Valentine Dinner-2-14-2016

Table decoration/Guests  Dinner/dessert

Appetizers Trio

We are bit older now and we have to watch our waistline... so with that in mind I am serving small portion so we don't over eat and we have dessert.

1-Tuile with Salmon tartar & crème fraîche

I served this dish so many time but it so delicious that nobody mind eating it again...


The tuile takes a lot of time to make but it is worth the effort as it is crunchy, rich and a perfect vehicle to enhance the creme fraiche and salmon tartar.

click on LINK to see preparation.


2- Hamachi Crudo

I was so happy I was able to get really good and fresh Hamachi at the Japanese groceries store today!

Since Hamachi is the star ingredient in the dish it has to be good.


I paired the Hamachi with a ponzu, grated ginger, honey, and olive oil sauce.  It is a simple sauce but it really delicious with the Hamachi


3-Asparagus vichyssoise shot with miniature quiche

The last appetizer is a shot of Asparagus vichyssoise served with a tiny piece of caramelized quiche.

The asparagus vichyssoise has Jalapenos in it and it was on the spicy side but I like it as it gives out a quick.

Click on LINK to see preparation


Main dishes

After the appetizers I have 3 main dish.  Again portion are kept fairly small so that our guest can have room for dessert.

1-Cauliflower puree, egg, burned butter, and crispy smoked duck breast.

This is an outstanding dish!   Each ingredient in this dish work so well together and yield an outstanding dish.


The base of this dish is a cauliflower purée, crispy smoked duck breast, warm organic egg yolk, burned butter mixed with tapioca Maltodextrin which  is a modern starch thickener that is designed to have a very low bulk density making it ideal to increase the volume of dry mixes and to stabilize high-fat ingredients which can then be transformed into powders. In this case my burned butter is turned into powder.


Here is a quick view in the kitchen when we platting the cauliflower dish.  There are 5 ingredients in this dish so it does take a bit of time to put it together.  Ha and Mai were kid enough to land me a hand.


The next dish is a homemade squid ink tonnarelli with calamari, tomatoes and white wine.  Here I just finished cooking it am trying to serve it.


Me and Ha platting the squid ink Tonarelli.  I am making sure that the portion is small....

Beautiful dish!  This is my first time making this dish and it turned out to be delicious.  The tonnareli had a nice texture ( a bit chewy) and the tomatoes sauce and the squid complimented the dish very well.

I made the pasta ahead and by the time I was ready to cook it, the pasta was sticking together and we had to put lots of flour to entangle the pasta.  The next time, if I am not using the pasta right away, I had to hang it to dry it out a bit so that they do not stick together.


Chartreuse of quail, sauteed cabbage, bacon, carrots, canned foie gras wrapped in cabbage leaves

This is a fancy dish that I served a few times and it is always well received.  This is a portion for two people.

Click on LINK to see preparation

I de-boned the quail so it is easier and faster to cook.  It took a while to de-bone the whole bird but it is a lot easier to eat.



1- Grand Marnier soufflé with creme Anglaise

My soufflé turned out really well!

Phuc loved soufflé so this is one is for him for a job well done with wine pairing.


2-Coeur à la crème

Coeur (heart in French) à la crème is the perfect dessert for Valentine!

It has the heart shape and right coloring in the raspberry sauce and it is also delicious.  Very light and so delectable.


We had so much to drink and the all the dishes I served were up to my expectation. The squid ink Tonnarelli dish was a hit and I am so glad as this this is the first time I made it.  The soufflé was stunning and the Coeur à la crème seems to please every palate.  Overall it was a very successful dinner. 


Until the next Valentine!


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