Monday, September 28, 2009

I broke myself

Well, maybe I did. I'm taking an easy week as far as workouts are concerned since I'm super paranoid about the whole Achilles thing. I'm all about the ice and rest right now. See?
Why buy a fancy ice pack when you can use a container of frozen soup?? Hehe. I MAY be stubborn and still try to get my 20 mile run in on Saturday...and still run the Army 10-Miler on Sunday. We'll see how I feel. And no, I'm not crazy - there will be no 'racing' at the race for me.

Ok! Time for fun dinner experiments! Last night I played with some blue brie, polenta, steak, mushrooms, brandy and POM Wonderful pomegranate juice to make
Blue Brie Polenta with Brandied Mushrooms and Steak with Pomegranate Sauce. I envisioned a really pretty meal as I walked home, but the actual plate didn't turn out as planned...
So I cooked the polenta as I normally would using chicken broth, butter and some light cream. Instead of parmesan cheese, I dumped in some blue brie -
THE WHOLE WEDGE. :[ I kept tasting it and maybe blue brie was a bad idea. It just didn't have a strong enough flavor. Perhaps next time I'd go with a mixture of blue brie and gorgonzola? Also, the cornmeal we had wasn't as coarsely ground as I usually get and I think that might have made the polenta have a weird texture? Too smooshy?

For the mushrooms, I reached out to one of our many Tyler Florence cookbooks:
Tyler's Ultimate has a ton of fun recipes and we've tried a handful of them. Tyler Florence has never steered this household wrong! Well, maybe until now...sort of. I went with his Brandied Mushrooms, which called for cream (that I thought was a little weird), but I swear, his mushrooms in the picture looked the opposite of creamy!
Mine? Um, that is CREAM! I quartered my cremini mushrooms and threw in some greens for fun. I think I should have gone with like sherried mushrooms or something. Or maybe followed his WHOLE recipe for his New York Strip Steak with Brandied Mushrooms and Thyme.

We grabbed a package of sirloin steak from the Giant and they were just the right sizes for us. After a generous sprinkling of salt and freshly ground pepper on each side, they were pan seared for a couple minutes on each side and rested while I worked on the sauce.

I melted 1 tbsp butter to the steak pan and added 4 ounces of POM Wonderful Pomegranate Juice and reduced the mixture. Spooned some on top of the steak and called it dinner.
The acidity and sweetness of the pomegranate juice actually worked well with all the creaminess of the polenta and mushrooms, but it still wasn't quite what I had pictured. Ah well.

While I was cooking last night's dinner, Chef Jamie started working on prepping tonight's dinner - Caesar Potato Salad with Sugar Snap Peas
This is what it looked like in the magazine - isn't it fun with the multicolored taters? Mine wasn't so colorful:
We stuck with the regular fingerling potatoes they had at the Giant and they were just as good. We did all the steaming and cutting last night and Jamie made the dressing this evening. It tasted pretty good this evening, but I'm sure it'll be even better tomorrow once the potatoes absorb the dressing! Instead of using just regular Dijon mustard, we used 1/2 tbsp Dijon mustard and 1/2 tsp whole grain mustard (because I love it so much haha). Definitely a great, light and tangy potato salad :)

Time to think of things to do with a fun package I got in the mail today:
Thanks to Foodbuzz's Tastemaker program, I have two loaves of Nature's Pride bread to test out! That's a whole lotta bread! Sammiches? Eggs in Holes? What on earth am I going to do with all this bread? haha. I'm open to suggestions!


MarathonVal said...

What a gosh darn fancy recipe you have there! ;)

Looks awesome! I am also a HUGE fan of that Tyler Florence cookbook.... and him, as well! He's quite sexy in person (I met him at a chef demo), in case you were wondering!

Olga said...

First, I hope you feel better soon!

And now for the food: that meals sounds absoutely awesome! Love polenta, love mushrooms, love steak :) Try adding feta to polenta next time, or smoked mozzarella.

As far as bread, make home-made croutons or a French Toast casserole.

B.o.B. said...

I am just so impressed with your cooking. I don't know how you do it. I am so lazy with my cooking.

Keep the achilles under a close watch. Keep on Hope it's better soon!

Rosey Rebecca said...

I got those loaves of bread yesterday too!! I completely forgot about egg in the hole!! wow! I'm making one this week!

Holly said...

ahhhhh i LOVE tyler florence. that man is a mean cook and seriously a cutie!

yummmmmy dinner girl!

Anonymous said...

You guys cook fancy!! ha, I like it! I've never flipped through Tyler's recipes, hmmmm. Might have to check that out.

Bread...uhhh...french toast? sandwiches? more sandwiches? umm...bread pudding? Ew, probably not with that kind of bread. haha. good luck with that!