Monthly Archive for June, 2006

Chez Paula

Nestled in a quaint neighborhood in the village of “Cla-Due” lies the
home of our foodie Matriarch, Paula, who graciously hosted a
scrumptious, scintillating, springtime supper.
Parties are always less stressful when enlisting the cooking skills
of the Zen Zin kids.
Chez_paula3_2

Menu
Mixed Green Salad
Grilled NY strips
w/zinfandel Sauce
Grilled Asparagus
Organic fingerling Potatoes
Mandarin Orange Cake
w/fresh strawberries
Zinfandel Chocolate Gelato
Assorted wines
Port
Coffee

Chez_paula_1
Bruno shares culinary secrets
w/Paula while Mandy does
salad duty.

Zinfandel Sauce

1 bottle (750 ml) red zinfandel

4 oz brown beech mushrooms

10 shallots (whole, peeled)

1 cup demiglace

2 cups veggie stock

1 tsp olive oil

1 tsp black truffle oil

1 tbsp butter

salt + pepper

Procedure

1) Combine wine and shallots in heavy saucepan and boil over high heat until reduced to 2 tablespoons

2) Add demiglace and veggie stock and reduce to 2 cups

3) Strain shallots from sauce and return sauce to the saucepan

4) In a small nonstick pan, saute’ mushrooms in olive oil and truffle oil

5) Add sauteed mushrooms to the wine sauce

6) Whisk in butter

7) Salt and pepper to taste

Yield: Approx. 2 cups

Chez_paula7_1_2 Dinner_at_paulas1
    finished product

-The dessert challenge was
to counter balance our
awesome but heavy dinner
fare

Mandarian Orange Cake w/ strawberries
1 ½ cups all purpose flour

2 cups white sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

4 eggs

¾ cup vegetable oil

1 11 oz can mandarian oranges w/juice

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 3500F – Grease and flour 3 round cake pans

Mix flour, sugar, b powder – add eggs oil, oranges w/juice and 1/3 c OJ and vanilla – pour into pans

Bake for ~45 min

Icing –

1- 3 oz pkg instant vanilla pudding mix

1- 9 oz carton Cool whip

1 large can crushed pineapple – drained

Mix together – spread on layers – refrigerate
Dsc00770 Chez_paula12_1
We ended the night with a lovely Port & Gelato
Chocolate_zin_gelato1_2

Zinfandel Chocolate Gelato¾ bottle (750 ml) red zinfandel

10 egg yolks

4 cups half + half

1 cup sugar

6 oz bittersweet chocolate (chopped)

** I originally used ½ bottle of zin and 8 oz chocolate, but in order to be able to taste more zin and less chocolate I changed the proportions

Procedure

1) Reduce wine to ¾ cups, then add chocolate and stir until melted, set aside but keep warm

2) In medium saucepan heat half + half gently to a simmer, then turn off heat

3) In medium size mixing bowl combine egg yolks and sugar and beat together until pale yellow

4) Beat 2 tablespoons of the warm half + half into the egg mixture (do this slowly to avoid curdling the eggs), then beat in the remaining half + half little by little

5) Place bowl over a pot of simmering water and cook over a gentle heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture coats the back of a spoon (do not let temperature exceed 170 degrees or mixture will start to curdle)

6) Cool in an ice bath and thoroughly blend in the wine/chocolate mixture during the cooling process

7) Chill mixture in fridge for at least 4 hours

8) Churn in ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions

9) Tranfer gelato to a 2 qt plastic container, cover top w/ parchment paper cut to size (this will reduce air exposure and prevent ice crystals from forming on the surface of gelato), and freeze until firm
Yield: Approx. 1 ½ quarts

Zin sauce & gelatoBruno
M.O w/S Cake- D.E.W.
Photos &  Prose – Duane

Oaxacan Black Mole w/ Grilled Beef on a Stick

 

 

This is a great recipe, but be prepared to spend

4 1/2 hours in the kitchen, including clean-up,

just for the mole!!

 

Mole

** recipe adapted from The Mole Page

 

Ingredients:

6 C chicken stock (I used veggie stock)

**5 chilhuacle negro chiles, or substitute ancho chiles,

seeded, stemmed

**5 guajillo chiles, or substitute dried New Mex. chiles,

seeded, stemmed

**4 pasilla chiles, seeded, stemmed

**4 mulatto chiles, or use ancho, seeded, stemmed

**2 chipotle chiles, seeded, stemmed

1 medium white onion, cut in quarters

6 cloves garlic

2 Tbs whole almonds

2 Tbs shelled, skinned peanuts (I used hazelnuts)

2-4 Tbs lard (I used canola oil)

*2 tsp raisins (I pureed w/ some stock, but next time

will add to onion, garlic, plantain then puree)

1 slice bread (I used Challa)

1 small ripe plantain, or use a small banana

1/2 C sesame seeds

2 pecan halves (I didn?t use any)

1″ Mexican cinnamon stick (I used a regular cinnamon stick)

2 whole peppercorns

2 whole cloves

2 medium tomatoes, chopped

5 fresh tomatillos, chopped

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp dried thyme

1 bar, or to taste of Ibarra chocolate,

or other Mexican chocolate (I used 5 ounces of bittersweet

chocolate from Trader Joe’s, chopped)

1 avocado leaf, omit or use bay leaf (I used a bay leaf)

salt to taste

Procedure:

1. Toast the chiles, or fry them in lard, until just darkened

— don’t let them burn. Place in bowl, cover with hot water

until soft, about 30 min. (I softened my dried chiles in the

veggie stock)

2. Puree chiles in blender, adding the soaking water

if needed to form a paste.

3. Roast the garlic and onion in the same pan until slightly

brown, then remove.

4. Toast the almonds and peanuts slightly, remove.

5. Toast the chile seeds until dark but don’t let burn.

6. Heat 2 Tbs lard in skillet and fry raisins until plump,

remove and drain.

7. Fry bread until brown, remove.

8. Fry plantains until brown, remove.

9. Add more lard if needed, and fry sesame seeds at low

heat until slightly brown, stirring often.

10. Add pecans, brown and remove and drain.

11. Toast the cinnamon, peppercorns and cloves lightly

in a dry pan. Let cool, and grind in a molcajete or grinder.

12. In a blender or processor puree nuts, sesame seeds,

bread and pecans; use small batches if needed.

13. Add onions, garlic, plantains and puree. Remove,

then puree tomatoes and tomatillos.

14. Heat the remaining lard in a large heavy pot and fry

the chile paste until dry, but don’t let it burn.

15. Add tomato puree and fry until liquid is gone.

16. Add ground spices, nut/bread mixture, pureed onion

mixture, oregano and thyme.

17. Heat to a simmer while stirring constantly, add chocolate.

18. Toast the avocado leaf over open flame briefly, then

add to mixture.

19. Slowly add reserved chicken stock to mixture until

mixture will just coat a spoon.

20. Salt to taste.

Yield: approx. 60 fluid ounces

*The recipe didn’t specify what to do w/ the raisins –

see note under raisins for my instructions

**I used the mole blend that I purchased from Tierra

Vegetables which contained at least 4 different

types of dried chiles

Beef

 

Ingredients:

2 lbs sirloin steak

1 pack of 8 inch bamboo skewers (at least 25)

1 small bag of charcoal

Procedure:

1. Soak skewers in warm water for at least 1 hour

2. Cut beef across grain into 1/4 inch wide slices

3. Remove skewers from water

4. Thread beef onto skewers

5. Place in deep dish and coat w/ mole on both sides, 

cover and place in fridge for 2 hours

6. Remove beef from fridge

7. Place charcoal in grill and light

8. When coals are fully lit, spread them out

9. Grill beef for 2 minutes on each side

Yield: Approx. 25 sticks

Place finished product on platter w/ a bowl of

mole for dipping, gather some friends, crack open a 

bottle of your favorite full-bodied red wine and enjoy

the fruits of your labor!

 

Cheers…

 

Bruno