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Archive for August, 2010

Soufflés and Sauces and Crêpes, Oh My

August 29th, 2010 1 comment

I am happy to report that the soufflés last night were amazing. Perfectly light and fluffy and gooey inside.  And to go with them?  Two of the best possible sides: an amazingly smooth and velvety chocolate-Kahlua custard sauce, and our friends Ian and Kristi!  The latter we invited over at the very last minute when we realized that we were going to have way too much soufflé.  As it just happened to turn out, Kristi had been talking about how she wanted to make soufflé, so it worked out perfectly.  My phone conversation with Ian went something like this:

Me: Hey, Dore and I just made soufflés, but we realized that we have way too much.  Would you guys possibly want to come over and share?

Ian: Hold on, I’m going to get a “yes” answer…

[Talking with Kristi in the background.]

Ian:  Are they chocolate soufflés?

Me: Indeed they are.  Chocoloate soufflés with chocolate-Kahlua custard sauce.

Ian: Hold on… I’m going to put you on speaker phone. [pause] Okay, say that again…

Me [now on speaker]: We’ve got some chocoloate soufflés with chocolate-Kahlua custard sauce that we need help with.

Kristi [in background]: Eeeeee!!!

They were over in record time, and I actually got to use the classic line, “They’re just coming out of the oven.”  Everything was perfect. The soufflés were warm, moist, and light.  The chocolate sauce was creamy and rich.  And, best of all, hosting friends was completely hassle free since we’d already done all of the work. 🙂

After a while, Ian and Kristi headed back to Ian’s place (to eat dinner, actually — they were just returned from a trip to Uganda and still hadn’t quite adjusted to the time shift), and Dore and I hung out for the rest of the evening watching videos and laughing, a nice warm glow of deliciousness radiating from our tummies.

This morning we slept in nice and late, and got up feeling very refreshed and energetic.  So what did we do?  Make crêpes, of course.  Yes, crêpes.  Those half-pancake, half-tortilla plate-fulls of deliciousness that only the French could dream up.  I had heard that they were hard to make, but people say the same for soufflés, and we already knew how those turned out, so we figured, “what the heck… let’s give it a go.”

I’m glad we did.

The crêpes turned out fantastic, and were really easy to make!  Dore and I had two each — one savory with prosciutto, spinach, cheese and tomato, and one sweet with sliced strawberries and the chocolate sauce from last night.  Mmm….  I’m pretty sure I’ve never cooked myself a better breakfast.

Fully sated, yet surprisingly not weighed down, we headed out to the gym to work off some of the decadence of the last few days.

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What’s For Dinner?

August 28th, 2010 No comments

Tonight we had a big old steak we found at Ralphs in the “Manager’s Specials” section for half price.  I pan fried the steak with salt and pepper while Dore cooked up a heaping pile of asparagus under the broiler and sautéed some frozen mushroom fettuccine noodles. To compliment the meal, we popped open a half-sized bottle of Tolosa 2006 Pinot Noir that we found at the local market.  (We saw the bottle and had to buy it: The first bottle of wine we ever had together was a little mini bottle of Tolosa Pinot Noir at the local Italian restaurant in San Luis. :-))

So how did it turn out?  Very, very nice.  The steak came out as a very nice medium rare.  I don’t think I could have cooked it any better.  Unfortunately the meat had quite a bit of connective tissue that made it tough to chew.  I did have a couple of bites that were definitely melt-in-your-mouth, however, and those were pure heaven.

We tried something a bit wild with the asparagus by putting a bit of balsamic vinegar over them right at the end, but it mostly ended up adding a hint of sour to the veggies that, while not unpleasant, didn’t really do anything to enhance them.  So we’ll probably skip that in the future.  But that’s the fun of cooking: every meal is an experiment.

The pasta was, as always with Trader Joe’s frozen goods, as good as you can ask for in a pre-packaged food.  Surprisingly good, really.

But enough of that… now, on to desert.  Dore tells me she’s got a soufflé planned out.  Needless to say, I’m very, very excited.

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Random Thought: Exotic Dinner

August 25th, 2010 No comments

I thought about calling the pet store today and asking them how much two pounds of iguana would cost. But then I realized that I don’t have anything to serve as an appetizer.

Oh well, some other day, I guess…

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