This past New Year’s Eve was the first that my husband and I spent at home since we met almost seven years ago. The morning of New Year’s Eve, he went by Huntington Meats and got some beautiful ribeye steaks to grill. I went by Larchmont Wine & Spirits and picked up Champagne and a one-ounce jar of paddlefish caviar. Paddlefish caviar costs about $20 an ounce versus close to $200 an ounce for beluga or osetra. It’s lighter in color with smaller eggs than its more illustrious sturgeon counterparts, but is still deliciously rich and salty and is fantastic atop an omelet or a baked potato. I thought our New Year’s Eve dinner would make for good Valentine’s fare—it has all the requisite decadence for romance, but perhaps most important, is there a faster way to your man’s heart than steak and potatoes?
Posts Tagged ‘caviar’
File this under “Top Gift I’d Like to Receive.” I’ve always said that the best hostess gifts are those you can eat for breakfast the next morning, but this Petrossian Caviar Powder takes the concept to a whole new level. My friend Trisha brought me a mill of this precious stuff as a hostess gift this weekend—”for your eggs tomorrow morning,” she said. The next morning my husband scrambled some eggs and we liberally ground the powder over them (it works like a pepper mill).
Needless to say, there weren’t many words exchanged over breakfast that morning. Just savoring the pure decadence and generosity of the ultimate hostess gift.
It’s no secret that we’re fans of breakfast for dinner. Or that I am obsessed with egg on egg. Following Saturday night’s sushi extravaganza, my sister sent us home with fresh crabmeat and roe—and a lot of it. And before I even got in the car to drive across town, I knew exactly the fate of said seafood. Because the only thing more exciting than breakfast for dinner is Eggs Benny for dinner! I’m sure someone somewhere has already realized this INSANE creation, but for the time being, I like to think it’s mine, all mine. The salty-oily salmon roe is fantastic with the poached egg, and I loooooove breaking through the yolk and having the hollandaise and yolk mingle with the crab meat. If you have arugula on hand, which I didn’t, it would add a wonderful peppery note (I would place on muffin before adding crab). If you really want to take your life in your own hands, instead of arugula, try avocado slices. I have tried this latter combo before and it is very naughty indeed.
The Foodinista’s Crab Benedict with Salmon Roe
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
4 English muffins, split and toasted
3 tablespoons butter, softened
Dijon mustard, to taste
Arugula or avocado slices, optional
12-16 ounces fresh crabmeat (depending on how piggy you are feeling)
Basic Hollandaise Sauce (to which I added a little orange zest)
Freshly cracked pepper
Fill large skillet with enough water to reach depth of 2 inches. Add white wine vinegar and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt to water. Bring to simmer over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low. Crack eggs into skillet of simmering water. Cook until whites are set and yolks are set to desired doneness, about 3 minutes for medium-set yolks.
Using slotted spoon, transfer eggs to plate.
Spread 3 tablespoons butter and a dollop of Dijon mustard over split sides of toasted English muffins. If using arugula, place leaves atop each English muffin half, or if using avocados, distribute slices. Divide crab evenly atop muffin halves. For each muffin, transfer egg from plate using spatula and place over crab meat. Top each with hollandaise, salmon roe and freshly cracked pepper.
Friday’s lunch was quite decadent as was dinner, thanks to some pressed caviar I purchased at Petrossian in West Hollywood. While pressed caviar is traditionally made from the “dregs” or leftovers, Christopher Klapp, GM at Petrossian, says “we use the same high quality caviar that we would sell jarred/canned…so we are using 100% Transmontanus caviar with a new Petrossian recipe so we do not need to use the leftovers. We would never want people to accept us giving them anything but the best caviar products possible!”
It’s pretty dreamy stuff, and Petrossian’s chef Ben Bailly likes to toss with pasta, which sounds incredible. In reading my email this morning, I discovered that both Christopher and I had the same dinner on Friday night—grilled steaks smothered with pressed caviar! We both agree that the steaks were good, but chef Ben Bailly did one better and made a light red wine sauce to go over theirs. Here are the grilled ribeyes (sans sauce) that Mr Foodinista and I enjoyed with a glass of Nicholas Feuillatte brut rosé. Talk about surf and turf!
It was a fun, if pricey, experiment but I’m not sure that I would repeat it as the flavors were perhaps a little lost in the fatty richness of the ribeye. I would, however, gladly repeat my breakfast experiment the following morning – every day of the week if money allowed! I mixed in some of this super concentrated pressed caviar with scrambled eggs and topped with a little cracked pepper and a dollop of sour cream. Whoa, was this good—little salty surprises in each bite and the intensity of flavor simply sublime. Now if only I could win the lottery…
Today it is pouring, and I mean, POURING in Los Angeles. After fighting my way through hellacious traffic from a morning meeting over in Santa Monica, I met my friend Trisha for lunch at Petrossian in West Hollywood. Let’s just say that if you ever need a little sunshine on a dreary day, this just might do the trick. We started with a glass of Champagne, and I kind of can’t believe what fabulousness happened next. Let’s start with blini with trout roe:
We also each had a bite of salmon roe and some classic caviar. I love the different textures and flavors from dark and rich to sweet and juicy.
And then came what Trisha dubbed the ultimate Super Bowl dip: caviar, dill and cream cheese spread topped with more caviar and served with paper thin purple potato and sweet potato chips. I mean, can you imagine?
Then came my absolute favorite, a soft-boiled egg with toast points smeared with pressed caviar. Okay, so pressed caviar is AWESOME. It’s what they do with the “dregs” and is essentially a paste of 100% sturgeon caviar that has been concentrated and is super intense. A little goes a long way. I bought a little 30 gm jar (1.06 ounces; $63) and am going to spread it over grilled ribeyes tonight. Woohoo! If I have any left over, will toss with pasta for lunch tomorrow! Or maybe I should just go this route for breakfast:
And because we hadn’t had quite enough caviar, and because Trisha knows the chef (the very young and talented Benjamin Bailly, formerly of L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon in Vegas), we had dessert. Topped with caviar. Think of this as a beignet with salt caramel, but instead of a beignet you have a fried blini and instead of salt, you have a dollop of caviar. Whoa. Thank you, Trisha, for a totally decadent and delicious lunch!!!!!
At the baby shower I cohosted with Gia and Trisha at her lovely home this past weekend, there were gorgeous sprays of pink flowers just about everywhere you looked. Like the tulips on the buffet table, above. Or the gerber daisies and hydrangeas atop the mantel:
Or a fresh bouquet on a side table:
The food was every bit as pretty, with fantastic sandwiches, crudité, and baby potatoes with crème fraîche and bright orange Petrossian trout caviar….
In addition to bacon-wrapped dates (a riff on those served at AOC) and Jane Royale cocktails, I also made Mark Bittman’s chicken laver pâté. More on that tomorrow. But let me leave you with a deliciously sweet bite made by shower attendee and former front woman for all-girls punk band The Red Aunts, Terri Wahl, who is also known as the force behind the delicious Auntie Em’s Kitchen in Eagle Rock:
As soon as the last plate of prime rib had been cleared on Christmas night, my husband declared that he was already starting the countdown to Christmas 2010. The one-two punch of fondue on Christmas Eve followed by Christmas dinner at my parents’ is by far the best meal sequence of the year—every year. We start Christmas evening with osetra caviar (this year we splurged on Caspian instead of domestic) and Champagne (Salon ’97).
Then my dad roasts a prime rib using a classic recipe out of James Beard, which calls for steady low heat. This year my husband made Yorkshire Puddings from an old Gourmet recipe. My mom has a great popover pan, which produces perfect individually sized puddings.
Here is indisputable proof that my father makes the best prime rib on the planet, and that Mr Foodinista has a way with a carving knife:
This year with the prime rib we enjoyed a 2003 Far Niente Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon along with a bottle of 1999 Cakebread Cellars Benchland Select from my alma mater (yours truly used to work at Cakebread Cellars right out of college over a decade ago), and a bottle of 2003 Eisele Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon from my friend Christiane’s family winery. We finished off the evening with some stilton and vintage port. And ibuprofen. I mean, let’s be serious.
And so the countdown to next year’s festivities begins! For a look at last year’s, click HERE.
One year ago today I was recovering from the previous evening’s annual holiday bash, just as I am today. (Moments ago, I located my favorite tinsel-y shoes from last night under a table. More on the evening’s festivities later). And one year ago today, I wrote my very first blog entry for TheFoodinista.com. That first day, the blog had 4 views. Today, more than 185,000 of you have visited, and I want to thank you SO MUCH for reading! To celebrate, I made an extra special breakfast this morning with a jar of salmon roe I got for the Deviled Eggs with Sour Cream, Chives and Salmon Roe from last night’s soirée. I think the oily-salty combo from the roe, combined with the scrambled eggs folded with cream cheese and sprinkled with chives might just be the ultimate antidote to Kathleen’s Champagne Pomegranate Punch…
I can’t decide what I’m more excited about—the rich, salty Siberian sturgeon caviar we had for dinner the other night, or this limited-edition nail varnish from Laura Mercier that I unwrapped in my Christmas stocking. It’s called “Caviar Dreams” and indeed it’s the same gorgeous dark gray as the caviar, but with a hint of dark plum and teal (like an oil slick—in a good way) and metallic shimmer. It’s a must for a New Year’s Eve manicure!
All year my husband looks forward to Christmas Dinner at my parents.’ It’s a killer lineup that starts with caviar and all the fixings—Kendall Farms crème fraîche, finely chopped sweet Texas onion, hardboiled egg and fresh dill on toast points (Pepperidge Farm white works great). This year we served it with a bottle of 1998 Taittinger Comte de Champagne left over from our wedding. With Russian caviar prices through the ROOF, my dad got Siberian sturgeon caviar sustainably raised in Italy. Soooo good.
Last year there was the horseradish debacle. None of the stores in town had fresh, and all of the jarred had been premixed with cream and had no fight. A couple months ago, my dad grabbed a jar of Fortnum & Mason’s hot horseradish from the shop in Piccadilly to go with the 9 ½ pound standing rib roast, roasted Brussels sprouts and mashed potatoes with chives and a dollop of that crème fraîche. My mother shared two incredible local bottles—a 2004 Joseph Phelps Insignia and a 2003 Shafer Hillside Select Cabernet.
Typically we end the evening with stinky cheese and port, but we’re going to do that tonight instead. Last night’s meal ended with a persimmon steamed sticky pudding and hard sauce. Merry Christmas indeed!