For our Mallorcan weddings, bathed in warm sun, with the intense colours and luscious tastes of the Mediterranean, food a real highlight of the celebration. And we like to think we've got the recipe right. We've sought out some of the most talented chefs on the island and worked alongside them to develop menus which combine the freshest flavours and the best ingredients.
Now, it must be said that not all weddings are memorable for their great food. The challenge of appealing to 120 people of all generations, the difficulty of producing a three-course meal for the 20th wedding of the season with a limited budget – well, it can all take its toll. But our wedding feasts are rich with the vibrant colours and textures you'd expect in the best Mediterranean kitchen, all created with our wedding clients and their guests in mind.
So it's with some excitement that I'm about to meet one of our best chefs to sample his renowned tapas feast. We're meeting one of our wedding couples for their tasting session and we drive through the Mallorcan countryside under clear blue skies, before turning off to make our way along narrow country lanes through almond groves. We arrive at our chef's home where he creates his tasting experience. The kitchen is in an open studio space with white painted furniture, a well-equipped open kitchen, quirky artworks and a relaxed international vibe. There's some cool acoustic lounge music playing and a wooden tray holds our first canape selection.
I can see brochettes, chorizo, smoked salmon and microsalad and our chef points out paprika sausage with confit onion, roasted tenderloin of beef with caper truffle cream and Mediterranean tuna with a fresh viniagrette.
He tells me; 'What we do is around the whole concept of a Mediterranean feast. It's about experiencing the feeling that you're here in Mallorca and you have a big busy table with everyone passing everything around, and everybody is happy about it. I Iove a good feast this way. Celebrating with lots of food, laughter, a few crazy details and sharing the grand moments in life.”
Our couple arrives and we sip chilled glasses of cava and discuss the latest details of the wedding plans before turning our attention to the food.
We start with the canapes which will be served just after the ceremony. There's a gorgeous blini with smoked salmon, lemon crème fraiche and salmon roe. Then we try the Spanish paprika sausage with sweet caramelized onions – a delicious combination of spicy and sweet. We dive into spicy chickpea and carrot fritters with lemon coriander yoghurt and nibble tiny Moroccan lamb kebabs with aromatic harissa yogurt. Then come crisp crostini topped with crushed green peas, truffle oil and Parmesan, crunchy squid with fresh chilli and lime mayonnaise and polenta fries with creamy Cabrales cheese and rosemary. The range of tastes and flavours is exquisite!
The tasting continues with the tapas dinner. At the wedding, an array of amazing starters will be served on tiered platters in the middle of the table.
The menu will include homemade terrine with Iberian pork, toasted pistachios and mixed
wild mushrooms served with apricot chutney, the best Spanish cold cuts, chorizo, salchichón and cured lomo, Bellota ham with grilled nectarines, Spanish tortilla with caramelized onions and green peppers, grilled vegetables, dressed with sherry vinegar, basil and Kalamata olives, and prawns straight from the grill with a saffron aioli.
The food is a revelation! Our host prepares it in front of us effortlessly with tremendous skill and panache. Our couple are now really excited to think about how much their guests will love the meal and how much it will add to their celebration.
The desserts are no less delicious - American vanilla and white chocolate cheesecake with strawberries marinated with basil and sherry vinegar, and dark chocolate and lavender treat with pink grapefruit jelly and cacao crunch get my vote before it's time to take our leave, promising to meet up with our couple the following day at their chosen venue to plan the décor and flowers.
As we head for home, we have a feeling we won't be needing too much supper this evening.