Early Easter and a celebratory dinner. It’s still cold but we are all hopeful that spring is on the way.
As usual, I start with wine and cheese in the living room but I went very light with a chenin blanc and a boursin soft herbed cheese and fruit because I added an extra course at the table.
I carried the chenin blanc to that course, an amuse bouche (isn’t that a great term?) of lobster tail salad with a slice of baguette with carmelized onions. Just a couple of bits of each to amuse the palate, I served the lobster salad in Asian soup spoons,
Next, a spring mix salad with another amusement: a deviled egg half made with goat cheese and white truffle oil. (Unfortunately, the picture of the salad was taken before I added the egg to the side of the plate.)
And the entrée:
First I’d like to say, inspiration comes from many and varied things (I once planned a wedding party around grapes that I KNEW had to be draped over a beautiful rock. I was lovely.) The inspiration for this entrée came from lovely, large plates with a deep indentation that made them bowl-like. The pattern on the plates said spring and the shallow bowl screamed broth!
So the entree: Cornish game hens with baby spring vegetables and wild rice pilaf on a plate of broth drizzled with truffle oil. (I’m into truffle oil right now.) The plate was beautiful. Cornish game hens are about 1 ¼ pounds with bone in. Really, if I’d been so inclined I could have split the birds in half and it would have been plenty. Or maybe quail would have been beautiful. But they were BIG plates and the whole bird fit perfectly.
The birds were prepared with butter and herbs under the skin and then roasted. They were beautiful browned with a little bit of crisp to the skin and moist meat underneath. With our entrée we served the same Cote de Rhone from Trader Joe’s that we served in February.
Incidentally, Cornish game hens are neither a game bird or necessarily a hen. It is a domestic chicken, can be either male or female, with a shorter growing span and a higher price!
For dessert, we had an amaretto cheese cake with a surprise in the crust –pretzels as well as graham crackers. Salty AND sweet, a nice touch and with a bit of whimsy on top – a white chocolate coated pretzel with sprinkles. Served with a glass of Amontillado sherry and expresso – perfect.