We got a new dish set. It’s soooo pretty and white and matching, in brand spanking new glory – so a dinner party was in order.
(I blame Jeni and her beautiful birthday dinner.)
So I told some of my foodie friends, I’ll cook, you bring the booze.
And off to the farmer’s market I went.
My friends brought a lot of wine. Well okay, seven bottles for 5 people. We randomly mixed and matched with the courses – speaking of which, here’s what I made:
Grilled summer vegetables, shikwasa vinaigrette, meyer lemon, pine nuts. I’m allergic to eggplants, but I couldn’t resist buying these itty bitty konasu eggplants that the Japanese Farmer Lady had. And the basket of perfectly shiny shishito peppers. And the fuzzy okra. Okay so I gave in.
Spicy miso salmon, Vietnamese slaw. Basically this, but updated.
Oxtail braise, lemon grass, ginger, star anise, banh tay. A westernized Bo Kho – a very winter-y dish, but one of the boys told me to give him my best shot at cooking… So he gets braised ox tails in the middle of summer. It paired well with the bajillion cabs he brought.
Flan, jasmine umeshu, grapefruit, candied fennel. This one I spent the most time on, but was the weakest. Dessert is always the weakest. If I am ever to be on Iron Chef I would be the type to bust out the dreaded ice cream machine because I suck that much at dessert.
I infused jasmine tea into umeshu (a cool trick I learned from Chris Cason‘s seminar at the World Tea Expo), which I macerated the grapefruit with. I also candied the fennel chunks with said jasmine-infused umeshu. I wanted it to be like a flavor assplosion but in the end you couldn’t tell what the eff was going on, so everybody chucked out the grapefruit and nommed. Oh well, you live you learn.
My friends picked up a mini Ariel birthday cake on the way down. They are random like that. And after we emptied our wines, we hopped over to the bar nearby and had more booze. Needless to say I was still drunk when I woke up the next day.
Then the hangover came so I made some ochazuke with the leftover salmon. So. Effin. Good. Leftovers are always good. Especially in the new bowl that came in the new dish set.