linens with the gold sequin table runners – love! The flowers were gorgeous as well.
Our masks… I went all out, because if you’re going to wear a mask, why not?
The ball had tables upon tables of silent auction items stretched down the pre-function room, and while we didn’t bid on anything since most were Nashville-related, we did participate in the Wine Wall. You pay $20 and you can select a mystery bottle of wine to take home. They range in prices up to about $250, but we sadly did not get that bottle. It was such a cute idea though.
Mask-free and about to explore the silent auction items.
first course // chicken and sausage gumbo with rice
entree // beef filet with piquante sauce over a bed of maque choux accompanied by creole roasted cauliflower
dessert // warm french bread pudding with bourbon sauce, whiskey raisins and creme anglaise
The menu was very “Louisiana” and I loved it. I had never heard of maque choux or serving beef with picante sauce, but it was absolutely divine. Here is Emeril’s recipe for maque choux if you’re interested. I cannot wait to recreate this menu at home. I love sauces for my meats, and this picante sauce went perfectly with the beef, the maque choux, and the roasted cauliflower (purple and orange cauliflower, by the way). I loved that I could dip anything on my plate into the sauce.
I should have taken a picture of the gumbo and the dessert, but alas, I was distracted talking with our friends and enjoying the evening. They also had a late night snack once the band was rocking. French macarons, muffaletta sandwiches, and fried okra continued the Louisiana theme.
By the end of the evening our arms were full of swag items… from bouquets of flowers, to the bottle from the Wine Wall, a cookbook from the Junior League of Chicago, a King Cake, Mardi Gras stationery… needless to say the ball was a blast, and we had a wonderful time supporting the Junior League of Nashville with dear friends.
What do you think of the dinner menu? Have you tried a Louisiana style dinner party before? It’s on my list now.