It's almost moving time here at home. But I wanted to get another recipe up before the kitchen is nothing more than empty cabinets and sparkling clean appliances. This wasn't the original dish I had planned. I wanted to make something we had last weekend at the Cliff House.
We went for dinner and were hoping for a sunset, but, San Francisco + Summer = Fog
The views are generally spectacular here and I recommend going, even if it's just for a cocktail at the bar after a walk through the ruins of the old Sutro Bathhouse, it's a beautiful part of the coast and you would hardly know you're still in the city.
And not to be missed is the giant camera! Inside Camera Obscura they have an enormous lens and projects a 360° view reflecting the coast. It's like being inside a camera. Pretty cool, but again this can only really be appreciated on a clear day.
The dinner was great, Jeff ordered the rib-eye which comes with pommes frites, crisp poached egg, and green beans (menus seem to be following a trend now of just listing ingredients), I was curious how they were going to pull off those items together, and it wasn't french fries at all, surprise it was the finest potato nest I've seen, (and you might remember I tried my hand last month at potato nests)
The potatoes weren't shredded, they were more in the form of angel hair pasta and made the cutest little nest, and note the egg was soft-boiled not poached. Here's a photo, courtesy of Jeff, and I was determined to make this fancy nest, I did a little research and purchased a julienne slicer after seeing how nicely it worked on zucchini. Well, um, the slicer came in this week and it did not work on potatoes at all. I mean it shredded it, but just like any other shred, I was hoping for finer strands of potato. And worse it was very difficult to cut through the potato. So I decided to abandon the whole potato nest idea and make potato pancakes instead. I found the recipe on Smitten Kitchen and added some gorgonzola and thyme. This also motivated me to try, once again, to properly poach an egg. And I have to say this is about the best looking poached egg I've ever made. Not only that, it was the best tasting as well, no vinegar taste! I found the directions from Jerry James Stone who has wonderful detailed instructions with photos and video on how to accomplish the difficult task of poaching an egg. It's all in the swirl! You get the water swirling really good, drop the egg in the center and it magically stays together. I feel much more confident now in poaching eggs. Oddly my first egg and last egg came out the best, important to note after you drop the egg in, don't swirl the water anymore, let it do it's thing.
I may revisit the potato nest after the move, do any of you have any idea how to get potato in angel hair strands?
I'm not sure when the Portland kitchen will be up and running, so I may do a few blog posts with some older recipes and photos that are from my pre-blog days. Until then I leave you with this improvised potato egg dish that came out really delicious!
Potato Pancakes with Gorgonzola + Thyme
(adapted from Smitten Kitchen)
- 1 large potato
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
- 1/4 cup gorgonzola cheese
- 2 tablespoons Canola or vegetable oil for frying
Peel and shred the potato. Rinse the shredded potato under water a few times, then squeeze out excess water and dry with towel as much as possible.
Mix together egg, flour salt and pepper, add potato and mix until well combined, add cheese and thyme until just mixed. Preheat skillet with oil, medium to high heat. Scoop a large tablespoon of mixture (I used an ice cream scoop) and place in pan, flatten with back of spoon. Cook about 2-3 minutes per side until brown and crispy. Drain on paper towel. (Deb says these can be stored in fridge and reheated in oven for later, but we ate them all up! so good!)
(adapted from Cooking Stoned)
- 4 eggs
- 8 cups of water (or more)
- 2 tablespoon white vinegar (or more)
Prepare an ice bath large enough for eggs when they're done.
In a shallow pan fill with water, water should be 1 1/2" - 2" in depth. For every 4 cups of water add 1 tablespoon white vinegar. Bring the water to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Spin the water with a wooden spoon, creating a whirlpool effect. Gently place the egg in the center of the swirl (I put the egg in a little dish prior so that it can easily slip in the center). Cook for 3 minutes for a runny yolk, or 5 minutes for completely cooked. When the egg is done cooking place it in the ice bath. Repeat for the other eggs.
In another medium sized pot heat water (enough for egg to submerge) until very warm but not boiling. Transfer eggs from ice bath to warmed pot of water for 30 seconds. Remove and ready to serve. (This process takes the vinegar taste away!)