We went to a Napa wine dinner last night, and I am still on cloud 9 this morning. Unlike a hangover, I'm enjoying the long and lingering finish, and I remember and savor every detail of the evening. Our signifigant others were able to accompany us this time, made possible by Courtney and Tim, who were able to keep up with Pippin on Halo ODST ( which I can't help but think of 'odius STD' when I say). The kids had a great time and we had a fabulous time and came home with some new wines to try. It is so much fun to talk with someone who is so passionate about food and wine, and it was really nice Shane was there because I would not have spent that much. But I will enjoy drinking them.
Apparently, we didn't get enough because when we got home we both wanted to try one right away. We picked the Owen Roe 'Rosa Mystica' ($46.99) , a 2007 cabernet franc. It was very nice, like liquid cocoa powder. We had it with pita chips, but I'm looking forward to trying it with food tonigth. I was going to do some halibut, but now I might do salmon instead. Or maybe the spicy shrimp we had last night.
We also had hanger steak with watercress sauce and onion jam. We'll be making that for Shane's birthday dinner, along with the apple pie with white cheddar crust. And the fennel spiced prawns with citrus salad. And one of the new wines.
I realized I didn't get all the courses, or any pictures of our group. But the wonderful food, wine, and company were a little distracting. And since we usually end up re-creating the meals at home, there are more opportuniteis for pictures.
Since its lent, and Friday, I'll just put the recipe for the prawns up. And because the kids are waiting to go ride bikes so I need to hurry.
Fennel spiced Prawns with Citrus Salad
12 jumbo prawn- 1/4 lb- raw, de-veined
1T Fennel spice
1 blood orange
1 navel orange
salt and pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 large bunch watercress - we actually used spinach last night and that was good too
1 c fennel seeds
3T coriander seeds
2 T white peppercorns
3 T kosher salt
Toast the seeds and peppercorns over med heat until lightly brown and fragrant. Let cool completely. Then blend in blender with salt until you get a fine powder.
Sprinkle 1 T over shrimp and refrigerate, covered, up to six hours.
Cut the skin and pith off all the fruits. With a kinfe, segment the fruit, leaving out the membranes. Slice them over a bowl to catch any juices. Add 1/4 cup oilve oil, salt, and pepper. Toss to mix.
Preheat oven to 400. Heat 2 T oil in skillet and cook prawns about 2 min until they begin to turn pink around the edges. Place pan in oven and cook 2 min longer.
To serve, place 1/4 watercress on each plate. Toss the citrus mixture and spoon over watercress, making sure to sprinkle the juices. Arrange prawns around each salad.
Update: We made this for Shane's birthday. I just sauteed the shrimp on the stove for 4-5 min and skipped the oven part. Also, we thougth we'd improve it by cutting the citrus in smaller pieces- they had serve them in segments- but the grapefruit really fell apart and it was better to leave them bigger.