13 May2007


Happy Mother’s Day!!! This was the special dinner I prepared for friends who had recently tied the knot, it would be brilliant for a Mother’s Day Dinner as well. I was cooking in a friend’s kitchen, and as a tourist or guest cook, I tried to make a minimum of fuss in the unfamiliar kitchen. In other words, the meal had to be simple, prepped back home as much as possible, yet yield a fitting meal for a very special occasion. The choice was to go simple but with extravagant ingredients. So here is the Surf, Turf and Sky a la Marketman meal… First off, some pure crabmeat crabcakes made from freshly picked crabmeat from six kilos of live alimasag purchased at the markets that morning. We steamed and picked the crabs back home, stored them in plastic tupperware in the fridge and kept them cold until we prepped the crabcakes, I have a recipe previously published, here. The appetizer platter had two crabcakes per person, some lemon dill sauce, some sweet grape tomatoes, edible flower petals, dill sprigs as garnish and a single crab claw for arte. This was served with a crisp, dry white wine provided by friends.


For the main course we went for serious gout inducing material. “Cowgirl”(as opposed to “Cowboy” with the bone) steaks were dusted with some pink Himalayan salt and cracked black pepper and pan seared and stuck in a hot oven for a few minutes to achieve the desired level of doneness. Meanwhile, nice thick slabs of foie gras taken cold out of the chiller were lightly dusted with flour, and pan seared to PERFECTION. Yes, I nailed the foie gras this time, after several disasters last Christmas. This foie was PERFECT! And laid on top of the steaks, the melting goose fat coated the steaks with a sheen of glorious, flavorful fat. Six huge steaks and a dozen thick slices of foie for 9 diners… This was served with small new potatoes sautéed with large chunks of pancetta. Oh, and the token veggie/fungus was four kinds of mushrooms chopped and sautéed in butter and garnished with chopped Italian parsley. Total time in the kitchen before dinner? Just 45 minutes… the short lead time freaked out the kitchen crew of our hosts a bit, but now you know that with a lot of planning and advance preparation, you too can pull off a meal of this sort with not a lot of time spent in the kitchen. This meal had seafood, flowers, fruit (tomatoes), herbs, fungus, starch, bacon (piggy), beef, goose liver, etc… Dessert coming up next…



  1. edee says:

    wow, i love foie gras and steak…i’m drooling now…..how long do you put the steak in an oven if you want it to be medium rare?…i haven’t done it yet, i just always pan fried mine…..this meal is perfect for us, my hubby loves your crabcake recipe and as i’ve said i love your main course :)

    May 13, 2007 | 7:06 am


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  3. Maria Clara says:

    It’s a major league dinner and you are a shining star with your host and hostess, dinner guests and your readers! You solved the mystery of perfect foie gras. Was light flour dusting of the foie gras the secret to perfection?

    May 13, 2007 | 7:48 am

  4. flip4ever says:

    “Surf & Turf” is an over-used marketing and promo slogan by the chain restaurants here…such an elegant meal as you’ve presented deserves a more elegant name…for newly-weds maybe “Marriage of earth, sea and sky”; or for Mother’s day – “Mother earth, sea and sky”; or something to that effect.

    May 13, 2007 | 10:32 am

  5. Apicio says:

    Ummm… and what did they wash it down with?

    May 13, 2007 | 12:28 pm

  6. Katrina says:

    It might be true that meal like this would send me to an early grave…but at least I’d be grinning in my coffin!

    May 13, 2007 | 11:40 pm

  7. connie says:

    I was watching the Food Network the other day and the show I was watching delved on the controvery of foie gras. As more and more cities here in the US are prohibiting the production of foie gras, and restaurants heavily fined for defying the prohibitions, some chefs have actually tried to make their own foie gras, calling it faux gras. I thought that was a cool name. The process doesn’t involve force feeding ducks to get that enlarged liver. One chef actually even used chicken livers. I’ve been looking for the recipe but have yet to find it. From what I can remember, they used butter, sauteed some onions, added cream and loads of butter into it. Blended the butter mixture with chicken livers (with the sinewy bits removed). The mixture was then strained for smoother consistency, placed in small round baking dishes and placed in a hot bath in the oven for an hour.
    If only I could find the right amount of cream, butter and chicken livers to use for the recipe. I would like to try that.

    BTW, MM, I think I just had an embolism from reading that dinner. LOL

    May 14, 2007 | 1:17 am

  8. tings says:

    Oh Connie, that’s really cool! I haven’t tried foie gras because of my love for animals, though I am not a vegan. I hope more people will try the faux gras (even the name is cool) instead of the real ones. Not to say that I don’t drool just by looking at picture above, and that I wasn’t tempted to try foie gras a million times before, but I hope we can find a way where we can enjoy food with a happy conscience! :D

    May 14, 2007 | 8:36 am

  9. millet says:

    mmmm….this meal is after my heart…seriously..and both literally and figuratively! i agree with flip4ever…”surf & turf” is too trite and ordinary for a super-duper meal like this!

    May 14, 2007 | 4:28 pm


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