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Archive for June 11, 2013

tFATHER’S DAY GIFT: Bialetti Espresso Maker

The Bialetti Mini Espresso: It’s neat, petite
and produces great espresso. Photo courtesy
Bialetti.

 

We’ve been enjoying our Bialetti Mini Express espresso maker every day for the last six months. So if you’re looking for a great gift for an espresso-loving dad, check it out.

A no-mess capsule machine with a modest footprint—7.5″ wide x 10.5″ deep—it fits easily onto the kitchen counter. At $149.95 on Amazon.com, it’s much more affordable than other options.

We like the different espresso blends, and decaf is one of the choices (great for that midnight latte!). We also like that:

  • It’s easy to brew as short or tall an espresso as you want (we always like a double). The cup platform easily holds an eight-ounce-size American cup.
  • The water reservoir is on the side. It’s so much more convenient than the typical reservoir-in-the-back design, which requires pulling the machine away from the wall to check the level and refill the water.
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    It’s a gift that keeps on giving every day, at breakfast, after dinner and for a cappuccino or latte in between.

      

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    TIP OF THE DAY: Your Signature Steak & Eggs For Father’s Day

    Treat dad to homemade steak and eggs for Father’s Day. While most often a breakfast choice, the combination is equally appealing at lunch and dinner.

    Get creative with your preparation. Although a conventional recipe combines sirloin steak with fried eggs, select from the variety of steak cuts and egg styles to create a signature dish—and name it after Dad.

    Add a green vegetable to set off the plate (and the cholesterol), and pick a “signature condiment”: anything from chimichurri sauce or chutney to curried ketchup or homemade wild mushroom and red wine sauce.

    START WITH THE STEAK

    Sirloin is a popular cut; a petite sirloin makes individual portions easy. But if your budget allows, go for a New York strip or rib eye. You can employ other favorite cuts as well.

     

    A Father’s Day favorite. Swith the homemade potato chips for something green. Photo courtesy Peach Valley Cafe.

     

     

    A fancy turn: poached eggs atop filet mignon
    and mushroom gravy, topped with a frisée
    salad and fresh chives. Photo courtesy Epic
    Roadhouse | San Francisco.

     

    DECIDE ON THE EGGS

    Fried eggs are popular, and the yolk provides a “sauce” for the steak—as do poached egg yolks. But you can serve any style of eggs that Dad prefers: scrambled, boiled, hard-cooked and sliced, a mushroom omelet, a frittata.

    Our signature steak and eggs recipe was inspired by the clever renderings of Chef Thomas Keller (his Oysters and Pearls is a sabayon of pearl tapioca with oysters and sturgeon caviar [caviar eggs are called pearls}):

    We designed our steak and eggs as a filet mignon served with boiled potatoes. The top of the potatoes is scooped out (with a small melon baller), filled with crème fraîche and topped with caviar (i.e., the eggs) and garnished with a hard-cooked quail egg, halved and garnished with chive mayonnaise.

     
    SUBSTITUTE A GREEN VEG FOR POTATOES

    Most restaurants serve steak and eggs with a side of hash browns or other potatoes. But the dish needs more of a balance than that provided by a pile of fried beige simple carbs.

    So go for something green. We like:

  • Arugula, frisée or mesclun salad lightly dressed with vinaigrette
  • Asparagus, steamed and lightly tossed with butter and lemon zest
  • Snap peas, snow peas or zucchini, sautéed with garlic
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    FINISH WITH A HERB GARNISH

    Nothing picks up a dish better than fresh herbs. Sprinkle your creation with a favorite herb or two: a basil chiffonade, chopped chives, cilantro, parsley or rosemary.

      

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