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between a roux and a bechamel

Monday, October 13, 2008

All Star Dinner

I know I write about my adventures in the kitchen quite a bit, but the meal I made tonight was really unbelievable. I'd say that if you've got a date or family member to impress, this wouldn't be a bad place to start. 

Radish Butter
Wash about 10 radishes. Cut into quarters (or pieces that won't choke up your food processor). Blend that with a stick of butter also cut up into knobs (you may decide you need more butter to even out the proportions). When that's well integrated, add a handful of watercress, 1-2 lemons' worth of zest, and a few good turns of fresh ground pepper. Process until all mixed together and smooth. 

Spread on toasted pieces of good bread. I chose sour dough. I also sliced additional pieces of radish on top for a little additional crunch. 


Whiskey Glazed Carrots 
The Pioneer Woman Cooks is a great food blog; she posts photos and an explanatory narrative first, so you get to know the recipe, then she posts it in more basic, standard terms. Her recipe today for whiskey glazed carrots caught my eye and sparked the whole rest of the menu. These were so good I'd recommend them even for Thanksgiving. Yes, that's right. Thanksgiving worthy! I didn't deviate from her recipe one bit, so here it is


Pork Chops with Arugula Salad
This was a really nice balance of acid and fat. At the end of the meal, I used the remaining arugula salad on the last piece of toast with radish butter, and that was also excellent. But this was a great way to mix up a stand-by main course. First, prepare the salad. 

Dressing
Whisk together the juice of half an orange and 1 lemon, and... some olive oil. I'm not sure on the amount. I usually follow Jamie Oliver's "3 to 1" rule for dressings -- 1 part acid to 3 parts fat. Also add a good squeeze of dijon mustard, one diced shallot, salt, fresh ground pepper and parmesean. 

Salad
Arugula as the main green leaf, a couple tablespoons of fresh chopped mint, and about half of a granny smith apple chopped. Toss it all together with the dressing to coat all the pieces.

Pan Seared Pork Chops
Dust each side of the chop with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Cook in hot pan in olive oil for about 3 minutes on each side. Top with the salad mixture. 

Here's what my finished product looked like. Happy cooking! 

on a scale of 1-10, this dinner earned a zomg

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like your style. However, I think it would be great to incorporate beets into the next meal. They can be used in so many different ways. It is strange to live in other countries and beets are served with everything. Even McDonald's, Subway, and other fast food places have beet root or avocado substituted for mayonnaise.

I would also like to see a dinner made with different types of nuts. Nuts and other legumes are vastly underrated in the US of A.

10:49 PM  

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