Posts Tagged ‘Butter’

It’s a spring thing

March 23, 2013

It's a spring thing

The local fish monger had shad fillets and roe sets today. Just what I wanted for dinner.

I melted a couple of tablespoons of sweet butter in a large skillet with an equal amount of olive oil. When it got hot, I placed the shad fillet in the skillet skin side down. I had already salted and peppered the fillet.

I spooned some of the butter/oil over the top of the fillet and, after two minutes on the stove top, I placed the skillet in a pre-heated, 350 degree oven.

For the roe set, I had soaked them for an hour or so in some cool water with a hit of fresh squeezed lemon juice. Then I rinsed the set and patted it dry.

I gently separated the sacks and dusted them with some flour seasoned with white pepper and salt.

I heated up some bacon fat in small skillet over medium low heat and placed the roe set into the fat.

Meanwhile, I pulled the pan with the fillet out of the over and set it back on the stove top over medium heat. I let it cook for a couple of minutes and then poured in about 3 ounces of white wine. Turning the flame up to medium high, I let the wine reduce by half. Then I added a couple more tablespoons of butter and a few ounces of heavy cream. I removed the fish to a plate and kept it warm while continuing to sitr and reduce the wine/butter/cream mixture.

The roe set I turned over just as it was crisping up…about three minutes. I let the roe continue to cook for another three minutes or so and then removed from the heat.

As the sauce thickened, I added some finely chopped parsely, tasted for seasoning and salted and peppered as needed.

I napped the fillet with the sauce and sprinkled on more chopped parsely.

The roe set I placed on the side of the plate with the fillet. I had a small sprig of bronze fennel I got out of the garden that I minced up and sprinkled over the top of the roe.

As an accompaniment, I sauteed some oyster mushrooms and put them on the plate as well.

Spring had sprung!


We’re back

October 2, 2011

It has been a busy stretch for us and I have neglected this blog.  Hopefully, you haven’t gone hungry waiting for tidbits and teasers from me.

One of the “distractions” of the past few months was our recent trip to Venice, the Cinque Terre and Milan. Obviously, we ate.  We ate well.  There will be reports about that later.

Tonight, I noticed a number of notes on Facebook from friends describing their various Sunday night dinners.  Although varied, they had in common a turn towards cool weather foods.

Our own meal this evening was what I would consider “transitional” between the summer and fall seasons.

Tonight, we had homemade fettucine in a burro oro e salvia (butter and sage) sauce, chicken breasts with fresh herbs and salad and pecan pie for dessert.

The cool weather inspired Ann to make the pasta.  With an abundance of herbs in the garden, why not use them in the sauce.  Butter and sage, while good anytime of year are rich and savory and comforting enough on a damp, chilly night.  The Rosemary and oregano were begging to be used as well, and what better way to flavor the chicken breasts.

We chopped the herbs and mixed them with salt, black pepper and olive oil.  The mix was then placed into a plastic bag with the boneless,  chicken breasts and left to marinate for an hour or so before being cooked over medium heat in a frying pan and a little more olive oil.

For the burro oro e salvia, I took about 5 tablespoons of sweet butter and melted it in a small pan over medium heat.  When the butter was completely melted and the foaming subsided, let it go a couple of minutes until it picks up a golden color. Toss in 6 to 8 leaves of fresh sage and remove from heat.

At about the time we put sage in the butter, we placed our fresh pasta in a pot of boiling, salted water.  The pasta  should be done shortly after the water has returned to a boil and the fettucine has risen to the top.  Drain, toss with the sage butter and serve.

Sunday, season bridging dinner. Homemade, part home-grown; comforting; quick.

Lox and eggs

June 8, 2011

 Growing up, Sundays around our house had a fairly predictable and comfortable routine.  We weren’t church folk…the combined result of a very mixed religious background and my father’s work schedule. 

Dad worked Monday through Saturday…including many evenings. Sundays truly were his “day of rest.”  As long as you could count visiting with family and catching up on house and garden chores “rest.”  

We’d get up and go through the Sunday papers…even as a kid, I would read at least the comics; get dressed and then head intoTrenton to visit my grandmother. 

We’d pick her up and run around to Palat’s Dairy on the corner of Cooper and Market Streets. 

Palats Dairy Photo Courtesy Trentoniana Collection

“And for you,” Mrs. Palat would ask, peering over the counter that was taller than she was. 

Our order was pretty standard:  ¼ pound of lox and a ¼ pound of nova (less salty); some creamed herring and a nice, plump, golden scaled, smoked whitefish. The quantities might increase depending on whom and how many were expected to be at table that morning.

Palat’s was a wonder to me.  The aroma when you walked through the door was like nothing else on earth.  I would love to have the opportunity to breathe deeply of that salty, dusty, garlic air once more.

From there, we’d walk down the street to Kohn’s bakery and then on to Kunis’ to gather the fixings for breakfast. Bagels, “half moons” and some onion rolls from one bakery; maybe a nice loaf of pumpernickel too; then some fruit or cheese Danish and some sticky buns from the next. 

Kohns Bakery Photo Courtesy Trentonian Collection

Kunis Bakery Photo Courtesey of Trentoniana Collection

I guess today this would be considered preparations for “Brunch” but back then it was just our Sunday breakfast.
Shopping done, we’d return to Grand mom’s house onFerry Street.  Aunt Evelyn might get the task of pulling the flesh from the whitefish while Grand mom started the lox and eggs.  To this day, the aroma of onion softening in butter sets my mouth watering in a true Pavlovian response. 

I love lox anyway and how I can get them.  But lox and eggs and a bagel on a Sunday morning; sitting at the table with extended family and friends.   Now that’s heaven on earth. 

Lox and eggs

¼ pound smoked salmon chopped fine
⅓ cup onion minced
4 tbs butter
8 eggs, lightly beaten

Melt the butter in a large frying pan and add the onion.  Cook over medium heat until the onion is soft and translucent.  Add the salmon and stir.  Immediately pour the eggs into the pan, stirring to mix everything and evenly.  Reduce heat if necessary and continue to move the eggs around the pan until they are just cooked through but still moist.  Serve family style with good bagels, sweet butter and/or cream cheese.  Serves 4

An all day sandwich

October 3, 2010

Simple to prepare, a pepper and egg sandwich on a good torpedo roll is a pleasure whether served for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  It can be quickly

 produced from ingredients that are almost always readily at hand (at least in my house); it satisfies; and it may even have restorative powers if you are suffering the after effects of a little over-indulgence.


Pepper and Egg Sandwich

  •  1 cup Italian Frying Pepper (Cubanelle), cut up (4 ounces or about two medium peppers)

    Everything you need for a pepper and egg sandwich

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 Tbs of olive oil
  • 1 good torpedo roll
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Red pepper flakes (optional)
  • butter

Heat the oil in a small omelet or sauté pan over medium heat.  Add the peppers, season to taste with salt, pepper and red pepper if using. Toss until just the peppers just start to soften (three or four minutes). Crack the eggs into a bowl or measuring cup and whisk until well blended.  Pour eggs over peppers in pan.  Cook until eggs are set but not dried out.  (Some people use an omelet type technique, but I find that with this ratio of pepper to eggs, it is somewhat difficult.  Instead, I sort of lightly scramble the eggs by turning the set portions over in the pan just enough to make sure they are cooked through).

Slice the roll (you can warm it in the toaster oven if you like), lightly butter it and place the egg mixture in it.  Enjoy.

Pepper and egg sandwich