Mother’s day provided us with another great excuse – not that we need one – to practice our culinary skills and to try out a few new dishes on our favorite guinea pigs, Mom and George. We decided to try a little haute cuisine this time, and scoured the Top Chef website (and our Top Chef cookbook) for something special. In the end, we put together a three course meal that was mostly pretty good.
We served a button and portobello mushroom crème with walnuts (created by Elia in season 2, for those who know the show). The soup was delicious, if a little thin, and the toasted walnuts really worked well with the earthiness of the mushrooms. Given the amount of heavy cream in it, though, I’m sure we’re all now a few steps closer to a heart attack.
A braised lamb shank with sunchoke puree was one of Sara Mair’s (season 3) dishes – not bad , just not as bold as we had hoped it might be. The meat was tender and tasty. We had never cooked sunchokes before, and these ones just weren’t all that flavourful. We both would have preferred celery root puree.
The dessert was a disaster, salvaged. Rather than Top Chef, we pulled a recipe from the Paula Deen cookbook my step-sister gave us for Christmas. This southern recipe for fried apple pies sounded great – sort of like a little empanada with apple pie filling – but our pie dough fell apart as soon as it hit the oil (probably because we used shortening rather than lard). We ended up serving the remaining pie filling in a parfait bowl with frozen yogurt and some of the fried pie dough crumbled on top. Hmmmm, deconstructed apple pie à la mode?
Check out these photos Junkii got. Makes the food look scrumptious! (click to enlarge)