Sunday, January 22, 2006

Foie Gras & I

Cooking with foie gras intimidates me. My first experience at home was a total disaster. Unfortunately I do not have the photos to show for it, (I deleted it out of disgust and the sheer embarrassment of the ugliness of the disaster) but take my word for it, it was horrible. I identified Thomas Keller’s roasting a whole foie gras for the experiment of the day. I had successfully de-veined and pieced back the liver, but my eagerness and impatience did not allow it to sit long enough in the fridge to re-set back into place and that was where it all went downhill. The book called for me to pan sear it and to toss it into the oven for the roasting. The picture in the book looked so beautiful, and the procedure seemed so simple, but alas it was not so for me. The minute my foie gras hit the pan, it started to fall apart and all I could see was this expensive delicate food item melt and fall away into the pieces that I had formerly broken it up into. The end product was overcooked on some ends and only edible on some parts.

M and A invited me over for dinner on Wednesday because they had some overseas visitors for dinner. I asked what was on the menu and A informed me that M was going to be cooking foie gras. My instant reaction was, “Has M ever done it? The last time I tried making foie gras it was a total disaster! The whole thing disintegrated on me and I watched my dollars literally melt away in my pan! Wish M all the luck in the world for tonight!” The conversation jolted my past experience, which I had longed to file away in my memory. Thankfully M was much better and successful with his first attempt. It almost made me jealous that his foie gras looked beautiful and had a lovely pan-seared crisp crust, a much much much better attempt than mine. I’m still intimidated.

The dinner that was cooked up was simple and luxurious. We started off with a Thai-flavoured prawns, which A has decided to call (she names all the plates) Otah-styled prawns. Put simple, there were spice elements that led to us commenting that it reminded us of Otah, and hence Otah-styled prawns. Following suit was the indulgent of roasted tenderloin with foie gras served with pineapple chutney. The pineapple chutney brought a good sweet balance to the plate alongside the slightly bitter salad leaves that were served. Dessert, was suppose to be simple, but it turned out to be a multi-coursed meal in itself! We started with a fruit platter, and then came the box of oh-so-delicious box of Royce chocolates. Before even the second piece of chocolate melted away in my mouth, I was served with a scoop of pineapple tart ice cream from island creamery. The ice cream was fantastic, but I felt so guilty from all that food that I resisted a second portion. Still dizzy from counting all my calories, the cheese plate arrived and my wine was refilled, at that point, I had decided to stop counting calories, taste everything once, and wash it all down with some Chinese tea. Dessert did finally come to an end and I rolled out of the house and made my way home and slept happy. I later dreamt about cooking foie gras; It must have been the encouragement by M’s success, so, perhaps, perhaps, perhaps.

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Blogger Richard said...

Looks like your weekend is something after all. I went to chinatown, looked at loads of traditional candies, cos most of them looked too sweet for my taste buds. Took loads of pictures, and will post them up really soon.

11:39 AM  
Blogger Amanduh said...

Ooh, if you cook foie gras, please call us! :)
Can I steal the pic of the foie gras too? Thanks!

11:55 AM  

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