Thursday, July 3, 2008

A Special Thursday Dinner

I had a special dinner planned for my husband this evening as our daughter is eating out with a friend. Won't he be surprised?

First, the Twice-Baked Potatoes. I cleaned and poked steam holes in two nice sized Yukon Gold potatoes. The potatoes are already cooked in this picture. I also clipped some chives and parsley from my deck pots. I set aside 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter, some light sour cream, salt and pepper for later.

I cooked the potatoes in the microwave until they were cooked through. Carefully cut in half, lengthwise. Remember, there is a reason the children's game is called "Hot Potato".

Use a spoon to cut all the way around the potato half, leaving enough potato for a strong shell. Scoop the inner part out and place in a bowl.

Arrange the potato shells on a baking sheet and set aside. Mash the potatoes that had been scooped out and add the butter. Stir until the butter is melted and season with salt and pepper. Add the chopped chives and mix in the sour cream. Add enough sour cream to make a nice, creamy filling.

At this point the filling is ready to go into the shells.

I decided to add shredded cheddar cheese to the tops of the potatoes. Chopped fresh parsley is then added to the Twice-Baked Potatoes before baking.

Here are the ingredients for the sauteed mushrooms.

I have 10 crimini mushrooms, some shallot, unsalted butter, the remaining chopped chives and parsley, white wine, salt, pepper, and vegetable stock.

After wiping the mushrooms with a dry paper towel to remove any debris, I slice them. An egg slicer can be used to get even slices. As it was, the mushrooms didn't want to be cut this way, so I sliced them with my chef's knife.

I ended up cutting about 1/8th of the shallot for this dish. I also opted to use just 1 tablespoon of the butter.

And here we have the stars of tonight's dinner. Two beef filet mignons. Sam's Club had a special on sliced beef tenderloin, so I bought a package of four. Upon arriving at home, I formed each into a round and wrapped bacon around each. I secured the ends with a toothpick and then froze them in packages of two.

Season liberally with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Meanwhile, heat some olive oil in a pan over medium high heat.

Sear on each side and then turn on edge so that the bacon can cook through. After all, no one wants raw bacon. Take care to not overcook as filet mignon is best eaten rare. This means the center will be red and cool.

Remove to a heat-proof plate and place in a warm oven.

Meanwhile, add more olive oil the butter and saute the sliced mushrooms. Once browned, add the sliced shallot and season with salt and pepper. Do not add salt to mushrooms until after they are browned as the salt will prevent proper browning. Add about 1/4 cup vegetable stock and a splash of white wine. Simmer until the liquid reduces. Add the chives and parsley.

Add about 1/4 cup vegetable stock and a splash of wine. Simmer until the liquid reduces. Add the chives and parsley at this point.

And now we plate.

Well, I'm ready to dig in now. The steaks were succulent and melted like butter in the mouth. I think I outdid myself with this dinner.


Rosie Hawthorne said...

Oh, Mar, I wanna eat those steaks and taters after my lackluster, mediocre, not-blowin'-any-skirts-up meals.

Looks delish.

Marilyn said...

And I'd gladly eat at your house!