Thursday, May 20, 2010

Roasted Radishes

I got these radishes at the farmer's market, grown by Mrs.Kruse of Columbia IL, and many St Louis area chefs and foodie types will know her. Her vegetables, herbs, and flowers are always just beautiful. The radish greens just seemd too fresh and healthy to pitch, so I began searching the web for radish green recipes-there aren't many. Last Spring when I was making the gumbo z'herbs I read Leah Chase's recipe (She is the remarkable chef/owner of Dookie Chase in NOLA)

and she used radish greens in her soup mix, before that I never considered eating radish greens.

I came across a recipe from St Louis's chef Gerard Craft of Niche restaurant, published in Food and Wine magazine. Chef Craft is a wunderkind guy who is garnering all sorts of awards and acclamations for his food. Sadly, since I work the nights he is open, I haven't been able to eat there yet, but absolutely everyone I've talked to really admires it.

I think the colors of these radishes are also lovely and unusual. The lavendar radishes were quite sweet, the red ones were the hottest. The greens were bitter, but tamed by the lemon juice and butter.

So Here is Chef Craft's recipe (not exactly word for word, but in spirit)

One bunch of radishes with greens attached

2 Tablespoons olive oil

2 Tablespoons butter

1/2 cup fresh lemon juice, divided

Detach the greens from the radishes and thoroughtly clean the radishes and the greens.

Quarter the radishes and lightly brown them in an ovenproof skillet with the olive oil, place the radishes in a preheated 400 degree oven for 15 minutes.

When the radishes are tender, add 1/4 cup lemon juice to the pan, season with salt and pepper, reserve while the greens cook.

In the skillet, wilt the radish greens, season with salt pepper, add the remaining lemon juice and butter.

I served the radishes over the greens.

Monday, May 17, 2010

I had quite a little birthday celebration over the weekend. Cards, e-mails, presents, flowers, and a cake-I am a truly blessed man. 57 is the majic number this year.
We feasted on:
Roasted radishes-I'll do a separate post on them
Grilled corn on the cob
Rib eye steaks with chimichuri
Baked potato boats with asparagus and St Andre cheese
Chocolate cake with 7 minute icing and cinnamon ice cream.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

La Paloma

These are addictive, salty-sweet-tart-boozy-juicy, much more appealing than Margarita. Translates to English as "The Dove".

Salt the rim of your highball glass

Fill the glass with ice

Squeeze one quarter lime into the glass and toss in the ssqueezed lime

Add 1 shot of white tequila

Add a splash of fresh grapefruit juice

Top with Squirt

Monday, May 03, 2010

Spit Roasted Leb of Lamb
The inspiration for this dinner is from my favorite taco stand. They serve a Tacos al Pastore that are quite tasty. You don't see these tacos any other place in town. They start with small corn tortillas topped with a marinated and grilled pork and pineapple-they are exceptional. I started researching this unusual taco. From what I understand it was an adaptation from Lebanese immigrants to Mexico. Today it seems to be made more often with pork than lamb, but I read that it started with lamb. I wonder why they didn't use goat because the flavor of goat and lamb are so similar.
In Mexico, the meat is vertically spit roasted with a pineapple at the top, so that the pineapple juices flow down, basting the meat. I have a small horizontal spit, so I had to brush pineapple juice over the roast as it turned. I roasted it for about 1 1/2 hours and let the leg rest for 20 minutes before slicing it, it was perfectly roasted to medium rare with lovely rosy, juicy slices of lamb.
I had every intention of making small corn tortillas for this, but as I said in my other post I had been doing yard work all day and there was no Maiz in the pantry to make them with, so I used a nasty store bought corn tortilla-it was still delicious. Add some rice and a fresh salsa made with pineapple, avocado, red onion, and jalapeno to turn a taco into a sit-down supper for Sunday night.
1 leg of lamb-I used a half leg, about 4 1/2 pounds
1 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup pineapple juice
2 cloves of garlic, smashed
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1 jalapeno, minced
Combine all the ingredients in a zip lock bag large enough to hold the lamb, add the lamb, and coat all sides, let the lamb marinate overnight in the refrigerator.
An hour before roasting, remove the lamb from the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature, drain off the marinade and place the leg on the spit, roast until medium rare-about 125 degrees, as your roast rests before slicing, it will continue to cook until the temperature reaches about 130 degrees-perfect for me. Baste the lamb with additional pineapple juice as it roasts.
Serve with a fresh pineapple and avocado salsa and some rice cooked with vegetables and a roasted poblano chili.

Tequila Pineapple Martini
We spent all day Sunday working on the yard and planting containers. At the end of the day I shook up this special martini to enjoy while we sat on the deck to enjoy all the flora and fauna.
2 ounces Tequila
Pineapple juice
juice of 1/2 lime
Kosher salt
Pineapple spear, for garnish
Lime wheel, for garnish
Run a cut lime around the rim of you glass and dip in the salt to salt the rim.
Fill you shaker with ice, add the tequila, a splash of pineapple juice and the lime juice.
Shake vigorously, strain into the salted glass, garnish with pineapple and lime wheel, and enjoy your freshly planted environment.