Friday, April 4, 2014

Dinner - All Appetizers

Escargot, simpler to make than you would imagine.  Canned escargot are drained and rinsed thoroughly.  In a saute pan, fine diced garlic is heated through with butter (2-3 tbls).  Once the garlic starts to perfume the butter but before it browns, turn off heat, add 1/4 cup of chopped parsley, salt & black pepper to taste 
I don't have a fancy Escargot pan, also called Aebleskiver, so I use my mini muffin pan instead.  Two snails fit into each well so there is plenty to share with another person.  I place the drained and rinsed snails into individual wells and spoon over the garlic/butter/parsley mixture.  Then on top of each bundle of 'joy' a sprinkling of bread crumbs, panko if you have it.  Then pop into a 350° F preheated oven for 15 minutes, pull out and serve with bread for dipping. 
I was late to grab my camera to shoot this little beauty so it has already lost most of it's outside leaves but you get the idea.  The two large fresh artichokes were cooked the night before in salty acidulated water for about 35 minutes or till a knife goes in with no resistance into the core (I cook mine with the cut side down so the core end is on top).  Another little trick is to weigh down the artichokes with a plate while cooking to prevent the bobbing apple issue.
My favorite, and now Paulie's as well, is Hollandaise sauce to dip the individual leaves into.  Admittedly, the sauce is not from scratch, it's a Knorr mix that I had in the pantry so it came in handy tonight.  I did add more black pepper and finished it with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice which really livened up the flavor.  I made extra in anticipation for poached eggs on Sunday for brunch... hint, hint.
I love the ease of Appetizer dinners, it makes everyone happy and it's so easy to eat on a 'date' in front of the TV on a Friday night.

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