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Food and Wine

 

ST recipe022112b 225 Food and Wine

A high-quality pre-made pie crust makes this recipe even faster and simpler.

 

Dining Tip: Spinach Quiche

An easy, classic recipe to pair with a Spanish white
Jennifer Fiedler

• 1 bunch spinach, washed and chopped
• 4 shallots, thinly sliced
• 4 eggs
• 1/2 cup milk
• 1/2 cup heavy cream
• 1/2 seed nutmeg, grated
• 1/4 cup comté cheese, grated
• 1 piecrust (store-bought or homemade)

1. Preheat the oven to 325° F. Bring a small pot of salted water to a boil. Add the spinach and cook until soft, around 2 minutes. Drain, then squeeze the excess water out of the spinach.

2. In a medium saucepan, heat a tablespoon of cooking oil over medium-high heat. Sauté the sliced shallots until soft and just caramelized, around 5 minutes.

3. In a large bowl, mix 3 of the eggs with the heavy cream, milk, grated nutmeg and 1/2 teaspoon of salt.

4. Coat a 10-inch pie pan with butter. Roll or unfold the piecrust and line the pan with the dough, trimming the edges. Spread the cooked spinach over the dough then cover with the grated comté. Pour the egg mixture slowly over the spinach and cheese. Beat the last remaining egg in a small bowl with a fork. Using a pastry brush, baste the exposed crust with the egg wash. Bake the quiche in the oven for 30 minutes, or until the custard has set and the crust has browned. Serves 4 to 6.

ST recipe021312 225 Food and Wine

Dining Tip: Pasta with Mushroom Ragoût

An earthy, satisfying pasta dish to pair with Barbera
Posted: February 13• 2 pounds mixed mushrooms (choose 3 to 5 different types, including wild mushrooms)
• 1/2 ounce (15 grams) dry mushrooms
• 1 shallot, finely chopped
• 1/2 cup dry white wine
• 1/2 cup concentrated chicken or veal broth
• 3 tablespoons butter
• Salt and freshly ground pepper
• 1 pound orechiette or other chunky dry pasta
• 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

1. Trim the mushrooms, reserving the stems and trimmings. Leave small mushrooms whole and cut larger mushrooms into halves, quarters or thick slices so everything is roughly the same size.

2. In a saucepan, combine the mushroom trimmings, dry mushrooms, chopped shallot, wine and broth. Simmer covered for at least 30 minutes, then pour through a strainer into a small bowl, pressing the trimmings to extract as much juice as possible.

3. In a large skillet, melt the butter and sauté the mushroom pieces until they start to wilt. Season them lightly with salt and pepper. Add the mushroom liquid, cover the pan, turn down the heat and let cook gently until mushrooms are very tender, about 20 to 30 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, in a large pot, bring 6 quarts of salted water to a boil. About 8 minutes before the mushrooms are done, add the pasta to the boiling water and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta and return it to the hot pan. Toss it gently over high heat for 30 seconds to dry, then stir in the hot mushroom ragoût. Toss another 30 seconds to allow the juices to soak into the hot pasta, then serve in warmed bowl with a tablespoon or so of grated cheese atop each serving. Serves 6 to 8.

FS Valentine020312b 225 Food and Wine

Beads of salmon caviar give a saline pop to this rich and creamy oyster dish.

Warm Pacific Oysters with Leek Confit, Salmon Caviar and Vermouth Cream

Note: This recipe serves six. To scale it down for a more intimate dinner for two, use one dozen oysters, six per person. Use half the listed amount of leeks and butter for the leek confit, half the listed amount of all ingredients for the vermouth cream, 1/4 ounce of caviar and 2 slices of brioche.

For the oysters:
• 36 medium Pacific oysters (may substitute East Coast or Gulf oysters)

Place the larger half of the oyster shell on a secure work surface and hold the top half down with a kitchen towel. Insert the tip of an oyster knife into the soft area at the hinge of the oyster and gently apply pressure in a downward motion until the knife penetrates into the oyster. Gently separate the oyster from the muscle that attaches it to the shell and place it in a bowl. Pour the oyster liquor through a fine mesh sieve over the oyster in the bowl, repeat with the rest of the oysters, refrigerate and reserve.

For the leek confit:
• 4 medium leeks, white only, rinsed well and cut into 1/4-inch dice
• 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
• Salt and white pepper to taste

Place the diced leeks in a cool sauté pan with the butter. Slowly increase the heat until the leeks begin gently simmering with the butter. Season with the salt and pepper and slowly cook the leeks until tender. Remove the confit from the pan and reserve.

For the vermouth cream:
• 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
• 1 whole shallot, peeled and diced
• 1 cup dry white vermouth
• Reserved oyster liquor
• 2 thyme sprigs
• 1 bay leaf
• 3 whole white peppercorns
• 1 cup heavy cream
• Salt to taste

In sauté pan, heat the butter over medium heat until it foams and subsides. Add the shallot and cook until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the vermouth and cook over medium-high heat until it has almost completely evaporated. Add the reserved oyster liquor, thyme, bay leaf and peppercorns. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat and add the heavy cream. Simmer until slightly thickened, about 4 minutes, then season with salt. Pass the sauce through a fine mesh sieve and discard the solids. Transfer the sauce to a clean pan.

To serve:
• 1 ounce salmon caviar
• Herbs for garnish: parsley, chive, chervil and tarragon
• 6 slices brioche, toasted

Gently heat the vermouth cream until simmering. Add the oysters and leek confit until the oysters are just cooked. Arrange six oysters each, and equal portions of the leek and cream mixture, in warmed shallow dishes, and garnish with the caviar and herbs. Serve with toasted brioche. Serves 6.   Serve with Sauvignon Blanc.

They pair the decadent dessert with Banyuls, a French dessert wine. “It’s a fortified Grenache, and the bright red fruit flavor, spice and a note of cocoa go really well with chocolate,” .

Belgian Chocolate Mousse

18 ounces bittersweet chocolate
9 ounces milk chocolate
¾ cup warm milk
5 egg yolks
9 egg whites*
2 cups heavy cream
Whipped cream, for garnish
Fresh raspberries, for garnish

Break the chocolate into squares or chunks, then melt in the microwave (30 seconds at a time, stirring before continuing) or in the top of a double boiler. When melted, transfer the mixture to a medium bowl. Whisk in the milk until completely incorporated, then mix in the yolks.

Using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites until stiff and fold into the mixture. Beat the cream to soft peaks and fold into the mixture. Pour the mixture into martini or wine glasses. Serve with whipped cream and chocolate shavings or with fresh raspberries. Serves 12.

* If using raw whites is a concern, combine them with a little sugar in the top of a double boiler and warm to 140°F. Cool and proceed as described in the recipe.

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