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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Cooking Classes - Entrées

Last night I again had the pleasure of leading a cooking class. We prepared a number of entrées such as Salt baked Rainbow Trout, Marinated Lamb Kebabs, Grilled Bison Rib eye steaks with two herbed butters and Cheese Soufflé.

1. Salt Baked Rainbow Trout

(image from Google Images)

1 Small Rainbow Trout*
1/2 - 1 kg Course Sea Salt
3 tbs ground Lemon Grass*
Parchment Paper

Preheat oven to 400º. Fit parchment paper on to baking sheet and place whole fish on the paper. In a bowl, mix salt and lemon grass together. Add enough water to make a paste with the salt but not too much as to dissolve the salt. Pack the salt mixture over the fish. Bake at 400º for up to 20 minutes. The salt will start to brown slightly when done. Remove from the oven and crack open the salt dome. Brush aside the salt and place on a platter. Peel away the skin of the fish and you should have very moist, flavourful fish.

Some variations can include using other fresh herbs in the salt or smoky dry teas.

*Beautiful Rainbow Trout or other fish now available at Gimli Fish, located in Winnipeg at 596 Dufferin Ave. and 625 Pembina Hwy.
** Ground Lemon Grass is available in Winnipeg in the freezer section at Dino's Grocery Mart at 460 Notre Dame Avenue.


2. Grilled Marinated Lamb Shank Kebabs

(Image from Google Images)

1 lamb shank boned out or cubed for kebabs
4 blood oranges (options are: pomegranate juice/molasses, raspberry juice, cranberry)
1/2 cup red wine
4-6 minced garlic cloves
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp chopped rosemary
1 tbs Ras El Hanout*
1/3 cup good olive oil

For the reduction:
Juice of one blood orange
1/2 cup red wine
Salt and Pepper
1 tbs butter

1-2 days prior to cooking, prepare marinade and let lamb sit in the refrigerator in the marinade. If making boneless lamb shank whole, grill on hot BBQ for up to 10 minutes a side, turning for grill marks. If making kebabs, skewer meat and place on hot BBQ, turning after 5 minutes.

In a sauté pan, heat the juice, wine and season. Let cook and reduce for a few minutes before adding the butter. When meat has finished cooking, let rest on a platter. Drizzle the reduction over the meat. Serve with flat bread, rice or couscous.

* Ras El Hanout is a Moroccan spice blend available for sale at Halal Meat Centre & Specialty Foods at 206 Maryland St and Dino's Grocery Mart at 460 Notre Dame Avenue. Literally, Ras El Hanout means "Best of the Shop". I make this blend of 25 spices that matches beautifully with lamb and vegetable tagine dishes.


3. Grilled Bison Rib Eye steaks with herbed butter

Drizzle olive oil over steaks. Heat BBQ to high heat. For 1 inch thick steaks, cook for 4 minutes a side to get medium rare. Turn steaks at two minutes to get grill marks. Always let meat rest.

For the herbed butter:

1/2 cup Softened butter
1/2 tsp dried chipotle chilies
1/4 tsp smoked paprika

Blend ingredients and chill in plastic wrap in the refrigerator. Cut off small piece per steak and place on steak when the meat is resting.


1/2 roasted red pepper
1 pinch saffron
1/2 cup softened butter

Try fruits or favourite herbs for different butters.


4. Cheese Soufflé

5 eggs separated
3 tbs butter
1/2 cup flour
1 scant cup milk
Salt and Pepper
1/4 + tsp grated nutmeg
Cheeses (1/3 cup grated parmesan, 1/3 cup grated Cave Aged Gruyere, 1/3 cup grated Crotonese Cheese)

Preheat oven to 400º. Butter and flour a soufflé dish. In a metal bowl over a saucepan with boiling water (1/4-1/2 inch water), make a basic bechamel sauce by whisking butter and flour together in bowl and adding the milk. Whisk until thickened, removing from heat as needed to prevent lumps or separating. Add salt and pepper and nutmeg. Stir in cheeses and blended egg yolks. Beat egg whites to a stiff peak and fold in to the cheese sauce. Pour into soufflé dish and bake for 30 minutes.

Serve immediately.


Thursday, April 12, 2007

New tasting menu

(Crab Cones)

Tasting Menu

Bourbon Rabbit Liver Pate with Baguettes
Crab Cones
Paired with Trumpeter Brut Sparkling

Miso Turkey Vegetable

Kashmiri Goat Curry
Moroccan Lamb Chop with Blood Orange reduction and Couscous Timbale and Blood Orange/Fennel Relish
Paired with Cuumano Nero D'Avola

Scented warmed water for hand washing

Butternut/Sage Ravioli in Brown Butter
Bison Tenderloin Medallions in creamy Morel and King Oyster Mushroom sauce
Paired with Mazzoco Chardonnay and Beyerskloof Pinotage

Cheese Course

Meyers Lemon Curd Meringue Tarts
Paired with Marnier Pineau des Charentes

(Meyers Lemon Curd Meringue Tart)

Thank you Sheila Nash from the MLCC for the wine pairings.