We entertained the Fangman's this weekend as they head for Des Moines in a few days. We have been friends since they moved here 8 years ago and will miss them sorely we just had to have a evening on the patio. A bit chilly that night as the ladies will attest but fond memories are there as we bid them farewell until we travel to Des Moines to catch up with them again.
I made an old favorite recipe that I haven't made in years. Scallops Au Gratin or Coquille St. Jacques. A french dish thats a little fussy and we found great dishes to serve it it. Usually we eat this over rice but tradition calls for mashed potatoes so we went with tradition. All in all it was a grand evening. Cigars and wine followed before we retired inside to have a rich dessert for a cap on the festivities. I made Pot de Creme with a surprise caramel sauce on the bottom.
The recipe comes from my Joslyn Cookbook which is loaded with kind of fussy recipes that only I would love. I believe they still sell the book at the museum but mine is a signed copy from when the author was still living.
Coquilles St. Jacques
3/4 c Dry Vermouth
1 bay leaf
1 diced shallot
1 pound Bay scallops, rinsed and dried
8 ounces of sliced cremini mushrooms
Water or Clam broth (optional)
4 tbl butter
3 tbl flour
3/4 c milk
1/2 c cream
2 egg yolks
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup shredded Gruyere cheese
2 cups mashed potatoes
I started by heating the Vermouth , bay leaf and shallots and simmering for 10 minutes. Add the scallops and mushrooms with enough water or broth to cover. Simmer gently till the scallops are just done (do not boil or the scallops with toughen). Remove the scallops and mushrooms and reduce the remaining liquid to 1 cup.
In another sauce pan, melt the butter and add the flour to form a roux but don't let it brown. Add the milk and cook till thickened. Add the beaten egg yolks and cream. Add lemon juice and zest. Thin if needed with more milk. Should make for a heavy cream sauce. Add the scallops and mushrooms back and stir to combine. Keep warm and set aside.
Cook and mash your potatoes. I used Yukon Golds. Load into a large pastry bag and pipe a border around the serving dish. Fill the center with the scallop mixture, top with Gruyere and broil till potatoes have a golden edge. Serves 4.
Chocolate Pot de Creme
Heat 300 gm cream and add 300 gm of semi sweet chocolate and 50 gm of butter. Allow the chocolate and butter to melt and stir till the mixture is dark brown and creamy. Set aside to cool slightly. I did all this in a 4 cup measure in the microwave. Makes 6 servings
1 c sugar
1/4 c water
6 tbl butter cut into pieces
1/2 c cream
heat 1 cup sugar and 1/4 c water in a heavy saucepan till the sugar turns amber. Add the cream off heat and mix adding butter a little at a time stirring after each addition.
Divide the caramel between 6 dessert cups. I refrigerated the caramel to set up a bit before pouring the chocolate on top. After pouring the chocolate, refrigerate till firm then sprinkle with Grey salt just before serving.