Monthly Archives: April 2014

Maple and walnut cake with fig ice cream

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God knows I am not a sweet kind of person, but some desserts definitely have me grabbing second (more like third) servings. This cake is just sweet enough, with lots of maple caramel coming through. The ice cream, however, is stupid. So good. So creamy. So deep. In love. Most fav.

Over and out.

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Cornish hen two ways

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Grape-stuffed breast, confit leg, creamy leeks and tarragon sauce. I promise you won’t miss your starches!

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Octopus!

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Confit octopus, garlic roasted fingerling potatos, roasted red pepper sauce.

I have always professed my love to octopus and I will eat it every time it’s on the menu, but I have to admit that it is hard to cook properly and although I do not mind a slight rubber to its texture most people do. One of the ways to get rid of this ‘rubber’ is to massage the octopus for a good 45 minutes, or, as Matt did, confit it in olive oil.

More please !

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Charred scallion pappardelle and duck meat balls

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Say whaaaaat?!

This dish is insane: hand made pappardelle, duck meat balls made from duck breast, mushroom and tomato ragout and duck skin crackling garnish. So much flavour and such good textures, it is definitely one of my all-time favs.

Hand made pasta is honestly one of those things that absolutely cannot be mimicked; fresh pasta has an almost ethereal texture that is light enough to be barely there and yet strong enough to give the most satisfying biting texture. Fresh pasta honours the craftsmanship of its making with every bite and it never fails to showcase the labour put into it.

Even though I don’t particularly love duck breast when it’s done medium rare in an ‘à l’orange’ style, the meatballs are amazing; made from house ground duck breast and an assortment of delightfully tangy spices, topped off with a savoury tomato and mushroom ragout… it doesn’t get any better. Except it does! duck crackling !!!! or as I like to call it, duck CHICHARRON. Deep fried (or in this case, baked) animal skin makes me happy in many levels: in Mexico, chicharron (or deep fried pig skin) is a staple dish that can be used as appetizer or a main, a crunchy, salty, fatty piece of goodness that I have been indulging in since I was a little girl. More people should try it, maybe everybody should try it. Go on! get some!

 

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Spinach salad

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Julienne spinach, apple, celeriac and endive, toasted pecans with aged gouda dressing.

It’s key to julienne the veggies right before serving or they will lose all their texture. So pretty.

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Shrimp cake

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Shrimp cakes, lemon pepper aioli.

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Boar rillettes

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Noms.

See this? yeah.

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Cheese and charcuterie

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If I could eat this all day every day, I would. There is such variety in cheese and cured meats, with mustards, compotes, jellies, jams, olives, pickled veggies… oh mon dieu! not two boards would be the same.

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Lemon panna cotta

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Lemon panna cotta, mille-feuille finger, blueberry purée.

Simple, tasty, sweet and light.

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Coq au vin, flavour-punch potatoes

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A great way to add some pzaz to some old favourites is to spice up the sides! This traditional coq au vin would be delicious on its own, but Matt added some dijon and tarragon to the mashed potatoes, and WOAH BUDDY!!! It’s important, obviously, to use the right amount of both of these intense flavours to compliment each other instead of fight on your palate. Most importantly, you want to compliment the star of the dish; the chicken and the sauce.

When pairing wine with food, and ultimately any flavours, it is usually safe to look at foods and wines that grow close to each other. In this case coq au vin is a traditional Burgundian (FR) dish much like Dijon mustard! no wonder these flavours work so well; tarragon also makes frequent appearances in Dijon mustard itself as a lovely flavouring agent for this most delicious condiment.

 

 

 

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