Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Things to talk about...Crab Cakes with pineapple-cucumber salsa...blackened Mahi...bolognese sauce...steak with creamy sweet potato, truffle and goat cheese puree...chicken picatta!

Ugh...where to start. I wanted to do this blog on a daily basis but it appears I have not written anything in over a week.lol. I have been trying to get things figured out with Le Cordon Bleu and when I will actually be able to start classes.

So since I usually write about the specials I made that particular night or the past couple nights, here are a few in a row and if anyone likes them then they can check them out.

Chicken Picatta

2 Chicken breasts, boneless
2 tbsp shallots finely diced
2 tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup diced yellow onion
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp capers
Juice of 1 lemon and pinch of zest
1/2 cup white wine
1 tsp fresh parsley
salt n pepper to taste
1 loose packed cup of fresh arugula (optional)
1/2-3/4 cup flour
3 tbsp of unsalted butter

First I pounded the shit out of the chicken and lightly coated them with the flour and some salt and pepper. After setting them aside, I placed a hot saute pan over my burner and threw in my olive oil, shallots, garlic and diced onion and cooked them for about 3 minutes or until au sec and then deglaze the pan with a little of the white wine. I then add the rest of the olive oil and the chicken. I cook the chicken for approximately 1 minute and then add in my capers, lemon juice and zest, remaining wine and I reduce the liquid by half (or until thickened slightly). I then add in the fresh arugula (for mine) and remove from heat. I then dice the butter up and slowly stir into the sauce to thicken. I poured this over some basmati rice and garnished it with a pinch of fresh parsley and julienne strips of manchego (a delicious sheeps milk cheese) over top. Oh and yeah....you guessed it...served with grilled asparagus!!LOL

Alrighty then...on another night, I pretty much took the easy way out and just blackened a mahi filet. I served it with my morrocan spiced carrots and a cucumber-pineapple salsa across the mahi filet. This dish really needs no special introduction or attention for that matter. Basic, simple, and delicious were the ingredients. We sold a bunch of them.

Now....whats better than fresh salsa???? Fresh salsa...the next day!!! Of course when you give your salsa, dressing, sauce, marinade, or anything along those lines, time to sit and meld together longer, it's gonna be really good!

So I decided to make maryland style crab cakes the other night...SUCCESS!!!

Maryland-Style Crab Cakes

1 lb of fresh lump crab meat
1/4 cup diced onion
1/4 cup diced red pepper
1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
1/2 cup mayonaisse
1/2 cup cream cheese diced
2 tbsp dijon mustard
1 egg
1 tsp of dried tarragon
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp of sea salt
1 tbsp of lobster base (optional)
a pinch or two of old bay seasoning (optional)

I basically mixed all the ingredients except for 2 eggs and the panko bread crumbs. First I mixed into a 4 qt mixing bowl, the mayo, cream cheese, dijon mustard, 1 egg, tarragon, cayenne and lobster base and set aside in cooler for ten minutes. Then I took another 4 qt bowl and mixed my rep peppers, onions, and plain bread crumbs together thoroughly and set aside for 5-10 minutes in fridge. Then I mixed the two bowls together into 1. I then took a 4 oz scoop and scooped out leveled scoops of the mix onto a sheetpan (flat side down) to chill in fridge for around thirty minutes or so. Then I take another sheetpan and press down slightly to even out all the mounds with flat tops and bottoms and then I place each cake into an eggwash and then bread in the panko bread crumbs. After that, I returned them to the fridge until needed for an order. I cooked them in olive oil in a pan and served over arugula with the cucumber-pineapple salsa and remoulade on each side. Sold out half way through dinner!!

Another night I made a Strip Steak with rutabaga (a type of turnip) and potato smash on side. I served a creamy truffle, goat cheese and sweet potato puree over the top of the steak. With braised pearl onions and mushrooms.

Truffle, Goat, Sweet Potato Puree

1 large sweet potato peeled and diced
4 oz of fresh soft goat cheese
1/2 cup of heavy cream
1 oz of truffle oil
1 tsp of dried tarragon
pinch of nutmeg
1 tbspoon of brown sugar

I took a 1 lb strip steak and seasoned it only with olive oil, sea salt and pepper. After grilling the steak to temperature I set aside to rest a bit. While this is happening I had one large sweet potato diced, and boiling down in a pot. In another pot I placed about 1/2 cup of heavy cream, goat cheese and truffle oil and reduced the liquid by a third. When the sweet potato is done, I add the cream mixture to the pan and mix thoroughly using an immersion blender until the texture is a silky, velvety cream that melts in your mouth. I also took a 1 lb bag of pearl onions, peeled them, and cooked them in some balsmic vinegar for 20 minutes or so and then tranferred to another sauce pan where I added olive oil and some merlot for deglazing my pan. I then lowered my heat and continued cooking the onions in oil and deglazing with the merlot. I also took a lb or so of brussel sprouts and cooked them "amanda style".LOL I first blanched them in boiling water and then an ice bath. I then cut up a lb of bacon and a whole onion and started cooking it in the pan and threw in the brussel spouts and cooked them down until thoroughly carmelized througout the pan, using some of the balsmic glaze from the other pan as well.

I'm sure there was something else to write about but it's late and it's my moms birthday and Im goona go hang with her now :-)

1 comment:

  1. Funny, I had Chicken Picatta for dinner tonight. It had capers in it and was quite yummy.