March 22, 2009

Corned Beef in Bourbon-Brown Sugar Sauce

Corned Beef in Bourbon-Brown Sugar Sauce
from the LA Times

2 tablespoons oil
1 large onion
1 pound corned beef
1 large clove garlic
1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
Dash ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 cup beef broth
2 tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate
1/4 cup Bourbon

Heat the oil in a large heavy-bottomed nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Slice the onion in half lengthwise, then thinly slice each half crosswise. Add the onion to the skillet, stirring well to coat the slices with oil. Reduce the heat to medium and cook until the onion is light gold, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently.

Meanwhile, slice the corned beef against the grain on the diagonal into 1/4-inch slices. Set aside. Mince the garlic.

Add the garlic and the brown sugar to the onion, stirring well. Cook until the brown sugar is bubbly and the onion is coated with the mixture, about 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in the cloves, allspice and mustard. Add the beef broth and stir well. Carefully place the corned beef slices in the skillet. Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook until the mixture thickens and is almost syrupy, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally and turning the slices over once.

Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the orange juice concentrate and the Bourbon. Return the pan to the heat just long enough to warm the Bourbon, about 1 minute. Do not boil. Divide the corned beef among serving plates and spoon the onion and sauce over the top.

Notes:Happy belated St. Patrick's Day -- this was the dinner for that evening this year. It was an attempt to do something a little bit different than the usual boiled method. However, it didn't come together as well as I had hoped. It took too long to cook down the beef broth so the sauce wasn't as thick as it needed to be before it risked making the meat tough and inedible. Also, the bourbon was just too strong and overpowered many of the other flavors, though the onions by themselves had more going for them. A worthy experiment but likely not one I'll repeat.

Posted by Jennifer at 3:17 PM | Comments (2)
March 6, 2009

Roasted Tuna with Grapefruit

Roasted Tuna with Grapefruit and Tarragon
from Bon Appetit February 2004

1 white grapefruit

2 tablespoons minced shallots
2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
6 6-ounce tuna steaks

Preheat oven to 475F. Grate 1 teaspoon grapefruit peel; reserve. Cut off peel and pith from grapefruit; cut fruit into six 1/4-inch-thick slices and discard seeds.

Mix shallots, tarragon, and grated grapefruit peel in small bowl to blend. Drizzle olive oil over bottom of medium roasting pan; heat pan in oven 3 minutes. Sprinkle shallot mixture over oil. Place tuna steaks in single layer atop shallot mixture; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast 5 minutes. Turn tuna steaks over. Top each with 1 slice grapefruit. Roast tuna to desired doneness, about 5 minutes longer for medium.

Notes: Other than the fact that I used ruby red instead of white, I followed the recipe pretty closely. I thought roasting the tuna was an interesting approach -- most of the recipes I have tried have gone for searing it in a skillet on the stovetop. I did think the grapefruit was a bit too bitter, but then I had also recently had a grapefruit salsa over fish at a restaurant and I think that was the taste I was looking to evoke. I might try combining these flavors in a different way next time to lighten it up and bring out more of the citrus.

Posted by Jennifer at 9:30 PM | Comments (1)