My company from Sunday showed up tonight, surprise, with "Hey Father! What can you do with this?"
What to do?
I dragged up a bottle of Bonarda and got it breathing.
Onions and a little celery in the pan with butter and walnuts. I had walnuts because of the chocolate chip cookies I made on Sunday.
Let them caramelize and deglaze with sherry.
Start some water for to steam broccoli, which I was going to eat tonight with, yes, ramen.
Meanwhile the veg is getting nice.
Start a Marsala reduction FAST. NOW! DO IT!
I added some honey. I was anticipating that the flavors would be too savory without some contrast. In retrospect this was a great choice.
Make Bearnaise sauce FAST … happily, I have tarragon growing in abundance and had fresh eggs. HURRY!
No photos of that, sorry. I was moving with speed.
Get a big pan going with an oil that takes a high flash point: walnut oil (which is why I added walnuts to the veg).
The elk spent less than two minutes, just over a minute probably, in the pan. REALLY HOT. You have to be daring. Light salt and pepper.
This is what you do with stuff on hand.
Meat such as elk is hard to work with, unless you are confident.
You must be willing to make very rare elk.
Then, let the meat rest a moment. It is good hot. It is better when it relaxes and cools a moment.
Lean meat is like this. Venison is like this.
Remember what elk eat and build around those flavors.
I started with a penny sized piece in the pan to get a sense of the heat of the oil and speed of the cooking.
I spooned the Marsala reduction over the meat and veg.
I say about … 15 minutes, beginning to end, but I was moving pretty fast.
It was really good.
For dessert, which I wasn’t planning for tonight, cheese and pears with a sweet wine.
Where I failed was the involvement of the …
I was brought a rutabaga.
I begged off making the rutabaga tonight.
Next time… perhaps with the upcoming Coq au vin?
In the meantime…
We had a very interesting conversation, including the Holy Father on his trip to Fatima, the "third secret" and the consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, the world economic melt-down, and how young people do not understand what troops went through in WWI, WWII and Korea, compared to how wars are today.
Then came my digression on what I would do if I were Pope.
I will write more about my contribution … probably tomorrow.
And here I thought it was a ramen night.