Sunday, March 24, 2019

A PEEP into the Upcoming #SpringSweetsWeek Festivities #Sponsored

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of the sponsors of #SpringSweetsWeek.
I received complimentary product for the purpose of review and recipe development,
but all opinions are honest and they are my own. This page may contain affiliate links.

Welcome to #SpringSweetsWeek 2019 hosted by Heather from Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks and Christie from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures! What better way to celebrate the coming of Spring than with food and a fun giveaway?!

Thirty bloggers from around the country have come together to share over one hundred sweet recipes perfect for Spring!  Get ready to ditch your hats, coats, and snow boots and get ready for some delicious sweet treats like cupcakes, cookies, sweet breads, and cocktails.


Our #SpringSweetsWeek sponsors are helping us give away some great prizes. Thank you so much Swiss DiamondDixie CrystalsNancy’s YogurtSprinkle PopAdams ExtractsBarleansMelissa’s Produce, and PEEPS®* for your generosity. I decided to shine the spotlight on that final sponsor - PEEPS® - for my introductory post. We have an incredible giveaway below and would love if you would take a moment to read about it and what you can win!


So, kick up your feet and get ready to be inspired! This is a lenghty post, but it's a worthwhile look. I promise. We have prizes, a giveaway, and lots of fun planned.

Monday's Line-Up

The Prizes
Check out the amazing prizes you can win in our #SpringSweetsWeek Giveaway!
 
Prize #1:   Swiss Diamond Cookware is giving one winner an XD Nonstick 6 Piece Newlywed Kitchen Kit!  Swiss Diamond’s 6-Piece XD Newlywed Set is the ultimate nonstick cookware collection, with a pot or pan for nearly every recipe you can think of! Nothing conducts heat more efficiently than diamonds, and combined with the extra-thick cast aluminum body, these pans have amazingly even heat distribution. With this superior heat retention, they sear ingredients as well as stainless steel, but without the messy cleanup. The XD nonstick coating releases so well, you can cook anything without a drop of oil or butter.   This set includes a 9.5" fry pan, an 8" fry pan, a 2.2 quart saucepan with lid, and 5.5 quart soup pot with lid. Swiss Diamond® International dates back to 1974, when HORT Coating Center SA was founded in Sierre, Switzerland, as a scientific research company exploring new materials and surface coatings. Fast forward a few years to 2001, when a revolutionary nonstick coating suitable for use on cookware was developed, which led to the creation of Swiss Diamond® International SA. Visit their website for delicious recipes and the best nonstick cookware around.

   
  Prize #2:  Dixie Crystals is giving one winner the Wilton Ultimate Cake Decorating Tools Set!   What better way to decorate your cakes made with Dixie Crystals sugar then to use this decorating set?  A blue and white rectangular organizer caddy has 4 see-through drawers and 2 top compartments for holding tips, plus slots on the side to hold spatulas.  Included in the caddy are 263 pieces including piping tips, a practice board, decorating bags, straight and angled spatulas, flower nails and an icing comb. There's also a lot of handy fondant tools including a roller, cut-out sets, impression mats, modeling tools, shaping foam and a fondant smoother. It's a cake decorators dream! Since 1917, Dixie Crystals® has been the South’s choice for high-quality sugar and sweeteners. Our pure cane sugar products are all natural, non-GMO and provide consistently delicious results. Visit their website  for hundreds of recipes, holiday ideas, great ways to get kids baking in the kitchen, and plenty of baking videos. 

   
  Prize #3:  Melissa's Produce is giving one winner an Organic Family Produce Box.  This box contains 100% organic fruits and vegetables including kale, cucumbers, apples, pears, lemons, oranges, carrots, onions, celery, garlic, and so much more!  It's easy to get in your five servings of fruits and vegetables with this fun produce box. Joe and Sharon Hernandez founded Melissa's Produce with a decade of produce industry experience in a small, rented produce warehouse lunchroom. The original office had just three telephones and four chairs.  In a few short years the company would grew to occupy a newly renovated and expanded 280,000 square foot office and warehouse complex.  The Melissa's brand is named after Joe and Sharon's daughter, who takes an active role in the company.  The company's Food Service Division has become a full-service operation that supplies culinary professionals with staples, exotics and Melissa's full line of organic produce.  Visit their website to find the best fruits, vegetables, gifts, and to get tasty recipes!

   
  Prize #4:  Nancy's Yogurt is giving one winner a fabulous Nancy's Yogurt tote bag full of fun items!   One winner will receive a tote bag stuffed with coupons for free Nancy's Yogurt products, a super cute T-shirt, recipe cards, and Post-Its.  It's everything you need to learn more about Nancy's Yogurt. Chuck and Sue Kesey opened Springfield Creamery in Oregon in 1960 right after they got married.  For the first decade they focused on bottling glass jugs of milk for home delivery and school lunches.  Nancy Van Brasch Hamren joined the Creamery in 1969 and shared her recipe for making yogurt.  Nancy’s became the first yogurt sold in the United States to contain live probiotics.  In 1999 Nancy's Yogurt began distributing to all 50 states.  Today there are nearly 60 employees and Springfield Creamery makes over 100 cultured dairy and soy products.   To learn more about Nancy's Yogurt, the products they sell, and how they make their products visit their website

   Prize #5:  PEEPS is giving one winner a gift card to PEEPS® & Co.  The winner can choose from a variety of delicious PEEPS® & Co candy items as well as apparel.  They even have fun gifts like throw blankets, slippers, plush bunnies, and socks.   The choice is yours! Just Born, the company that makes PEEPS® & Co., was founded in 1923 in New York and moved to Bethlehem, Pennsylvania in 1932.  Just Born got its name when founder, Sam Born, proudly displayed in his store window an evolving line of daily-made candy, declaring them "just born".  Today we enjoy the wonderful combination of sweet colored sugar and fluffy marshmallows that create the unforgettable taste experience of PEEPS® Brand Marshmallow Candies.  Visit their website to buy PEEPS® & Co. candy, gifts, and apparel.

   
  Prize #6:  Barlean's is giving one winner a bottle of Seriously Delicious Omega-3, Extra Strength Ideal CBD Hemp Oil, and a bag of Super Seeds.    Seriously Delicious Omega-3 is a tasty way to add Omega-3's to your diet without a fishy after taste.  The Extra Strength Ideal CBD Hemp Oil is made from US grown hemp, contains no artificial ingredients, has a natural mint flavor, and is gluten free, vegan, and is known to promote health and to keep people resilient to changes in their environment.  Super Seeds are a delicious way to add antioxidants and Omega-3's to your morning oatmeal, smoothies, and yogurt.  Barlean's believes that people can make a difference in the world through ordinary purchases. They are on a mission to make premium natural supplements and functional foods that feed the mind and body and using our profits to support outreach programs for people in need, both locally and around the world.  Visit their website to learn more about their products, community, and where you can purchase their products.

 
  Prize #7:  Adams Extract is giving one winner four of their amazing extracts and a set of their food colors.   The extracts include Pure Almond Extract, Pure Vanilla Extract, and Pure Lemon Extract.  The winner will also receive Adams Best Twice as Strong Vanilla which is awesome to bake with.  John A. Adams began making and selling his Green Plant Sarsaparilla extract in 1888 in Battle Creek, Michigan. In 1905, he moved his family to Beeville, TX.  Working with just $6.71 worth of materials on top of an old icebox, John A. Adams created a new formula for vanilla.  His wife tested it by whipping up a cake and announced, "John, this is the BEST flavoring I have ever used.” “Well, that’s old man Adams BEST,” he responded. The name stuck, and Adams Best was born!  Today, Adams manufactures and markets under several Adams Brand banners, including Adams Best®, Adams Extract®, Adams® Seasoning & Spice, and many more.   To learn more about Adams Extract, to shop their products, or to find delicious recipes visit their website.

 
  Prize #8:  Sprinkle Pop is giving one winner six fabulous sprinkle mixes from their Easter collection!   The sprinkle mixes include Hangin' with my Peeps, Bewitched, Signature, Green Tea, Cottontail Confetti, and Egg Hunt.  These fun sprinkles are a great addition to any spring or Easter baked goods.  Liz Butts founded Sprinkle Pop in Texas.  Liz found that not only can she pinpoint exactly what sprinkle color combinations work best together, she can create a custom blend with the perfect textures.  She grew the business from a one-woman show operating out of the small “sprinkle room” in her house on nights and weekends then soon expanded to a dedicated warehouse space with a devoted team of sprinkle fairies in under a year. She makes delicious sprinkle mixes that are custom, vibrant and luxurious.  Over 50% of all the sprinkles are dyed in house so they are one of a kind!   Visit their website to shop their sprinkles, learn how they give back to the community, and for fun recipes! 

The Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

PEEPS® Shenanigans
And here are just a few ways in which we've been having fun with our PEEPS® at Casa Mann. I've used them in as decorations. Find two glass containers that nestle into one another with enough room to wedge a PEEP. Fill the space between the two containers with PEEPS® and some candy, if you wish. Place flowers and water in the inside container. You have an instant s-PEEPS®-tacular centerpiece or tablescape!


Playing with PEEPS®:  Chicks vs. Bunnies 
We played tic-tac-toe with them. In case you're wondering - the bunnies won. The sponsor had asked us to decide if we were Team Chicks or Team Bunnies. Hands down, we were Team Bunnies all the way. #PEEPBunnies


I found the chicks too oddly shaped to do much with them. My Precise Kitchen Elf, chided me: "Mom, they're weird. But they are iconically weird. You have to love them."


Hmmmm... whether I love them, or not, they sure have brought smiles to our faces this month! Thanks, PEEPS®, for all the chuckles! We might be a little fanatical about PEEPS® now.

Thank you #SpringSweetsWeek Sponsors: Dixie Crystals, Swiss Diamond, Nancy’s Yogurt, Barlean’s, Sprinkle Pop, PEEPS, Melissa’s Produce, and Adams Extracts for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #SpringSweetsWeek recipes. All opinions are my own. The #SpringSweetsWeek giveaway is open to residents of the United States who are 18 years of age or older.   All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Six (6) winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The #SpringSweetsWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter or any other social channel mentioned in the #SpringSweetsWeek posts or entry.

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Sautéed Sesame-Soy Fiddlehead Ferns and Asparagus #OurFamilyTable


Today, Christie of A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures is hosting us as we share Springtime Sides. She wrote: "Fresh peas, asparagus, and all the spring produce flooding the market means deliciously fresh side dishes! How do you serve up spring produce?"


We share Recipes From Our Dinner Table! Join our group and share your recipes, too! While you're at it, join our Pinterest board, too!

Sautéed Sesame-Soy 
Fiddlehead Ferns and Asparagus
There are a few things that have such a short season, at least in our area, that I just about scream and dance a jig when I see them. Rhubarb is one; fiddlehead ferns are another. We've foraged fiddleheads a few times, but whenever I see them in the markets or a store, I scoop up as many as I can.

If you're lucky enough to find them, you can cook them as you would asparagus. I opted to do an Asian-inspired sauté. In this case, I didn't actually have enough fiddleheads, so I mixed them with asparagus.


What are fiddleheads? Besides being a harbinger of Spring, they are the tightly curled fronds of a young fern. They are bright green, have a snappy texture, and have a grassy, woodsy taste.

R commented that they taste "like the bottom of a redwood forest." I'm not sure exactly what that means, but that's kinda grassy and woodsy.


Jake was equally dubious this time around, too. You've had these before, I insisted.

"But did I like them?" he asked. Yes, yes you did.



Ingredients
Before you cook them, you might need to do a little bit of prep. Wash the fiddleheads and remove any brown fur or fluffy "skin" and trim off any browned ends. Now, you're set...
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 to 3 cloves garlic, peeled and pressed
  • 1/2 pound fiddlehead ferns
  • 1/2 pound asparagus, cut into 2" lengths
  • 1 T soy sauce
  • 1 t toasted sesame oil
  • sesame seeds for garnish, approximately 2 t

Procedure
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, approximately 1 minute. Add the fiddlehead ferns and asparagus and cook, stirring, until the fiddleheads and asparagus are bright green and crisp-tender, approximately 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the soy sauce, sesame oil, and sesame seeds, tossing to coat completely. Serve immediately.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Boquerones Asparagus Salad #FantasticalFoodFight


I love the Fantastical Food Fight coordinated by Sarah of Fantastical Sharing of Recipes. For more information about the event, click here.




I haven't been very good at participating, but this month, I couldn't resist. Our theme for the month is: asparagus. And those are always the harbinger of Spring, for me. So, I jumped right in as Spring is my favorite season.

The Asparagus Party
Inlinkz Link Party

Boquerones Asparagus Salad
Simple salads are a mainstay of our Spring and Summertime meals. Fresh ingredients, some protein, a pop of flavor, and we're set. So, when I picked up some fresh boquerones - anchovies! - I knew I wanted to feature them in a salad. This isn't even really a recipe, but I hope it inspires you to mix and match some fresh produce and embrace the season.


Ingredients serves 4 as a sidedish or 2 as an entree
  • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed and blanched
  • 4 C organic wild arugula
  • 12 boquerones
  • flake salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • olive oil for drizzling
  • manchego cheese for serving

Procedure
On a serving platter, place the arugula as a base. Top with asparagus. Arrange boquerones on top of the asparagus. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil. And, just before serving, shave manchego cheese over the top. Serve immediately.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Triple-Citrus Mousse Cake / Torta Agli Agrumi #TheCakeSliceBakers


So, I am new to The Cake Slice Bakers group which I stumbled across after drooling over Karen of Karen's Kitchen Stories' post about last month's selection: Ukranian Caramel Cake. Karen is one of those bloggers who makes phenomenal looking breads and cakes and makes me wish I lived closer to her; I'd definitely be inviting myself over for dessert often! In any case, I immediately started asking questions about how to join this fun group. Here's the scoop...

Each month The Cake Slice Bakers are offered a selection of cakes from the current book we are baking through. This year it is The European Cake Cookbook by Tatyana Nesteruk*. We each select one cake to bake, and then on the 20th - never before - we all post about our cake on our blogs. There are a few rules that we follow, but the most important ones are to have fun and enjoy baking - and eating - cakes!

Follow our FacebookInstagram, and Pinterest pages where you can find all of our cakes, as well as inspiration for many other cakes. You can also click on the thumbnail pictures below to take you to each of our cakes. If you have a blog and are interested in joining The Cake Slice Bakers and baking along with us, please send an email to thecakeslicebakers at gmail dot com for more details. 

The Cake Slice Bakers also have a new Facebook group called The Cake Slice Bakers and Friends. This group is perfect for those who do not have a blog but want to join in the fun and bake through this book. So, here we go...

March 2019


Triple-Citrus Mousse Cake

 After looking at the options, I asked the boys to pick and the first choice on everyone's list: Triple-Citrus Mousse Cake. A note: one of the rules is to stick to the original recipe as much as possible. This recipe calls for lemon, lime, and orange.

I ended up with Buddha's Hand Citron (it's lemon-like), Makrut lime leaves + Key limes (in the lime family), and mandarin orange (which is actually an orange and not a tangerine as it appears) because those were the homemade liqueurs I had on my 'witch shelf' as my family and friends call it. I joked that I was going to be booted from the group for not following the rules in my first month. I hope not!

This recipe comes from the Southern Decadence chapter, subtitled Mediterranean-inspired cakes with cheese, fruit, and citrus. Especially Italy and Greece.

It's hard to believe that my oldest is in Greece right now with a school trip. His teacher sent me this photo, from the rooftop of their hotel. I'm just a wee bit jealous! Even though I lived in Italy for over a year - and traveled extensively - I have never been to Greece. There was plenty to see in Italy. Till then, I'll live vicariously through his trip. I am so grateful he has this opportunity.

R and Mrs. A, his freshman English teacher and school's awesome IB MYP coordinator.
Athens, Greece. March 2019.

So, I am sharing the Triple-Citrus Mousse Cake that I am alternatively calling Torta Agli Agrumi, which literally means Cake of Citrus. I made all of the liqueurs I used in the traditional style of limoncello: clear alcohol infused with the fruit for several weeks, then a simple syrup is added and you let it age, again, for several weeks. The entire process takes about three months. Then it can sit as long as you like!

Ingredients
Crust
  • 2 C crushed graham crackers
  • 1/2 C melted butter
  • zest from 1 organic Meyer lemon (optional and not part of the original recipe)
  • Also needed: Springform pan

Makrut and Key Lime Layer
  • 4 ounces mascarpone cream
  • 1/2 C sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/4 C lime syrup or liqueur (I used my homemade Makrut-key lime liqueur from last year)
  • 1 C heavy whipping cream
  • 4 T water
  • 1 pouch powdered gelatin
  • green food coloring, optional (I used a vegetable based color that was more pastel than bright)

Mandarin Orange Layer
  • 4 ounces mascarpone cream
  • 1/2 C sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/4 C orangecello (I used my homemade mandarin-Meyer lemon liqueur from last year)
  • 1 C heavy whipping cream
  • 4 T water
  • 1 pouch powdered gelatin
  • orange food coloring, optional (I mixed red and yellow vegetable based colors that were more pastel than bright)

Buddha's Hand Citron Layer
  • 4 ounces mascarpone cream
  • 1/2 C sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/4 C limoncello (I used my homemade Buddha's Hand citron liqueur from last year)
  • 1 C heavy whipping cream
  • 4 T water
  • 1 pouch powdered gelatin
  • yellow food coloring, optional (I used a vegetable based color that was more pastel than bright)

Garnish
  • organic mixed citrus, thinly sliced
  • organic lime leaves
  • organic chamomile blossoms

Procedure

Prepare Springform pan by wrapping the outside with foil. Clear a space in your fridge to fit the pan as you'll be putting it in and taking it out repeatedly through this process.

Crust
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, and lemon zest. Use a spatula to make sure the crumbs are all moistened. Turn the mixture into the prepared Springform pan and press down to compress. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool while you prepare each layer.



Makrut and Key Lime Layer
Place water in a small saucepan and sprinkle gelatin over the surface. Heat over low heat until the gelatin is dissolved and the entire mixture is clear. Keep warm. Place the mascarpone cheese, sweetened condensed milk, and lime syrup or liqueur in a medium mixing bowl. Whip until well-combined and smooth. In a large mixing bowl, beat the whipping cream until stiff peaks form. Add in the mascarpone mixture and gelatin. Beat until well-mixed and slightly lightened and fluffy. Add green food coloring, if using. Pour mousse over the crust and smooth with a spatula. Place in the refrigerator while you create the next layer or 30 minutes, whichever is longer.


Mandarin Orange Layer
Place water in a small saucepan and sprinkle gelatin over the surface. Heat over low heat until the gelatin is dissolved and the entire mixture is clear. Keep warm. Place the mascarpone cheese, sweetened condensed milk, and orange liqueur in a medium mixing bowl. Whip until well-combined and smooth. In a large mixing bowl, beat the whipping cream until stiff peaks form. Add in the mascarpone mixture and gelatin. Beat until well-mixed and slightly lightened and fluffy. Add orange food coloring, if using. Remove cake from the refrigerator and pour mousse over the lime layer and smooth with a spatula. Place in the refrigerator while you create the next layer or 30 minutes, whichever is longer.


Buddha's Hand Citron Layer
Place water in a small saucepan and sprinkle gelatin over the surface. Heat over low heat until the gelatin is dissolved and the entire mixture is clear. Keep warm. Place the mascarpone cheese, sweetened condensed milk, and lemon liqueur in a medium mixing bowl. Whip until well-combined and smooth. In a large mixing bowl, beat the whipping cream until stiff peaks form. Add in the mascarpone mixture and gelatin. Beat until well-mixed and slightly lightened and fluffy. Add yellow food coloring, if using. Remove cake from the refrigerator and pour mousse over the orange layer and smooth with a spatula. Place in the refrigerator while you create the next layer or 30 minutes, whichever is longer.


After all three layers have been poured. Let mousse cake chill for, at least 4 hours. When ready to serve, garnish with thinly sliced citrus. The original recipe calls for thin slices of lemon, lime, and orange.


I opted to slice organic mandarins into slices, then half, and arranged them like petals of a flower. The center was an organic chamomile blossom and organic lime leaves were the leaves of my mandarin flower.


When we finally served the triple-citrus mousse cake, everyone was in awe.


The Precise Kitchen Elf commented that he loved the texture, but the flavors were too sweet. He suggested a pinch of salt in each layer next time. Hmmm...


My husband declared, "The texture is pretty amazing!" While, ever the critic, my Enthusiastic Kitchen Elf said that my colors were too dull. "And you should use a milder flavor for the orange layer." But, as he always practices sandwich critiques (that means a criticism sandwiched between two compliments), he admitted that he liked the crust. So, I made notes on the recipes for how we will adapt it next time. And there will definitely be a next time. This cake was beautiful and delicious.


*This blog currently has a partnership with Amazon.com in their affiliate program, which gives me a small percentage of sales if you buy a product through a link on my blog. It doesn't cost you anything more. If you are uncomfortable with this, feel free to go directly to Amazon.com and search for the item of your choice.

Plancha-Grilled Skirt Steak and Eggs #FoodieReads


I ordered this book - Cucina Tipica: An Italian Adventure by Andrew Cotto* - because my older son left on a school trip to Italy and Greece this week and I had Italy on the brain. This will be in a different post, but we had a Buon Viaggio! brunch for him before I dropped him off to leave for the airport.


I didn't tear up that he could see. Really. I didn't! Watching him say good-bye to Jake got me, right after breakfast, and when I was driving away after dropping him off.


But back to the topic of this post! I chuckled when I received the package because the author's sur name is Cotto. That means 'cooked' in Italian! That just goes to show you my sense of humor. I read it in one sitting before breakfast on the weekend and, then, climbed out of bed, inspired to make steak and eggs.


I can honestly say that I have never had steak and eggs. I've had the combination of ham and eggs, bacon and eggs, and even chorizo and eggs; plus one of my favorite breakfast spots locally serves calamari and eggs. But steak and eggs hasn't been on my radar. And I certainly didn't have it when I lived in Italy because I didn't eat meat when I lived there! But after reading the book, I whipped up some skirt steak and eggs. My three meat-loving boys were so happy. "We love that book, Mom!" they declared. "Even though we haven't read it. We love what it inspired." Recipe to follow...

On the Page
The story centers around a recently unemployed Jacoby who accompanies his travel writer fiancée Claire to Italy where he finds himself soaking up the food, culture and customs of Italy. And though they are there for Claire’s assignment for the renowned Haxby’s Travel Guide, Jacoby has his own agenda: to track down the story behind a photograph of a woman who may be his mother. The back of the photograph has faded handwriting that reads ‘Villa Floria-Zanobini 1939.’

What follows is an entertaining introduction to the food and culture of this part of Italy. You get chance encounters with cinghiale (wild boar), history of the area, comical interactions between the genders, and mentions of traditional dishes and regional wines. It's a rich, and fun, novel though his handle on the Italian language is more than a little clunky. But he did have me longing for a Negroni.

"'The house special is a Negroni.'
...
Bill smiled and whisked two long cocktail glasses from below the bar and added some ice. Bottles of gin, Campari, and sweet vermouth were tossed into a glass and given a quick spin with a long spoon. Orange peel was sliced off and used as garnish. Bill presented the translucent ruby cocktail with a nod.

'To a magnificent day,' Bill toasted" (pg. 104).


On the Plate
Inspired by this passage, I made fluffy scrambled eggs in the double boiler with fresh dill from our garden...

"Back in the barn, the yolks were huge and orange, and Jacoby hummed as he whipped a half-dozen eggs together with the some chopped prosciutto left over from Paolo's welcome bounty. He added some sage taken from a bush behind the barn. He scrambled the eggs and prosciutto then slowly reduced them to a creamy consistency over a double boiler.... Jacoby loved cooking for people, then sharing the meal and mutual pleasure of being together. Eating the same food; drinking the same wine; everyone on the same stage. It was like sex when sex was good and mutual" (pg. 68).

And steak was inspired by how he knew that his engagement was over; Claire had lied about where she had been for days.

"'The steak is from the butcher in Panzano.'
'How'd you know that?'
'Sage.'
'What?'
Jacoby looked at Claire. 'Sage. The cows he gets his meat from are fed on enough sage that there's a hint of its flavor in the meat. I knew it that night in the restaurant..." (pg. 174).

Plancha-Grilled Skirt Steak

Ingredients
  • 2 lb skirt steak (approximately three 1/2" thick pieces)
  • 2-1/2 t whole peppercorns (I used a mixture of black, white, and pink)
  • 1 T coarse sea salt
  • Also needed: caramelized onions, roasted potatoes, fluffy scrambled eggs, fresh lemons or limes

Procedure
Prepare plancha grill for cooking over direct heat. While grill is heating, coarsely crush peppercorns with a mortar and pestle. Mix the crushed pepper with the sea salt and set aside.

Pat steaks dry and sprinkle both sides liberally with the salt-pepper mixture, pressing gently to help it stick to the meat. Grill steaks on lightly oiled grill. Cook approximately 7 or 8 minutes total for medium-rare, so 4 minutes on each side.

Transfer steaks to a cutting board and let stand, tented loosely with foil, for 5 to 10 minutes. Thinly slice steaks diagonally and serve with caramelized onions (process in this post), roasted potatoes, and fluffy scrambled eggs for a filling Cucina Tipica breakfast. We like to squeeze fresh lemon or lime juice over our grilled steaks.

*This blog currently has a partnership with Amazon.com in their affiliate program, which gives me a small percentage of sales if you buy a product through a link on my blog. It doesn't cost you anything more. If you are uncomfortable with this, feel free to go directly to Amazon.com and search for the item of your choice.


Here's what everyone else read in March 2019: here.

Share Buttons