Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Inaugural Seafood Stew

Tradition has our new president's first meal served at the Statuary Hall in the Capitol. The menu was puiblished in the Times last week. It is based on the foods favored by Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln favored scalloped oysters, so the inauguration committee chose a shellfish stew. The second course is duck and pheasant with wild rice and sweet potatoes whipped with molasses, and apple cake for dessert. All paired with California wines-a Duckhorn Sauvignon Blanc with the stew, Goldeneye Pinot Noir with the duck and pheasant, and Korbel California "Champagne" with dessert. I think it's a faux pas to serve California "Champagne"-since I believe Chanpagne only comes from Champagne in France. Read the article here.
I didn't feel ambitious enough to complete the entire menu, but the stew was marvelous. Also the Apple cake sounds to me more like Apple Charlotte.
I started with lobster stock from the freezer. I poached all the ingredients separately, so nothing would be overcooked and rubbery.
2 lobster tails
12 shrimp
1/2 pound bay scallops
1/4 cup diced celery
1/4 cup minced leek
1/4 cup diced carrot
1/4 cup diced potato
Salt and white pepper to taste
Poach all ingredients seperately. When all the items are poached, add 1 cup dry white wine to the poaching liquid and reduce by half, add 2 cups heavy cream and continue to reduce until it's sauce consistency and thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
Add the shellfish and vegetables to the cream sauce, add some salt and white pepper if you like, and ladle into oven proof crocks.
Top each crock of soup with puff pastry and seal. Eggwash and bake for 25 to 30 minutes until the pastry is puffed and browned.


The Duo Dishes said...

Puff pastry! It's a favorite of ours! Anything covered with puff pastry is a guaranteed winner.

Lori Lynn said...

Hi Mickey! Cool! Love your Inaugural Seafood Stew photos. I was originally going to make that, but I had to pull the dinner together after work, so I went for the Duck. I just found out about the menu that afternoon while watching the ceremony on TV. Yours looks fabulous. It was fun to be part of the celebration, and as I've said I may have some differing positions from the current administration, but I am a patriot nonetheless. Thanks for visiting my blog, please keep in touch.
Lori Lynn
P.S. I look forward to exploring your blog further!