January 31, 2005

Crab Stuffed Salmon

Crab Stuffed Salmon
(cobbed together from various sources)

8 oz. salmon filet

4 oz. crabmeat
3 TBSP Butter
1/4 cup green onion, chopped
1 egg
1 tsp Dijon mustard
dash Worcestershire
pinch Pepper
pinch Salt
1/2 cup Bread crumbs

Saute green onions over medium high heat in the butter until tender. Beat egg then add mustard, Worcestershire, salt, pepper, bread crumbs. Add to pan. Mix in crab until well combined and refrigerate until ready to stuff the salmon. (Stuffing should be allowed to cool before inserting in uncooked salmon.)

Place stuffing in salmon filet, fold over, and secure. Cook in pre-heated 400 degree oven, 10 minutes for every inch thickness of folded fish.

Notes: I think I've decided the stuffing is a bit on the bland side and I'm not entirely sure how to dress it up. Most of the recipes I found are for stuffed flounder, but most whitefish or flat-fish types aren't popular in this household (well, except with me), so I decided to try it out on salmon. Tonight's filet took 25 minutes to cook through. Oh - and note to self, remove plastic top of glass Pyrex dish prior to putting in the oven. Sigh. Just not my night, apparently.

Posted by Jennifer at 9:44 PM | Comments (17)
January 28, 2005

Gorgonzola Penne

Gorgonzola Sauce
from Marcella Hazan's Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking

1/4 pound gorgonzola at room temperature
1/3 cup milk
3 TBSP butter
pinch of salt
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 1/4 pounds pasta
1/3 cup freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano

Choose flameproof serving ware that can subsequently accomodate all the pasta. Combine gorgonzola, milk, butter and salt over low heat. Stir with a wooden spoon, mashing the cheese and incorporating it with the milk and butter. Cook until sauce has a dense, creamy consistency. Take off the heat until you are nearly ready to drain the pasta.

Just before draining the pasta, add the heavy cream to the sauce and stir over medium-low heat until thickened. Add the cooked drained pasta and toss. Add the grated cheese and toss until melted. Serve immediately from the pan with additional grated cheese on the side.

Serves 6.

Notes: This really did turn out rather yummy, but if you compare what I've written above with what is actually written in the cookbook, you'll see I took some liberties in approach. I was once again reminded that I'm not pleased with how this cookbook is written. The language isn't always clear (for instance, she says you reduce the sauce, not that you thicken it, but over medium-low heat it's not really going to do much in the way of reduction). Her instructions were also very particular about the gorgonzola, especially in the type (which I didn't really have much choice about) and in not using it cold (which was helpful). Since I was cooking for two, I only made about 1/3 pound of pasta (I used penne) and didn't end up with much extra sauce (perhaps I'm too generous, but I would have felt I was stretching the sauce with almost 4 times the pasta).

Served with rosemary olive oil bread and my roasted tomatoes (with cheese and oregano). Parker Station Pinot Noir 2003 was the accompanying wine, medium-bodied with a smooth texture; a bit fruity on the palate with a hint of something sharp and spicy in the finish. By my estimation, a pleasant but not challenging beverage.

Posted by Jennifer at 9:39 AM | Comments (2)
January 25, 2005

Food Addiction

Everyone has to eat.... but some people are a *bit* more involved with it than others. Selections courtesy of a recent thread on eGullet.org, some ideas about how to know when you have a "problem"....

* when you plan vacations around where to eat and not what to see
* when employees at small ethnic markets greet you by name
* when you're accused of reading cookbooks like novels, and not only don't deny it but are confused as to how anyone could do it differently
* when your coworkers greet you on Monday morning by asking what you cooked over the weekend
* when your mother calls *you* for cooking advice
* when someone asks for driving directions and all your landmarks are restaurants
* when you have a spreadsheet for restaurants you want to try
* when grocery shopping isn't a chore -- it's a highlight of the week (and you find an ingredient for something that has you jumping up and down in the aisles)
* when you travel and take your own knives and cooking equipment along
* when it actually costs more to cook at home than eat out at a mid-range restaurant
* when your clothes are basic jeans and tshirts, but you spare no expense on cookware and kitchen accessories (e.g. Wusthof, KitchenAid, All-Clad)
* when you have a blog solely dedicated to food/cooking

Posted by Jennifer at 9:01 PM | Comments (6)
January 21, 2005

Veal & Gorgonzola

Veal Scaloppine with Gorgonzola Sauce
Bon Appetite (April, 1999)

1 cup beef stock or canned beef broth
1 cup chicken stock or canned low-salt chicken broth
1 pound veal scaloppine
All purpose flour
3 tablespoons (about) olive oil

1 cup whipping cream
3/4 cup chopped seeded plum tomatoes
6 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2/3 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese

Boil both stocks in medium saucepan until reduced to 1 cup, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

Sprinkle veal with salt and pepper. Dredge veal in flour to coat; shake off excess. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in heavy large skillet over high heat. Working in batches, add veal and saute until cooked through, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer veal to platter; tent with foil to keep warm. Repeat with remaining veal, adding more oil to skillet as necessary.

Add reduced stock mixture, cream, 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes, 4 tablespoons basil and tomato paste to skillet. Simmer until reduced to sauce consistency, whisking frequently, about 5 minutes. Add 1/3 cup Gorgonzola; stir until melted.

Pour sauce over veal. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup chopped tomatoes, 2 tablespoons basil and 1/3 cup Gorgonzola.

Serves 4.

Notes: A relatively easy recipe. The preparation time was minimal -- more of it taken up by waiting for the broth to reduce than by chopping up ingredients. The sauce came out somewhat thinner than I anticipated. Perhaps I'll let the second stage reduce a bit longer next time before adding the cheese. Still, it was tasty -- though I feared the gorgonzola might overpower the dish, that wasn't the case, and the tomatoes provided a nice contrasting brightness, both in flavor and color. Definitely worth revisiting.

Posted by Jennifer at 10:49 AM | Comments (0)
January 16, 2005

Marinated Rabbit Stew

Marinated Rabbit Stew

3-4 lb. rabbit, cut up
1/3 c. olive oil
3 TBSP fresh lemon juice
2 1/2 tbsp. soy sauce
2 tsp. grated lemon rind
4 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 tsp. dried rosemary - or - 1 TBSP fresh rosemary
1/2 tsp. fennel seeds
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 c. all-purpose flour
2-3 TBSP. butter
1/4 c. Madeira or dry sherry
3 c. chicken broth
1 bay leaf
2 TBSP all-purpose flour
Parsley for garnish

Rinse rabbit and pat dry. Place into deep bowl or plastic bag. Set aside. Combine olive oil, lemon juice, soy sauce, lemon rind, garlic, rosemary and fennel. Pour over rabbit. Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours.

Drain and place rabbit pieces on waxed paper. Sprinkle on both sides with salt, black pepper and flour.

Heat butter in heavy skillet and brown rabbit until golden. Transfer to deep casserole. Add Madeira or sherry to pan. Heat to boiling. Add broth. Boil and scrape pan clean. Pour over rabbit. Add bay leaf. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until rabbit is very tender. Remove rabbit to serving dish and keep warm.

Add flour to skillet. Stir in 2 to 3 tablespoons juices to make a paste. Gradually add remaining juices. Cook, stirring, until thickened. Pour sauce over rabbit and garnish with parsley.

Notes: I made this about two weeks ago, and I still remember how marvelous it tasted. I don't come by rabbit very often, but I'll be sure to use this recipe again when I do.

Posted by Jennifer at 5:38 PM | Comments (1)