7.21.2009

LA CUCINA VIGNETO ....... SUNDAY BRUNCH

Brunch on Sunday is by far - my favorite meal. Sometimes it is inspired by local fresh produce. The Sandia Man is selling watermelons down the road from our country house, so we picked one out and sliced it up for brunch and even soaked some in the champagne. It was sweet as honey. Nothing tastes quite like ice cold watermelon on a hot summer day.


I try and make something different each Sunday. A Cheese Souffle, Herbed French-Style Potato Salad and Asparagus with Sauce Marquis pair quite well with Mango Mimosas.

Asparagus with Sauce Marquis

1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
3 large egg yolks, well beaten, 4 teaspoons lemon juice
Dash each of salt and Cayenne pepper
1 ounce black caviar
8 to 16 asparagus spears - cooked until barely tender

Make the basic Hollandaise sauce:
Break butter into three pieces. Put one piece into the top of a double boiler - set over hot (not boiling) water. Add egg yolks and lemon juice. Beat with a wire whisk until butter is melted. Add the second piece of butter and continue beating and cooking until the mixture thickens, never allowing the water to boil. Then add the last piece of butter. Stir and cook until sauce has thickened. Remove from heat and stir in salt and cayenne.
Add caviar to the cooled Hollandaise and Voila! You have Sauce Marquis. Drizzle sauce on cooked asparagus.

Herbed French Style Potato Salad

1 pound small red potatoes
1/8 to 1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
1/2 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chopped chives
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 tablespoon chopped dill
1/4 cup white wine
2 tablespoons mild-flavored oil (Olive or Grapeseed)
1/2 to 1 teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste

Cover potatoes with cold water in medium pot and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until done.
While potatoes are cooking, prepare marinade. In medium bowl, combine shallots, garlic, hers, wine, oil, salt and pepper.
When potatoes are cooked, drain them and let them sit until just cool enough to handle. Cut potatoes into quarters and drop into bowl of marinade. Toss gently and refrigerate for at least an hour or two while potatoes absorb the dressing.

Cheese Soufflé

4 eggs
2 cups shredded cheese (Chévre, Havarti or Cheddar)
2 teaspoons snipped fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup milk

Separate eggs and cover both bowls with plastic wrap. Set aside at room temp for 30 minutes. Toss shredded cheese with thyme, cover and set aside.
In medium sauce pan, melt butter, stir in flour and pepper. Add milk. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubble. remove from heat. Add cheese mixture a little at a time until melted. beat egg yolks until smooth. Gradually stir cheese sauce into yolks. Set aside to cool. Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Gently fold about half of the beaten egg whites into the cheese mixture to lighten it, then fold in the remaining egg whites. Pour into an ungreased 1 1/2 quart souffle dish and bake for 40 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.

Photography By: Ryannan Bryer de Hickman



10 comments:

  1. Ry..love that face:) The dishes AND the food~

    Jacques would think he was in a 5 star hotel.. with the utmost charm.
    I have never made a cheese soufflé you make me crave one.. and potato salad ..is one of my favorite things in the world when well done.. with loads of flavor...Yours sounds and looks so good!
    I love where your country home is..
    Just the face:) Is enough..He's smitten with you too..:) In a nice way~

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  2. Ry, your blog is where I visit when I need a mini-vacation, the beauty you share with us never disappoints.

    What a feast! And your fabulous photos are icing on the cake. Very nice.

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  3. Cara Ry,
    Ditto! Your photo is stupenda! Wish I could pass by for your Sunday brunch. Asparagus (my favourite) time is March-April/May here. Then no more! Have to wait another eight months. Bacione, Ingrid in Umbria

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  4. What a delicious-looking brunch. I love that you like to try something new every weekend. And gorgeous photos. Perfect.

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  5. Can I just be your neighbor?...live under the crook of your arm? In the cracks of your wood floor? I won't make noise. Promise. Just feed me. Pretty please.

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  6. great portrait shot Ry. Cold watermelon in summer would have to be one of nature's best gifts to us. Ever tried it with feta cheese?
    Wave from oia ;~)
    M

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  7. The brunch looks delightfully delicious! Wonderful combination of flavors on the menu.

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  8. Just a delightful feast for the senses Ry! I love the relaxed way in which you tell us about your wonderful meals, it would be a whirlwind at our place just to slice up the watermelon! I did my first cheese souffle recently, a twice-baked goat's cheese & it was fantastic. Don't know why it's taken me so long to discover it.
    Millie ^_^

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  9. I'm with Linda! What a delicious looking brunch and setting.

    I've been looking for a potato salad recipe without the mayo...I'll give this a try. Thanks for sharing your meal with us!

    Diane

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