When you have a place in Maine, lots of folks come to visit which means many meals to think about. As a rule, guests, especially the ladies, are quite helpful, but what a surprise when a guy insists on taking over the kitchen. Go for it I say!
First, we had to go to Beth’s, a nearby farmstand with loads of beautiful fresh produce. You’ve never seen such rapture on a guy’s face as when he saw all there was to choose from. He selected with, so he said, no fixed idea about how the veggies would be used for dinner. Hmmm, I like that.
Veggie shopping done, next stop was the fish market where beautiful halibut filets and right out of the water scallops were selected.
Then to the kitchen where the real work began. His wife and I were the peelers and choppers while the fella looked through the pantry for spices, oil and vinegar. Next thing you know the house was filling with delicious aroma, and still there was no clue about what the finished dishes would be. Talk about spontaneous!
To keep the chef going, we plied him with plenty of good wine.
All done, and here’s how all the ingredients came together. First course was sliced watermelon topped with fresh goat cheese, blackberries, basil and a vinaigrette dressing. Very refreshing on a warm night.
Second course, seared scallops atop sautéed chard and finished with a warm bacon vinaigrette. What an interesting combination of ingredients and beyond good!
For the entrée, he prepared a corn pudding made with lots of fresh cream, roasted beets and purple haze carrots and pan roasted halibut topped with a creamy tomato sauce. Oh my goodness, by the time we finished this meal the rest of us thought we had died and gone to heaven. Keep in mind there were no recipes, no measured ingredients, just incredible results. The only hint he gave for preparing really good food is that the dish should have a combination of sweet, tart and acidic flavors. Here’s the really big clue: anything with bacon is good.
This guy doesn’t do dessert, and we really didn’t need one, but I just happened to have some tasty, all natural ice cream from the Ice Cream Lady and some freshly baked cookies to provide the finishing touch. I wish Martha Stewart had been around to sample because I’m sure this meal would make her magazine.
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