Sunday, March 20, 2005

I made a good dinner the other night:
Grilled asparagus spears
Sauce maltaise (hollandaise made with blood orange juice instead of lemon juice)
Quinoa with garlic
Roasted Carnival squash
I also roasted beets, but I haven't eaten them yet.

I was proud of myself: everything, including the broth I used to cook the quinoa, was made from scratch. The asparagus, blood oranges, and garlic were from the Box, as were the carrots and leek ends I used for the broth (though not the mushrooms or celery). The Box = Farm Fresh to You from Capay Farms.

The night before, I made some cheddar pie crust from scratch and used it to make two lattice-top Pink Lady apple pies, which I had a la mode with Robert, Sarah, Mike, Kenny, and Rahul, while watching Pee-Wee's Playhouse episodes. The apples were also from The Box.

Heat a grill pan to high, oil the asparagus, and throw it on there, turning it around after it gets some grill marks on it. Keep a window open--this gets smoky!

Sauce Maltaise:
I don't remember all the exact quantities, but you need to whisk together three egg yolks in a simmering double boiler with 1 1/2 Tbsp. of cold water. Once the yolks are thick and foamy, whisk in some warm (not hot) melted butter--I think it was 1 stick. Also whisk in salt and pepper and some blood orange juice. (The blood orange juice should be a cooled reduction of about 1/4 cup blood orange juice--2 small oranges--with two big strips of zest and a little bit of sugar simmered for about 4 minutes.)

Quinoa: Wash the quinoa thoroughly to remove the bitter saponin coating. Saute a clove of minced garlic in oil, then toast the quinoa in the pan with the garlic until it's golden. Add twice the volume of the quinoa in liquid, bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer and cover until all the liquid is absorbed. (Like making rice pilaf).

Squash: Stab a few times and bake on a foil-covered pan in a 350-degree oven for about 45 minutes.

Beets: Scrub well, and bake in a covered baking pan with 1/2 cup water in a 350-degree oven for about 45 minutes.

This morning I made a corn and potato semi-souffle from the Whole Foods cookbook: beat three egg whites till foamy (I did it by hand!), slice 2 potatoes (from the Box) and roast at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes, mix some flour, red pepper flakes, cinnamon, salt, pepper, and a can of corn into the egg whites, and make a casserole in a greased square pan by layering potatoes with the corn mixture. Bake for about 30-45 minutes at 350 degrees, until the potatoes are tender and the top is golden. It was a little too bland.

I also had an amazing (and very expensive) truffle and an outstanding square of mint chocolate from the Scharffen Berger factory. I think I would like to move in there forever.

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