Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Salad and Dessert

Save room for dessert. Salad for dinner.
To start I roasted cauliflower florets and rinsed salt-packed capers dressed with a little olive oil in a 400ยบ oven. I let the vegetables cool and then tossed them together with chopped chives, radicchio, shaved pecorino romano cheese and a lemon juice and olive oil dressing. Simple light and delicious.
For an easy follow up I roasted summer squash and tossed the still warm slices with fresh marjoram from our garden. To finish I drizzled on a buttermilk herb dressing: 1 part olive oil, 1 part white balsamic vinegar, 2 parts buttermilk, S&P, finely chopped chives and thyme leaves.
I know it's not the 80's anymore but I am still a fan of panna cotta. When I need to make dessert and don't feel like making too big a mess or need a do-ahead sure-fire hit I turn to panna cotta. For today's version I dissolved one packet of gelatin over one cup of cream in a saucepan. After five minutes or so I added in another cup of cream, one cup of milk, and 1/2 cup of sugar and heated the mixture gently until the sugar and gelatin dissolved. I added in a large bunch of basil, covered the pot, and let the milk steep for about 20 minutes to subtly flavor the dessert. I served James' milky dessert topped with candied kumquats. The tangy fruits and gentle herb flavor made what might seem a dated dessert feel very today.

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