Sunday, January 20, 2013

Soft boiled eggs anyone?

Soft boiled egg over shoestring fries

Martha Stewart has yet another show called.."Martha's Cooking School"... we were watching an episode on potatoes one day and the next morning a show on poaching eggs.  With both ideas fresh in my mind I combined them for breakfast.  I didn't deep fry the potatoes like she did.  I used a mandolin to cut the potatoes into shoestrings, rinsed in a bowl of cold water and paper towel dried them; I used a nonstick skillet with a good coating of olive oil at the bottom, heated the oil first then drop in the potatoes and sauteed them over medium high heat until they became crisp; season with salt and pepper.  The egg is a fresh farm extra large egg, only a couple days old (thanks to my friend Lisa) and I just bring a saucepan of water with a bit of white wine vinegar to a good simmer; carefully drop in an egg and allow to cook for 3 minutes; remove with a slotted spoon and remove any excess water on paper towels then serve over the potatoes...

I had some tomatoes that were getting old so I roasted them with a couple tablespoons of olive oil, a couple tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, whole garlic cloves with the paper on, salt and pepper at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes.  I let it cool to room temperature and serve with fresh mozzarella cheese and a crunchy slice of french bread (pictured below)

Roasted Tomato and Fresh Mozzarella Crostini (above)

Finnish Raspberry Pancake

I was flipping through the pictures on Pintrest and I came across this pancake, it was early Saturday morning and I was trying to figure what to make for breakfast so I made this.  It's not the regular pancake you know well, this one is from Finland and it's more like a custard, it's cooked in the oven and topped with jam and a drizzle of honey.  It was interesting...I will make it again...

Here is a slice of the Finnish pancake described above.

Caramelized Pork Tenderloin Medallions with Stewed Apple and Pears

I started with the stewed fruit by peeling and dicing one Granny Smith apple and one Bosc pear into 3/4 inch dice; add to a saucepan with a pat of butter over medium high heat for about 20-30 minutes or until they are tender and slightly browning.  While they cook remove the silver skin from a pork tenderloin and slice into 1 1/2 inch medallions, lay them down and press down slightly so they are now about an inch thick; season with salt and pepper on both sides then sear in a skillet for about 2 minutes per side; remove to a warm 150 degree oven just to keep them warm while you make the sauce; deglaze the pan with about 1/2 cup of red wine, let it boil down for a minute while you scrape up any brown bits from the pan; add about 1/2 cup chicken stock and let that boil for a few minutes; finish with a tablespoon or two of ketchup (Jacques Pepin's trick to finishing his sauces which adds richness and flavor); taste to see if you need any seasoning; add the pork and any juices that accumulated back to the sauce just to coat and serve over the stewed fruit.

Salmon en papillote

Cooking en papillote is cooking (usually fish) in a parchment paper, sealed tightly and baking it in the oven.  I first lay a portion of salmon that's been seasoned with salt and pepper on the parchment then saute a chopped shallot in olive oil for just a minute to get it going then sprinkled it over the salmon; chop a tomato and added them along with some fresh tarragon; fold the parchment like a book and seal the edges by making small folds overlapping until you've worked your way all the way around; brush the parchment with oil so it looks pretty when it comes out of the oven; bake on a sheet pan for 10 minutes at 400; serve as I did (below) in the paper just cut open and pushed aside or remove it completely by sliding it onto a plate.  I served this with potatoes that I cut into a small dice; boiled until tender; drain well; heat a non-stick skillet with olive oil; add the potatoes tossing now and then to brown; this process takes about 20-30 minutes.. Serve with a slice or two of lemon...

Salmon en papillote

Roasted Kale

I forget where I saw this but someone roasted these whole Dinosaur Kale leaves so I had to do it too... I washed and dried the leaves then lightly brush with olive oil, a little salt and pepper then roast for 20 minutes at 400 degrees until they turn into "potato chips"... 

Turkey Scaloppine with wild mushrooms and Israelian couscous

Jacques Pepin was making this on his show "fast food my way" so I made it.  He used dried morel mushrooms but I used a combination of dried mushrooms that I had in my pantry and it worked perfectly.  Basically you put about a cup or so of dried mushrooms in a small bowl and cover with hot water and let it reconstitute for 20 minutes or so; pound out turkey breast to about 1/4 inch; season with salt and pepper; dredge in flour knocking off the excess; brown on both sides in olive oil in a non-stick skillet which should only take a total of 4-5 minutes; keep warm while you make the sauce; add a finely diced shallot to the pan after 30 seconds add the reconstituted mushrooms and slowly pour in the liquid the mushrooms were soaking in but hold back the very end where there may be some sand that you don't want in your dish; cook that down to pretty much nothing then add about 1/4 cup of heavy cream then reduce that for a few minutes until a nice consistency; add the turkey back to the sauce and coat it.  Serve with Israelian couscous which only takes about 10 minutes to cook; I flavored it with 1/2 of a small onion finely chopped and sauteed in olive oil first then I added 1 tsp of turmeric and I used homemade chicken stock for the liquid instead of water.

Pistachio Crusted Veal Chop

I always let a piece of meat like this sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes before cooking, it will ensure even cooking.  Also 30 minutes before season with salt and pepper on each side.  I pulsed a handful of pistachio nuts in the food processor along with a handful of fresh parsley leaves until it's like coarse breadcrumb consistency.  Brush on a teaspoon or two of Dijon mustard to help the crust stick and add flavor; press on the pistachio mixture; in a oven safe skillet heat some olive oil then add the veal; cook on that one side for about 5 minutes then put the whole pan in a 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes or until it's perfectly done for you!  I served mashed potatoes and a green salad with this.

Cherry Tart

I had about 1 pound of cherries that I pitted and added to a bowl along with, 1/4 cup of sugar, 1 Tablespoon of cornstarch and 1 Tablespoon of lemon juice; mix together and pour into the center of a rolled out pastry dough; fold the edges up over the filling and onto a cookie sheet; add a pat of butter to the top of the cherry filling and brush the crust with heavy cream or egg wash then sprinkle on a bit of sugar; into a preheated 400 degree oven for about 50 minutes or until the crust is browned and the filling is bubbling.

Mousse Cups

This is something I made and brought to a friends house for New Year's Eve.  It's these little plastic shot glasses I got at The Party Store that I first placed a raspberry at the bottom, then some vanilla pudding and some chocolate mousse; I had these little spoons which were perfect and decorated them with some wire-ey things I found at the party store.

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