Birthday Dinner Menu

The Flowers

Flower Arrangment 1

The Menu Card

Dinner Menu March 2nd

The Appetizer

shrimp de jonghe

The Soup

Lettuce Soup

The Main Entree 

Beouf Bourgingoin

The Dessert 

clafoutis

 

 

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FLOURLESS APPLESAUCE SPICE CAKE

Healthy + Flourless Applesauce Spice Cake
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 1 8 x 8 baking pan
Author Chelsea
Ingredients
1 cup applesauce
1/4 cup coconut oil*
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup oat flour just blend up regular oats
1/2 cup lightly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts optional
1/3 cup raisins optional
Optional Cream Cheese Frosting
2 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
1 and 1/4 – 1 and 3/4 cups powdered sugar
Optional: additional chopped pecans to top
Instructions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8 x 8 baking pan with parchment paper — otherwise your cake will likely not come out clean. (Trust me, I had one cake completely stick to the bottom even with spraying and lightly flouring it!)
In a large bowl, stir together the applesauce, coconut oil (measured when completely melted), large egg, and vanilla extract. Stir until completely combined.
Add in the baking soda, cinnamon, baking powder, salt, allspice, and nutmeg. Stir until completely combined. (Here’s where you can increase or decrease spices to personal preference — if you are wary of too much spice add a little less and if you LOVE spice increase them.)
Stir in the brown sugar and oat flour (blend regular old fashioned oats or quick oats in a blender or food processor until they resemble flour — blend well so you don’t have any weird oat chunks! Measure AFTER blending and not before).
If desired add in the chopped pecans or walnuts and raisins. In my testing, I personally liked the cake best with just chopped pecans. But if you love raisins in your cake definitely add them in!
Bake for 30-35 mins at 350 degrees or until a fork when inserted comes out clean. Be careful to not over bake as it will make this cake less tender and less flavorful. Allow to cool.
Optional Cream Cheese Frosting:
Quickly wash and dry the bowl from the cake and place in the *room temperature* cream cheese (Make sure it isn’t melted or softened by the microwave). Beat with the vanilla until smooth. Add in the salt and slowly add in the powdered sugar (beating in between additions) until smooth and creamy and your desired consistency has been met. If it is too thick add in a little bit of milk or heavy cream.
Frost the completely cooled cake evenly with the frosting. If desired top the frosting with the chopped pecans.
Recipe Notes
*Not all coconut oils are equal — some tend to give baked goods a slightly off or bitter taste. I use Pure Coconut Oil by LouAna and have never had a problem with it. I highly recommend this brand for baked goods.

Shrimp De Jonghe

shrimp de jonghe

Chicago’s Shrimp DeJonghe

De Jonghe Hotel on Chicago’s Monroe Street first served this dish in the 1920s. The original recipe which was first printed in 1947 also had nutmeg.

Ingredients

1 lb shrimp, peeled & deveined (I like to remove shell from tail too)
6 tablespoons butter
3⁄4 teaspoon minced garlic
1⁄4 cup sherry wine
1 tablespoon sliced green onion
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1⁄4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1⁄4 teaspoon paprika
1⁄2 cup dry plain breadcrumbs

Directions
Preheat oven to 350°F Grease a 1 to 1-1/2 quart casserole dish.
[the first time I made this recipe I didn’t peeled and deveined nor did I sautéed them. The recipe didn’t turn out as well as it did the second time]
Melt the butter in a medium size saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and sauté about 30 seconds.
Stir in the shrimp, sherry, onion, salt, cayenne, and paprika. Add 6 Tbsp of the bread crumbs and stir until moistened.
Transfer the mixture to the casserole dish. Sprinkle the remaining 2 Tbsp bread crumbs on top and bake for 25 minutes, until browned and cooked through. Serve hot.

Homemade Salami

 

salami

Ready in 1 day and 2 hours
Serves 8
195 calories

Ingredients:
2 pounds ground beef
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon mustard
2 tablespoons sugar-based curing mixture (such as Morton(R) Tender Quick(R))
1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

Directions
In a large bowl, mix together the ground beef, garlic powder, onion powder, mustard seed, curing salt, black pepper and liquid smoke. Mix in the red pepper flakes if desired. Roll the mixture into a 2 inch diameter log, and wrap tightly in aluminum foil. Refrigerate for 24 hours.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Make a few slits in the bottom of the roll to allow the fat to drain when cooking. Place roll onto a broiler pan, and fill the bottom part of the pan with about 1 inch of water to keep the salami moist.
Bake for 90 minutes in the preheated oven. Remove from pan and cool completely before unwrapping the salami. Slice and eat as lunch meat, or serve on a tray with crackers and cheese.

BEEF BOURGUIGNON

Beouf Bourgingoin

Ingredients for 4 to 6 people: 
 1 kg of beef (chuck, for example) cut into cubes 
 2 big sliced onions 
 6 carrots cut into slices 
 1 cube of beef broth diluted in 15cl of water with a bouquet garni 
 150g sliced Paris mushrooms 
 200g smoked diced bacon 
 1 liter of red wine, Bordeaux for me … 
 2 tablespoons flour 
 A few sprigs of chopped fresh parsley 
 1 tablespoon of butter 
 Salt 
 Pepper 

Preparation 
1. In a casserole, brown bacon and add carrots, onions, and mushrooms. When the onions are translucent, remove from the pan and set aside. 

2. In the same casserole, melt the butter and add the beef cubes. Once seized, make a roux by adding the flour. Stir well and add the carrots, onions, and mushrooms. Add the broth, then the wine. It is necessary that during all the cooking, the liquid covers the whole contents of the casserole. 

3. Cook for 2 to 2½ hours, depending on the size of the cubes of beef. Add the parsley ½ hour before the end of cooking. 

I often stop cooking at 1:30, let cool, then resume cooking 1:30. I find intensifies the flavors of the dish and makes the meat even more tender. 

Well, nothing complicated for a result always amazing.

Raspberry Clafoutis

clafoutisINGREDIENTS
½ c. all-purpose flour
¼ c. sugar
2 tbsp. sugar
salt
3 large eggs
3 tbsp. unsalted butter
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
¼ c. milk
2 tbsp. milk
1½ pt. raspberries
confectioners’ sugar

DIRECTIONS
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch gratin dish. In a bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, and a pinch of salt. Whisk in the eggs, butter, and lemon zest until smooth. Add the milk and whisk until light and very smooth, about 3 minutes. Pour the batter into the gratin dish and top with the raspberries.
Bake for about 30 minutes, until the clafoutis is set and golden. Let cool slightly. Dust with confectioners’ sugar, cut into wedges, and serve.

Lettuce & Asparagus Soup

Lettuce Soup

I adopted this recipe from the French “Soupe verte a la creme” version.

Ingredients:

1 large head lettuce or a bag of mixed lettuce greens
1 medium onion, chopped
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
1 bunch of asparagus, chopped
2 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
1/2 cup sour cream

Directions

Rinse your lettuce and, if you are using a head of lettuce, chop the lettuce.

Melt the butter in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another minute. Add lettuce and cook until wilted, stirring occasionally.

Add asparagus, broth, water, salt, and pepper and simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes. At this point, it looks like unappetizing seaweed, but stick with it.

Purée soup in batches in a blender with dill and cream. (Note: I initially tried blending the soup with my immersion blender as this tends to be a little less messy for me since I am a total klutz. Unfortunately, because I used mixed lettuce that had small stems, I ended up with a stringy tangle of lettuce around the blade. Use the blender and save yourself from having to de-string your immersion blade.)

Late Valentine’s Dinner

Valentine's Day Dinner
table

February 18, 2018, 7pm

Menu Item 1

Shrimp with Louisiana-Style Remoulade Sauce

Chocolate Hazelnut Torte

 

Menu Item 2

 Beet Borscht with Backerbsen and Eierstich (Grandma’s recipe).

Valentines Beetroot-Soup-

Menu Item 3

Louise Bourgeois’s French Cucumber Salad

Menu Item 4

Swordfish Fillets in Salt Crust an alteration of this Sea Bass Recipe with Lemon Capers Sauce 

swordfish

swordfish in salt crust

swordfish finished

Menu Item 5

Asparagus with Hollandaise Sauce 

Menu Item 6

Chocolate-Cheese Truffle and Chocolate Hazelnut Torte with Bacon.

Torte

 

 

 

 

Fish Baken in a Salt Crust

Ingredients:

Lemon slices, several sprigs of flat leaf parsley; however you can use other herbs as well depending on the type of fish you choose.
1 sea bass or other suitable whole fish, about 1.5 pounds, cleaned and scaled.  If you prefer you can use fish fillet as well.
4 cups sea salt or kosher salt
3 egg whites
Extra virgin olive oil
Lemon wedges

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Tuck the lemon slices and parsley sprigs into the cavity of the fish. If you use fish fillets place them on top and below the fillets.

Combine the salt, egg whites, and 1/4 cup water in a bowl, mixing well until the salt has the consistency of damp sand. (If the mixture feels too wet, add more salt; if too dry, stir in a bit more water).

Line a large rimmed baking sheet (or any other baking dish) with foil or parchment paper. Using half of the damp salt, form a bed for the fish. Place the fish on top, and pack the remaining salt over it to form a covering.

Bake the fish to an internal temperature of 135 – 140 degrees, about 25 minutes. (You can just poke an instant read thermometer right through the salt, into the fish). Remove from the oven and let stand for 10 minutes.

With the back of a wooden spoon, crack and remove the hard, pale brown crust of salt. Remove the skin and fillet the fish. Serve with your best olive oil and lemon wedges.

 

You can also cook a whole chicken in a salt crust but I haven’t tried it.