Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine’s – We’re Two!

C says:

I can’t believe we’re two! Time really does fly, and judging from the number of posts in 2007 compared to 2006, we’re just eating more and more. Our ever expanding waistlines (and everything else) can lay claim to that.

As per tradition, I cooked our Valentine’s Day dinner again, only this year I took leave (I have leave to clear, I’m not THAT devoted a wife) so I was able to spend a fairly leisurely day prepping and cooking, rather than making some items in advance like I did last year.

I made a seared tuna and rocket salad to start, and in case you’re wondering, yes I used my blow-torch again to sear the tuna.

For the main, I got a couple of fillet steaks from The Butcher again, and made a beef fillet with mushroom gratin dish that I saw on Gordon Ramsay’s F Word. Basically, he seared the fillet on all sides just to brown it, then topped it with a mixture of sautéed mushrooms (I used shitake and baby portobellos), cream and egg yolk, grated parmesan cheese on top, and stuck the whole pan into the oven to roast. I wanted an easy carb, so I just steamed some new potatoes and tossed them with butter and some truffle salt that I got from Culina.

The gratin added a new flavour dimension to the meat, but I’m not sure if I prefer this, or just a simple ol’ grilled steak. What I DO know is that the fillet steaks from The Butcher seem to be getting even better. The steaks today, which they cut specially for me because I wanted larger portion sizes than those on display, were even finer, more tender and sweeter than I remember. At $35 for 500g of meat, I think they’re well worth the price.

What’s our Valentine’s dinner without lava cakes; this year I used a new recipe, after my last attempt with the Nigella recipe turned out less than stellar. Unfortunately, they were a failure *sob* They didn’t ooze at all; I guess a minute and a half extra really makes a huge difference, because the practice one I made earlier in the day was too oozy and liquid. Argh I have half a mind to give up on these altogether; my track record has been dismal of late. In terms of taste, hard to believe but I think I’ll actually go back to the Nigella recipe. The one I tried today was little too light and airy, and didn’t have the sinful, almost fudgey texture of Nigella’s.

I’m now on a mission to re-perfect my lava cakes. Wish me luck.

A says:

Starter was great. Main was nice but I think the meat was so good, it really didn’t need all the accompaniments. Too bad about the dessert. Not bad but not great either. Still it was a meal that’s as good as anything from a normal restaurant.

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