Sunday, April 1, 2012
When you're a foodie and on a diet, a birthday is a wonderful thing. It means a day totally away from ye olde diet. Boy oh boy was it ever fun!
Breakfast started out with leftovers. Leftover Eggs Benedict, that is. The morning before I finally got to meet a wholesaler face-to-face. He'd been the internal wholesaler for a fund company in Vermont and we'd corresponded via email for years. Recently, he and his family moved to Cleveland so he could take over this territory. He was as delightful in person as he'd been via email. We met at a place called Lincoln Square that's close to the office. It's got consistently wonderful food. We both ordered the Eggs Benedict and I took half of mine back to the office intending to give them to Connie. But, I walked in and he was munching on cereal and yogurt so I got lucky and had leftovers for the next day.
On Friday, once I'd finished my leftovers and printed my calendar and moaned over the plethora of emails sitting in my inbox, I called the crew together for our staff meeting. Amber showed up with birthday "cake." It's a yellow cake, cherry pie filling, crushed pineapple and Cool Whip. And, it is GOOD!!!! I took some to Mom and she loved it as much as I do. Jess has requested chocolate cake for her version in May. Sounds great to me.
Lunch was at Kona Jacks with Mom, brother John, Connie and me. I had gumbo and a house salad. These folks have a killer soy ginger dressing that I could just eat plain. No lettuce necessary, just give me a spoon. When I get a salad over at their sister restaurant next door (Daddy Jack's) I always ask if they'll get some of the soy ginger dressing from Kona's.
After lunch we stopped and ordered our mulch. Connie was looking forward to an evening of yard work. I was kind of hoping for a leisurely evening. The weather was looking out for me. We had severe thunderstorm warnings so had to stay inside. Darn the luck :-)
At Kona Jack's fish market, we'd bought two scallops. All I knew was that I wanted truffled scallops. And, I just wanted a taste, not a full serving. Once we got home, it was off to the internet to see what I could find. I printed a couple of recipes off and asked Connie to choose. Turns out it needed a bit more butter than called for but I can turn the leftovers into some killer garlic bread.
The rest of dinner was stuff we'd had before. Steak House Sear steaks with morel dust.
Asparagus from the garden. And, individual potato gratins. Except I replaced the red potatoes with sweet potatoes. And, the gruyere with blue cheese. Major YUM!
Then, there was dessert. Please head over to That Skinny Chick Can Bake! You'll see a recipe and photo of the most decadent creme brulee. OMG was that stuff ever good. Liz certainly can bake. And cook. And, she's a wonderful human being. Lucky me to count her as a friend. Let's go back to the creme brulee for a minute. It's made with white chocolate. And, it's smooth and creamy. And, it is amazing. Right now it's all I can do to not go down to the refrigerator and finish it off. But, I made half the recipe and that means three ramekins. And, I told Connie I'd share the 3rd with him. He's walking on the treadmill. I'm blogging. He'd never hear the fridge door open. But, alas, I'd know I'd taken his share. Gosh darn it but a conscious is sometimes a real pain in the tookus :-)
As for the scallops recipe, I'm going to print it just as Rouxbe had it. Then, you can adjust according to the number you're serving.
Seared Scallops with Truffle Beurre Blanc
1 T shallots
1/4 c white wine
8 T unsalted butter, cold
kosher salt to taste
pepper to taste (you can use white if you'd like)
lemon juice (optional - I don't recommend it)
12 medium scallops
1 T grapeseed oil
1 T chives, finely chopped
truffle oil to taste
First you're going to make the beurre blanc. In a small skillet, add the shallots and wine. Simmer until the wine has reduced to almost a glaze. Whisk in the butter about half a tablespoon at a time. You'll want the heat on the stove at a very low setting. Once you've incorporated all of the butter, drizzle in some truffle oil to taste.
It's pretty powerful stuff so don't go overboard. Finally, stir in your chives. Keep the skillet on low while you cook the scallops. Dry them with a paper towel. Sprinkle them lightly with the truffle salt.
Use a skillet that works for the number of scallops you're cooking. I had two so used a really small one. Heat the grapeseed oil so that when you toss a drop of water in, it sizzles. Cook the scallops for one to two minutes per side. You don't want to over cook them. We used sushi grade scallops so we undercooked them. Serve the scallops on a small puddle of the beurre blanc.
adapted from rouxbe.com