24 Oct2011

Call it a celebration of the “Fall” harvest. An annual re-enactment of New England pilgrims’ feast. The starting gun on holiday entertaining. A reason to get friends together. Or a meal to give thanks for all the graces of the year so far. At any rate, we broke only one major tradition for this feast this year, we decided to schedule it on some random Sunday evening, like last night. A couple of weeks in the planning stages, we had promised some Canadian friends a “thanksgiving meal”… then we invited an aunt who requested sauteed chicken livers… then some more friends confirmed they were attending despite getting off a transpacific flight just hours before, some edible goodies stuck in their luggage for all of the guests to enjoy… but the really sweet reason for giving thanks and a toast with the bubbly last night was the fact that the Teen just received word of a private triumph, something that she had been working on for a while, and we are all truly thankful… :)

So a special dinner for 10 it was. And this was the setting for the evening…

A cream-colored linen tablecloth draped the dining table, ironed to crisp crease-less perfection earlier in the day.

Mustard yellow plates (a gift from Sister, as were the linens and silver) actually meant for casual outdoorsy settings, say on the French Riviera or your villa in the hills of the South of France. We had stored them at the beach, but brought them back for this dinner… and liked them so much I think they will remain in town throughout the holiday season 2011… :)

The centerpieces included dozens of mini-gourds in various shapes and sizes…

…yellow roses, orange-pink carnations and pale yellow lillies and a dozen votive candles…

…the yellow roses appeared “too yellow” during the daytime, but once it got dark, the table looked fine. All those orange, yellow and candlelit hues were quite flattering.

And yup, it was a formal enough dinner to warrant place cards, which Mrs. Marketman does with her calligraphy pen.

Just a peek at a side table, with pies in waiting. Menu/dishes up in posts in the days ahead. But a quick note to Bettyq, I made a “foraged by BQ mushroom bread pudding” and it was STUNNINGLY GOOD. One of the best new things I have tried this year! Thank you. :)



  1. eej says:

    Such a festive setting for an evening of Thanksgiving with good food and great friends. Best wishes to the Teen for whatever personal triumph that may be!

    Oct 24, 2011 | 7:05 am


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  3. Joseph (Vancouver) says:

    I guess you celebrated the Canadian Thanksgiving. Can’t wait to your next posts on the food you served. I think I’ll do a mushroom bread pudding ala BettyQ for our Christmas holiday dinners.

    Oct 24, 2011 | 7:36 am

  4. Joseph (Vancouver) says:

    I’m having trouble locating bettyq’s mushroom bread pudding recipe. I read it in one of MM’s posts but I can’t figure out where. I hope someone can help me by posting the link here. Thanks.

    Oct 24, 2011 | 7:51 am

  5. cwid says:

    What a pretty table setting! Congratulations to the Teen! You and Mrs. MM must really be proud.

    Oct 24, 2011 | 7:59 am

  6. ami says:

    Congrats to the Teen. The table setting looks spectacular. Looking forward to the food posts up ahead. Btw MM, have you ever spotted peonies in Dangwa/Dimasalang?

    Oct 24, 2011 | 8:28 am

  7. Marketman says:

    ami, yes, I have spotted peonies in the late winter, early spring, at Dangwa, at the 1-2 shops that have airconditioned display cases. They are usually by special order and VERY EXPENSIVE if I recall correctly. I have never purchased them in Manila… ami, cwid and eej thanks on the Teen’s behalf. Joseph, I actually did a recipe somewhat on the fly, with Bettyq’s description, and will post a recipe in the days ahead.

    Oct 24, 2011 | 8:35 am

  8. Libay says:

    Whatever it is, congrats to the Teen. :)

    Oct 24, 2011 | 9:28 am

  9. friedneurons says:

    Wow. I will never cease to be amazed at your fantastic table settings (or, as TV hosts are wont to call them, tablescapes). I am utterly unimaginative in that regard, so almost all of our china is plain white. :)

    Oct 24, 2011 | 9:28 am

  10. betty q. says:


    ….very nice plates, Sister! Can you be my Ate, too?

    Joseph…it is mushroom season!…edible and the others, too! Golden chanterelles are everywhere and white chanterelles are starting to pop up. If I knew where you are, I will you give chanterelles. I prefer NOT TO DEHYDRATE chanterelles for once you rehydrate them, the texture is somewhat woody and chewy! So….I saute the fresh chanterelles quickly in garlic and shallots, add the mushrooms, season, cool them them down and then FREEZE them in zip plocks! When defrosted, they taste like fresh ones and the texture is very much like fresh chanterelles…

    I am glad you tried the Mushroom Bread Pudding, MM!….must have BACON in it! I think Lee would say…BACON RULES! It is really good anytime of the year!….makes excellent baon….that with a salad, hubby and my sons are good to go and happy!

    Oct 24, 2011 | 9:36 am

  11. linda says:

    SPECTACULAR!!! Congratulations to the Teen!

    Oct 24, 2011 | 9:48 am

  12. Mimi says:

    Love the hues of yellows and oranges!

    Oct 24, 2011 | 9:51 am

  13. Artisan Chocolatier says:


    Oct 24, 2011 | 10:00 am

  14. millet says:

    congratulations to The Teen and her parents for whatever it was! Mrs. MM, that calligraphy is amazing. MM, i love everything in this post..very, very nice. are you going to tell us what you served at that dinner?

    Oct 24, 2011 | 11:11 am

  15. sophie says:

    congratulations to the Teen ( for whatever it was ^o^ )…. and a very nice table setting MM… i do really love it.. looking forward to your next posts

    Oct 24, 2011 | 11:27 am

  16. cwid says:

    Betty, someone has posted locally picked chanterelles for sale out of downtown Vancouver. Do chanterelles grow in the wild and are not farmed? Just wondering as I am so ignorant about mushrooms and I am afraid I might get the poisonous kind.

    Oct 24, 2011 | 12:33 pm

  17. Betchay says:

    At Joseph(Vancouver): BettyQ’s recipe is # 10 and 12 in the comment section of MM’s post “Authentic Halloween Decor…..”—Oct 19, 2011.
    Love the yellow plates….MM, your table settings never cease to amaze me!
    Congratulations to the TEEN!

    Oct 24, 2011 | 12:52 pm

  18. Joseph (Vancouver) says:

    Thanks Betchay for the info on bettyq’s mushroom bread pudding comments. I found it with your help. I will also wait for MM’s mushroom’s recipe.

    Bettyq, I appreciate your offer of chantrelle mushroom. I actually live in Richmond. If its ok with you we can perhaps meet over coffee or even dimsum. I’ve been dying to finally meet you. We can discuss this further through email.

    Oct 24, 2011 | 1:12 pm

  19. Marivic P L says:

    Oh, thanks for inviting me! Sorry I couldn’t go! Mrs. MM wrote pa my name. hehe.

    Oct 24, 2011 | 2:13 pm

  20. betty q. says:

    Cwid…chanterelle mushrooms , one of the few that cannot be cultivated for it is a mycorrhizal fungi meaning the mycelium which is the root part is dependent on a host such as oak trees and Douglas fir mostly. Another one is Lobster mushroom….it is dependent on another mushroom which serves as the host. And yes, you need to know your mushrooms …for instance, there is a False Chanterelle that looks exactly like the Golden one but the non-edbile one has a brownish stem when split open and the cap has scales. The edible Golden Chanterelle on the other hand has a milky white stem when you split it open and smooth cap…the gills also is like straight and not in wavy ridges and it blends into the stem. Besides the Golden Chanterelles, there is a WHITE CHANTERELLE which is meatier than the Golden ones. Foraging is exhilarating and exciting! If you find one, look around you for you are sure to find its sisters and brothers around you, not far behind!

    But who knows, one day it can be cultivated. Morels, ages ago, were found in the forests. Now, you can inoculate a log with Morel plugs or spawn and leave it in your backyard!

    Oct 24, 2011 | 2:40 pm

  21. cumin says:

    Warm glowing colors. Congratulations to The Teen!

    Oct 24, 2011 | 4:46 pm

  22. EJ says:

    Congratulations to the teen! Has she gotten into the college/university of her choice?

    Oct 24, 2011 | 6:47 pm

  23. JoAnne says:

    but Marketman, what did you serve?? can’t wait

    Oct 24, 2011 | 6:57 pm

  24. MP says:

    Wow, spectacular setting MM. I think I’ll copy some of your gorgeous ideas as it is our turn to host Thanksgiving dinner for hubby’s bibolous colleagues… I was planning a simple setting thinking that they won’t notice anyway as they are more concerned about the drinks (hahaha) but yours is such an inspiration. A surpise or 2 will blow them away!

    In any event, congratulations to the Teen. I bet it had something to do with an acceptance to a university that she’s been wanting to attend… and I bet, if she applied to lots of universities in the US, she’d be accepted in all of them! :-)

    Oct 24, 2011 | 7:31 pm

  25. Marketman says:

    Thanks everyone for the kind greetings… no, the teen hasn’t even applied to college yet, she’s only in 11th grade! :)

    Oct 24, 2011 | 7:45 pm

  26. LT says:

    MM ~

    WOW! What a LOVELY table that is! I LOVE that!

    When I saw that, I was thinking of having the same for us come Thanksgiving next month. But sad to say that in our circle of friends, we still have little ones (between 18 months and 6 y/o and some “tweens) and I know that this is not going to be possible. Even having another table for them would be chaotic knowing that there will be all over the place and it wouldn’t be one of those quiet “adult only” dinners.

    Oh, maybe someday when the kids grow up, we will have a formal and intimate dinner like this with our closest friends (whom we consider as our family) here.

    Looking forward to the “Thanksgiving Menu” post.

    Oct 24, 2011 | 9:31 pm

  27. Marketman says:

    LT, we have had similar dinners from the time the Teen was born, and she has always managed to sit through them, or be excused or leave the table when bored. She has also always joined us at restaurants wherever we went, without being unruly or bothersome to other diners… No reason to wait until they are adults, at that point, they will not have experienced these kinds of meals while growing up…

    Oct 24, 2011 | 9:48 pm

  28. psychomom says:

    BEAUTIFUL setting MM!!! congratulations to the Teen. like you MM, we brought my son along to fancy restaurants (from infant carrier to high chair now to regular chair) and he managed to sit through the mealswith no fuss. never had a mishap with glasses or breakables either. i think the earlier we expose them to these experiences the better equipped they would be. we just brought along things that he could play with or engage in quiet activities (books, crayons, leapfrog etc).

    Oct 24, 2011 | 10:20 pm

  29. Pink Carnations says:

    M A R V E L O U S ! ! !

    Oct 24, 2011 | 10:26 pm

  30. Pink Carnations says:

    Artist par excellence!

    Oct 24, 2011 | 10:27 pm

  31. MP says:

    Oppps, sorry Teen, my bad. In our household, we always associate “good news + kids” with education and after the blogs about your visit to the east coast to check out universities, I assumed… anyhow, whatever the good news was, congratulations!

    I told my hubby about it and he said: “Maybe she got her driver’s license….good news for the Teen, not so for Mr & Mrs MM”!

    Oct 24, 2011 | 11:35 pm

  32. betty q. says:

    LT…I don’t know where you are…when my kids were still like babies they sat with us at the dinner table during formal dinners at home like family Christmas dinners or Valentine dinners. What I did was put STAIN RESISTANT classically elegant tablecloth which is readily available in any dept store like BBB (Bed Bath and Beyond), Home Sense, etc…yes, the kids also had their stain resistant table napkins. As for their clothing, I depended on TIDE to remove the stains if ever!

    As they were growing up, because they were exposed to those things, restaurant servers cannot help but notice and remark that my boys are the most well-behaved kids they have ever served in their restaurant.

    I know how it can be a “hair pulling” experience for I have seen other parents get so frustrated when their little ones start running around. Another thing you might want to try, is refrain from giving them sugar in any form before dinner so they are not going to be hyped up. Also include them in the menu planning if they are that stage that they can make decisions. Maybe you would end up with some nuggets or hot dogs for them but if they see they are nicely plated, it will open their eyes…humans eat with their eyes!

    Oct 25, 2011 | 12:31 am

  33. la emperor says:

    Congrats to the Teen!. Such a beautiful table setting, MM.

    Oct 25, 2011 | 2:16 am

  34. cwid says:

    Thanks for the tips, Betty. I might pick up the chanterelles tomorrow but I was told they have been cleaned and dried. I wonder where I can forage for chanterelles in our neck of the woods.

    Oct 25, 2011 | 3:44 am

  35. betty q. says:

    Cwid…I am heading out to the kabihasnan tom. and will gladly give you some FRESH WHITE CHANTERELLES!…didn’t get any Golden ones this time! Had I known you wanted some Golden Chanterelles, I got a few pounds last week but I gave half of what I got to my brother! If you want to go mushroom hunting, best DO NOT pick in BC Provincial parks for you could be fined by the rangers and native land like in Squamish? I know someone who picks in Squamish and was told he needs permission from the elders?!? Also do not go alone…make sure someone knows where you went just like when you go camping or hiking. But before you go, google the habitat of mushrooms and bring with you book if you are a beginner. Also, if you have a dog, bring the dog with you. They can sense if there is a bear nearby and they will start barking. As well have a whistle around your neck. So far, I haven’t encountered a bear…knock on wood! Now, when you go foraging, keep your eyes glued to the ground and have a stick with you so you can gently search through the dried leaves esp. around conifers. If you are searching for Golden Chanterelles, gently remove the dried leaves if you see something yellow-orange poking through the ground. Chances are…golden chanterelles or it could be Jack-o- lanterns (the non-edible ones!).

    Sustainable harvesting implies that you carry a pocket knife with you and cut the mushrooms at the stump. DO NOT PULL IT for you will disturb the mycelium. How’s this…each time I go and find some…I will give you some to try…haven’t found any lobsters yet or Matsutakes.

    Here is something you might want to notice when you and C are out for a drive say in a long stretch of road with no houses for miles…if there are cars parked on the side of the road and it isn’t a trail….chances are people are foraging esp. this time of the year! or if you google map the area and there is no river or creek nearby, then people are definitely NOT there for FISHING!

    Oct 25, 2011 | 4:37 am

  36. Wisdom tooth says:

    Congrats to the Teen!! It must really be a big and joyous feat to make the Dad & Mom of the Teen to plan a very festive Thanksgiving event. Can’t wait for your menu for the night. Will also try to make Betty q’s Wild Mushroom bread pudding.
    BTW, MM when I want to go to your website during my free time in my place of work I get redirected to a xrated site pero sa bahay or in my iphone hindi naman. Kakainis. I don’t open it na lang at work. Duling lang if I read frm my phone. Do you have an answer to that?? Thanks

    Oct 25, 2011 | 4:56 am

  37. Marketman says:

    wisdom tooth, there was a time the site was “under attack”. If you clear out your cache and cookies on your computer at work, it should clean things up, it did for most of the other readers… thanks.

    Oct 25, 2011 | 6:33 am

  38. Joseph (Vancouver) says:

    Wisdom Tooth: If I may make a suggestion, you can try clearing your web browser’s cookies, cache and history. That might help.

    Oct 25, 2011 | 6:35 am

  39. cwid says:

    Hi Betty, wow thanks for the tips! Tomorrow, I am picking up some chanterelles from someone in DT Vancouver — someone who is a forager who placed an ad on Craigslist. I have tried chanterelles only once and they were the dried kind. Foraging sounds like fun except for the bears. I googled foraging in BC and I found a foraging event in the Cowichan Valley. I asked C if we could go and he said, do you know where it is? Which is like telling me, malayo yan. Siguro konti pang kulit. C had cataract surgery today so we can’t drive anywhere. But thanks so much for your very generous offer. I heard that foragers are very secretive about the location of their source so I will not ask anymore if I could join you. We should be happy just sharing your bounty. We are so lucky to be living in Vancouver and so close to you!

    Oct 25, 2011 | 10:51 am

  40. Ros-Anna says:

    Way to go Teen! You do your Mom and Dad proud! Then again, it’s also genetic, MM & Mrs MM! ;-)

    Gorgeous tablescape MM! And the plates – – -divine!

    Yes, BQ, we’re so happy to have you on this forum; but we feel doubly-blessed to have you in our neck of the woods. cwid, we better get that “End of Season Get Together” planning started. ;-)

    Oct 25, 2011 | 12:01 pm

  41. ayla says:

    Beautiful beautiful setting MM!

    Oct 25, 2011 | 2:16 pm

  42. joyce says:

    gorgeous! looks like a page from martha stewart living. you could make a second career being a tablescape artist. congrats to the Teen!

    Oct 25, 2011 | 4:33 pm

  43. betty q. says:

    cwid…yes, it is malayo! It is over at the Island in Duncan. I should know for we lived there for 2 years in the 90’s. But what it is …they will take you in the nearby forest and identify mushrooms you see along the way…poisonous and edible ones…how to identify the poisonous ones. If I am not mistaken, GVRD and Van Dusen offers the same field trips here in the Lower Mainland. I took one ages ago about this time of the year.

    Oct 25, 2011 | 9:26 pm

  44. LT says:

    MM ~

    The thing is, our son is never unruly at meal time even when he was still a baby. We often go out to eat and it’s always a joy for us (3).

    Sad to say that it’s our friends’ kids who are quite rowdy (I hate saying that) and I can’t really do anything about it.

    Oct 26, 2011 | 12:20 am

  45. Marketman says:

    LT, I understand some folks put benadryl in the soda to calm kids down… :) I am KIDDING of course. Seriously, I am not serious. :) I commiserate with you; not all parents raise their kids the same way. At the restaurant, I more often than not see kids that have an inability to stay put and amuse themselves…

    Oct 26, 2011 | 6:28 am

  46. sister says:

    Can’t top that absolutely festive table setting. Wish I could have tasted the meal. Have to get ready for our Thanksgiving here, looking forward to having family for the holiday.

    Oct 26, 2011 | 5:51 pm

  47. Irene says:

    Inspiring table setting as always.

    Congratulations to the teen!

    Oct 26, 2011 | 8:44 pm

  48. PITS, MANILA says:


    Oct 27, 2011 | 1:11 pm

  49. marissewalangkaparis says:

    Congratulations TEEN!! You make your parents proud!!!!We too are proud. It seems we saw you grow up…and your have fine genes!!

    Kakainggit your tablescape MM!! Marvelous. I wish sister was also my ate.. Sister,those plates look so beautiful against white linens….

    Oct 27, 2011 | 4:38 pm

  50. Celia B E says:

    I am floored by graciousness of the setting and the spirit. most especially by the warmth of family. congratulations to the Teen. may she enjoy many more milestones.

    Oct 28, 2011 | 4:56 pm

  51. Lambchop says:

    The colors are so pretty!

    Oct 31, 2011 | 11:44 am


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