Archive for December, 2010

Matthew’s Homecoming

Friday, December 17th.  Matthew came home today after five weeks on the road.  I always try and have something homey but light for him to eat. After sitting in an airport and on a plane for 8 to 10 hours one is usually very tired and hungry.  Not wanting to weigh him down with food, I opted for a nice salad of Bibb lettuce with warm vegetable vinaigrette from the December 2010 issue of Food & Wine.  It was a success.



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Roasted Cornish Hens

So, I haven’t written in a while.  I wanted to post about a meal I had with Kris a week or so ago, but, I didn’t like the picture I took it’s upside down and I don’t know why.  I’m taking pictures with my laptop which is really difficult.  I’ll have the digital camera back on Friday when Matthew returns home from Africa.

Anyway when Kris came for dinner I prepared Roasted Cornish Hens with Balsamic Glaze from Lydia Matticchio’s “Lidia’s Italian-American Kitchen”.  It’s a great recipe: sauté scallions, carrots, celery, dried porcini mushrooms, fresh rosemary and fresh sage in a little olive oil until the scallions are wilted. Then smooth the vegetables out and on them nestle the hens seasoned with salt and pepper; put a sprig of rosemary, sage and a bay leaf in the cavity.  Roast at 425 degrees, for 25 minutes, basting with chicken stock to keep the vegetables moist until the hens are lightly browned.

Then remove enough of the roasting juice to measure a cup and dissolve honey and balsamic vinegar in it.  Return the birds to the oven and baste occasionally with the mixture until the birds are a rich mahogany color for another 15 minutes.  Disgard the vegetables.

I served this with Acorn Squash with Sage Oil from Mario Batali’s “The Babbo Cookbook”   Cut the squash into rings, and put them in foil along with some cipolline onions  wrapped separately in foil, in the oven for an hour, then allow to cool.  Puree the squash in a food processor, then add an egg yolk, Parmigianino-Reggiano, mascarpone, nutmeg, salt and pepper; fold in whipped egg whites and place in ramekins that are lightly greased with butter or oil, and fill them half way; place them in a pan filled with water halfway up the ramekins and baked for 35-40 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. 

While the squash baking place shiitakes mushrooms in another pan with a drizzle of olive oil, sprinkle with chopped sage and garlic and toss.  Roast until mushrooms are tender 15-20 minutes, cool.  Deep fry a few sage leaves in olive oil.  Carefully unmold the squash, place a few onions around it and garnish with the fried sage and a few julienne strips of squash; combine the mushroom oil (strained) with sherry vinegar, add mushrooms pour over squash  and serve.  There was also a sage oil made of olive oil and fresh sage but I thought it was overkill, ( I did make it ) I think the mushroom vinaigrette and some parmigiano sprinkled on top is perfect!  Sorry Mario ( I still love you).

All in all it was a good meal.  Bon Appetit!

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To Master The Art

I just saw To Master The Art at the Timeline Theater (  in Chicago at 615 W. Wellington) and it was fantastic! 

Have you ever read a great novel that was turned into a movie and you came out of the theatre really upset thinking what book did they read?   Well, not this time. The book is ; My Life In France by Julia Child with Alex Prud’homme. I thought To Master The Art was the best thing I’ve seen in a while.  The show began and ended just where it should have ( for me anyway) to convey the story.  William Brown and Doug Frew the directors- bravo!

  Karen Janes Woditsch who played Julia nailed the part.  As did Jeannie Affelder as Simone Beck.  Craig Spidle really brought Paul Childs personality and love of Julia to life.  The entire cast was fabulous, if you haven’t seen it don’t wait.  The dialog,  and humor were engaging and it moved along nicely. The use of real food on the stage and the smell of butter and shallots cooking really added to the ambience of the whole production. Even the stage setting was perfect, I love the fact that they made the sink low to the ground so that she towered over it just like in the book.  The details were marvelous.  Two extra shows were added  because of the demand.  I hope it’s going to be around a little while longer.

If you’re a foodie you need to see this!

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