mandarin's Profile

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Italian Cheese course

OK... so I found this great recipe to serve as the cheese dish for a 6 course Italian feast.
it is a "pear carpachhio" - thinly sliced pear round, shaved pecrino, balsamic vinegar, . The other ingredient is pureed pea/olive oil, but I am not so sure it is "italian enough" to compliment the rest of the meal. Any suggestions for an alternative ingredient that could go well with the pear & cheese?

Aug 16, 2012
mandarin in Home Cooking

Provencal degustation - wine pairing help

I am preparing a 7 course Provencal inspired meal and after some help with wine pairings. I have ideas about style of wine (feedback appreciated) as well as any particular brands/suggestions would be great. Menu below. I would like to provide all French wines, but not essential.

Stuffed Zucchini Flower / Marinated Olives - pair with champagne

Delicate crab meat served with a velvety asparagus puree - a pinot gris or dry riesling

French Goats cheese wrapped in Fuille de brick pastry on a bed of mesclun leaves with a drizzle of honey walnut vinaigrette - Semillon

Seared duck breast served with sweet potato swirls, watercress & orange madeira reduction - Pinot noir

Oven Baked Lamb rack encrusted with Herbs de provence served with artichoke mousse
- -Shiraz or Grenache

Truffle infused Triple cream Brie served with rosemary pears, radicchio & truffle honey - Merlot

3 styles of strawberry compote served with lemon mousse & basil cookies - Gew├╝rztraminer

May 08, 2012
mandarin in Wine

German Platter

Yes - Erdapfelkas sounds like the one (I looked up a few recipes)
And the Obatzta sounds a great idea (I had something similar in Prague called "Beer Cheese")
Great ideas here. Giant pretzels; yum!!

Aug 25, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

German Platter

I am seeking ideas for a German lunch platter (similar to photos attached) - taken in Munich.

I am not certain about the names of cheeses and dips but any suggestions would be great. One of the dips I had in Muncih was a crunchy potato dip which is served topped with salt & pepper. I have no idea what it is called?!

So far I am thinking:

Shaved & Whole radish
cheeses
dip (potato as mentioned above) and/or other
boiled egg
cold meats
pretzels
assorted rye bread
Garnish with lettuce

Any suggestions welcome:)

Aug 23, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Duck Confit sauces

THe Pommes de terre a la sarladaise sound great as do the cherries. Someone has also suggested to me to serve the duck and potatoes with a small garnish of watercress & marinated blood orange + blood orange drizzle around the plate

Aug 10, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Duck Confit sauces

I am seeking ideas for a sauce/glaze to serve with duck confit. The sides will be duck fat potatos & green beans. Any ideas?

Aug 10, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Appetisers using truffle

I am seeking some ideas for an interesting appetiser/canape/nibbly using black truffle. Something to serve with champagne before a light 3 course French meal.

Aug 07, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

German roast pork & potato dumplings

A recent trip to Munich got me wondering how do they make their roast pork so tender, & delicious... with of course the perfectly cooked crackling. I am interested in tips for cooking something like the picture attached (either a roasted slice or pork knuckle)

and the potato dumplings and gravy were scrumptious as a side dish....
How do they do it!?

Jul 22, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Savoury sorbets

That is a good idea, however the dish is also being served with a sprinkling of coffee/almond crumble \. Celery sounds interesting....

Jul 19, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Savoury sorbets

So far I have found:
Champagne & Saffron sorbet
Pea & Mint (mint may be too strong)
Pumpkin
Pear & Bitter chocolate
Goats cheese

Jul 18, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Savoury sorbets

I am seeking a savoury sorbet recipe to serve with some fairly strong cheeses

. I had originally tried pear and wine sorbet however it was far too sweet and felt it would overpower the cheeses too much (also it had quite a lot of sugar in it )

So I am thinking a savoury sorbet would be nicer. I was thinking an eggplant or maybe even fig. THere is a French (provencal) theme so using typical ingredients to the region would be nice also

Jul 18, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Pastry tips (goats cheese filling)

I think feuille de brick is the way to go (aka Tunisian Brick pastry ) - have found it in a local gourmet store
I am also seeking a dressing to go with this salad dish ... perhaps a honey vinaigrette or something similar.. however many of them have chopped onions in the recipe and am hoping for something smooth (like in the picture)

Jul 16, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

French Cooking - 6 courses

Yes I do... been experimenting with each recipe 2-3 times aswell! Half the fun is getting there....

Jul 13, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Food stacks....

I am looking at creating a ratatouille "stack" consisting of marinated and girlled veg (red capsicum, tomato, zucchini, eggplant, fennell & red onion ) - similar to photo attached.
Any tips on how to "keep it neat" - the version I tried looks quite messy as all the slices are different sizes and looks like it will topple over.
Also, trying to serve it hot is a challenge as it takes a while to assemble so by the time it is successfully on the plate it would be fairly luke warm. hmmm

Jul 12, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Leftover Grilled Corn Ideas?

grilled corn is the best ingredient for mexican salad... mixed with kidney beans, coriander and red onion is nice

Jul 12, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

French Cooking - 6 courses

The date is to be decided... I am aiming on 6-7 weeks time. It will be more like a "long lunch" though... starting at noon and no doubt drifting into the evening. Taking time to indulge in food & wine...

Jul 11, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

French Cooking - 6 courses

Your menu sounds fantastic.. and, yes, wine pairing is the next step. I will post up the finished mennu shortly. Thankyou

Jul 10, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Tourist area restaurants in Paris

I do agree that lots of the restaurants on the champs elysee are overpriced and not so great... but my absoloute fav spot in Paris is Vesuvios on the Champs (one of the closest cafes near the arc de triomphe) on the right if you are facing it... not so expensive. Delicious pizza and pasta and what better place to be to sit and watch the world go by...

Jul 06, 2011
mandarin in France

French Cooking - 6 courses

Ah yes the lavendar champagne cocktail is on my "to experiment list" - I think to me it was the presentation that caught my eye... so I wonder if it were just champagne with a sprig of lavendar as a garnish whether the lavendar flavour would be overpowering? hmmm

Also re; 2 mains... yes, it is a tasting style menu so all portions (of everyting) will be very small....

And , dessert - 2 guests do not like fruit... I was originally loving the idea of pear soaked in wine and settled on creme brulle because it's just so simply delicious! But theres still time to search for something else. How about something like a rum soaked cake... or pastry and cream based dessert? hmmm

Jul 06, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

French Cooking - 6 courses

A week or so of experimenting & seeking new recipes I have made some progress in putting together this menu
-Lavendar champagne cocktail (see photo) served with aioli, tapenade and crudites
-. Potato & Leek Soup is perfected - will be serving with grissini sticks or bread sticks of some sort
-Goats cheese salad - I have discovered a walnut oil/honey vinaigrette recipe to experiment with
-Duck confit is a goer (I was really hoping to experiment with this) serving with duck fat potatoes
-Lamb rack with a ratatouille stack (see picture) I thought it was an appropriate side
-3 x types of french cheese with a coffee cumble & pear sorbet (the cheese journey - a smiliar dish I was served in France, just have to select the cheeses)
-creme brulee

Jul 06, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Tourist area restaurants in Paris

THere are numerous restaurants in the "Latin Quarter" aimed at tourists. They have set menus (3 courses) varying from 15-30 euro pp of typical French dishes . THe food is not fantastic... but good value

Jul 05, 2011
mandarin in France

Pastry tips (goats cheese filling)

Yes I originally thought filo, but thinking back it wasn't as flaky or "delicate". Will check out that website for tuile recipe

Jul 04, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Pastry tips (goats cheese filling)

I had a delish goats cheese salad in Paris and wanting to recreate it. The goats cheese was wrapped as per picture and the pastry was light and crunchy. What type of pastry would this be? and any tips on cooking with goats cheese and pastry?

Jul 04, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

What is the best dip you ever had and the recipe?

How about a good beetroot dip? Anyone have one? Done well it is sensational

Jul 04, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Potato & Leek Soup

Oh another thing... I have decided not to experiment by adding shaved truffle on top. Although a friend suggested to me if I were to serve at a dinner party add some fresh crab meat or lobster at the bottom.

Jul 04, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Potato & Leek Soup

I have tried the Potato & Leek soup this evening (with suggested improvements) and it is fantastic.

Started with Cooking 1 shallot, garlic clove, celery stalk, 3 leeks & half an onion in butter for 15 minutes
Added home cooked chicken stock ( 3 cups) and cubed potato (350g). Bought to boil and simmered 20 minutes
Added white pepper and salt. Pureed
Back to pot & added 3/4 cup cream

THe result was brilliant! Fresh chopped chives on top is a must do! I am sold with these ingredients and method. Thanks all for the tips...

Jul 04, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Antipasto Platter must haves

I am putting together a quite large antipasto platter for a group of 10 people to graze on before a pasta dish/dessert

Any must haves/ideas for a Roman style antipasto??

So far am thinking grilled artichokes, prosciutto, mortadella, braesola, provolene, marinated olives, tomato bruscetta, grissini sticks

Jul 04, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Potato & Leek Soup

Great tips here, I think the main alteration I will make is: scrap the milk - use chicken stock & cream
Add onion.
I have read a recipe which includes celery aswell but not sure about that one.
And definitely puree it better so it is very creamy. WIll give the truffle garnish a shot and post a review

Jul 01, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Potato & Leek Soup

I think I would look at an entirely new recipe, pureed onion and shallot may work well. And, yes, I agree the milk did dull the flavour. Sour cream (as suggested on the recipe link) sounds interesting... may try a few variations but am looking at perfecting the recipe.
I was hoping to serve it with shaved trufflle on top but unsure whether the dish is "worthy of truffle" hmmmm

Jun 30, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking

Potato & Leek Soup

What is the secret to a creamy & flavorsome Potato & Leek soup?

I tested a recipe which consisted of just butter, salt, pepper, potato, leek & whole milk
It had very little flavour so I added 1 clove garlic, 2 tsps chicken stock, 1/3 cup cream. It was not bad but not fantastic.

Any tips?

Jun 30, 2011
mandarin in Home Cooking