In comes Crudités! The harvest season seems a bit longer this year, due to the strange weather, so the farmer’s market is still awash with beautiful fall vegetables. I wanted to showcase their beauty and color. You can use any variety of veggies that you can get your hands on. Our platter had 2 varieties of radishes, green beans, Persian cucumbers, carrots, radicchio, baby bell peppers, asparagus, and some pistachios for crunch. We served our veggies with two sauces, a homemade aioli and homemade Caesar dressing.
For me, this meal was an opportunity to indulge in some of my favorite things! I am turning 30 after-all…so Escargot was a must for this meal, and so was beef wellington! I couldn’t quite afford to serve foie gras to 16 guests, so I decided to create a terrine paired with a delicious shallot jam. The terrine’s single most important ingredient is the chicken livers, which my friend Anwar (who runs International Grocery and Halal Meats Inc. on 33rd and Greenmount – go there it is amazing!) has been saving for me for a few weeks! The livers mixed with pork, chicken, and duck, create an amazingly complex flavor. The mustard and cornichon juice give it a bit of an extra kick!
For our first course, the aperitif, I made a traditional Parisian cocktail, the 1789, created to celebrate the revolution! I wanted to create some nibbles while we sipped our cocktails, so I made these delicious Olive Crisps and served them with a Green Olive and Almond Tapenade with some Anchovy for extra flavor and some creamy, and delicious Riclettes de Sardines.
The rains keep coming, and so do the tomatoes! I am really excited about my harvest this year! I was keeping count up to 90 on my 2 tomato plants, but now I have lost count of how many gorgeous tomatoes we have cooked and eaten this summer. I combined of our tomatoes with some super sweet wild cherry tomatoes from the Waverly Farmers Market that I bought and proceeded to forget about until today. The tomatoes already wilted a bit in the fridge, so I figured I would bake them up to use as a topping on pork or salmon or a spread on a slice of Kalamata Olive and Rosemary Baguette!
I have read that homemade tomato paste is much better than the store bought (which I also love and live by), but wow, it is magic! I read in one of my cookbooks that someone referred to a stewed tomato sauce as tomato magic, I want to steal that! This is my Tomato Magic!