Restaurants

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Oysters

Let's talk oysters.... Sure, you love to eat them in a restaurant, but at home???  Let's go for it!
Let me guess your fears, "I don't know how to shuck an oyster.." "I'm scared to eat raw "meat" at home"...
Yes, shucking takes some practice, but that is exactly what you do,  practice.
Make sure you really scrub the oysters clean before you start to open. If the oyster has a weird smell...toss it. Don't eat bad oysters.

Which oysters to pick? I say keep it local. If you live on the East Coast, you have your pick of VERY fresh oysters...If they are flown in, they tend to be more expensive.

Now, what to serve with the oysters...
lemon and mignonette...
here is a recipe:
  • 2 teaspoons Champagne vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped shallot
  • Pinch of coarsely ground black pepper
  • Pinch of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Get fancy with Pate

I have a weakness for really good pate...Thank you Julia Child...I found this recipe in Bon Appetite.
P.S. Don't be scared of Chicken Livers

  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 1 pound chicken livers, trimmed
  • 1 cup canned low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon Cognac
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt

  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 3/4 cup dried black Mission figs

  • 1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts
  • Fresh chives (for garnish)
  • Red leaf lettuce (for garnish)
  • 1 French-bread baguette, sliced, toasted

Preparation

Spray 3-cup soufflé dish or terrine with vegetable oil spray. Line dish with plastic wrap; spray plastic. Combine chicken livers, broth and onion in medium saucepan. Bring to boil. Cover and simmer until livers are cooked through, stirring occasionally, about 12 minutes. Drain cooking liquid; transfer chicken livers and onion to processor. Add butter, Cognac and salt to processor. Puree until smooth. Transfer to prepared dish. Cover and refrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours.
Bring wine to simmer in small saucepan. Remove from heat. Add figs. Let stand until figs soften, about 15 minutes. Drain wine. Quarter figs. (Pâté and figs can be prepared 1 day ahead. Keep pâté refrigerated. Transfer figs to small bowl; cover and refrigerate.)
Unmold pâté onto platter. Press walnuts onto sides of pâté. Garnish top with chives and some figs. Arrange lettuce on platter with pâté. Place remaining figs atop lettuce. Serve with toasts.

Thai Guacamole

I love making guacamole for a snack, it great for you, raw, and delicious. Try this twist..


Ingredients
1 avocado, pitted and peeled
1 cup green beans
3tbsp lime juice
2 tbsp minced ginger root
1 tbsp chopped, seeded jalapeno
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp curry
1/4 cup minced cilantro.
Instructions
Puree avocado, beans and lime juice until smooth. stir in all other ingredients.
(To taste- this is VERY garlicky, so if you want, you can reduce the garlic)
Play around with it; it comes out interesting any way you look at it! Yields about 12 servings.

SHOP LOCAL

If you're like me, you try to buy local and organic when you can, but sometimes it's just easier to run to the supermarket, buy cheap, and not think about where my food is coming from.
  Here in New York, we are lucky to have so many green markets, but in the winter months, there are less vendors, and less choice it seems.
But I just found a great site that helps you find local farms online. Go straight to the source!http://www.localharvest.org

Good luck, and healthy eating!

Yummy Pizza!

I love making homemade pizza.. you have more control over how unhealthy you decide to eat. I love veggies on my pizza, here is a great recipe I found on Martha Stewarts web site!
Serves 4
  • Olive oil, for baking sheet and drizzling
  • Flour, for dusting surface
  • 1 pound store-bought pizza dough, fresh, or thawed if frozen
  • 8 ounces part-skim mozzarella cheese, grated (about 2 cups)
  • 6 cups (about 1/2 recipe) Roasted Fall Vegetables, drained and coarsely cut
  • 1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves (optional)
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Brush a large baking sheet (preferably rimless) with oil, or line with parchment paper, if desired, for easy cleanup.
  2. On a lightly floured surface, roll and stretch dough into a 12-by-16-inch oval (or as large as will fit on baking sheet); transfer to sheet.
  3. Sprinkle dough with half the mozzarella. Scatter vegetables on top, and dollop with ricotta; sprinkle with remaining mozzarella and, if using, rosemary. Drizzle with olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Bake until bubbling and golden, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve.
From Everyday Food, October 2006