Thursday, August 26, 2010

Full Disclosure

It's not only vacationing that's kept me from You Gonna Finish That? No, I've gone and met someone. Oh alright, let's come right out and say it. I have a boyfriend, and we'll be referring to him as Peyton on this here bloggy posty thing. And that's all you're gonna get out of me for now. I will add this, he's a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America. How's that for serendipity? So, to the detriment of the hard-earned loyalty of my reader(s), I've spent every weekend since returning to NYC down at his place in Philly, and not in front of my computer monitor, sweating over grammar and vocabulary.

Peyton makes me breakfast every Saturday morning.
Last weekend, after a day spent at Longwood Gardens, we did a grilled chicken Caesar salad for dinner. I paid, Peyton grilled (a real bargain for yours truly). I was in charge of the salad dressing.
Caesar Salad dressing - adapted from Antiquity
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 6 anchovy fillets
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 lemons, juiced
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
In a small food processor, pulse the garlic, anchovies, egg yolks, mustard, lemon juice and water until the mixture is smooth. With the machine running, slowing pour the olive oil in through the feed tube to make an emulsion. Stir in the Parmesan cheese with several grinds of black pepper. Taste for salt and set aside.
Peyton marinated chicken breasts in fresh herbs, some olive oil, a bit of white wine and a squeeze of anchovy paste for a couple of hours before grilling. Once the breasts were done (about 8 minutes per side on a hot grill), he put some nice sear marks on halved heads of romaine lettuce. You should see him with a carving knife. Like a surgeon!
I almost forgot, Peyton makes his own croutons. Don't you just love this guy!
Herbed croutons - a Peyton concoction
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
  • 3 cups country bread, crust removed and cut into ¾-inch cubes
In a heavy skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and herbs, and sauté until fragrant, just a minute or two. Remove from heat, add the cubed bread and toss to coat. Spread bread out onto backing pans and season with salt and pepper. Toast in a pre-heated 325°F oven, tossing occasionally, until golden and the moisture is baked out, about 15 minutes or so. Bring to room temperature uncovered.
Arrange grilled romaine on a plate, add croutons and drizzle with Caesar salad dressing. Garnish with some extra Parmesan cheese. Fan out sliced chicken breasts beside the romaine. If you have a professional chef at your disposal, make quick work of a fresh melon for some added color and tuck in. I picked a dry Australian Pinot Grigio to whet our whistles.
So, I'm back in the saddle with my own personal sidekick. Or maybe, at least in the kitchen anyway, I play Tonto to his Lone Ranger. That would make a most excellent nickname, don't you think?
Thanks for taking the time - Blog O. Food

1 comment:

BigAssBelle said...

in love with your boyfriend . . . and happy for you both. how cool to find a meeting ground over the table :-)