Filet Clémenceau with Béarnaise Sauce and Braised Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta

I don’t get to make it back to New Orleans as much as I used to. The one place I miss more than anywhere is Galatoire’s. Not only is the food the best in the city (a close second being the muffalettas from Central Grocery), but the service is the best I’ve ever experienced anywhere on Earth. Plus, the gound floor dining room has not changed since the dawn of time. It’s about as old school as old school gets. Since I can remember, my order has always been the Filet Clémenceau.

The original recipe would have you pan fry the steak – as well as everything else – on the stove. But I’ve decided to grill the steak and cook the potatoes with the mushroom and peas separately. The recipe is not too dissimilar from my Crispy Rosemary & Sage Fingerling Potatoes – minus the herbs and adding the mushrooms (which is like the original recipe I based mine on) and peas.

½ lb new potatoes – the smaller the better
1 tbsp lard
3 cloves of garlic, chopped fine
sea salt
fresh cracked black pepper
3 tsp garlic oil
1½ cup Crimini mushrooms, cut into thirds
½ cup frozen peas

Place the potatoes in a large heavy bottom pot, cover with cold water, add a sprinkle of salt and bring to the boil. Once boiling, lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Drain the potatoes in a colander. When the potatoes have cooled, cut in half lengthwise.

Heat the lard (which I get from the butcher counter at Sheridan Fruit Co.) in a Pyrex baking pan until melted. Add the potatoes and coat with the melted lard. Mix in chopped garlic and season heavily with sea salt and pepper. Arrange potatoes so that the cut side is facing up. Bake for 30 minutes at 425°. While the potatoes are cooking, toss the mushrooms in 2 tsp of the garlic oil in a small bowl and do the same with the remaining garlic oil with the peas. After the 30 minutes is up, mix in mushrooms and cook for another 10 minutes. Mix in peas and cook for another 5 minutes.

The addition of the Béarnaise Sauce was inspired by Portland’s Galatoire’s equivalent – St. Jack (the old South East location) – and their amazing Steak Frites. You can find the recipe – as well as a video – on Michael Ruhlman’s website.

The Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta recipe can be found here.

The only thing that could have made this any better was if John Fontenot was here to serve it.

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For a meal this special, I wanted something that would knock it out of the park. I went with a 2011 bottle of the Bourbonic Plague from Cascade Brewing. For dessert, I decided to have a 2009 bottle of the Cherry Adam from the Wood from Hair of the Dog.

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Fondue with Bierwurst, Bavarian Pretzels and Apples

This was something that was thrown together…

I had bought the frozen pretzels a few months back when I had picked up the Rouladen from Edelweiss Sausage & Delicatessen. I had picked up the pre-packaged fondue last week when I was preparing for the snowstorm. And I always have apples. So, all I needed to pick up was some Bierwurst

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With dinner, I had a bottle Flemish Kiss by The Commons Brewery. For dessert, a 2009 bottle of the Bourbon County from Goose Island.

Kielbasa and Collard Greens Soup

SNOWPACALYPSE Part 4.

The original plan for the weekend, was to make Garbure Gersoise – a recipe I had seen in Saveur. I had already picked up most of the ingredients early in the week – except two crucial items: the cabbage and the duck confit. I had planned to pick up the duck confit at Chop on Friday, but that turned out to be impossible. So, I decided to go with some Olympic Provisions kielbasa instead. The decision to use collards greens instead of the cabbage was because the recipe reminded me of my grandmother’s collard green soup recipe.

I did make the chicken stock from scratch, using the leftover carcass from the roasted chicken I had cook two weeks prior. I followed this recipe from Alton Brown, but instead of filling the sink with ice water to cool the stock – I filled the sink with snow.

I needed some kind of bread to go with the soup, but wanted something frozen so that it wouldn’t be stale by the time I cooked it – two days after I bought it. Frozen garlic bread was my only option…

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And to drink: Montem from Propolis Brewing.

Cheese Grits with Bacon

SNOWPACALYPSE Part 3.

This was another easy one. I already had the grits. All I needed was some bacon – which I also need for the soup – and some cheddar cheese.

Here’s my recipe for Cheese Grits: Get some Bob’s Red Mill Corn Grits / Polenta and follow the instructions on the package. Then, stir in 1 tbsp of Tony Chachere’s Original Creole Seasoning, 2 tsp of Tamari, 1 tsp of Chipotle hot sauce. Then, add 1.5 cups (or more if you like ’em really cheesy) of Sharp Cheddar Cheese (I like Tillimook) and mix well. Serve with bacon (or some chicharrón if you have a good carniceria in your neighborhood) and garnish with some green onions.

Shrimp and Andouille Gumbo

SNOWPACALYPSE Part 2.

This one was a no brainer. I had some leftover roux and half a pound of frozen shrimp. I decided to pick up some andouille to add a bit more flavor.

I would have grilled the shrimp and andouille before adding them to the roux, but by this time the snow was really coming down. So, I had to pan fry them separately then add to the roux. Serve over white rice and top with some green onions. Done.

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To drink, I went with a bottle of the Bourbon Woody from Breakside Brewery.

Corned Beef Hash with Swiss Cheese Cresent Rolls

SNOWPACALYPSE Part 1.

The snow started coming down pretty heavy on Thursday. I knew I didn’t want to drive to work, but I also needed to hit the grocery store since I knew we were going to be snowed in all weekend. I quickly surveyed the frigde and freezer, and figured out what I needed – and what I could carry in one shopping bag since I was taking public transit to work.

The corned beef was left over from a few weeks back. I always cook way more than we can eat so that I can make corned beef hash later. I also had a red onion. All I needed to grab was a bag of hash browns and a thing of cresent rolls and some sliced swiss cheese.

For the corned beef hash, I sliced the red onion and grilled the slices on the gas grill. Then dice the onions and corned beef. Cook the hash browns as per the directions and add the onions and corned beef a few minutes before they are done.

For the cresent rolls, follow the directiosn on the package – just add a triangle of cheese inside before rolling up.

Steamed Mussels with Chorizo & White Wine, Asparagus with Fried Jambon & Olives and a Baguette

The first time I ever cooked mussels, it was with this recipe. And to be honest, it didn’t turn out so well… But after numerous tries, I figured out that the key is having the right chorizo (which I just happen to have left over from last week). I decided to serve the mussels with the Asparagus with Preserved Lemon, Fried Jambon & Olives recipe that I’ve copied from Toro Bravo – although this time I skipped the Preserved Lemon.

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I decided to try a bottle of the Maybelle from The Commons Brewery this week.