French Bistro Meal
1/2 cup milk
1 Tbs. unsalted butter
1 Tbs. all-purpose flour
2 egg yolks, at room temperature
1/4 cup shredded Gruyère cheese
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
Cayenne pepper, to taste
1/2 Tbs. Madeira wine
2 1/2 egg whites, at room temperature
Pinch of cream of tartar
Preheat an oven to 350°F. In a small saucepan over medium heat, warm the milk until small bubbles appear around the edges of the pan. In another saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. When foaming, add the flour and whisk until blended. Cook, whisking, for 1 minute; do not allow the mixture to brown. Gradually add the milk, whisking constantly. Continue whisking, regularly scraping the bottom and sides of the pan, until the mixture thickens and comes to a boil, 2 to 3 minutes. Cook for a few seconds more until thickened and smooth, and then remove from the heat. Let cool a little.In a bowl, whisk the egg yolks until pale yellow, 1 to 2 minutes. Gradually whisk the hot sauce into the yolks, and then add the cheeses, salt, pepper, a sprinkling of cayenne and the Madeira. Stir to mix well. Set aside.Place the egg whites in a large, clean, dry bowl. Add the cream of tartar and, using a clean whisk or beaters, beat until soft peaks form and hold their shape. Spoon about one-fourth of the egg whites into the cheese sauce and, using a rubber spatula, stir gently to blend. Then gently fold the remaining egg whites into the sauce just until incorporated. Spoon the mixture into an ungreased 2 soufflé dish and bake until puffed and lightly browned, 35 to 40 minutes.Remove the soufflé from the oven and carry it immediately to the table before it begins to fall. (I made them in 2 ramekins and cooked them
for 25 minutes)
Green Peppercorn Cream Sauce
1 cup beef stock or canned beef broth
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup chopped shallots
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 1/2 tablespoons Cognac or brandy
1 tablespoons drained green peppercorns in brine Boil stock in small saucepan until reduced to 3/4 cup, about 7 minutes. Meanwhile cook steaks. Transfer steaks oven (do not clean skillet). Add chopped shallots to same skillet and sauté 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Add reduced beef stock, 1 cup whipping cream, 3 tablespoons Cognac and green peppercorns. Boil until mixture thickens to sauce consistency, about 6 minutes. Season sauce to taste with pepper. Spoon sauce over steaks and serve.
Broccolini with sautéed shallots and toasted pine nuts
Blanch one bunch of Broccolini in salted water take out and put in ice water immediately in a large sauté pan sauté shallots in olive oil salt and pepper add the Broccolini and sauté till desired doneness about 6 minutes. Add the juice of half a lemon and the zest of half a lemon and cook for 1 more minute. Toss in Pine nuts that have been toasted before hand till golden brown.
Pate a Choux- Cream puff pastry
2 Large Eggs
1 large egg white
5 tablespoons unsalted butter cut into 10 pieces
2 tablespoons whole milk
6 tablespoons water
1 ½ teaspoons granulated sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup sifted unbleached all purpose flour
Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 425 degrees. Spray large (12-by 18-inch) baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray and line with parchment paper; set aside. Beat eggs and egg white in measuring cup or small bowl; you should have 1/2 cup (discard excess). Set aside.
Bring butter, milk, water, sugar, and salt to boil in small saucepan over medium heat, stirring once or twice. When mixture reaches full boil (butter should be fully melted), immediately remove saucepan from heat and stir in flour with heatproof spatula or wooden spoon until combined and mixture clears sides of pan. Return saucepan to low heat and cook, stirring constantly, using smearing motion, for 3 minutes, until mixture is slightly shiny with wet-sand appearance and tiny beads of fat appear on bottom of saucepan (temperature of paste should register 175 to 180 degrees on instant-read thermometer).
Immediately transfer mixture to food processor and process with feed tube open for 10 seconds to cool slightly. With machine running, gradually add eggs in steady stream. When all eggs have been added, scrape down sides of bowl, and then process for 30 seconds until smooth, thick, sticky paste forms. (If not using immediately, transfer paste to medium bowl, cover surface flush with sheet of plastic wrap sprayed lightly with nonstick cooking spray, and store at room temperature for up to 2 hours.)
Fold down top 3 or 4 inches of 14- or 16-inch pastry bag fitted with 1/2-inch plain tip to form a cuff. Hold bag open with one hand in cuff and fill bag with paste. Unfold cuff, lay bag on work surface, and, using hands or bench scraper, push paste into lower portion of pastry bag. Twist top of bag and pipe paste into 1 1/4- to 1 1/2-inch mounds on prepared baking sheet, spacing them about 1 to 1 1/4 inches apart (you should be able to fit about 24 mounds on baking sheet).
Use back of teaspoon dipped in bowl of cold water to smooth shape and surface of piped mounds. Bake 15 minutes (do not open oven door), then reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees and continue to bake until golden brown and fairly firm (puffs should not be soft and squishy), 8 to 10 minutes longer. Remove baking sheet from oven. With paring knife, cut 3/4-inch slit into side of each puff to release steam; return puffs to oven, turn off oven, and prop oven door open with handle of wooden spoon. Dry puffs in turned-off oven until centers are just moist (not wet) and puffs are crisp, about 45 minutes. Transfer puffs to wire rack to cool. (Cooled puffs can be stored at room temperature for up to 24 hours or frozen in zipper-lock plastic bag for up to 1 month. Before serving, crisp room temperature puffs in 300-degree oven 5 to 8 minutes, or 8 to 10 minutes for frozen puffs.)
Bittersweet Chocolate Sauce
Whisk the sauce gently so as not to create tiny air bubbles that can mar its appearance. Makes 1 1/2 cups.
¾ cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into three pieces
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine
Bring heavy cream, corn syrup, butter, and salt to boil in small nonreactive saucepan over medium-high heat. Off heat, add chocolate while gently swirling saucepan. Cover pan and let stand until chocolate is melted, about 5 minutes. Uncover and whisk gently until combined. (Can be cooled to room temperature, placed in airtight container, and refrigerated for up to 3 weeks. To reheat, transfer sauce to heatproof bowl set over saucepan of simmering water. Alternatively, microwave at 50 percent power, stirring once or twice, 1 to 3 minutes.)
I added 1/2 tsp instant coffee.