Tag Archives: wedding

United Kingdom of F’in’ Delicious

Yes, I’ve been terribly delinquent in posting.  BUT! (and isn’t there always a “but”?) I do have a good excuse.  Mr. Kitchen and I are finally legally a Mr. & Mrs.! We were wed in a beautiful ceremony in upstate New York, and afterwards, we whisked ourselves away for a truly amazing honeymoon in London and Scotland. What’s this got to do with food (other than providing an excuse for not posting)?  While on our honeymoon, we had two of the best meals we’ve ever had.   You know that cliche that food in the U.K. is boring and bland? Don’t you believe it.

One was a gift from our darling bridesmaids — dinner for two at Ramsay’s at Claridge’s in London.  I wish that we had had the opportunity to take photos of our dishes, cause let me tell you — nobody plates like Gordon Ramsay.  The dining room, surprisingly, wasn’t overly stuffy, despite being located in the veritable institution of class that is Claridge’s.  We  ate ourselves silly through three courses that had us tasting roasted loin of rabbit, thai-spiced lobster ravioli, a delectable roast loin of pork, a light and delicate john dorry and desserts that knocked our socks off — a dark chocolate, raspberry and praline sphere, and a gingerbread souffle with a blackcurrant sorbet for my hubby.  I can’t even begin to describe how beautifully blended each dish was — flavors were in turns surprising and comforting, but always balanced.   Fine dining in London is no joke.  Watching our servers was like watching the ballet – everyone flowing together, mostly in groups, in what I swear were synchronized steps.

Mr. Kitchen and I are sightseeing types — we’re not prone to lying on beaches.  We love history and exploring a new city is a past-time that we both have really enjoyed. (Except driving in said new cities.  That one nearly ended our marriage before it really got started.)  We had run ourselves pretty ragged running around London and then Scotland, until we got to Skye, which is the. most. beautiful. place. on. earth.  Yes. Each word needed its own punctuation.  It’s that damn gorgeous.  And the seafood!  If you like seafood, I’m convinced you’ll never find better than on that island.

Some of the island looks like this.

And where we were staying? It looked like this.

View from Carter's Rest, Skye

View from Carter's Rest, Skye

We spent two nights there, relaxing and taking in the beautiful countryside.  Little did we know, one of the top 35 restaurants in the world was just down the road in the middle of nowhere.  The Three Chimneys is completely unassuming.  You’d never know it was there and you’d definitely never expect a fine dining experience that is equal parts sophisticated and warm and welcoming.  Everyone there was incredibly friendly, but the restaurant itself offers truly superb service.  When the chef, Michael Smith, found out we were traveling from New York on our honeymoon, he invited us to come chat with him in the kitchen at the end of the night.  I almost keeled over! I immediately bought two of his cookbooks, and he signed them both and then gave us copies of the night’s menu.  We did manage to sneak some photos with our phones of our dishes — Sadly, they don’t do the meal justice.   We did the seven course tasting menu, which is not for the faint of heart.  All of the food is locally sourced and really, it’s worth the trip to Skye alone for a meal here.  At one point, halfway through dessert, I turned to Mr. Kitchen and said, “I don’t think I can do it.  I just don’t think I can finish.”  Mr. Kitchen, who was well into a fine Talisker, said, “Oh you’re gonna man up and finish that dessert because that’s a Drambuie dipping sauce.  I said Drambuieeee!”  When our server came to ask if we had finished, I gave him a pitiful look and said, “My husband said I need to man up and finish this.  I’m gonna need another minute.”  He returned a few minutes later with a plate of mini desserts.  He was evil.  In the best way possible.

I present below, the menu and photos of most of our courses, from The Three Chimneys.  Next up — I try my hand at jelly doughnuts and I discover the beauty of a nutella mousse!

An Amouse Bouche Terrine of Seafood (this wasn’t on the menu, it was a surprise first course)

Terrine Three Chimneys

Terrine Three Chimneys

Armadale Mackarel Tartare with Tattie Scones, Glendale Mesculun & Apple

Tartare Three Chimneys

Tartare Three Chimneys

Crab Risotto with Shellfish Essence and Truckle Wafer

Crab Risotto Three Chimneys

Crab Risotto Three Chimneys

A Selection of Broadford Cold & Hot Smoked with Farm Quail Egg

Smoked Fish Three Chimneys

Smoked Fish Three Chimneys

 Sconser King Scallop with Hazlenut Crust, Split Pea  & Ham Hough Purry

(Sadly, no photo – we were too busy eating to take the photo)

Three Loch Harport Oysters with Cucumber & Mint Jelly, Homemade Creme Fraiche & Loch Etive Trout Caviar

(served with ice cold vodka)

Oysters Three Chimneys

Oysters Three Chimneys

Roast Fillet & Shredded Shin of Lochlash Beef with Pearl Barley and Totaig Vegetable Broth, Horseradish 

Beef Three Chimneys

Beef Three Chimneys

 Dessert — Hot Marmalade Pudding Souffle with Drambuie Syrup and Mealie Ice Cream

Marmalade Souffle Three Chimneys

Marmalade Souffle Three Chimneys

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Stew it up

I won a cookbook giveaway!  Since Mr. Kitchen and I have started planning our wedding, I’ve become a devoted wedding blog reader.  I recently entered a giveaway hosted by OneWed for the Dam Good Sweet Cookbook by Beard nominee David Guas, and I won!  The cookbook features New Orleans-style desserts and I can’t wait to give it a try.  (How I’m going to fit into a wedding dress, I have no idea.)  Mr. Kitchen is in for a yummy fall!  Speaking of yummy, Mr. Kitchen and I have been working tons and tons over the past few weeks, and we are plum tired.  So tired, that I forgot to buy tickets for today’s Vendy Awards.  So instead of spending the afternoon tasting the delicious fare of some of the city’s best food trucks, we’re heading over to Eataly.  Something tells me my bank account is going to be very angry with me later… Hey, some girls shop for shoes — I shop for food!

Anyway, on to fall produce!  Next up: Carrots.  Definitely one of the most versatile of the fall vegetables, carrots can go in, well almost any dish, and one of the easiest fall dishes to prepare is a hearty, stick to your ribs beef stew.  Seriously all you need is the ability to chop, brown and boil to make stew.  I’ve used lots of different cuts of beef for stews but I recently tried giving short ribs a try.  I really liked the way it turned out — the marbled meat was definitely falling off the bone by the time the stew was done and it was absolutely tender.  I’m also a firm believer (and perhaps this is my Irish heritage talking), that you can put in almost any vegetables you’ve got lying around.

Fall Short Rib Stew

Fall Short Rib Stew

Short Rib Stew

7-8 hearty-sized short ribs

3 celery stalk (roughly chopped)

3 shallots (roughly chopped)

2 medium sized carrots (roughly chopped)

2 Yukon Gold potatoes (cut into bite size chunks)

1 sweet potato (or just use 3 Yukons) (cut into bite sized chunks)

1 turnip (roughly chopped)

2 cups beef stock

1 small bottle red wine (I think it’s 375 ml?) (I prefer a cabernet sauvignon for beef stews)

1 tsp salt (to taste)

2 tbsp thyme

1 tbsp tarragon

Flour (for dusting short ribs)

2 tbsp olive oil (for browning ribs)

In a bowl, toss the short ribs with flour, salt and pepper.  In a large pot, heat oil and brown the short ribs on all sides.   Remove short ribs from pot.   In the remaining oil, saute shallots.  Once they are soft, add the meat back in and add the wine.  Cook over medium heat until the wine is halfway reduced, about 10 minutes.  Add beef stock, thyme, tarragon, carrots, turnips and celery and reduce heat, cooking meat until it is very tender (about 1.5 hours).   Add chopped potatoes and cook for an additional 45 minutes to an hour, until all vegetables and meat are completely tender.  Season with additional salt and pepper as desired.

Browned short ribs and shallots

Browned short ribs and shallots

Pour in the vegetables and herbs for short rib stew

Pour in the vegetables and herbs for short rib stew

Short rib stew

Add the potatoes and cook until tender

Leave a comment

Filed under Beef, Dinner, Recipes, Soups and Stews