Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Re-Opening Ad Hoc Part 2

Think we're the luckiest people, because Ad Hoc Restaurant agreed to host us both nights of their friends and family pre-opening. It was the best leap day I remember.
The public was made what we had on Leap Day, February 29th the very next day March 1st--their official public re-opening after the renovation. What we had on Tuesday, Ad Hoc recreated for the public on their second opened day Friday, March 2nd.
Fried Chicken, Cole Slaw, Butter Beans (Supplement: Biscuits & Gravy)
Banana Split
Saturday March 3rd they served prime rib and were very busy. We ate the caramel panna cotta dessert with friends, and I took home the scallop supplement. The atmosphere was a-buzz many people happy to be back home.
Sunday March 4th Ad Hoc had hash for brunch and pork rack for dinner. Monday Thomas Keller himself was in house for the fried chicken dinner. Can't think of a better way to cap a whole week of Ad Hoc.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

St. Joseph's Table Preparation--Day 2

As promised, the second portion of the Fig Cake recipe. The filling portion's recipe is in the previous day's blog post.

Fig Cakes (adapted from "Viva San Guuseppe: a guide for Saint Joseph Altars")

6 c. flour
1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp. salt
2 1/2 sticks butter
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups cold milk
2 tsp. vanilla

Place all dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Cut butter into dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, beat eggs, milk and vanilla. Add liquid mixture to dry ingredients and mix thoroughly. Dough should be very stiff (if not cover and refrigerate). Roll out pastry dough into sheets 1/8" thick. Cut dough into long strips 2" wide. Place fig filling evenly along the center of the strip (as described here is easier than the shorter strip version pictured above). Roll one side of the dough over the top of the filling. Continue to roll dough to complete a long tube of dough and filling. Roll tube to smooth and thin out. 

Here I cut the tubes about 3" long and shaped into a horseshoe, then made incisions 1/3-1/2 way through at 1 cm intervals.

Place cookies on a lightly greased cookie sheet and bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven and place on rack or waxed paper. Allow to cool. Frost with a simple powdered sugar and milk icing. Yields 60-100 cookies depending on size.
Iced and decorated Fig Cakes
Decorative (non-edible) Wheat Sheath with Mouse loaf [before]
Grape Cluster and Wheat (decorative only)
Made the decorative only loaves using the same recipe as last year, but reduced the yeast to 1/2 teaspoon only (low yeast for a crisp design). http://csagirlfriend.blogspot.com/2011/03/bread-of-st-joseph-vuccidrato-pane-di.html Loaves will be baked further in a low warm oven for several hours to dry out fully, then shellacked for multi-year use.
Fish loaf before
2012 Fish loaf after baking
St. Joseph's Staff, Cross, Artichoke and Fish decorative bread loaves

Saturday, February 18, 2012

St. Joseph's Table Preparation 2012--Day 1

Orange Lemon Cookies
1/4 of the recipe was specially decorated for friends
10 c. flour
9 eggs
1 lb. butter
2 1/2 c. sugar
7 tsp. baking powder
zest and juice of one orange
zest and juice of one lemon
1/2 c. milk

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Farenheit. (Note: this barely fits in a standard home mixer, recipe may be halved.) Cream the butter and sugar, add eggs one at a time, mix well. Add milk, zest and juice from the orange and lemon. Mix in flour and baking powder. Roll the thickness of a breakfast sausage and cut into 1 1/2" long pieces on a diagonal. Place on a greased cookie sheet and bake for 6-9 minutes, until just done, a very light brown color (watch closely). Recipe makes ~200 cookies.

Frost with a mixture of powdered sugar and lemon juice (thickness to taste). Dip cooled cookies into frosting (and optionally sprinkle with colored candies).

Fig Cakes

Hubby helped by mincing the following ingredients for the inside of fig cakes (cookies). We did this by hand in an effort to save money by not purchasing a meat grinder.
The recipe below is meant to go in the cookies listed in tomorrow's post, however noticed it would work in the "forever" items made for the table above.  These are not suppose to be eaten, rather used year, after year for the St. Joseph's Table.

20-24 oz. dried figs
10 oz. diced dates
1 orange
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. cloves
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
2 tsp vanilla
1 c. pecans

Grind (or chop very finely, over and over again) figs, dates and pecans. Place in a large mixing bowl. Add all other ingredients and mix. Cover and let stand until needed.
(fig cake 'cookie' recipe continued tomorrow).