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Le Mistral, Beat Divas on This Week’s Show

Our 21st Year of Eating, Drinking and Telling You About It!

HOUSTON Saturdays and Sunday 4-5 p.m., NewsRadio 740 KTRH

A Presentation of Spec’s Wines, Spirits & Finer Foods 

SATURDAY: Ten years ago this month, in the bleak aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, two brothers from France opened a restaurant called Le Mistral in West Houston. Today, David and Sylvain Denis love their chosen country more than ever – and they have a lot bigger place to love it from. Plus, we devote our Grape & Grain tasting segment to Italian wines, all looking ahead to Houston’s 33rd annual Festa Italiana.

AUSTIN Saturdays 10-11 a.m., Talk 1370

A Presentation of Spec’s Wines, Spirits & Finer Foods 

Recently, when the International Association of Culinary Professionals checked out the food offerings in Austin, they were treated to a concert by three local ladies who call themselves the Beat Divas. As we shall learn, the Divas sing about a lot of the normal stuff – but mostly about food. And in our Grape & Grain segment, we taste the wonderful Spanish wines of Bodegas Juan Gil.

This Week’s Delicious Mischief Recipe

ROASTED QUAIL BREAST WITH PLUM AND CHORIZO FILLING 

Quail Breast:

4 double quail breasts

4 tablespoons plum preserves

4 tablespoons ground chorizo sausage

4 slices bacon

½ teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon black pepper 

Foie Gras:

4 (2-ounce) slices foie gras

Salt and pepper 

Celery Root Puree: 

3 cups whole milk

3 cups water

1 tablespoon salt

2 large celery roots (about 2 pounds total), peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes 

1 medium russet potato, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes 

1 small onion, peeled and quartered

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 5 pieces

Ground white pepper

Chopped fresh chives, for garnish 

Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Spread quail breasts out on a clean, dry work surface. Season with salt and pepper on both sides. Spread 1 tablespoon of chorizo on each and spread the plum on top of the chorizo. Close up each breast and wrap tightly with a bacon slice. Roast for 15 minutes. While the quail is roasting, preheat a sauté pan over high heat. Salt and pepper the foie gras slices and sear them for 30 seconds on each side. 

To make the celery puree, bring milk, water and salt just to boil in a heavy saucepan over high heat. Add celery root cubes, potato cubes and onion quarters, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes. Drain, discarding cooking liquid. Combine vegetables and butter in a food processor and puree until smooth. Season to taste with salt and white pepper. Serve quail with foie gras slices on top, with the puree mounded on the side. Garnish with pan juices and chopped chives. Serves 4.

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About John DeMers

I've been a journalist and author forever. My favorite single word in the English language is "foodandwine." This spirit drives my 45 published books and my weekly radio show heard in Houston, Dallas and Austin.

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