Using the diverse cultures and foods of Astoria, NY to feed one man's imagination in the kitchen.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Spend a day about town and still cook dinner for friends.

Today was a great day. Played tennis at Astoria park till 10am then off to Grand cafe with wife for a leisurely lunch at 11am, sipping frappes and watching the world go by from our comfy outdoor table. Took the subway into town to see an exhibit at MOMA (interesting) then strolled Central Park till 4pm. Had to get back home because a friend was coming for dinner and nothing done yet about food.

Deciding to keep it lite and simple fit the bill for an easy stress free meal. Took a mental inventory of the goodies in our fridge, hastily picked up some items in the neighborhood and home for a nap. Up at 6pm to set table, caffinate and start prep for dinner at 7pm.

Tapas and a salad would do the trick. Used items from last nights dinner plus the new purchases and a few secret ingredients to turn out a nice menu. Very little cooking tonight, thank you very much.

The Salad.
Left over feta and olives with some chopped tomatoes, lettuce, cucs and red onion for the salad. Served with flaky sea salt, extra virgin olive oil from Morocco and Greek red wine vinegar.

Roast salmon with wasabi mayo
Last night's entree (lemon grilled salmon) spread onto toast points with a wasabi mayo. Purchase some prepared wasabi paste from your local sushi joint. Mix 1 cup mayo with enough wasabi so that the flavor stands out but not too spicy. Add a touch of sweet relish to balance the heat with some sweet.

Truffled egg salad

Organic eggs from last week's farmers market run, hard boiled, cooled and mashed with mayo and truffle oil. Onto toast and topped with thinly shaved imported proscuitto. *Credit to Chef Darren at Il Bambino for this amazing combination.

Sliced apple and imported Parmesan served with aged balsamico.

All in all, this menu makes for a nice presentation.

Our guest brought a delicious chocolate mousse cake for dessert. We ate, we talked, we spent the evening with a good friend. And that completes tonight's meal. Little work, big results and tiny clean up. Today's lesson? Know your local shops, have a few top notch secret ingredients on hand and you can turn leftovers and pantry items into a special meal with little work.


jim morrison said...
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jim morrison said...
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jim morrison said...

Eggs and Proscuitto!!! Even I can make that. A wine that jums to mind right away, Stefano Inama makes a few Soaves that would be delicious. The Classico should be easy enough to find in the Metro area, but if your feeling ambitious seek out the single vineyard wine, the Inama Soave Foscarino. The weight is something like Pinot Blanc, with soft fruit akin to Pinot Grigio, but with far more structure and Minerality from the volcanic soil. It will stand the truffles with great aplomb yet it will not dominate the subtle flavors of the eggs.