I was just skimming through my old posts and I realised that I had never posted about how the vegan dinner party went.
The short answer, from a culinary point of view, is: badly.
The starter was to be leek and potato soup, the leeks and potatoes having been purchased by my fellow hostess as I was embroiled in rehearsals for a concert later in the week. Due to a variety of commitments on both our parts, I didn't get hold of these vital ingredients until an hour before the guests were due to arrive. It was at the same time that we realised neither of us had bought any fruit for the trifle.
Luckily, I had some frozen red berries in the freezer. The strawberry jelly was ready and set in its bowl so I defrosted the berries and added them to the jelly layer. Then we decamped to the kitchen to start cooking.
The risotto was fairly straight-forward. The only advance planning required was soaking the porcini mushrooms, which I had done that morning, so I threw the whole lot into my rice cooker and left it to be switched on at the appropriate moment so that, in theory, the perfectly-cooked risotto would be ready as the last soup spoon hit an empty bowl.
The soup itself presented more of a difficulty. We didn't have a large enough pan to boil all the veg at once, so it was split into several smaller pans and boiled, fried and generally blitzed into softening enough. Then we poured some (again, not all would fit) into the blender. Half of the soup blended. Then the motor burnt out.