With our new horizons fast approaching at Hurley House, my time this week began to center around creating the infrastructure necessary to launch our new social media channel, the Lunch Party, and the Hospitality Hotline. It was a lot of work, with so many details I had to create a chart to keep it all straight.
Normally, I would have loved this process, but because I was also trying to plow through the final weeks of cooking, my mind was foggy. I find myself wanting to soak up the end of this project, yet simultaneously stretched forward toward what is next. It’s a little unnerving to watch these final weeks fly by, knowing that when they are gone, they will not return. My emotions seem to be right under the surface most days, and I am doing my best to stay honest and in the moment about what I’m feeling and why.
WHAT I COOKED
Panko-Crusted Rack of Lamb, Cook Like a Pro
Orange-Roasted Rainbow Carrots, Cook Like a Pro
Warm Brown Rice & Butternut Squash, Cook Like a Pro
Roasted Duck Breast with Dried Cherries & Port, Cook Like a Pro
Maple-Roasted Acorn Squash, Cook Like a Pro
Sauteed Savoy Cabbage with Bacon, Cook Like a Pro
Moscato Poached Fruit, Cook Like a Pro
Radishes with Butter and Salt, Barefoot in Paris
Crispy Mustard Chicken & Frisee, Cook Like a Pro
Haricots Verts with Hazelnuts & Dill, Cook Like a Pro
Mustard Vinaigrette, Cook Like a Pro
Coffee Granita, Make It Ahead
Farro Tabbouleh with Feta, Cook Like a Pro
Tuscan Tomato & Bread Salad, Cook Like a Pro
Pork Souvlaki with Radish Tzatziki, Cook Like a Pro
Celery Root & Chickpea Puree, Cook Like a Pro
Fresh Peach Cremolata, Cook Like a Pro
Filet of Beef with Mushrooms & Blue Cheese, Cook Like a Pro
Filet of Beef Carpaccio, Cook Like a Pro
Butternut Squash Gratin, Cook Like a Pro
Baked Spinach & Zucchini, Cook Like a Pro
Flounder Milanese, Cook Like a Pro
Lemon Vinaigrette, Cook Like a Pro
Parmesan Pesto Zucchini Sticks, Cook Like a Pro
WHAT I LEARNED
SAUTÉED SAVOY CABBAGE WITH BACON.
I discovered how much I love sautéed cabbage from Ina’s version in Parties!. This version takes that idea and makes it even better with the addition of bacon. Cabbage is so delicious when done well, and it can feed a small army with a single head.
CRISPY MUSTARD CHICKEN AND FRISEE.
This recipe takes a known formula and carries it forward. Ina first introduced the idea of hot crunchy chicken with cold salad greens in Family Style with her Chicken Parmesan. This is another riff on that theme. There is indeed something very satisfying about the snap of cold greens bathing in vinaigrette paired with warm bites of tender breaded chicken. Adding roasted potatoes to this one-dish-wonder turns it into a full meal.
FILET OF BEEF WITH MUSHROOMS AND BLUE CHEESE.
This dish is iconic. Beef, mushrooms, blue cheese. It is restaurant-worth and incredibly special. This is the kind of cooking that brings me satisfaction because it is perceived as fancy, but in reality takes no more effort than any other cooking. Yes, it is pricy, but in a way, this is what elevates it. You can taste it in every bite.