I had a lunch at my place on the weekend for some special dinner guests so needed to put some effort in to make a full 3 course lunch 🙂 They are special dinner guests because when I’ve been to their place, I’ve definitely had some of the nicest meals ever so now was not the time to be cutting corners!
I decided to cook a couple of recipes which had already been on the blog as well as a new one for dessert which I will feature here; strawberries and cherry tomatoes in a sabayon sauce. I took this approach because 3 courses is not something I do that often so to do a couple of familiar recipes, while mastering one new one seemed like a good balance where I wouldn’t get too stressed!
For the starter I did chicken nuggets which was my last post 🙂 There were 5 of us for lunch and I wanted a relatively simple starter and also so that people were not too full before the main of risotto. The idea was that the lunch would get posher as we went through the courses! The chicken nuggets seemed popular anyway so a good choice to kick off the lunch 🙂
Risotto is one of my old favourites and I hadn’t made it for these friends yet so a good opportunity to cook it again as the main 🙂 Also I was able to focus my energy on the dessert. Actually in the end, the dessert was pretty simple so I would say the risotto won in terms of the most time consuming part but all in all a good mix between the dishes!
The dessert recipe comes from one of my current favourite books; Little Paris Kitchen by Rachel Khoo. Again it looked quite light so wouldn’t be too much after the risotto. It was pretty simple to make overall. I think I whisked it for longer than the 10 minutes it suggested but apart from that it was quite straightforward.
The highlight of this recipe was being able to try an egg yolk separating trick with a plastic bottle that I’d seen on an internet article! So I cracked an egg into a bowl (gently so the yolk didn’t break) and then squeezed the bottle directly above the yolk to suck it up, before depositing the yolk in a separate bowl.
It’s probably easier if you watch this:
I did this to get 6 egg yolks and then added 3 tablespoons of sugar. I whisked this over a bain marie a little before adding 150 ml of cava (the recipe quotes champagne but living in Catalunya, I had to choose cava above champagne!). Then I carried on whisking for about 15-20 minutes until the mixture thickened and was a little foamy (the tip is if you can draw a figure of eight shape in the sauce and it stays then the sauce is ready). I chilled the sabayon sauce in the fridge until it was dessert time and I think you can do this for upto a couple of hours (one other tip; I do think the sabayon sauce evaporated a little while chilling so I didn’t have as much as I expected!).
When it was time for dessert, I put 3-4 tablespoons of the sabayon sauce into bowls and added a few quarters of strawberries and deseeded cherry tomatoes. Unfortunately I didn’t get a picture of the finished product so I’m posting it from the book instead!
It was definitely a nice end to this meal, with a good combination of plates. It’s true that cherry tomatoes go very well with strawberries (apparently, scientifically speaking, strawberries and tomatoes have the same flavour components) which was a nice discovery and the sweetness of the sabayon sauce goes very well with these fruits.
Other learnings from this post are that I don’t appear to be able to spell the word dessert (just had to go through and correct many references to sand!) and also that I think my food pictures have improved when looking at my old risotto post from over a year ago 🙂 I also got a new iPhone…I guess it helped 😛