Our Raki 20 slow dining diner series took to Kerstin Rodger’s -better known as Ms Marmite Lover’s, Supper Club. In just seconds through the door, she hits her guests with that convivial Turkish spirit: lacing one palm with a Yeni Raki and Orgreat cocktail and the other with a pickled green almond straight from Istanbul. Nothing beats a welcome than one that fills both hands simultaneously with glorious food and drink.
As the host of the longest running supper club in the UK, she knows a thing or three about maintaining conviviality across the whole evening. So what’s her secret? Of course we asked. Of course she told. Be prepared to up your raki table game with Kerstin’s tips:
1. Your food
“Yeni Raki is really the perfect thing with meze. Small plate eating has been the trend now for some time. At home it’s a great way of eating and you can make lots of the cold meze in advance, so you can sit down with your guests.”
2. Your flavours
“Think about what goes with aniseed, I’ve found anything with a lemony flavour goes really well, I’ve also noticed that globe artichoke goes really well with it as well as fragrant flavours that are strong enough to stand up to Yeni Raki’s aniseed tone.”
3. Your time
“I recommend you write prep lists. Each supper club takes me at least four days: a day planning the menu and testing a few of the dishes, a day set aside for ingredients -I have my fish supplier and green grocer deliver to me to save a lot of time but for specialist ingredients, I might need to take a special trip out to buy them. Then one or two days prepping the dishes beforehand. Organisation is key!”
4. Your Finale
“Your pudding must be stunning. It’s the last memory that anyone has of the meal before they go away. It’s important to have a good aperitif, a good canapé or starter. People tend not to remember the middle of the meal so much. Make sure you end with good finish. I’d suggest doing your pudding the day before. A cold pudding before hand gets it out of the way.”
5. Kerstin’s Yeni Raki inspired recipes:
Kerstin’s raki table was packed with ingredients and food inspirations. Here’s some of Kerstin’s top Yeni Raki inspired recipes that’ll work a treat with your raki table guests, such as canapés of Artichoke buttons, Ezmé salad, Artichoke stew with dill and black lime and an ending with an all-important flourish, homemade Yeni Raki flavoured Turkish Delight.