Monday, February 25, 2013

we have been to the north...

and it was freezing! After a few days in PA, Vance and I are back in Nashville. We celebrated my mom's birthday and I was able to see my great friends, Mer, Jen (another birthday girl!) and the Breads 'n Cheese gang. Vance had his vacation and joined me few a long weekend. It was so nice to catch up with my family and we were able to stay with his grandparents for a few nights too.
As to be expected, the weekend was full of eating. We made a great dinner on Saturday, Ina's slow roasted fillet of beef with a basil mayo.

  • 1 whole filet of beef tenderloin, trimmed and tied (4 ½ pounds)
  • 3 tablespoons good olive oil
  • 4 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
  • 10 to 15 branches fresh tarragon
  • Basil Parmesan Mayonnaise, for serving
  • For the mayo:
  • 2 extra-large egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (see note)
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves, lightly packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup vegetable oil, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup good olive oil, at room temperature
  • Preheat the oven to 275 degrees. Place the filet on a sheet pan and pat it dry with paper towels. Brush the filet all over with the oil, reserving about half a tablespoon. Sprinkle it all over with the salt and pepper. Place the tarragon branches around the beef, tying them in 4 or 5 places with kitchen string to keep them in place, and then brush the tarragon with the reserved oil.
    Roast the filet of beef for 1¼ to 1½ hours, until the temperature registers 125 degrees in the center for rare and 135 degrees for medium rare. I place the thermometer horizontally through the end of the beef. Cover the filet with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 20 minutes. Slice thickly and serve warm or at room temperature with Basil Parmesan Mayonnaise.
    For the mayo - place the egg yolks, lemon juice, Parmesan, mustard, basil, garlic, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper in a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Process for 20 seconds, until smooth. Combine the vegetable oil and olive oil in a 2-cup liquid measuring cup. With the processor running, slowly pour the oil mixture through the feed tube to make a thick emulsion. Taste for seasonings—the mayonnaise is a sauce so it should be highly seasoned. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use; it will keep for up to a week.
    sauteed tomatoes in EVOO and fresh herbs
    My mom does a great job of keeping us in sauce and I headed back to TN with lots of good food!
    Five County Cheddar from B'n C, pasta sauces from Georgetti's Market in NJ & Stromboli from Pronio's in Hershey
    I hope you had a good weekend - and stayed warm wherever you are!

    Sunday, February 17, 2013

    welcome to the world of antiquing

    I haven't posted in a number weeks - things at work have kept me so busy! In the last month I have been to New York for a few days, spent two night in Richmond (where I stayed with my amazing friend, Courtney, in her adorable new house and fell in love with her pup, Nash. I also saw a grad school friend Megan and a very-missed friend from Nashville, Shana). In Richmond, we drank...
    Lily Pulitzer at Acacia - vodka, cactus pear, strega, lemon, rosemary. Love.
    Then I was off to DC for almost a week. So happy to eat at Zorba's with Josh, Margret & Jaimie - this group is amazing about taking time of out their busy schedules to see me when I come to town. I am so lucky to have these friends! It was great to catch up over delicious gyro! One of my DC best, Jen, and I were also able to meet up for lunch. Rosa Mexicano - table-side guac makes you re-eavaluate everything you hold dear. And of course, some great family time! My parents, Bill, Kathleen and I enjoyed dinner at Green Pig Bistro in Arlington and then brunch at Tunicliff's, complete with Eastern Market ravioli buying.
    Eastern Market food vendors are amazing and the ravioli shop is the best!
    Once I was back in town, I had a bit of fun volunteering at Whole Foods for a Knife Skills class. The menu was delicious as usual. Below are goat cheese crostini on a simple vinaigrette salad. Lightly toast your French baguette and then top with small pats of goat cheese. Melt at about 400 degrees for a few minutes and serve on salad.

    In home cooking news, new fav wine, Broadbent. Lightly fizzy and semi-dry. Served with apple, brie & honey panini.
    We had a few large events for work in February so the days have been full of guest lists,  invitation sending and presentation-prepping followed by nights of meeting new people, chatting about how great Nashville is and lots of eating! Vance and I did celebrate Valentine's Day with a nice dinner at home.
    Dessert - chocolate cherry cordials and a red zin.
    We had friends, Erin & Josh, over for dinner this weekend and we roasted our Vanderbilt Turkey! I made an orange maple glaze with used lots of herbs. The turkey was quite good, and we also had mashed sweet potatoes and roasted asparagus with Parmesan and lemon zest.
    1 lb asparagus, trimmed
    2 tablespoons butter
    zest of one lemon
    1/2 shredded Parmesan
    S&P to taste
    On a cookie sheet, assemble the asparagus in one layer and dot with butter. Roast at 425 degrees for about 8 minutes. Remove from oven and top with cheese and zest. Serve at room temperature. Top with a bit of S&P if you would - so easy and delicious!
    One of most exciting things (and the namesake of this post) was an amazing find this weekend at the Tailgate Music Valley Antique Show
    Two Piece Cherry Corner Cupboard, circa mid 1800's - Freeport, OH
    As soon as it was delivered, I started snapping photos for my parents, cleaning, shining and filling. I love having our glassware and China displayed. I can't look at this corner cupboard and not smile. Apparently, the dealer pulled it out of an old Ohio farmhouse. If it is possible for furniture to have a soul - this one does. I can feel it in the room. How weird is that? This piece makes me very happy. I can also feel our house becoming a home; I love it. When I spoke with my parents (at the height of my excitement), my dad's closing words were "welcome to the world of antiquing."