Monday, February 2, 2009

"Good Morning Sweetie, I made you Brunch"

Menu by Deidre Santos
1st Course: Sweet Onion and Roasted Red Pepper Soup with Croutons

Sweet Onion Soup 

3 oz sweet sherry

1 pound Sweet Vidalia Onions

2 leeks, whites only

1-cup celery chopped

2 sprigs thyme

6 tablespoons butter

2 quarts chicken broth

Salt and pepper to taste

1-cup heavy cream

Italian parsley, hacher 

Roasted Red Pepper Soup 

4 tablespoons olive oil

2 onions, chopped

2 carrots, peeled and chopped

3 garlic cloves, chopped

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves

6 cups chicken broth

2 roasted red bell peppers

1/2 cup dry white wine

1-tablespoon sugar

Salt and freshly ground black pepper 


6 slices white bread cut in 1-inch cubes

3 tbsp butter 


For the Onion Soup

Heat butter in a heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onions, leeks, celery and thyme and sauté until onions are translucent. Add sherry and chicken broth to onion mixture; bring to a simmer over high heat. Reduce heat add cream simmer for 5 minutes longer, take off heat and cool slightly. Using an immersion blender, puree soup until smooth, season to taste with salt and pepper.


For the Red Pepper Soup

Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, carrots, garlic, and thyme and sauté until the onions are translucent. Add the broth, bell peppers, wine, and sugar. Bring to a simmer over high heat. Decrease the heat to medium-low. Partially cover and simmer stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. Cool the soup slightly. Using an immersion hand blender, puree the soup in the pot until it is smooth. Season the soup, to taste, with salt and pepper. 

For the Croutons

Add butter to sauté pan over high heat. When hot, add the cubed bread and sauté, adding more butter as needed; when golden brown, drain on paper towels and reserve.

2nd Course: Brown Butter Basted Scallops with Lobster 


24 large bay scallops

Salt and freshly ground pepper

1⁄2 cup Clarified Butter

4 sprigs thyme, finely chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced 


1/2 cup white wine

2 lemons, chopped up in small pieces

2 - 6 oz cooked lobster tails cut in small pieces

4 tbsp whole unsalted butter 


For the Scallops

Pat the scallops dry with paper towels and season them with the salt and pepper. Coat the bottom of a large skillet with clarified butter. Place over a medium-high flame and heat until the butter is nearly smoking. Sear scallops in the butter, reduce the heat to medium and add a little more clarified butter to the pan. Cook the scallops until they are deeply brown on one side, about 3 minutes. Turn the scallops over, and add thyme and garlic to pan. Allow the scallops to brown slightly on the other side, basting them with the hot butter, about 2 minutes. Transfer the scallops to a platter and reserve in a warm place. 

For the Sauce and Topping

Over med heat add whole of butter to the pan and swirl until butter turns brown, add 3 splashes of white wine, chopped lemon and the lobster. Remove from heat and serve over scallops immediately.

3rd Course: Crispy Southern Fried Chicken with Cornmeal Waffles, Warm Spicy Apple Maple Syrup

For the Fried Chicken

4-6lbs frying chickens, thighs and legs

4 cups buttermilk

2-cup flour

Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste

2-teaspoon cayenne

2 teaspoon dried thyme

2 teaspoons dried parsley

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (optional)

1/2 teaspoon onion powder (optional)

Vegetable oil (for frying)

For the Cornbread Waffles

1 cup yellow cornmeal

1-cup all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons sugar

1-tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1-teaspoon salt

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

5 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled

1-cup milk, more or less as needed

For the Spicy Apple Maple Syrup

3/4 cup plus 2 tsp. apple juice, divided

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

1/2 cup maple syrup

1 1/2 cups golden delicious apples, chopped peeled (about 2 medium)

2 tsp. cornstarch


For the Fried Chicken

Wash chicken pieces thoroughly and pat dry. Place chicken in a long, shallow glass-baking dish. Pour the buttermilk over the chicken, cover and refrigerate for a least 4 hours, turning once or twice. In a clean plastic or brown paper bag, combine the flour, salt, pepper, cayenne, thyme, parsley, garlic and onion powders. Drain the chicken and place two or three pieces of chicken in the bag and shake well to coat evenly. Repeat until all chicken has been coated with seasoned flour mixture. In a large, heavy skillet, heat about one-half of oil over medium-high heat until hot, but not smoking. Add chicken and brown on all sides, about three minutes per side. Place browned chicken on a warm platter until all pieces are browned. 

When all the chicken pieces are browned, crowd them into the skillet; turn heat to medium-low, cover and cook, turning occasionally, until tender, about 20 - 25 minutes. Remove cover, turn heat to medium-high and cook six to eight minutes more or until skin is crispy.

For the Waffles

In a large bowl, combine the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt until well blended. Add the eggs and butter. Gradually add the milk, mixing well until a thick batter is formed. Prepare your waffle iron and make the waffles. Serve them as they are finished or, if necessary, keep them warm in a preheated 300° F oven on a wire rack set over a baking sheet.

For the Syrup

Combine 3/4 cup of the apple juice and all of the maple syrup, red pepper flakes and apples in a 1-qt. saucepan. Place over medium heat, and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes, or until the apples are tender. Combine the cornstarch and the remaining 2 teaspoons of apple juice in a small bowl. Add the mixture to the pan, and cook and stir for 1 minute, or until the mixture is slightly thickened.

4th Course: Poached Egg and Braised Short Ribs with Roasted Potato Hash and Hollandaise Sauce

Short Ribs

2 bottles dry red wine

2 tablespoons olive oil

8 slabs short ribs, trimmed of excess fat

3 shallots, quartered

3 small onions, quartered

10 cloves of garlic, chopped

2 large carrots, peeled, sliced thick

2 stalk of celery, sliced thick

2 bay leaves

4 sprigs fresh thyme

4 tablespoons parsley, hacher

2 tablespoons flour

4 cups beef stock

Salt and ground black pepper to taste 

For Potato Hash

2 pounds red potatoes cut in chunks

1 large sweet onion cut in large chunks

4 to 5 cloves garlic, smashed and minced

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

Dash dried marjoram

3 tablespoons olive oil 

For Poached Eggs 

8 eggs

2 liters water

4 tablespoons vinegar 

For Hollandaise Sauce

7 ounces clarified butter

2 egg yolks 

2 tbsp water

Lemon juice

Pinch cayenne

Pinch salt


For Short Ribs

Preheat oven to 375°F. In a large dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Season the ribs with salt and pepper. Sear the ribs until brown, about four minutes per side. Remove ribs to plate and set aside.

Lower the heat to medium. Add the onion, shallot, garlic, carrot, and celery. Sauté for two minutes, add the bay leaves and thyme sauté for four more minutes, stirring often, until just brown. Deglaze pan with wine, reduce until about half, singer with flour, stir. Return the short ribs to the pot; add the stock until the ribs are covered by just over half. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Once boiling, cover and move pot to oven.

Braise for about 2.5 to 3 hours, until the ribs are fork-tender. A couple of times during the braising quickly open up the oven and skim any fat off the top of the braising liquid. Return Dutch oven to the stove. Carefully transfer the ribs to a plate and cover with a tinfoil tent. If the meat has fallen off the bone, return the bone to the Dutch oven. Bring the remaining liquid in the dutch oven to boil over high heat, reducing the liquid down to just two or three cups. Taste and adjust seasoning, strain through a chinois, discarding any solids. 

For Potato Hash

Line a baking sheet with parchment; spray with cooking spray or lightly grease. Heat oven to 400°, combine all ingredients in a large bowl or food storage bag; toss to coat thoroughly. Arrange in the baking pan and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until potatoes are tender and nicely browned. 

For Poached Eggs

Bring water to a boil in a small stock pot and add vinegar. Lower the temperature to 180°F. Break cold eggs into a ramekin one at a time. Carefully add eggs to water. Cook for about 3 minutes. The whites should be firm, and the yolks should remain liquid and covered with a thin film. Remove eggs to a basin of cold water to stop cooking and remove vinegar taste. Trim ragged edges with knife or scissors. To reheat quickly dip in hot salted water and serve. 

For Hollandaise Sauce

Vigorously whisk the egg yolks and lemon juice together in a stainless steel bowl and until the mixture is thickened and doubled in volume. Place the bowl over a saucepan containing barely simmering water (or use a double boiler,) the water should not touch the bottom of the bowl. Continue to whisk rapidly. Slowly drizzle in the butter and continue to whisk until the sauce is thickened and doubled in volume. Remove from heat, whisk in cayenne and salt.


5th Course: Pan Seared Lamb Chops with Blackberry Balsamic Reduction & Asparagus


16 baby lamb chops (2 per person)

6 garlic cloves, chopped

8 tbsp. olive oil

Salt and Pepper to taste 

For the reduction

8 oz fresh blackberries

1 - cup balsamic vinegar 

2 tablespoons sugar

Salt and freshly ground pepper 

Pommes Puree

8 potatoes, peeled and quartered

1 - cup milk

1 stick butter

Salt and freshly ground pepper

Pinch nutmeg 

For Asparagus

2 bunches asparagus (cooked a’langlaise) 


For the lamb

Season lamb chops well with salt and pepper, heat oil in a large sauté pan over med high heat. Sear lamb chops until golden and medium rare. Remove from pan and keep warm. 

For the reduction

Pour excess oil from pan used to sear lamb chop. Deglaze pan with balsamic vinegar scraping up all the sucs, add blackberries and mash them in the pan and sugar to skillet and bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to medium, stirring frequently until the volume has reduced down to 1/2 cup (about 10 minutes). 

For Pommes Puree

Put potatoes in a pan and add cold water. Over med-high heat cook potatoes until fork tender. Put potatoes through a food mill. In a saucepan heat milk and butter until warm, add to potatoes, season to taste with salt, pepper and add a pinch of nutmeg.  

For Asparagus

Cut asparagus in half leaving tips. Fill a large saucepan with water add plenty of salt, water should taste like the sea. Bring to a rolling boil, add the asparagus and cook until tender. Refresh asparagus in ice water to stop the cooking process. Drain on paper towels.  


6th Course (Dual Desserts): German Chocolate Cake with Coconut Pecan Frosting and Black Walnut Ice Cream  

German Chocolate Cake

4 ounces Baker's German's Sweet Chocolate, melted and cooled

2 1/3 cup cake flour

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2/3 cup butter, room temperature

1 cup buttermilk, divided

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 eggs  

Coconut Pecan Icing

1.5 cup evaporated milk

1 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup butter

2 teaspoon vanilla

6 egg yolks, slightly beaten

2 2/3 cups Baker's Angel Flake coconut (3-ounce can)

2 cup chopped pecans 


For the Cake

Set aside a 2 - 12 cup silicone muffin pans, spray with non- stick cooking spray. Sift together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Cream butter with sugar; add melted chocolate and vanilla. Mix in eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour mixture and beat in buttermilk. Mix just until combined. Pour batter into muffin pans. Bake in a preheated 350° oven for about 20 - 35 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on rack for 15 minutes. Remove and cool completely on racks; frost with coconut pecan frosting, below. 

Coconut Pecan Icing and Filling

In a saucepan over medium heat, combine milk, sugars, butter, and vanilla. Bring to a full boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat (mixture might appear a bit curdled). Quickly stir a small amount of the hot liquid into the beaten egg yolks; return egg yolk mixture to the hot mixture in saucepan and blend well. Return to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in coconut and pecans. Cool to spreading consistency, beating occasionally. 

Black Walnut Ice Cream 

8 Egg yolks

1-1/4 Cups sugar

1/8 Tsp salt

2 Cups whole milk

2 Cups heavy cream

1 Tsp black walnut flavoring

1-1/4 Cups black walnuts, chopped 

Blanchair egg yolks with sugar until pale yellow; add salt. Bring milk, cream and black walnut flavoring almost to boiling; remove from heat and temper with egg mixture, stirring constantly. Return to low heat, stirring constantly, until mixture begins to thicken. Put mixture though a chinois over a bowl or ice. Pour mixture into 1-gallon ice cream maker freezer container, following manufacturer's directions for ice cream maker. When ice cream is soft, about 5 minutes before ice cream is complete, add black walnuts. Put into a plastic container and freeze further until ready to serve. 

9 comments: said...

Your dishes are awesome!!

Anonymous said...

The dishes look spectacular. Great job as usual!!!

Your cuz, Kelsha

Anonymous said...

The dishes look spectacular!! Great job as usual!!!

Your cuz,


Anonymous said...

The dishes look spectacular!!! Great job as usual!!! Definitely two thumbs up.


shavedicesundays said...

Love that photo with the waffles. Smiley face :)

Salt and Pepper said...

These look fantastic!

Anonymous said...

not anonymous ,its no-L,here to Oh MY GOODNESS,U-nice will be treated to her first ever brunch,thanks to you hope i dont mess it,looks and sounds great. just in case i will have on speed dial ,lol

Stephanie said...

Deirdre, your project looks great. I love the brunch theme. The highlight for me was the sweet onion and roasted red pepper soup; I'd like to try that.
Job well done,

Colloquial Cook said...

Woohoo, I'm coming for brunch!