It's been snowing here (duh, guess that's true for every state in the country except Hawaii) so we've pretty much stayed home. Except for a late lunch today (which Henry really deserved as he and some of our neighbors spent three hours shoveling snow and ice at the base of our street so we weren't captives in the 'hood).
If you live in Atlanta, you want to go here: http://www.theporterbeerbar.com/ It's a very hip, cool place in Little 5 and we so do not fit in there, but it doesn't matter. Molly Gunn and her husband Nick Rutherford serve up some of the best casual food in the ATL. They built the place themselves on a shoestring and the eternal optimism of youth. Oh, and some very creative food also. Go.
But I had nothing to do yesterday as I was stuck in the house, so I decided to make a Coeur a la Creme. I have no idea why, but in some weird way I figured it might make up for the lack of a Valentine's Day card or gift or even any acknowledgement of this silly holiday. And of course Henry would much rather have a dessert than a gift any day (especially since the food police will actually let him eat it). So there you have it.
Here's the recipe.
COEUR A LA CREME (adapted from Ina Garten)
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
3/4 cups confectioner's sugar
Pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups heavy cream, chilled
1 teaspoon vanilla paste (available at Whole
Zest of 1 lemon
In electric mixer using the paddle attachment, beat cream cheese, confectioner's sugar and salt until smooth. Scrape down bowl once or twice. Change paddle for the whisk attachment. On low speed, add cream, vanilla paste and lemon zest. When blended, increase speed to high and beat until mixture is very thick, like whipped cream. Be careful not to overbeat.
Line a coeur a la creme mold (basicaly a ceramic dish with holes in it - you can substitute a strainer) with cheesecloth, making sure that it overhangs the sides. Spoon the cream mixture into it and smooth top. Fold cheesecloth over top and chill for at least 24 hours.
RASPBERRY CARAMEL SAUCE (adapted from Chez Panisse)
1 1/2 pint basket fresh raspberries
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water, divided
Juice of 1 lemon
1 T. Chambord or Framboise
Spoon generous helpings of the cream mixture into wine glasses or glass bowls. Drizzle sauce over and garnish with fresh raspberries.
Even if you don't celebrate Valentine's Day, if you make this for your partner, he/she will be sure to appreciate the fact that you are in their life.....
Just in case you thought that my mind has wandered away from Cambodia and everything I experienced there, trust me, it has not. Here are a few photos.