Monday, November 1, 2010

Sunday Dinners are Sacred: Halloween edition

Halloween weekend I decided to be mildly festive and dress up as Margot Tenenbaum for my sunday dinner while i cooked a somewhat festive meal. I made a monkfish recipe from Philippe Laloux's amazing new cookbook Le bonheur de cuire which my mother gave me as a gift and I had also prepared a pumpkin cheese cake for dessert.

Philippe Laloux opened Laloux restaurant in 1988 but then left to do his own thing and travel. I know his cooking only from when he catered my brother's wedding and managed to dish out perfect magret de canard for 80 people in a really small and ill equipped kitchen. I don't know how he did it but it was the best magret I ever had!(much better than the one i tasted at the restaurant that still bears his name...)

So the monkfish recipe was relatively easy to make and the fish really isn't that expensive. We bought the clams and the monkfish at the fish market suggested by M. Laloux, Nouveau Faléro on Parc. It's sort of a thai influenced dish with coconut milk, green curry and saffron. The recipe suggests to serve it with basmati rice since there is a large quantity of the fragrant broth and it's so delicious it really should'nt go to waste! I also enjoyed eating it as a soup...

2 poireaux émincés (i didn't use any...)
1 red onion chopped
1 cup of chopped celery (i put more)
2 cans coconut milk
1 tsp green curry paste (i put 2)
1 tsp saffron
1 1/2 pounds of monkfish
2 cups clams
a little less than a cup of white wine
1 cup of green peas (i put 2)
2 tomatoes, chopped
olive oil
salt and pepper

1. cook the onions and celery in some olive oil and then add the coconut milk .
2. Add the curry and saffron.
3. Cut the fish in pieces and place in broth.
4. Allow to sightly boil and cook covered for 5 minutes.
5. Rinse the clams, cook separately in the wine in a covered pot for 5 to 7 minutes or until they all open.
6. Right before serving add the peas, clams and their filtered juice to the fish.
7. Cook a bit longer.
8. Add the tomatoes at the very end
9. I chopped up some chives and added them at the end too.

paired with: a gewurztraminer

For the cheesecake recipe i basically followed the smitten kitchen one except for the crust in which I added cinnamon and I also made it thinner. I split the recipe in two because it was for a giant cake from what I saw in the pictures! Also I used fresh pumpkin instead of the canned version. Canned things scare me a little.

So the meal was a great success! The monkfish was simply delicious. The cake was a also a huge hit with my family and friends and was a perfect dessert for a Halloween night.


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