Saturday, 11 July 2015

Nouvelle Lunch at TTHTI

Finally I've made my way to TTHTI to try their Nouvelle Lunch. I'm so glad I did. The prices are incredible for the quality of ingredients used in the food, and it's great to support the students, the upcoming chefs and other staff members. I've been wanting to try their food for a while but never seemed to make the time. Now that I have, I have more confidence in the quality of education at the institute as the students seemed to put together quite the feast.

First course at lunch: pressed foie gras with sauternes, rose & hibiscus gelée
and walnut brioche.

Second course: shrimp sachet in saffron broth.

Third course: oven roasted red fish with "eggplant caviar".

Fourth course: smoked scallops, pickled grilled mushrooms, black bean salsa,
chili cumin oil and orange-carrot reduction.

Fifth course: ravioli of chicken and foie gras, sautéed onions with tarragon
and thyme meat jus.

Second option - Beef roulade stuffed with mushrooms and bell peppers,
red onion and zucchini chips with puree of provision medley.

Last course/dessert! White chocolate lace poached pears, amaretto jelly in
phyllo pastry and burnt orange grand marnier parfait with cardamom sugar
and dill sponge with fruit compote.

Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture of the palate cleanser, and by the time I remembered, I was almost done. Those ginger-brandy snaps were so good.

Watermelon sorbet and ginger-brandy snaps.

I have minor criticisms but nothing worth mentioning. What's worth mentioning is that the food, service and entire experience was wonderful and I definitely think any and everyone should give it a try. The kitchen is usually well prepared to meet special dietary needs as well. I'll definitely be visiting in the near future.

Friday, 10 July 2015

Potato Leek Soup

Finally I got around to trying my very first (and the very first) recipe from Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child, Louisette Bertholle and Simone Beck. I did mention a while back that my sister had bought this wonderful book for me as a present. I read quite a bit of it, bookmarked a few recipes and then decided to try one. Naturally, the first recipe of the book is the one I chose. Simple and light, yet flavourful and satisfying. I was quite surprised that such few ingredients could be transformed so well.

Potato-Leek Soup (Potage Parmentier)
from "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" by Julia Child
  • 1 lb. peeled potatoes, sliced or diced
  • 1 lb. leeks (or yellow onions), thinly sliced
  • 2 qts. water
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • 4-6 Tbsp. heavy cream or 2 to 3 Tbsp. butter
  • Parsley or Chives for garnish
Simmer water, salt and vegetables together, partially covered for 40 to 50 minutes until vegetables are tender. Using an immersion blender (or a food processor when the soup has cooled a bit), blend soup until smooth. Just before serving, reheat soup to a simmer. Remove from heat and stir in soft butter or cream. Top with garnish and serve!

What an incredibly simple recipe, for such sophisticated results. It was definitely a success and I look forward to trying more recipes from this book, and to continue reading and learning.
What I love about this book is the detail in the recipes. She ensures that you understand what you are doing, to produce almost foolproof results. The writing is comprehensive but not overwhelming, and you feel like you are being taught by someone who truly loves food. Thus far, I recommend the book if only for the writing, but I will continue to test more recipes and share some of them along the way.
Bon Appetit! :)