White Hortensia Dinner

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During my holidays in France I tried every evening a special selected restaurant. My intention was to find out which qualities are needed to go to a restaurant a second or even a third time. It’s not only the choice of product or the genius of the cook. Also atmosphere , combination of dishes and decoration are important.The first restaurant which impressed me most, was ‚Josephine chez Dumonet‘ in Paris Montparnasse. An authentic traditional french bistro with high quality food. And every dish gives you the illusion to be more than only food. Foie gras with roasted figue bread or a Grand marnier soufflé for example. The second one was a little Pop up restaurant in Médoc, which was run by the adorable , elegante and talented food blogger Mimi Thorisson, who’s blog I follow since two years.In her private house she gathered people from the whole world and every detail was amazing.

Since I was child I played at home what I have seen in my holidays, and also now I wanted to play restaurant in my appartement. So I cooked a first trial dinner. Of course with french inspiration and a little influence of Oktoberfest.

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Daube de boeuf

( for 6 persons )

  • 1,2 kg beef, cut in 2 cm cubes
  • 8 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 onions, roughly chopped
  • 1 carotte, sliced
  • 1 stick celery
  • 1 bunch different herbs, such as thyme, persil, ysop, tarragon and savory, bound with kitchen string
  • 2 slices pancetta
  • 2 tbsp dried porcini
  • 3 tbsp cognac
  • 1 bottle good red wine
  • 1 l beef broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 strips orange rind
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 4 tbsp cornstarch

Heat 3 tbsp of the olive oil in a big pot, cook the beef in it until slightly browned. Season with salt and put aside.Heat the 3 remaining tbsp olive oil in the same pot and cook the onions , carrots and celery for a few minutes. Give the beef back in the pot and all the other ingredients except the tomato puree and cornstarch. Leave everything to marinate overnight. The next day put it on the fire and let it slowly cook for about 4 hours, until the meat is really tender.Then put the meat and vegetables out of the pot, throw the herbs, bay leaf and orange rind away and reduce the liquid to about 500ml. Dissolve the cornstarch in enough broth and stir it into the sauce as well as the tomato puree. Put the meat and vegetables back into the pot, warm it again and season with salt and pepper as needed.

 

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Tarte aux mirabelles 

  • puff pastry
  • 500 g mirabelles
  • 30 g butter
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

To make individual tarts, cut pieces from the puff pastry and roll each very thinly. Cut the mirabelles into thin slices and put them regularly on the puff pastry . Cover them with small pieces of butter and sprinkle sugar and cinnamon on them. Bake in the oven for about 15 min. at 180°.

Burnt almond ice-cream

  • 1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
  • 125 ml water
  • 125 g sugar
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 400 ml cream
  • 100 g ricotta
  • 1oo g burnt almonds , cut in small pieces( from Oktoberfest )

Put the water with the sugar and the vanilla seeds in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Meanwhile beat the egg yolks until pale and creamy. Then put the syrup which is already cooking for several minutes to the egg yolks. Keep beating for further five minutes. Then fold in the cream and the ricotta. Cool the mixture overnight. The next day put it in an ice-cream maker. Just before completely frozen, fold in the burnt almonds.

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