Decadent New Years, Without The Fuss


For you, a special menu for you to ring in 2014.

Bon New Year appétit!

Salmon Tartar In Cucumber Cups(Serves 6)1 pound sushi-grade, fresh, organic salmon

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Juice of 1 to 2 lemons

2 to 3 tablespoons high quality extra virgin olive oil

Optional ingredients:

1/2 pound smoked salmon, coarsely chopped (if using do not add salt to fresh salmon)

1/4 to 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley, chives, chervil or tarragonTo prepare:With a very sharp knife, remove all traces of sinews, skin, dark fat and any portion that is not perfectly pink salmon.

For precision, make sure that the knife stays clean between cuts.

Place salmon on a clean cutting board, then cut into small pieces—cleaning the knife every so often for clean cuts—with two sharp chef knives parallel to each other, until the salmon has a fine texture (but not a paste).

Transfer salmon to a glass bowl, season with salt and pepper and mix well.

Stir juice of one lemon into the salmon until well blended.

Add olive oil a few drops at a time, until the salmon holds together, stirring until blended.

Taste and adjust the seasonings with juice or oil.

Stir in optional ingredients and blend.

Cover and refrigerate until serving time.

To serve, get creative. Use cucumber cups, toast or crackers.Tournedos Of Beef Teriyaki (Serves 6)6, 1½-inch-thick beef filets, trimmed of fat and tied

2 tablespoons grated, peeled, fresh ginger

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup soy sauce

1/2 cup olive oil

1/4 cup dry sherry or mirin

Zest of 1/2 lemon, grated

2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste To prepare;Whisk together the ginger, garlic, soy sauce, oil, sherry, lemon zest, vinegar and black pepper in a small bowl until blended.

Taste and adjust the seasonings.

Pour just enough marinade to barely coat the steaks into a shallow dish or sealable plastic bag.

Add trimmed steak and marinate at room temperature, approximately 20 minutes.

Remove from marinade (but keep the marinade) and sear or grill steaks on a grill or in the oven, to personal preference.

Keep steaks warm, lightly tented with foil in a warm plate or in a low temperature oven.

Pour marinade remaining from the steaks into a skillet, then bring to a boil and reduce by half.

Drizzle sauce over the steaks and serve at one.

Pass extra marinade at the table. Olive Oil Russet Potato Chips (Serves 6)3 to 4 Russet potatoes

Extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Parchment paperTo prepare:Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

On a mandolin or Benriner, cut potatoes into thin slices.

Drop sliced potatoes into cold water to prevent discoloration.

Line baking pan with parchment paper.

Drizzle olive oil over the paper.

Working in batches, remove a few potato slices from water, pat them dry with paper towel and immediately roll in olive oil to coat.

Arrange the slices in a single layer on the parchment-lined baking sheet.

Drizzle a few drops of oil over the potatoes if necessary and season to taste.

Cover slices with another sheet of paper and weight it down with a second sheet pan placed directly on the paper.

Bake about 15 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.

Remove the top pan and the parchment paper and continue to bake until light brown and crispy on the edges, about 20 to 30 minutes total.

Serve warm, fresh out of the oven. Judy’s Festive Holiday Salad(Serves 6)For the dressing:

1 cup sliced, garlic-stuffed green olives

1 cup sliced black olives

1 bunch scallions, sliced

Extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling

2 teaspoons good quality red wine vinegar

1 pint grape tomatoes, washed and cut in half

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Fistful of chopped parsley

For the salad:

1 bunch watercress, washed and tough stems removed

1 head Boston or Bibb lettuce, washed and spun dry torn into bite-sized pieces

2 to 3 cups sliced romaine lettuceTo prepare:Toss the green and black olives together in a mixing bowl with the scallions.

Drizzle with oil and vinegar, to taste.

Add tomatoes, then season with salt and pepper to taste and let stand at room temperature.

Mix assorted greens together in a large salad bowl.

Add tomato and olive dressing and toss until blended.

Serve at once.

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