Sunday, April 04, 2010

Mushroom Risotto, Orange-Glazed Hickory-Smoked Grilled Tofu, Grilled Maitake Mushrooms, Braised Carrots, Grilled Asparagus, Peach Pie

Easter Dinner 4/04

Mushroom Risotto

Orange-Glazed Hickory-Smoked Grilled Tofu

Grilled Maitake Mushrooms

Braised Carrots

Grilled Asparagus

Yukon Gold Potato and Green Bean Salad with a Maple Syrup Vinaigrette over Mixed Greens


Peach Pie

As it is with most dinners, the final plating gets decided about 10 seconds before we actually start laying the food down -- we don't want the food to get cold while hungry people are waiting around -- so the camera is ready to go and less than 3 minutes later, we're eating... As a photographer, this really focuses your mind. ;)

Seeing the ring mold in the drawer earlier started the idea of a stack of the risotto and then it only made sense to add the grilled/glazed tofu and maitake mushrooms on top. Rounding out the plate were the braised carrots and marinated/grilled asparagus

The stack started with a base of risotto that was cooked with mushroom broth -- in this case shiitake mushrooms stems that we've been saving for the last month. They were pressure cooked for 40 minutes in 8 cups of water which yielded a surprisingly rich and fragrant broth. The risotto technique comes from Andrew Carmellini -- add half of the mushroom stock and let it cook for 7-8 minutes, add the second half of the liquid and cook for another 7 minutes, and finish with nutritional yeast, soy margarine, salt and pepper.

Next, the tofu was hickory-smoked for 25 minutes, then marinated (1/4 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup tamari, 2 cloves of garlic smashed, 1 tbs. agave, 1 tbs. ketchup and pepper to taste), then grilled, about 5-6 minutes per side, turning once for nice grill marks. The tofu was brushed with a glaze (1/2 cup of orange juice, 1 tbs. brown sugar and 1/4 tsp of ground clove, whisked together over medium heat until the sugar dissolves and the sauce thickens) and put on a rack on a sheet pan and put in the oven for 10 minutes at 350F, flipping once and basting again half way through.

The last part of the stack was the maitake mushrooms, using the same marinade as the tofu, and then grilled along with the asparagus.

The salad was a Roasted Yukon Gold Potato and Green Bean Salad with a Maple Syrup Vinaigrette over Mixed Greens -- which is rapidly becoming the de facto holiday salad ;)

We had a lovely peach pie for lunch at the Vegeterranean last week and Liz decided to make the switch from our ubiquitous carrot cake -- a great choice (and pie).

It wouldn't be an Easter dinner without a few gratuitous shots of the table decorations...

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