Thursday, March 18, 2010

St. Patty's Day

to celebrate saint patrick's day, we had E's mom, M, over and baby artichokes with lemon butter parmesan dipping sauce, reuben sandwiches and bailey's pots de creme. wow, everything was really good. i think my favorite thing was the atrichokes (mainly because of the fabulous dipping sauce.)
i know artichokes are kind of random for st. partick's day but i saw martha talking about them on the today show in the morning and it's all i could think about. she is even the one who recommended the lemon butter parmesan dipping sauce. so, when i saw baby atrichokes at whole foods, i grabbed them. i don't really have a recipe for the dipping sauce, i just melted some butter (maybe 1 tbs?) added the juice of 1 lemon, a little salt and pepper, and just enough parmesan cheese to make it creamy. M and i  kept tasting it until it tasted just right. YUM!
the reuben sandwiches turned out pretty well. nothing beats the kind you get at a diner or irish restaurant, but E and M said they liked them. i used 100% rye bread from whole foods
and layered the sandwich together on the grill pan. (russian dressing, swiss cheese, sauercraut, and thinly sliced corned beef)
i read a recipe to cook them low and slow to achieve the wonderful browned, buttery crust but the method didn't pan out too well for me. maybe i did it too low or too slow (or maybe both). when i flipped them, i turned the heat up and it was much better. so, unfortunately, we had one nicely crispy and brown side and one kind of mushy light brown side. oh well . . .
for dessert . . . the piece de resistance . . . bailey's pots de creme! i found the recipe on yumsugar and she found it in the san francisco chronicle. the recipe here below is halved from the original recipe. i am so glad i ended up doing that because even the halved recipe made a ton. whew!
mmmm, baileys and espresso
whipping up the cream
folding it all together
Baileys Pots de Creme
from the San Francisco Chronicle

1 1/3 cups heavy cream
5 tbs Baileys Irish cream
1/4 cup freshly brewed espresso
8 oz mascarpone cheese
2 tbs powdered sugar
  1. Whip the cream in a bowl until soft peaks have formed.
  2. Place the Baileys Irish cream in a bowl with the espresso, mascarpone cheese, and sugar. Beat until well combined, then fold in the cream.
  3. Divide among cups or ramekins of scant 1-cup size and refrigerate overnight before serving. Serve chilled with shortbread cookies, if desired.

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