Thursday, January 26, 2012

Porcini Mushroom Risotto, English Peas, Black Truffles

This is the last of the truffle dishes.  Fresh Porcini mushrooms are in season and I was able to get some and a local market. This dish takes 1 hour, costs about $30 and feeds two or three.

Porcini Mushroom Risotto
1 cup organic white onions, diced
1 cup organic leek, diced
1/4 cup shallots, diced
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup white wine
2 cups Arborio rise
4 cups vegetable stock
4 cups water
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
4 tablespoon of butter
1/2 cup fresh English peas, blanched
1/2 lb fresh Porcini mushroom, cleaned, quartered and roasted at 375 for 20 minutes
2 teaspoons chives, chopped
salt and pepper

Combine water and stock on a medium saucepan and place on low heat.  Also place a large high sided sauce pot or very large sautee pan on medium low heat (4 of 10) and add olive oil and butter. Then add the chopped onions, leeks and shallots and cook until the onion is translucent, about 7 minutes. Now add the 2 cups of Arborio rice. Stir the rice and vegetables until it begins to toast a bit and becomes translucent, about 4 minutes. Now add the wine and stir until most of the wine has cooked off. Now add three ladles of the homemade warmed stock. Stir the rice well until all of the liquid is almost all absorbed. Then add three more ladles of stock and stir it in again until absorbed. Stir the pot every 3-4 minutes or so, don't walk away. Keep adding the three ladles of stock every time the liquid is almost absorbed. It should take about 35 to 40 minutes for the rice to stop absorbing the liquid rapidly and begin to get tender. About 5 to 6 times of adding the stock. Turn off the heat on the risotto and add the Romano and Parmesan cheeses and mix well. Add the roasted porcini mushroom into the risotto and gently fold it all together being careful not to beat up the rice. Finish it off with the chives and add salt and some pepper to taste. Shave fresh black Perigord truffles on top.

Serious...Buon Apetito!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Sunny Side Up Egg with Black Perigord Truffles

Many truffle aficionados say that this simple method is the best way to enjoy the flavor and aroma of truffles.  I though it was amazing as well.  The most important thing is to use a quality farm raised egg.  Buon Apetito!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Diver Sea Scallop, Crab and Egg Yolk Sauce, Black Perigord Truffles

This was the second course in the truffle experiment.  This takes about 20 minutes, feeds two and costs about $20.

Crab and Egg Yolk Sauce
1/8 cup jumbo lump crab meat
2 yolks only, farm raised egg
1 tablespoon chopped chives
1 tablespoon butter, softned

Using a double boiler whish egg yolks over the heat in a large mixing bowl.  They will increase in volume after 2 or 3 minutes.  Now add the butter and the chives and whisk again.  Toss in crab and mix thoroughly.  Season with salt and white pepper.

I pan seared the scallop in butter and olive oil along with some diced shallot.  I topped the dish with fresh truffle shaves and it was amazing.  It may have been my favorite one of all. Buon Apetito!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Creamy Polenta, Maitake Mushrooms, Black Perigord Truffles, Leek-Shallot Reduction

Ok here we go into the truffle menu I made this week.  This is the first of the Black Perigord Truffles this season.  They are about $1500/pound wholesale.  This costs about $20, takes 3 hours and feeds two with a bunch of polenta left over.

Creamy Polenta
1 1/2 cup water
2 cups half and half
1/4 stick butter
1 tablespoon salt
1 cup #1 or #2 ground cornmeal or polenta
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 stick butter

Bring milk, water, salt and butter to a light boil over a double boiler.  Slowly add the corn meal while whisking, its better if there are two people.   Now bring the heat down to low and let cook for about 2.5 hours.  You MUST stir the polenta every 5-7 minutes or so!  Once the desired texture and the consistency is reached add the remaining butter and Parmesan cheese.  Stir and remove from heat.

Shallot-Leek Reduction
2 medium shallots, thin sliced
1/2 a leek, thin sliced
1 cup vegetable stock

Place all items in a small saucepan on low heat and let reduce for 45 minutes or until the liquid is reduced to 1/4 cup.

I bought some Maitake mushrooms and I roasted it in the oven for 15 minutes on 350.

I put the polenta, then the mushroom, then the reduction.  I topped it all off with some fresh shaves of the black truffle.  Wow what an amazing way to experience the black truffles earthy flavors.  Buon Apetito!

Black Perigord Truffle - 15 grams (about $45)

Friday, January 13, 2012

Pain Perdu - Classic Fresh Toast

This easy classic makes for a great start to your day.  This cost $5 feeds two and takes 20 minutes.

Pain Perdu
1 Loaf country white bread (or brioche) from the baker, unsliced
4 farm raised eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon orange zest
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 dash cinnamon
1 teaspoon kosher salt

Whisk all the ingredients in a shallow bowl.  Slice bread about 1.5 inches thick and let soak on each side for about 2 minutes in the egg mixture.  Cook in a large flat pan with a touch of butter on medium heat. Brown on each side and then remove and place on a large baking rack in a 250 degree oven to keep warm and continue cooking through.  Serve with real maple syrup and powdered sugar.  Buon Apetito!

Butter Poached Lobster, Crispy Artichokes, Bay Scallops, Pistachio Puree and Meyer Lemon

I found some fresh mini lobster tails at Fresh Market for $6 each so I thought this would be a great way to make a spectacular dish on a budget.  This costs under $30 feeds two and takes about 45 minutes.

Butter Poached Lobster
1 stick salted butter
1/2 meyer lemon, juiced
4 tablespoons olive oil

In a very small saucepot start all ingredients over low heat.  Once melted add lobster tails in one at a time for about 15 minutes.  Remove and place in a warm oven to keep hot.

Pistachio Puree
1/2 cup of fresh pistachio, blanched and inner skin peeled
1/2 small potato, peeled, diced and blanched
1/2 white onion, diced and blanched
1/2 meyer lemon, juiced
4 tablespoon olive oil

Boil all ingredients until tender.  Puree in a blender with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.

Sea Scallops
1 cup bay scallops seasoned with salt and pepper and then sauteed on medium high heat for 4 minutes until golden on one side.

Crispy Artichokes
1 package marinated artichokes.  Remove artichokes and rinse in cold water.  Pat dry and sear in a sautee pan with butter and olive oil until golden.

Buon Apetito!!