Sunday, March 28, 2010

Dinner Almost Impossible: March

I play this facebook game called Restaurant City. You can design your own restaurant and level different dishes using different ingredients. These are their graphics. Aren't they cute?

Dinner Almost Impossible (DAI) started in January when I entered an online cooking contest where I need to create a dish using 3 specific ingredients and submit photos and recipe at the end of the month. I would spend the month trying to come up with something and Peter would take the pictures. Although the contest was put on hold for March and April, I wanted to continue my monthly cook-off. I had Alice, Jessica, and Mike choose the ingredients: Wasabi, Corn, Chicken.

For this Dinner Almost Impossible, I had to prepare food for 13 guests. I found that February's dinner was very rushed, and I overwhelmed myself by trying to prepare too many dishes, so this time, I focused on three specific dishes and made some effort to perfect them. There was another goal for this dinner: low calorie. My personal trainer attended my dinner and a lot of my friends wanted to lose weight.

Cheese Combination: Cherry Tomato, Granda Padano, Italian Wine Salami Dinky
I make one of these for each DAI. The baguette slices were rubbed with a garlic herb olive oil I made the night before. I then toasted them for a few minute, before putting slices of salami, halved tomato, and padano shavings. Salt and pepper to taste. It was all gone by the time I sat down to eat. One was saved for me. It needed more cheese and oil for dipping.

Appetizer: Everything Salad
I made this salad by accident for the February's DAI, by putting some of the left over greens, herbs, and sauces together. The guests loved it, so I spent the month refining the recipe. At the end, I forgot to put salt and pepper on it, but the guests didn't seem to have noticed. The trick is in the sauce, which has no butter or cream.

First Course: Black Sesame Ahi Tuna
I have a "crust" obsession since my panko crust albacore tuna. I wanted to make something that is not bready (which is over done) or shake'n bake crust. I went with a seed crust and black sesame offered a nice color with the red tuna.

Main Course: Garlic Chicken Roll
This is the contest dish containing wasabi, corn, and chicken. Another dish that was created by accident. Chicken breast stuffed with roasted garlic, harissa sauce, baharat spice, basil pureƩ, oregano, and parsley. It was pan seared and steam baked. The chicken came with two sauces: mustard wasabi no-cream sauce and sweet corn pureƩ. On the side, I roasted star shaped potato. So far, I haven't use my cookie cutters to cut cookies.

Dessert: Helen's Plum Wine Jelly
Helen makes amazing desserts. She topped the dinner with this delicious dairy and egg free dessert. The flavour was delicate and the perfect balance between sweet and sour. She said the trick for this incredible yet simple dessert is to get the perfect bottle of plum wine.

I will post the recipes later.

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