Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Happy New Year!!!

Another year is gone, another decade has passed. A new year can mean a new slate; a chance to make the future better than the past.

The world has many great traditions to help make the new year lucky and prosperous, and in addition to our full, regular menu I'm once again offering a special menu for New Year's Eve to help celebrate those traditions.

The meal starts with a canape of golden caviar harvested from sustainable whitefish and is served on a sourdough crouton with crème fraiche, followed by a salad of frisee, celery root, green apple and crunchy pomegranate with flakes of hot smoked salmon and an herb vinaigrette. In Germany and Poland fish is often eaten to bring fortune because its scales represents coins.

The entree, which I will be offering for the entire week, consists of three ravioli filled with a handmade wild boar chorizo because round things represent coins and pigs are often consumed because they root forward, symbolizing prosperity and also because the fatty meat translates to a fat wallet. To continue with the round theme I laid the ravioli on a bed of lentils sauteed with my own cured beef bacon, tomatoes, roasted fennel and leaves of brussel sprouts for green, the color of money. I finished the dish with a brown butter sauce laced with shredded black trumpet mushrooms.

Since it is often felt that the richer the dessert, the richer the new year will be, I took no chance and created “The Elvis”. I made a peanut butter mousse cake with a brioche crust and a little chocolate ganache swirled in. The cake is then topped with thick slices of banana that I brule, or sprinkle with sugar and caramelize with a torch to mimic gold coins. No “Elvis” would be complete without bacon, so for that great flavor and added texture I sprinkle the plate with cubes of bacon that are caramelized in brown sugar.

Finally, no New Year's Eve celebration can take place without a little bubbly, but I like mine with a little more kick, so I came up with a twist on the classic French 75 that I call a French 2011. I infused dry gin with fragrant jasmine to intensify the liquor. This is then mixed with the juice of freshly squeezed blood oranges that are now in season, a honey syrup and topped with sparkling wine.

With a menu like this, how could your new year go wrong?!?!

With Love,