Billy's Memorial Biirthday Dinner?
  Re: (...)
I would like to propose this menu, all recipes from Billy's book, to be cooked between now and his b'day, Dec. 9th and and review it on Friday, Dec. 10th -

Billy’s 2010 Birthday Memorial Dinner

Roast Beef and Couscous Wraps

Potato & Leek Soup

Baked Eggs with Mushroom Sauce
Hot Cooked Pasta (of choice)

Flourless Chocolate Cake

Celebrate the Rain

1 cup chicken broth
3 tablespoons olive oil -- divided
1/2 teaspoon herbes de Provence
3/4 cup couscous
1/2 cup orange marmalade
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onion – white part only -- green tops reserved and cut into ¼" wide strips
3 tablespoons minced parsley
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pound thinly sliced (about 1/8-inch) deli roast beef -- regular or Italian style
1 red bell pepper -- cored, seeded, and lengthwise into 1/4-inch strips
Lettuce -- for garnish

Combine the broth, 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, and the Herbes de Provence in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Stir in the couscous; take the pan from the heat, cover, and let sit for 5 minutes. Fluff the couscous with a fork and stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil with the marmalade, Parmesan, sliced green onion, parsley, red wine and balsamic vinegars, and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside to cool.

Once the couscous has cooled, layout a few slices of roast beef on the counter. Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the couscous mixture along a short side of each slice of roast beef and use your fingers to press the couscous together to help make a tidy mound.
Set a strip of bell pepper alongside and roll the roast beef/tightly to enclose. Each cylinder should be about 1 inch in diameter. Tie the rolls at 1-inch intervals with the green parts of the green onions. Repeat with the remaining slices of beef and couscous filling. (The rolls can be prepared the night before up to this point, wrapped well in plastic and refrigerated.) When ready to serve, cut the rolls on the diagonal into 1-inch lengths (you should have about 50 pieces in all), and arrange them cut side up on a lettuce-lined serving platter.

You can use toothpicks to secure the rolls rather than tying them with the green onions tops before cutting.

Rich and robust, zinfandel can handle both the savory and sweet flavors of these do-ahead wraps.

"Made these to take to a pizza party with Bill & Jane Miller and Billy J. Sept. 08"

NOTES : There is a subtle sweet-and-savory combination in these impressive appetizers of roast beef wrapped around a couscous filling.


Potato and Leek Soup
Billy: this is one of my favorite comfort soups. It's easy and, yes, comforting
Serves 6

1 pound leeks
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
freshly ground black pepper -- to taste
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 slices bacon -- chopped
5 cups chicken stock
2 pounds russet potatoes -- peeled and diced
3/4 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons fresh chives -- chopped

Trim the green portions of the leek and using a sharp knife, halve the white part lengthwise and rinse well under cold running water. Slice thinly crosswise and set aside.

In a large soup pot over medium heat, melt the butter and add the bacon. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is very soft and has rendered most of its fat. Add the chopped leeks and cook until wilted, about 5 minutes; add chicken stock and potatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are falling apart and the soup is very flavorful.

Add the heavy cream and adjust the seasoning. At this point you may either puree or serve as is.

NOTE: I sometimes skip the bacon.

Denise - I made this myself and it's very easy and so good! How he could never omit the bacon I do not know.


Lorraine had a great suggestion to serve the Eggs w/Mushroom sauce over pasta, so I’m thinking this could be our entrée – Make Billy’s recipe and serve over hot cooked pasta.

Baked Eggs w/Mushroom Sauce

2 tablespoons butter
4 large eggs
8 ounces sliced mixed mushrooms -- including shiitake and oyster
4 cups packed baby spinach
3/4 cup whipping cream
salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 drops truffle oil or to taste

Preheat oven to 300°F.

Butter four 1-cup ramekins or glass dishes. Break an egg into each one and top each egg with a tiny knob of butter.

Place ramekins into a baking dish and fill dish with boiling water halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Place in the oven and bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until egg whites are opaque and yolk is just set but still runny. It will continue to cook once the sauce is spooned over it. Remove ramekins from water bath.

While eggs are cooking, heat remaining butter in a skillet over high heat and add mushrooms. Sauté for 2 minutes or until mushrooms are just cooked. Add spinach and cook 1 minute longer or until spinach wilts. Add cream and bring to boil and boil for 2 minutes or until slightly thickened. Season with salt and pepper and add truffle oil.

Divide sauce between ramekins and spoon over eggs. Serve at once with some crusty bread to sop up sauce.

Billy's NOTES : I cooked the eggs a little longer since I like them a little better done. The sauce had to cook a little longer too for it to thicken sufficiently.

Jean: and maybe just the lightest sprinkling of fontina cheese as it comes out of the oven.
Lorraine: I think I'd make a double batch. Put the leftovers over hot pasta and call it supper!
Jean: "Put the leftovers over hot pasta" yes!! doesn't that sound so Pepinesq????

""Food & Drink Holiday 2008" LCBO mag. Billy posted this 3/12/09"


I (Billy) thought about making y'all beg for it, but that wouldn't be nice Here it is:

Flourless Chocolate Cake - Lorraine

10 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate -- chopped
1 1/4 cups unsalted ( I used salted) butter -- diced)
10 large egg yolks
1/2 cup plus 6 tablespoons sugar
2 tsps vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
9 large egg whites

Position rack in centre of oven and preheat to 350F. Butter a 10 inch round springform pan with 2 3/4 inch sides,. Line the bottom with parchment paper round. Place chocolate and butter in medium metal bowl. Set bowl over saucepan of simmering water, stir until mixture is smooth and melted. Remove bowl from over water, cool to lukewarm, about 10 minutes.

Using electric mixer, beat egg yolks and 1/2 cup of sugar in large bowl until very thick and pale yellow in color, about 5 minutes. Beat in vanilla and salt. Gently fold chocolate mixture into yolk mixture. Using dry, clean beaters, beat egg whites and remaining 6 Tbsp sugar in another large bowl until peaks form. Fold 1/3 of beaten whites into chocolate mixture.

Fold in remaining whites in 2 additions. Transfer batter to prepared pan.

Bake cake until tester inserted into centre comes out with moist crumbs attached, about 45 minutes. (I had to cook mine about 55 minutes, but I don't think it really matters). Cake will be puffed and souffle like while baking. Cool cake in pan on rack for 15 minutes. Cake will fall in centre.

Run knife around cake sides to loosen, press edge of cake down to make level with centre. Remove pan sides, and cool cake completely.

I served it with a raspberry coulis ( I used frozen berries), and whipped cream. I would do it the day before next time, and refridgerate it. Then it bring to room temp before serving. darn it was good. LOL Have fun!!! "Bon Appetit - March"

And, of course, raise our glasses to him.
Retired and having fun writing cookbooks, tasting wine and sharing recipes with all my friends.
  Re: Billy's Memorial Biirthday Dinner? by cjs (I would like to prop...)
I'm not sure I can convince William to go for couscous again, but since it's an appy, maybe.

I'm for sure in for the rest! I've been wanting to make one of those flourless cakes FOREVER!!!!
Keep your mind wide open.
  Re: Re: Billy's Memorial Biirthday Dinner? by Gourmet_Mom (I'm not sure I can c...)
Depending on how we eat over Thanksgiving weekend with Don here, that will decide if I make the cake....
Retired and having fun writing cookbooks, tasting wine and sharing recipes with all my friends.
  Re: Billy's Memorial Biirthday Dinner? by cjs (I would like to prop...)
I love the menu and love the thought of a Billy Memorial Dinner. Good thinking Jean! Thank you.
"Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time."
  Re: Re: Billy's Memorial Biirthday Dinner? by cjs (Depending on how we ...)
What a nice thing to do again, Jean! Thanks for putting the menu together. And, yes, we will join in. Ron didn't really care for the couscous last time I made it for a review dinner, but I think it's high time he tried it again. I think he will like the flavor combination. I can't commit to making the cake, although it does sound delicious! I'll have to make sure the rest of the family is around so I don't eat it all by myself.

"Drink your tea slowly and reverently..."
  Re: Re: Billy's Memorial Biirthday Dinner? by Mare749 (What a nice thing to...)
I have made everything on that list but the Roast Beef and Couscous wraps So I will make those for sure
  Re: Billy's Memorial Biirthday Dinner? by cjs (I would like to prop...)
Thank you Jean! I'll do as much of it as we can. I like the idea of the eggs on pasta!

The cake might be problematic, but Francois says I can use his oven anytime I want.
You only live once . . . but if you do it right once should be enough!
  Re: Re: Billy's Memorial Biirthday Dinner? by Harborwitch (Thank you Jean! I'l...)
Great idea, Jean. Oddly enough, there's no such thing as "deli roast beef" here, unless one buys a sandwich from Quiznos.
If blueberry muffins have blueberries in them, what do vegan muffins have?
  Re: Re: Billy's Memorial Biirthday Dinner? by labradors (Great idea, Jean. O...)
only calls for Deli beef, 'cause of the thinness needed to be able to roll. Plus, it's such a good ingredient for folks like Roy and me so I don't have to roast a 8-10 lb. roast. (I don't think small roasts cook properly.)
Retired and having fun writing cookbooks, tasting wine and sharing recipes with all my friends.
  Re: Re: Billy's Memorial Biirthday Dinner? by cjs (only calls for Deli ...)
bringing this back to the top - now that we can all take some easy, comfort food.
Retired and having fun writing cookbooks, tasting wine and sharing recipes with all my friends.

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