I've been soooo craving meat recently. I think I must unintentionally deprive myself of must-needed nutrients now and then because my brain eventually kicks in and starts yelling at me, reminding me of what I'm missing. And when it does, I must listen. Luckily we had a dinner planned with two other meat lovers, Marysol and Simon. So we went all out.
Can we serve beef as the app AND the main? I think I may have pushed a bit for this one, and I'm glad I did because my husband did a marvelous job. As usual.
We started off with a carpaccio salad. Bright red fleshy slivers of fresh, raw beef. We actually called the butcher at the Glebe Meat Market ahead of time to request it. What they do is take a beautiful piece of meat and then freeze it a bit so it's easier to slice. My husband served it as a tower, layering arugula between the slices and topping it all off with shavings of parm and dollops of spicy dijon, lemon mayo dressing. I was in heaven.
Our main was equally delicious. A perfectly seared tenderloin topped with a delectable herb butter sauce – minced shallots, garlic, parsley and chives. Sautéed mushrooms were actually made to accompany the meat but were sadly forgotten in the pan until the last few bites. But it's never too late for mushrooms – and they were quickly devoured. And the frites, so carefully prepared. My husband followed the recipe on how to cook the best fries in his Cooks Illustrated magazine. I swear this magazine is like a mechanic's instructions manual, but for chefs. The secret to these golden beauties? Cornstarch and double frying.
Along with all this mouthwatering food came a lot of really good wine too. We actually started off the evening with a cheese plate served with Hinterland's sparkling White Cap – one of my favourite drinks to start the evening with and unfortunately only available in Prince Edward County. With the app, we enjoyed Sandhill One, a 2007 Cab Sauv blend from the Okanagan Valley – amazing wine. This also brought us into our main, until we finished it off and reached for Lockwood Vineyard's 2007 Cab Sauvignon, not a match to the first but a great pairing for the dish. And finally, I served my overcooked chocolate molten cakes (they were kind of lacking on the lava side) with a ruby port, Fonseca Bin 27 Reserve.
Amazing food, company and wine = happiness all over.