Mustard Horseradish Sauce

One of the things I was most excited about when I made a Roast Tenderloin of Beef was leftovers to make sandwiches with. I loaded up on arugula, cheddar cheese, and topped it all off with mustard horseradish sauce on wheat bread. The mustard horseradish sauce was really easy to make and was so good (especially with homemade mayo to start it off with). That was a week of delicious lunches to look forward to! What else could I have this sauce with? Hmm….

Mustard Horseradish Sauce
From Ina Garten

3/4 cup good mayonnaise
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
1/2 tablespoon prepared horseradish
2 tablespoons sour cream
Kosher salt

Whisk together the mayonnaise, mustards, horseradish, sour cream, and a pinch of salt in a small bowl. Serve at room temperature.

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Roast Tenderloin of Beef

I had never made a roast beef before but with an old friend in town visiting I wanted to try something new. I was so pleased with the week’s worth of chicken sandwiches that I was able to make out of leftover roasted chicken that I wanted to do something similar. I wanted to make something that would give me a week’s worth of lunches.

The recipe I used, below, called for “1 whole beef tenderloin” which is a little vague so I headed to Whole Foods and let them know what I needed. They didn’t have any beef tenderloin behind the glass but they said they had some in the back and would be happy to trim one up for me. They were very helpful and asked all sorts of questions about my dish so that they would best help me.  I explained that I have never made a roast beef before and wanted to feed about 6 people (between dinner and leftovers for sandwiches) so trusted them to cut what they thought was the right size. A few minutes later they came out with this huge slab of meat. Ok, sure, whatever you guys say. I glanced at the price and saw $29.99 which was fine as it would feed me for a week. When I got to check out I quickly learnt that the beef was $29.99 per pound and that giant slab of meat was almost five pounds! Yes, that’s about $150.When they rang that up I almost fainted. Although I was mortified for being so ignorant about the price I asked them to take it back and popped across the street to Trader Joe’s and got about 2 pounds of it for about $14. Score.

The roast beef came out really nicely and was very simple to make, as you can see. I served the roast beef with a side of Leek and Potato Puree which went really nicely with it. With the leftovers, I sliced the roast beef as thin as I could and made sandwiches with arugula, cheddar cheese, and mustard horseradish sauce on wheat bread – now there is a bagged lunch to look forward to! Do you guys have any any good suggestions for leftover roast beef leftover?

20120312-201802.jpgRoast Tenderloin of Beef
From Marcia’s Kitchen

1 whole beef tenderloin, trimmed of fat
1/2 cup olive oil
1 T balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
several sprigs of fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
2-3 cloves of garlic- mashed- you don’t have to peel
kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper
2 T unsalted butter- room temp

Combine the olive oil, vinegar,parsley,thyme, bay leaf, and garlic in a glass dish large enough to hold the beef- with some space around the roast. Rub the beef all over with the mixture and marinate for at least an hour- if longer than an hour refrigerate it. (Remember to remove it from the fridge about an hour before roasting)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Remove the meat from the marinade and pat dry. Place it in a shallow roasting pan and rub the butter all over- top, bottom and sides.

Roast for 20 minutes. Check with a meat thermometer- in at least 2 places- when it’s 120 degrees it’s medium rare. The temp goes up fast so if you need to return it to the oven check every few minutes- this is one expensive cut of meat that you don’t want to over-cook.

Let the meat rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing into thick- about 1/2” slices- serve with the sauce of your choice. I added a splash of wine and cooked down the juices and finished it with a little butter which turned out great. Bearnaise or Bordelaise would work well too!

Leek and Potato Purée

I came across this recipe while looking for a side dish to serve with roast beef. It was a nice alternative to plain ol’ mashed potatoes but not too much so that the roast beef was no longer the star of the dish. These potatoes were creamy, rich, and flavorful – I’ll definitely be making them again, especially with red meat. Delicious!

Leek and Potato Puree20120311-183454.jpg
From Eat Live Travel Write

1/2 cup (125 mL) butter
1 leek, white and light green part, thinly sliced
1/2 cup (125 mL) chopped fresh parsley
1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt
1 1/4 lb (625 g) Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and chopped
2 tsp (10 mL) chopped fresh thyme leaves
1/2 cup (125 mL) 35% whipping cream, heated

Leek and Potato Puree: In nonstick skillet heat 1 tbsp (15 mL) of the butter over medium heat and cook leeks for about 10 minutes or until soft and golden. Stir in parsley and salt; set aside. Bring potatoes and thyme to boil in large pot of salted water for about 20 minutes or until tender. Drain well and mash until smooth. Add cream and remaining butter and stir until smooth and creamy. Add leek and parsley mixture into potatoes and stir to combine well. Set aside and keep warm.

Fall Salad with Roasted Pears and Blue Cheese

I’m on a salad kick! Who would have thought in the middle of a New England winter to boot? Well, its almost Springlike here in Boston so that might explain it…

Here’s another good one I have found, I’m loving the roasted pears and hope you do too. Make sure you get good blue cheese, nothing will ruin a dish quicker than a cheap and smelly blue.

Fall Salad with Roasted Pears and Blue Cheese
From Confections of a Modern Bride (Adapted from Barefoot Contessa, Back to Basics)

Ingredients20120128-102840.jpg
3 ripe but firm red Anjou pears
juice of 3 lemons
3 oz coarsely crumbled sharp blue cheese
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
1/2 cup apple juice
3 Tbsp Port
1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
6 cups of Arugula (or your favorite salad greens)
Black pepper
Salt

Instructions
Preheat the oven to 375.
Peel the pears and cut in half length-wise. Use a melon baller to remove the cores and seeds. Cut a small slice away from the rounded side of each pair to keep it steady when filling and baking. Toss the pears with lemon juices and arrange them core side up in a baking dish.
Toss the blue cheese, cranberries, and walnuts together and divide among the pears. Combine apple juice, port, and brown sugar, whisking together until sugar dissolves. Drizzle over and around the pears. Bake the pears, basting every 5-10 minutes with the apple-port mixture, until tender (about 40 minutes in my oven). Remove and let cool to warm or room temp.
Whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, and 1/4 cup of the basting liquid. Toss with the arugula and divide among 6 plates. Top each salad with a pear half, season with salt and pepper.

Crepes Two Ways

Oh mon dieu.

I decided to make crepe batter a couple of weekends ago and things got a little away from me. A batch of crepe batter apparently makes about 122 crepes so found myself trying a few new recipes as well as just “snacking” on a little crepe with lemon and sugar here and there. Thank goodness there was no nutella in the house or I would have really been in trouble.

For the batter, I used Ms Stewart’s Basic Crepe Recipe. Don’t forget to refrigerate, the batter can last up to two days (I pushed it to three).

For the first meal, breakfast, I made a galette complète, sans recipe. Although I decided not to use a recipe for this, I’d suggest you do as I made a couple mistakes (here’s a good looking one for you).crepe 1So what I did was make the crepes as the above recipe directs. I then laid them on a cookie sheet, filled the insides with ham, gruyere, and a raw egg, leaving room to fold over the sides about an inch. I then salted and peppered that shit. Using the egg as a glue, I folded over the sides an inch and carefully attempted to pop them into an oven at about 350 degrees. Can you imagine what might have happened? Well, the cookie sheet was a bit warped and had no frigging lip on them so my eggs were making a run for it and I was twisting and turning the sheet as if I was juggling trying to keep the eggs and galettes on it. Ultimately I lost the battle they ran onto the floor in a goopy mess so I had to start over, using a sheet with a lip. In the moment it was a disaster but in retrospect I wish it had been recorded as it was hilarious. Here is the finished product. The eggs ended up being overcooked so I’ll use the stove top method next time but overall – delicious. Pretty too, right?

And now… what to do with leftover crepe batter….? THIS.

crepe 2I came across this recipe and had no idea how amazeballz it would be. I’ve thrown this into the regular rotation so you betcha you’ll be seeing more of this one. The crepe was salty and creamy and the honey sauce’s sweetness was a perfect compliment to it. I could eat it by the spoonful.

Spinach Artichoke and Brie Crepes with Sweet Honey Sauce
From Half Baked Harvest

Filling:
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
    • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
    • 1 (8-12 ounces) bag fresh spinach
    • 1 (12 ounces) jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
    • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
    • 1 (8 ounce) brie wheel, sliced into slices
Sweet Honey Sauce
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Instructions

  1. Heat a large skillet oven medium heat and add in 1 tablespoon of olive oil and garlic. Add the salt, pepper and crushed red pepper if using, cook for 2 minutes. Stir in spinach and artichokes, cooking for 5-6 minutes until spinach is fully wilted. Reduce heat to low and stir in the parmesan cheese, then turn off heat. Remove from the skillet.
  2. Whisk together the olive oil and honey. Place in a small sauce pot and warm through. Keep warm until ready to use. You can also do this in the microwave.
  3. Wipe the skillet clean and heat over medium-low heat. Working with one crepe at time lay it flat in the skillet. Lay a few slices of brie on one quarter (basically make a triangle) of the crepe. Layer on the spinach and artichoke filling and then top with a few more slices of brie. Fold over the bottom of the crepe and then fold it over again to make a triangle. Cook for about 2-3 minutes and then flip and cook another 2-3 minutes or until the brie is all melty and gooey. Repeat with remaing crepes until the brie and filling are gone. I was able to make six crepes. Remove the honey sauce from the heat and stir in the chopped parsley. Drizzle the crepe with the warm honey sauce and dig in!

Salted Caramel & Chocolate Samoa Macaroons

I had big plans for today: up early, nice run around Fresh Pond, errands, lunching, some cooking… But then last night I decided that dancing was in order and ended up heading to TT the Bears for Heroes – their awesome 80s dance night. Needless to say I didn’t get out of bed at 7am as anticipated and instead snoozed until about noon. When I did finally get up the last thing I wanted to do was go for a run or be productive in any way. After a few hours of mind-numbing TV I scavenged through my cabinets and found the ingredients to make Salted Caramel and Chocolate Macaroons. Thank god as this is just what I needed to get through the day.

These are quick, easy, and delicious. They taste like Samoas / Caramel Delites without the shortbread cookie. As Depeche Mode said, I just can’t get enough.macaroonSalted Caramel & Chocolate Samoa Macaroons

from The Craving Chronicles
Makes about 24 cookies

Egg whites vary in size, so if you find your cookie mixture too runny and your cookies are forming puddles around the bottom as they bake, don’t be afraid to add a little bit more coconut and/or flour to firm things up. Keeping the mix cool will help prevent that too. The coconut oil is optional but helps to thin the chocolate some for easier dipping and drizzling.

Ingredients

4 large egg whites
12 ounces sweetened flaked coconut, divided
7 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
2/3 cup granulated sugar
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 + 1/8 teaspoon salt

6 – 8 ounces dark (at least 60%) chocolate, chopped
1/2 tsp coconut oil (optional)

Directions

Whisk egg whites in a large bowl. Add half of coconut and flour, stir with a spatula or wooden spoon until combined. Set aside remaining coconut.

In a 4-quart or larger saucepan over medium-high heat, combine butter and sugar. Cook, stirring occasionally, until caramel reaches a rich coppery color. (Caramel may looks separated with a layer of butter on top. Don’t panic.) Remove from heat. Carefully add reserved coconut and salt (Caution: may spatter!), and stir to combine. Cool about 5 minutes.

Add about 1/4 cup of the caramel mixture to the egg white mixture at a time, stirring vigorously to combine and prevent cooking the eggs. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Mixture should be wet but not too loose or runny.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet or two with parchment or Silpats. Scoop cookies between 1 1/2 and 2 tablespoon size, and place about 1-inch apart on baking sheet. (Return any remaining mixture to the fridge until read to bake.) Bake at 350°F for 12-14 mins, or until bottoms are golden brown. Cool about 2 minutes on the pan, then move to wire racks to cool completely.

Place chocolate and (optional) coconut oil in a small, microwave-safe bowl and heat in 30 second intervals on High until chocolate starts to melt. Continue heating in 15 second intervals, stirring well between each, until melted and smooth. Dip cookie bottoms in chocolate and set on wax paper. Drizzle remaining chocolate over top. Allow chocolate to harden at room temperature, or pop cookies in the fridge to speed the process up.

Doris Greenspan’s French Pear Tart

There really is something about the French and their pastries. The professionally done ones in shops are always so delicate and like little works of art and you can barely stand to eat (I said barely). Then you have the home bakers who seems to just throw something together effortlessly, pop it in the oven, and pull something gorgeous and inspired out. I’m certainly no pastry expert but I like to think that with Famille Jolivet blood running through my veins I can claim a smidge of that talent but I have a long way to go.

When I bought my first tart pan a few years ago I experimented with numerous different kinds of crusts and fillers before finding Dorie Greenspan’s French Pear Tart recipe. The recipe looked complicated, long, and intimidating but the results looked well worth it. I’ve since made it a few times and each time time its been absolutely fantastic. There is a lot of effort that goes into into this tart but it will show in the final product, I promise you. I don’t have any changes or edits to Dorie’s recipe, she has far perfected it.

French Pear Tart after cooling but pre-powdered sugar.