Thursday, April 14, 2016

Big TX Brisket Bock Bucatini with Mini Rellenos and Cilantro Pesto

I am so excited and a little shocked that I was recently accepted to compete in Barilla's Represent Your Region Contest! Competitors were sent an assortment of Barilla pastas and challenged to create a dish inspired by their region. As I brainstormed what to make to represent Texas the best, I was overwhelmed with the list of ideas I had. I managed to edit it down and I am really excited with what I came up with!
I made a Tex-Mex braised beef brisket sauce loaded with chiles, smoked salt and Shiner Bock beer and tossed that with Barilla's bucatini pasta. Drizzled on top is my Tex-Mex spin on a pesto with cilantro, lime and pepitas. The crowning glory is my "Mini Rellenos" - roasted jalapenos stuffed with cheese and fried just like their tex mex big brother Chiles Rellenos!
The grand prize for this contest is an all expense paid Culinary Weekend experience at Barilla’s annual Modern Casual retreat at Farmer Lee Jones'Culinary Vegetable Institute in Cleveland, OH!!! There's also a people's choice award up for grabs, so if you can, hop on over HERE and give my recipe a vote!
3 dried guajillo chiles, stems and seeds removed
2 cups boiling water
1 Tablespoon ancho chile powder
4 cloves garlic
2 teaspoons ground toasted cumin seeds
1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
1 teaspoon ground toasted coriander
1 teaspoon smoked Mexican sea salt       
1 14.5 ounce can fire roasted tomatoes with garlic
3 pounds beef brisket
1 Tablespoon kosher salt
2 Tablespoons butter
1 Tablespoon canola oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 large poblano pepper, chopped with seeds and stem removed
12 ounces Shiner Bock beer

1 cup packed cilantro leaves
2 Tablespoons lime juice
1 small clove garlic
1 Tablespoon minced jalapeno pepper
2 Tablespoons  olive oil 
1 Tablespoon salted roasted pepitas
1/2 teaspoon smoked Mexican sea salt       

6 large jalapeno peppers
4 ounces oaxaca cheese, cut into 6 sticks
4 cups frying oil
2 egg whites, at room temperature
1 egg yolk, at room temperature
1/2 cup flour


1 Tablespoon kosher salt
1 12-ounce package Barilla Bucatini


Preheat oven to 350°F.

Place chiles in a medium bowl. Pour the boiling water over them and place a small glass plate on top to weigh them down. Soak until chiles soften, at least 30 minutes.
Place chiles in blender along with the soaking liquid, chili powder, garlic, cumin seeds, oregano, coriander, smoked salt and tomatoes; blend until smooth.

Pat beef dry, remove excess fat and cut into 3 inch cubes. Sprinkle with kosher salt. Melt the butter and oil over high heat in a large heavy based pot. Working in batches, add brisket and sear on all sides until browned, then remove to a plate and set aside. Turn heat down to medium low and add the chopped onion and poblano. Sauté for 5 minutes, or until the vegetables have softened. Add the beer, brisket (add the juices too) and the chile puree.

Bring the mixture to a simmer. Cover and place in oven for 2 hours. Uncover and continue to cook about 1 hour longer or until the beef is tender enough to pull apart with forks and the liquid has reduced to be a thick sauce.

While the brisket is cooking, place the cilantro, lime juice, garlic, jalapeno, olive oil, pepitas and salt in a small food processor and blend until smooth.  Pour mixture into a squirt bottle for later use.

Remove the brisket from the sauce onto a large sheet tray. Skim off any fat from surface of sauce and shred the brisket coarsely with two forks, discarding any remaining fat. Return the shredded meat to the sauce, cover the pot and set aside until ready to serve.

Place the jalapenos over a gas flame or underneath the broiler and char until they are blackened on all sides. Place them in a bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap and let stand for 10 minutes. Peel the charred skin off and carefully make a small slit one side of the pepper. Fill the peppers with the cheese and secure with a toothpick. In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan, pour in oil and heat over medium-high heat until the oil reaches 375 degrees. Beat the egg whites in a medium mixing bowl until soft peaks form. Add the egg yolk and continue to beat until combined. Dredge the filled peppers in flour, shake off any excess, then dip the into the egg mixture. Fry until golden brown, about 3-5 minutes and drain on a cooling rack placed on a cookie sheet.

Bring a very large pot of water up to a boil over high heat. Add 1 Tablespoon of salt and add pasta and cook until al dente, about 7 minutes.

When the pasta is ready, reserve 3 cups of the pasta water and drain. Add the pasta to the ragu mixture, along with 1 cup of the reserved pasta water and stir to combine. Gently toss the pasta over medium high heat for 3-5 minutes, until the sauce coats the pasta.

To serve, place a serving of pasta in a large bowl, drizzle with the cilantro vinaigrette and top with mini rellenos. Serve immediately, makes 6 servings.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Lemon Almond Poppy Seed Scone Sticks

This is my entry for the Bake it With Rodelle Contest!
The contest invited bakers to share their take on the delicious recipe they posted for 

Lemon Vanilla Poppy Seed 2-Bite Scones and below is my take on their creation.

One winner will receive a Rodelle prize pack filled with gourmet baking supplies, the best vanilla on the market, and international spice blends. The chosen winner will also receive a 12" Convection Digital Countertop Oven and aArtisan® Series 5-Quart Tilt-Head Stand Mixer - both in beautiful Cobalt Blue!
  • Lemon Almond Poppy Seed Scone Sticks
  • Scones
    1 cup all-purpose flour
    1 cup white whole wheat flour
    1/4 cup sugar
    2 tablespoons brown sugar
    1 tablespoon baking powder
    4 teaspoons poppy seeds
    Scant 1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 large egg
    1/2 cup buttermilk, plus extra to brush the dough
    2 tablespoons lemon zest
    2 teaspoons almond extract
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1 stick cold butter, diced
    Glaze
    1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted
    3 tablespoons vanilla flavored coffee creamer

    Add all dry ingredients to your KitchenAid Stand Mixer with the paddle attachment and mix on the "stir" (lowest) setting until well combined.
    In a separate bowl, combine the egg, buttermilk, zest, almond extract and vanilla. Whisk lightly and set mixture aside.
    Add cold, diced butter to the stand mixer and mix on the lowest setting for approximately 60-90 seconds. The butter should start to break into smaller pieces but not fully combine with the flour. Do not overmix!
    Stream the wet mixture into the dry ingredients while the mixer is on low ("stir") until a dough forms. This should take about 5-10 seconds of mixing.
    Turn off mixer, using a spatula, fold any remaining flour to the top and mix for a few more seconds. Do not overmix.
    Turn dough onto a well-floured surface and gently knead into a ball. If the dough feels overly sticky before kneading, heavily sprinkle with flour before kneading. Split into two even pieces and place one in a bowl in the fridge.
    Gently roll out or shape the dough with your hands into a rectangle about 3/4-inch thick. The rectangle should be approximately 4"x8". You will see pieces of butter in the dough and this is what you want - it will make your scones flaky and delicious.
    Cut rectangle into even slices and place on a parchment lined baking sheet with about 1/2 inch or so spacing between them. Repeat preparation steps with the remaining, refrigerated dough.
    Place scones on the pan in the freezer for 10 minutes.
    Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
    Lightly brush scones with buttermilk and bake for 12-15 minutes, until the edges are a deep golden brown and the tops are light golden.
    Let cool for 10 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack and let completely cool.
    Drizzle on 1 - 1 1/2 teaspoons glaze over each cooled scone. Top with extra poppy seeds if desired.
    For the Glaze
    Stir ingredients together until well combined. Mixture should be pourable but not too thick or too thin. 

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Spring Break in New York

Our trip to New York was short and sweet this time. It's kind of crazy to think that this is the 5th trip I've won to New York and every time I'm there I fall in love with the city even more.
It felt like a dream, which was pretty appropriate since that's the name of the hotel we stayed at in Midtown Manhattan.
We took the 6am flight to NY and got to the Dream hotel around 11:30 
(Isn't the headboard gorgeous?!)
Just enough time to drop off our bags and head straight to Nobu for lunch
 Holy mother of all things delicious, Nobu was amazing! It was one of those meals where all you can do is moan at how good it is and fight over the last bite like cave men. 
To start I had the Champagne 95 (Champagne, Torres Orange Liqueur, Crème de Peche & Pineapple Juice). A little sweet, but still delicious. Yellowtail Sashimi with jalapeno was next and was light and refreshing- the perfect way to start the meal. We got the special roll of the day, but for the life of me I can't remember what was in it. Just know that it was damn good. I couldn't go to Nobu without trying the Black Cod with Miso, which lived up to all the hype I had read about it before going. For dessert we got the Raspberry Mille-Feuille: (Caramel Miso Cream Layered Puff Pastry Wafers, Raspberry Coulis, White Chocolate Tuile, Chamomile-Fromage Blanc Sherbet) while this was good, I thought it was the weakest dish we had that day. Maybe because right before we had dessert, we were served the Duck. It was a special of the day, and by far the best thing I ate the entire trip. Seared duck breast, a leg of duck confit and a fresh micro-green salad sat on top of icy cold watermelon and jalapenos with a bright vinaigrette. I seriously wanted to order another one as soon as we were done. Mind blowingly good!
After lunch we went back to the hotel to get ready for the night!!
The party was put on by Food Network Magazine, The US Potato Board  and Alex Guarnaschelli at Butter Restaurant . The venue was really beautiful! The menu on the tables were printed out for the night and my recipe was first on the list!! There was a huge oyster bar as well, so Louis and I were in heaven and stopped by there a few times that night.
I was pulled aside to take pictures with my dish and with Chef Alex and as you can see it was blinding! Overall the night was amazing and it truly flew by. 
The next morning we headed over to Dominique Ansel Bakery for cronuts! I was so super excited to try these after seeing them all over instagram. Louis, however, had no idea what I was talking about or why I had to pre-order and pay for them weeks before we even got to NY. This month's flavor was raspberry coconut and they definitely lived up to the hype. We also got an order of Madeleines fresh from the oven. After loading up on sugar we walked down to The Highline, a park built on old freight rails that takes you above the streets of the city. It was the perfect day to walk along and watch the crowds below.
The Highline took us to Chelsea Market where Food Network studios and a bunch of restaurants and stores are. I couldn't get over how gorgeous the produce was! 
We had walked a long time at this point, and for anyone that knows me, you know that's a big deal. I typically hate walking especially if it's hot. Luckily the day was cool and gorgeous, so it was ok but I was ready to eat! We headed to Ippudo for lunch and sat at the counter. It was super busy, but we only had to wait about 10 minutes. Any time someone is seated or food is brought to you all of the staff makes these loud announcements together in Japanese. I don't have any idea what was going on, but it was cute.  Louis got the lunch special of Pork Soboro (rice and sweet and savory pork), a side salad and the Classic Ramen. I got the Akamaru Modern Ramen and I totally get now why they say that Ramen is Japanese soul food. It is a hug in a bowl and I couldn't even finish half of the noodles the bowl was so big. The broth was amazing, and being able to recreate that at home is now on my to-do list.
Next up was something I had been dying to do since the moment I knew we were going back to NYC! 
I truly love this show, the music, the costumes. Everything about it is amazing and even though we've seen it once already, there were parts I had forgotten that felt new all over again. Love love love.
After Wicked, we had about two hours to kill before the car was ready to bring us to the airport so we walked across the street to Cognac Brasserie and sat at a table outside to people watch. I have to say, I would not recommend this place at all. The service was painfully slow, the food was lacking and look at how sloppy the bowl of soup I got was brought out to me! I got a Kir Royale and Lobster Bisque and Louis had a Manhattan and the Cassoulet. Meh.
We got back around 1:30 am and we were so exhausted but look at those furry faces waiting for us! Beignet hasn't left my side since we got back. Oh, you want to read? I'm just going to sit on the book so you have to pay attention to me. 
I don't know if it was too little sleep, too much partying or dirty planes but I got a terrible cold which hit me quick so I made myself a huge pot of chicken soup. It wasn't the same as Ippudo's ramen, but it hit the spot. 
I was also super excited to see Food Network Magazine posted this little gem on Instagram!! Here's my link  (@fleurdelectable) if you'd like to follow me over there as well! 



Monday, February 29, 2016

Street Corn Mashed Potato Poppers with Ancho-cado Dip

I'm not sure how or why, but 2016 has been unbelievably kind to me! 
I really have never been one to make new years resolutions, but this year I decided to really buckle down and try as hard as I could to bring my contesting to a whole 'nother level. To keep a schedule, enter as many quality recipes as I could and work on my photography to have my pictures really sell my dish. I guess hard work and prayer really does pay off, because for the second time this year I've won an amazing trip to New York!
I literally could not believe when I received this email and I have re-read it roughly 1,376 times just to make sure I wasn't dreaming:
Hi Lauren,
 On behalf of Food Network Magazine and the US Potato Board, I would like to congratulate you on being the WINNER of The Ordinary Extraordinary Potato Recipe Contest. Please confirm receipt of this email ASAP so we can coordinate prize details!

You and a guest will be flown to NYC for a Food Network Magazine’s Small Bites Event on Tuesday 3/15 at Butter Restaurant where your dish – Street Corn Mashed Potato Poppers with Ancho-cado Dip – will be served to attendees. 

In addition, US Potato Board would like to feature your recipe on their websitePotatoGoodness.com.

Looking forward to hearing from you! Be sure to reach out with any questions.

Best,
Steven & The Food Network Magazine Team 
PS – Your recipe was by far the favorite – I can’t wait to try it at the event J

 Street Corn Mashed Potato Poppers with Ancho-cado Dip
Street Corn Mashed Potato Poppers:
3 pounds russet potatoes
4 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
2 ears corn
1 jalapeno pepper
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
½ cup cilantro, chopped
2 cups shredded pepper jack cheese
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3 Tablespoons flour
½ teaspoon pepper
1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder
2 Tablespoons Mexican crema
1 cup crumbled cotija cheese

Ancho-cado Dip:
1 large avocado, skin and pit removed
¼ teaspoon cayenne
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup Mexican crema
2 teaspoons ancho chili powder

6 cups vegetable oil
3 cups panko breadcrumbs
½ cup cilantro, chopped
1 lime, cut into wedges

Peel and cut potatoes into ½ inch cubes and add to a large pot. Cover with cold water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Season the water with 2 teaspoons of the salt, and cook until fork tender, about 10-15 minutes. Drain the potatoes and return them to hot pot to dry.  
While the potatoes are cooking, grill the corn and jalapeno. Heat a large grill pan over high heat. Brush the oil all over the corn and jalapeno, place on the hot grill pan, and cook turning frequently until charred on all sides. This will take about 8-10 minutes. Set aside until cool enough to handle. 
In a large bowl, scrape the corn kernels off of the cob with a sharp knife and using the back of the knife, scrape all the corn milk into the bowl as well. Remove the stem and seeds from the jalapeno, dice it and add it to the corn. Add the cilantro, cheese, eggs, flour, pepper, garlic powder, crema, cotija and remaining 2 ½ teaspoons of salt. Stir until the mixture is evenly combined. Add the potatoes and stir, slightly mashing, until the mixture is evenly blended. Place in the refrigerator to cool for at least 30 minutes. 
While the potato mixture is chilling, make the dip. Add the avocado, cayenne, salt, mayonnaise, crema and chili powder to a small food processor. Blend until smooth and set in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Heat the oil to 375 degrees in a large, high sided pot over medium-high heat, fitted with a candy thermometer.  
While the oil is heating, use a small cookie scoop to spoon 2 Tablespoons of the potato mixture out. Roll into panko until well coated on all sides. Working in batches, fry for 3-5 minutes, until deeply golden brown and crisp. Remove poppers from the oil and place on a large paper towel lined cookie sheet to drain. 
Place the poppers on a serving platter, sprinkle with cilantro and serve with lime wedges and dip. 
Mixture makes 70 poppers.


Thursday, February 25, 2016

Cajun Fish Taco Tostadas with Mardi Gras Slaw and Remoulade Sauce

Last year, I was lucky enough to win with my Greek Style Baked Turkey Taquitos with Tzatziki Drizzle and I'm really hoping to keep the winning streak going. 
I wanted to use a different rub this year, so I chose the Cajun Seafood Seasoning and created something that is delicious, colorful and healthy!
My Cajun Fish Taco Tostadas feel like a splurge even when they're not. I chose to broil corn tortillas to make them nice and crispy. Swapping corn tortillas for flour tortillas is an easy way to cut fat and sugar all while bumping up the fiber in your diet. The slaw is colorful and gives the perfect crunchy texture to the tostadas. For the fish, I used striped bass because that's what my boys caught on their fishing trip but feel free to use tilapia, cod or any other white flaky fish in the market.
While Remoulade is a delicious sauce served with seafood in Louisiana, it's typically loaded with fat and salt. My version packs a ton of flavor without all the unnecessary calories by mixing a bit of greek yogurt in with a low fat mayonnaise to make it creamy and using the Cajun Seafood Seasoning to give it spice and flavor.
My kids devoured these- I hope you try them and love them as much as we did!
Cajun Fish Taco Tostadas with Mardi Gras Slaw and Remoulade Sauce
 8 soft 6-inch corn tortillas
3 Tablespoons low fat mayonnaise
3 Tablespoons fat free plain Greek yogurt
The zest of 1 lemon
1 Tablespoon creole or course grain mustard
1 Tablespoon ketchup
3 cups thinly sliced purple cabbage
1 ½ cups thinly sliced yellow bell pepper
6 green onions, thinly sliced
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1 pound flaky white fish
 
Preheat the broiler on high. Lightly mist the corn tortillas on both sides with olive oil spray and place on a large cookie sheet. Broil the tortillas for about 2 minutes per side, watching closely to prevent burning. Once the tortillas are crisp set aside to cool slightly.

In a small mixing bowl, stir together the mayonnaise, Greek yogurt, Cajun Seafood Seasoning, zest, creole mustard and ketchup.

In a separate small mixing bowl, combine the sliced purple cabbage, yellow bell pepper, green onions, olive oil and lemon juice. Stir until the slaw is evenly coated.

Sprinkle the fish evenly with the Cajun Seafood Seasoning.

Heat a large non-stick skillet sprayed with olive oil cooking spray over medium high heat and working in batches, cook the fish about 3-5 minutes per side, or until the fish flakes easily.
To assemble, top each crispy corn tortilla with the slaw mixture, pieces of the fish and then drizzle with the Remoulade sauce. Serve immediately.

Serves 4, serving size: 2 tostadas

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Suggestions and Smoothies

While having the time of my life chatting it up in NYC with Chef Jeffery Saad for the Bush's Chili Cook-off he suggested once we were back in Austin to try out Barlata since he knew the chef and had been there numerous times before. I was super excited when I found out that Louis had booked reservations for us to go there for brunch on Valentine's Day!
It did not disappoint! We tried a little bit of everything, and I would definitely go back. The cocktails were amazing and here were some of our favorite dishes:
The Lola's Cooler was absolutely delicious, I could have had a pitcher of that alone. The garlic shrimp were divine, and the best part was the butter in the bottom of the pan soaked up with the warm bread they kept bringing to the table. Totally delicious!
Torrijas- Castilian Toast, Seasonal Berries, Almonds, Whipped Cream
House cured salmon- Pickled​ red onions, capers, crème fraiche
Gambas Ajillo- Shrimp Garlic/Olive Oil
Pulpo- 2 hours cooked octopus with fingerling potatoes and adobo oil
Barlata Paella- Spanish​ saffron rice, mixed seafood, chicken, chorizo and veggies
Lola's Cooler- StGermain, Dolin Blanc, Pear, Yellow Chartreuse, Honey, Citrus and Cava


In more exciting contest news, I had two wins in the same week that I am pretty proud of!
My Blood Orange Coconut Lava Flow Smoothie won me a $500 WholeFoods gift card 

And my Southwest Sackin' Stackers won the runner up prize for Pepsi's Game Day Grub Match challenge!! I took Cheddar Jalapeño cheetos and pressed them on the outside of crescent roll swirls with bacon, mexi-corn and pepper jack cheese. Topped with FritoLay hot bean dip and a creamy Lay's Smooth Ranch Dip Salsa for the win! 

Runner-up prizes:  Check in the amount of $500,  PepsiCo party pack including a mix of PepsiCo food and beverage products, a signed cookbook from Anne Burrell and a Wilson Super Bowl 50 Football.  

It's been a great week so far!


Friday, February 5, 2016

New Win in New York!

Remember a while ago when I posted my Mushroom Chicken Marsala Chili for the Bush's Beans Chili Cook-off? Well, guess what? I WON!! I almost fell over when I got the email and probably re-read it a thousand times just to be sure I wasn't dreaming!

I still can't believe it myself. Nothing beats getting those kind of emails. I will never get tired of it!
 So, I got the email that I had won and literally was supposed to be in New York within a week. I was nervous about getting everything squared away with the kids, but I am super lucky that my dad (who lives 8 hours away from me) is retired and dropped everything to drive in and stay at my house to take care of the kids and dogs while Louis and I were whisked away and spoiled in NYC!
We got to the Ace hotel and there was the cutest saying painted right on the wall and the Empire State Building was right outside our window.
The welcome bag was an unexpected nice touch! Bottled water, t-shirts, postcards, snacks and $1,000 in Visa gift cards! They really know how to spoil a person!
Once we dropped off our bags in the room I couldn't wait to get downstairs to eat. Lucky for us, the hotel's restaurant is The Breslin.  I've seen it featured on Food Network and in magazines for years and couldn't wait to try it. I had a glass of prosecco, Louis had an Old Fashioned- perfect way to start our trip and calm my nerves from flying! For an appetizer we split the Seafood Sausage with Beurre Blanc & Chives. It was delicious, and we were both starving, so no picture of that. I peer pressured Louis into getting the Chargrilled Lamb Burger with cumin mayo, feta and thrice cooked chips and I got the BLT with Lamb Bacon, Guajillo, Fermented Green Tomatoes and Gaufrettes. We split both of them, and while they were absolutely delicious, if I had to choose, the BLT was the better.
 That night we had tickets to see The Book of Mormon so we wanted to have an early dinner within walking distance of the theater. We ended up at The Paramount Bar and Grill. The hotel and restaurant is beautiful! We started with the Tuna Poke with Tarro Chips and Avocado. I was still pretty full from lunch so I got the Burrata with Heirloom Tomatoes and Grilled Bread and Louis got the Pan Seared Scallops with Pureed Carrots, Blistered Tomatoes and Crispy Shallots. Everything we tried was absolutely delicious but the service was painfully slow and the few questions I asked the waitress about the menu she just made up answers for so not sure I'd ever go back there.
After dinner we walked to the theater, I got my sippy cup of wine and we had great seats! After the show we went to The John Dory Oyster Bar, had a few snacks and then went to bed. I was exhausted and I knew the next day would be a long one!
Bright and early we headed over to The Daily Meal offices for taping! I was SO nervous. Like can't eat, sweating in 15 degree weather, pacing the floor nervous. The kitchen was gorgeous, and when I got there everything was prepped and ready to go for me. I was excited to meet and cook with Chef Jeffrey Saad and luckily he was such a pleasure to work with! He's just a down to earth friendly guy that really made taping the video easy and fun. I quizzed him all about his experience on The Next Food Network Star and loved picking his brain!
The thing that took us the longest was figuring out how to turn on the burners! 
We taped one shot and all of the production people were really happy with the way it went, so I felt very relieved. They brought in lunch from Mario Batali's Otto- pizzas, salads, brussels sprouts, marinated olives, pasta. They had a ton of food, and since I was too nervous to eat breakfast earlier, I tried almost everything! On the schedule it was planned for me to be there for the taping until 6pm, but I was done by 2. They told us they were happy with what I did and for us to go enjoy the city, so we headed down the street to Eataly. I just love walking through that place! It's like a culinary Ikea- filled with everything you didn't know you needed and very hard to find your way out of. We had a drink at Manzo before walking back to the hotel
For our last night in town we made reservations at Scarpetta
The dining room is so pretty, warmly lit and feels very romantic. We got seated right by the front window and it was nice to watch the world go by outside while we ate. The only downfall was that we felt really rushed while there. We ordered a cocktail to start the night and the 3 course tasting with the wine pairing. Before we could finish anything they were attempting to take our plates away and bringing us the new wine pairings. Other than that, the night was perfect. The bread basket alone is worth going for! Since we were rushed I didn't even get to take as many pictures as I would have liked. For starters I got the Creamy Polenta with a fricassee of truffled mushrooms- totally decadent and delicious, and Louis had the Raw Yellowtail with pickled red onion. As our mains, I had to get the Spaghetti with Tomato and Basil. It's what Scott Conant is known for and it is the most comforting bowl of pasta ever. You can tell it's hand made and I cleaned my plate with no problem! Louis had the Black Cod with braised fennel and concentrated tomato- delicious, but I liked my pasta more. Even though we had ordered the 3 course tasting menu, I had heard so much raving about the Duck and Foie Gras Ravioli with marsala reduction, we ordered that as well. If there is Foie Gras written on a menu, Louis wants it. Unfortunately, he wasn't as thrilled with dish like the rest of yelp is and I thought it was just OK. For dessert, I chose the Coconut Pana Cotta- my least favorite dish of the night and Louis got the Valrhona Chocolate Cake. If you ever get a chance to go to Scarpetta, get the spaghetti and skip the dessert!
As you can see so far, we had an absolutely amazing time through  this whole experience. I didn't realize that once I was home Bush's would have another surprise delivered to me! 
I was totally blown away and I've already used the beans and the Le Creuset!
Now, to end the longest blog post ever, here's the link of the video we shot! I hope you like it!