Food Under Control

Garland Oven and Six Burner Stove
Last week I had the opportunity to run Nellie James for 3 days, which gave me a chance to cook whatever I wanted from available ingredients. Here are the highlights:

Chicken in Thai Basil Cream with Spinach
I started with a Suprême sauce – a velouté reduced with whipping cream. To deepen the flavour of the velouté, I cooked the roux with garlic until it was nutty and fragrant. As well, the essence of a sprig of rosemary and pinch of chili were infused into the roux. Once the velouté and cream were simmering, sea salt, ample amounts of cracked black pepper and lots of freshly grated nutmeg rounded out and warmed the completed sauce. To this, roughly chopped basil was mixed in for its anisey freshness. Once the cream sauce was poured over the pieces of chicken breast, handfuls of wilted spinach topped it all off.

Wilted Bok Choy with Bella Vitano Artisan Cheese and Basil
Finding a bag of bok choy in the fridge: Once it was tossed with olive oil, salt, pepper and cumin seed, I threw it in a smoking hot pan until it was just wilted. I finished it off with a chiffonade of fresh basil and rough shavings of Merlot rubbed Bella Vitano cheese.

Wilted bok choy with artisan Bella vitano cheese and thai basil
Savoury, wilted but still crisp bok choy with notes of herb and cumin spice under slices of nutty, pungent artisan cheese.

Smoked salmon pasta agli i olio
A penne pasta, tossed in an aglio e olio: olive oil, plenty of chopped garlic, a splash of tomato sauce, chilis, fresh finely chopped parsley, sea salt and cracked black pepper. Chunks of smoked salmon strewn throughout and garnished with finely minced capers mixed in olive oil and dill.

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