Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Sunday Dinner in Mt. Washington

I had a great Sunday dinner experience at the home of my friend Daniel this past week.  Not only was the food delicious, but I had the chance to meet someone new-- Daniel's friend Elizabeth Preger.  Elizabeth was not only a very charming dinner companion, she was also a stunning model.  Here she is collecting watercress for our salad... or at least posing with Daniel's scarecrow after collecting watercress for our salad.
Elizabeth and her freshly picked watercress, July 31, 2011.

Our Sunday dinner started off with an appetizer of walnuts with gorgonzola cheese, which was an ode to an appetizer I made for Daniel many years ago.  It was followed by a summer salad of tomatoes, persian cucumbers, onions and watercress.  Everything except the cucumbers came from his garden and the watercress was freshly picked, as you can see.

The main course was tuna in a tomato sauce that Daniel elegantly refers to as "Albacore in Pappiette with Caprese Salsa".  To make the sauce, Daniel utilized a process that he calls "salsifying".   This is not to be confused with the plant "salsify", although I suppose you might be able to use salsify when you salsify something.  In Daniel's case, "salsify" refers to the process of turning a set of ingredients into a salsa-like sauce.

No matter what you call it, it's delicious.  Thanks, Daniel, for the meal and the recipe.
Sunday Dinner at Daniel's house, July 31, 2011.

Albacore in Pappiette with Caprese Salsa
by Daniel Marlos
Opened Pappiette, July 2011.

  • Parchment paper
  • 1 pound of 1-inch thick albacore steak cut into three equal portions
  • ½ stick of butter
  • Roma tomatoes
  • Basil
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 green onions, choppped including greens
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • Parsley hopped
  • Capers in salt
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 big, hard, black olives for garnish
  • Pre-fold three pieces of parchment paper into Pappiette.
  • Boil tomatoes until skin splits.  
  • Remove skin of tomatoes once they have cooled.  
  • Salsify the tomatoes until they are a chunky puree.  Reduce to 2/3 original consistency over low flame.
  • Melt Butter and brush onto the lower and upper surface of the prefolded parchment paper, only the part that will come into contact with the fish.
  • Place an albacore steak on the bottom surface of the parchment paper on top of the butter.
  • Drizzle 1/3 olive oil on each steak.
  • Mix vinegar and onions.  Put 1/3 on top of each steak.
  • Top with  ½ teaspoon capers on each steak.
  • Salt and pepper fish to taste.
  • Top with basil and parsley to taste.  
  • Finish by topping with generous spoons of Salsa Caprese or Pureed Roma Tomatoes.  
  • Garnish with Black Olive and fold pappiette.  Double fold sides to make a steam tight envelope.  
  • Brush with olive oil and place in 500º oven for 10-12 minutes.
  • Serve with Summer Tomato Salad and Braised Asparagus  (recipes to follow).