Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Kitchen of Coleman-Cocktail Party

Well, I really can't say this menu follows official cocktail party canon, however, should you desire to include your own spirits I am sure you could find some to accompany this hors d' oeuvres menu. This is not a menu created in my kitchen, but it was the one I presented to the cooking class I teach and it was so fabulous that I couldn't pass up the opportunity to share it. Enjoy!

Warm Tomato Chutney Dip
Fried Green Olives
Crostini with Root Vegetables and Goat Cheese
Dried Cherry, Bacon and Pecan Mix
Tequila-Lime Shrimp

Warm Tomato Chutney Dip

2 cans (28 oz. each) tomatoes (I recommend the Muir brand)
1/4 c. canola oil
1 tsp. each yellow and brown mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and nigella seeds
1 white onion, finely chopped
3 tbsp. peeled, minced fresh ginger
2 tbsp. minced garlic
2 small dried red chiles, chopped
fleur de sel and freshly ground pepper
2 tbsp. tamarind paste (also called Indian date, this can be found Asian stores)
1 tbsp. sugar

Pulse tomatoes in food processor until coarsely chopped.

In large saucepan over medium high heat, heat oil until it simmers. Add mustard, cumin and nigella, cook and stir constantly for about 30 seconds, then add onion, ginger, garlic and chiles.

Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring, until onion and garlic softened, but not brown, about 2-3 minutes. Stir in a pinch of salt and tomatoes. Bring to a boil, then reduce at a very gentle simmer for about 1 hour.

Stir in tamarind paste and sugar. Taste and adjust with salt and pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Fried Green Olives

60 pitted green olives
2 1/2 c. panko
1 c. flour
2 large eggs
Vegetable oil for frying.

Put flour, panko and eggs (beat well) in three separate bowls. Drain olives and remove excess moisture. Place olives in flour, then eggs, then panko and place on sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Place in freezer for about one hour.

Pour oil (about 1 1/2 inches high) into large saute pan. Heat until oil registers 350 degrees. Gently lower olives in batches (without over crowding) into pan. Fry until golden brown, about five minutes. Transfer to paper towel lined plate to drain briefly. Before adding second batch make sure oil returns to starting temperature. Serve at once.

Crostini with Root Vegetables and Goat Cheese

1 small red beet, parsnip, turnip , carrot and celery root
3 tbsp. olive oil
2 large egg yolks
5 tbsp. sherry vinegar
1 1/2 c. grapeseed oil
2 tbsp. hazelnut oil
1 baguette, cut into thin slices
1/2 c. fresh goat cheese at room temperature

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place root vegetables on sheet pan with a silpat. Drizzle with 1 tbsp. olive oil, season with salt and pepper, toss to coat. Roast about one hour. Carrots need to be checked at about 30 minutes. Allow to cool and then peel and finely dice. Put all into a bowl except beet (it will stain other vegetables).

In a food process, pulse egg yolks and vinegar. Slowly add grapeseed and hazelnut oils while processor is running in a slow stream until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Pour some of the dressing onto beets and then remaining mixed vegetables, coating lightly.

Put baguette slices onto another sheet pan, brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake until crisp, about 8-10 minutes. Allow to cool, then spread each toast with goat cheese. Divide vegetables evenly among toasts.

Garnish with fresh herbs and fleur de sel.

Dried Cherry, Bacon and Pecan Mix

3-6 slices thick-cut applewood bacon
1/4 c. dark brown sugar
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1 lb. pecan pieces
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. water
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
1 1/2 tsp. fleur de sel
1/4 tsp. ground clove
1/2 c. dried cherries
1/4 c. chopped candied orange peel

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lay bacon on a sheet pan and bake for about 15 minutes. Drain fat from pan. In small bowl combine brown sugar, cayenne and clove. Sprinkle on bacon and return to oven for about 5 more minutes, or until bacon is very crisp and sugar mixture is bubbling. Transfer bacon to cutting board and allow to cool.

In saucepan over high heat, combine 1/2 lb. pecans, sugar, and water. Cook, stirring often, until sugar melts and thickens to syrup, 6-8 minutes. Stir constantly until syrup crystallizes and is sandy, 3-5 minutes longer. Pour onto baking sheet and allow to cool.

In a bowl, stir egg white, salt, and cloves. Add remaining pecan, toss to coat, and spread on another sheet pan. Bake until lightly toasted about 5 minutes. Allow to cool.

Cut bacon into 1/2 inch pieces. Toss together bacon, praline, toasted pecans, cherries, and orange peel.

This can be stored, without bacon, in airtight container at room temperature for about one week.

Tequila-Lime Shrimp

Normally I would recommend making the marinade from scratch, however, Williams Sonoma has a great Tequila Agave marinade. If you really want the recipe, let me know and I will get it to you. This is also a great first course, especially with the presentation that I used. For an easy hors d'oeuvres weave snow pea over body and under tail of shrimp, forming an S shape with snow pea. Secure in place with a cocktail pick. Top with a little of the pico.

1 bottle Tequila Agave Marinade from Williams Sonoma
4 plum tomatoes, seeded and finely diced
1/2 red onion, finely chopped
1 seeded jalapeno, finely diced
3 sprigs cilantro leaves, chopped
juice of 1 lime
1 tbsp. olive oil
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 lb. shrimp, peeled and deveined
60 snow peas

Preheat indoor/outdoor grill to 350 degrees.

To make pico, combine tomatoes, onion, jalapeno, and cilantro in a bowl, tossing gently. Stir in lime juice and oil. Salt and pepper as needed.

Add marinade to shrimp and let stand for 15 minutes. (Do not allow to sit for much longer or the tequila will start to "cook" the shrimp; we aren't trying for ceviche in this recipe). Grill shrimp, turning once, until opaque, about 2 minutes per side. Allow to cool.

While grilling shrimp, boil some water in a saucepan. Add snow peas and cook for one minutes. Drain and immerse peas in ice water to stop cooking. Drain and pat dry.

Place 3 snow peas in a star pattern on a place, add four pieces of shrimp and top with a spoonful of pico.

No comments:

Post a Comment