Hors d'oeurve Soupe Poisson Viande Entre Salade Dessert Fromage

Field Greens With Sour Cherry Lozenges , Leek-Brie Feuilletee and Pistachio Vinaigrette

Serves 4

pea shoots
fennel fronds
pansies or nasturtiums
2 leeks
8 purple miniature scallions
12 chives
90 g Cowgirl Creamery Mt. Tam triple crème brie
7-10 leaves purple basil, chiffonade
2 sprigs tarragon
1 Meyer lemon, peler a vif

60 g Morello cherries
300 mL Beef consommé
150 mL Morello cherry juice (from jar)
2 thin slices dried Winesap apple
1 gelatin sheet or 1 small packet Knox powdered gelatin

15 mL rice wine vinegar
juice of 1 lemon
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 shallot, ciseler
10 g mustard
90 g pistachios, finely chopped
20 mL hazelnut oil
20 mL canola oil
salt and pepper

Interestingly enough, the leek feuilletee was the result of an accident with a terrine I prepared. I decided to cook the leeks a l'anglaise and shock them to preserve the color and soften the fibers. Then, I brushed the leeks with olive oil and baked them, as you would with zucchini. However, the leeks cooked much faster and came out slightly crisp and inflexible, so that I could not use them to line the terrine mold. But the flavor was amazing. Ultimately, I replaced the terrine with the grilled shrimp. But I repeated the mistake to create the "leek feuilletee", which serves as a pouch to encase the brie, rather than pate feuilletee. The tart Winesap apple I found at the Union Square Farmers' Market. It is a interesting addition to the aspic lozenges, and pairs well with the sweet Morello cherries.

  1. Wash and dry the greens.
  2. For the vinaigrette, finely chop the pistachios and add to the vinegar, lemon juice, and mustard. Crush garlic, ciseler shallot and wrap both in cheese cloth for easy removal after vinegar has infused. Season with salt and pepper. Infuse for 20 minutes.
  3. To form sour cherry aspic lozenges, fill a bowl with hot water and bloom gelatin. Once soft (not cracked), squeeze dry. Meanwhile, combine all lozenge ingredients and bring to a gentle simmer, cooking for ~5 minutes. Strain through a chinois. Add gelatin and stir, until gelatin dissolves. Pour into small candy molds and refrigerate until set, ~30 minutes.
  4. Peler a vif lemons, and remove supremes. Cut into small dice.
  5. Cook purple scallions a l'anglaise, for ~1-2 minutes. Shock in an ice bath and dry.
  6. For the lozenges, combine Morello cherries, cherry juice, apple slices and consommé in a sautoir and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for ~5 minutes. Add sprig of tarragon and let infuse for 10 minutes. Strain in a chinois, return to sautoir and add gelatin packet, while still hot. Stir until gelatin dissolves, pour into candy mold and refrigerate until lozenges set (~45 minutes).
  7. For the leek feuilletee, remove dark greens, root ball and outer grit. Slice two vertical slits along each side of the leek, so that it is divided in half lengthwise. Rinse thoroughly. Remove hard inner core (often found in springtime leeks) and cut to uniform length.
  8. Cook leeks a l'anglaise, until fibers are softened and palatable (approximately 7 minutes). Shock in ice bath.
  9. Remove translucent fibrous sheath on the underside of the leek.
  10. Place leeks on baking sheet coated with olive oil. Brush the top side of each leek with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Weight with another baking sheet and bake at 250°F for ~30 minutes. Leeks should still be slightly malleable.
  11. Meanwhile, quickly dip chives into boiling water (~1 min.) and shock in an icebath. Dry and set aside.
  12. Remove leeks from oven and, before they cool, quickly shape them into purses.
  13. Pipe triple creme brie into each purse and tie with a chive.
  14. Remove cheesecloth from vinegar-mustard mixture and gradually add hazelnut oil, whisking vigorously until emulsified. Add finely chopped pistachio.

  1. Pour half of vinaigrette into bowl and add mesculun and pansies. If needed, gradually add more vinaigrette and toss. Plate.
  2. Randomly sprinkle greens with lemon segments, fennel, pea shoots and individual tarragon leaves.
  3. Garnish with leek-brie feuilletee, miniature purple scallions and aspic lozenges.


wine pairing

Sainsbury Pinot Noir

bright raspberry, fruit forward

The first time I went to Café Lalo, I had the most amazing eggs you've ever imagined. The so-called "steamed eggs" are a house specialty, although Lalo is better known for their pastries (and as the location shoot in You've Got Mail). Served alongside the steamed eggs are roasted potatoes and a side salad with sunflower dressing. I thought about trying to replicate the dressing, but decided instead to experiment with pistachios, which, in the U.S., are grown in California. The first attempt involved olive oil and a food processor. However, the olive oil was too heavy and the nuts, when pureed, made the vinaigrette too viscous. For the second version, I chose hazelnut oil, added more vinegar and lemon juice, and finely chopped the pistachios, adding them after the oil.

To be honest, I'd always given aspic wide berth. The notion of fish or boiled eggs suspended in jelly made me grimace. But once I tried aspic in Level I, I had a change of heart. For this recipe, I've taken a basic beef consommé and flavored it with the same sour Morello cherries that appear in the pork tenderloin glaze. The aspic lozenges are formed into wafer-thin diamonds using a candy mold.