Sunday, February 12, 2012

Valentines Eve...... Online

Well, February 14th is nearly on us! Time to reward the Eve Widow for letting me lock myself in a dark room and play Eve Online far too often for the previous 364 days!

So in the first ever, only-partly-Eve-related SC&S blog (don't worry I'm not planning any more of these), here's the dinner I will cook for the "Trouble and Strife" in order to get another 364 days of Eve Online without too many complaints.

I'm a civil engineer, not a cook and certainly not a chef. Most of the below is inspired from Jamie Oliver and his latest book or Masterchef on the TV! However, cooking a great meal isn't rocket science nor is it Amarr Titan level 5. It's fairly easy to cook a meal that your wife will go "Wow!" and let you play important internet spaceships in peace over the next year!

Also I don't really tend to measure or weigh things a lot.... I just bung it in until it looks/tastes right. As I keep telling the wife... experiment!

Starter - Smoked Salmon Blini's
I plan to go quick and easy on the starter. Don't want to do too much work! This is quick and easy to make, takes no time at all and tastes great.

- Smoked Salmon
- Packet of cocktail blini's (thin toast will do) or make your own here.
- Sour cream and chive dip.

All the above should be available from your local supermarket. If you are in the UK, Sainsbury's used to do it all. Simply heat the bleni's in the oven whilst cutting the smoked salmon into strips. Take a bleni, put a dollop of sour cream and chive sauce on it, a few strips of salmon on top of that and sorted! A squeeze of fresh lemon gives it a bit of extra zing! Very quick and easy to make, but looks like you spent a lot more time than you did!

Main - Posh Surf and Turf.

The Turf
- Half a beef fillet (400-500g ish)
- Oil and butter

Pre-heat your oven to max. In a large frying pan, heat some oil and butter and sear the outside of your fillet. Then lob it in a roasting tray stick it into the oven for 20 minutes. Once it's done take it out, cover with tin foil and leave to rest for 20 minutes. Easy!

The Surf
- Whole lobster
- Fresh dill
- Red chili
- Tablespoon of peppercorns
- 2 lemons

Butter for the lobster
- Melted butter
- Juice of 1 lemon

I get ready dead lobsters here, less messy. Take all the ingredients and put them in a big pan of hard boiling salt water. Halve the lemons first, squeeze the juice into the pot and place the lemon halves in too. Lower your lobster in whole (careful, boiling water is boiling) and cover the pot. After 5 minutes turn off the heat and leave for 15 minutes.

Take Mr Lobster out (be careful, obviously he's ****ing hot) and get a BIG knife. Place the knife in the centre of the head and stab the bugger down. Bring the knife down and cut it in half. Finish off the other way so you slice him in two length-ways (be careful that is all you slice in two!). There may be a vein running along the middle, just remove this with your fingers. Then remove the stomach sac from behind the eyes. Jamie Oliver's video here shows you how to cut 'em up and what to remove. To be honest, you're best off watching that!

Brush the exposed flesh (giggity) with the melted butter mixed with lemon juice and the jobs a good un.

The Sauce for the Beef and Chips
- Egg yoke
- Butter
- Tarragon
- Shallot or small onion
- 3 peppercorns
- White wine vinegar
- Water

Melt the butter a sauce pan whilst you fry off the finely chopped shallot/onion. When the onion is cooked, place it in a blender with the egg yoke, the tarragon and peppercorns. Blend! Take the hot butter and little by little add it whilst blending. Don't do it too fast or too much at once as it'll separate. See the BBC link to do it properly :)

Chunky Chips
- Potatoes
- Deep fat frier

Peel the spuds, and cut into chunky chips. Place in a large saucepan of boiling salted water and boil for a few minutes until the outsides start to go soft. Take out and leave to cool. Set the frier to low (170oC) and cook for a few minutes and take them out of the oil. When you are nearly ready to serve, whack the frier up to max (190oC) and crisp them up.

Veg - Who cares
With the amazing food above, who cares what veg you do. I'll be chopping some carrots up, boiling them, drain, lob in a knob of butter, shake it around, sprinkle some parsley on top and hey presto! Token veg!

Desert - Summer Fruit Jellies
- A bag of frozen summer fruits
- Leaf Gelatin
- Caster sugar
- Elderflower Cordial
- Prosecco (or other sparkling wine)

Just see Jamie Oliver do it from the link :)

Serve with a nice wine of your preference. With red meat and lobster you could go red or white. To be honest, ignore the wine snobs and go with what you want. For extra brownie points I'm going for her favorite, a nice bottle of Chianti. And as it's Valentines day I won't even do my bad Hannibal Lecture impression.

You cook the above and send her red roses to work ("oh it was so embarrassing.... but all the girls at the office were so jealous!") plus go to sleep with a tired out tongue..... then you should have hassle free Eve Online for the next year.
..... well at least a week or until I get back from Fanfest!

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