Friday, March 1, 2013

Girl's Night IN Rally Call Take 2

Something tells me I am not the only one after the past week may need to let loose tonight and have a little fun.  So I went back and cheated just a bit and decided that I would bring back the ladies rally call.  The importance of girl’s night is beyond having fun, it is about not having to deal with some of the idiocracy out there.  It is about just being able to relax, to be you and be accepted for just that. Girls night in is about spending time with other people who know how you feel without having to discuss all the depressing details. It is about finding your way back to that inner rock star, and knowing that those around you don't judge and hold no expectations. 

My feelings are quite simple, lets face it if the guys can have their night out, ladies so can we. Though of course being who I am I just find the thought of bonding with the girls over some simply delectable treats, fine cocktails, and not to mention splendid company.  

Because we all know we may find a shared comfort in the food we eat, by just sinking our teeth into some tantalizing dish, but sometime the comfort of knowing that the ladies are there, they have your back, no matter what.  

You can revel in the fact that there is just some bit of comfort with those that care and have nothing but love for you. We all know there are compete, share the hate, but for this nigh no guard has to be put up because you are among those who love and care for you.  

So today I dedicate this girls' night out to all my friends.  My old and dearest friends, those I have only had the pleasure of meeting here, those I had the pleasure of meeting when I visited Hawaii.  

BFF Cocktail 

3 oz orange juice, fresh squeezed and pulp free
1/2 oz grenadine
3 oz champagne or sparkling wine, chilled
Orange wedge squeeze
1 cherry, for garnish

  1. Fill a champagne flute or champagne coupe ½ full of cold orange juice.  Slowly top with chilled champagne or sparkling wine.  
  2. Top with grenadine (will sink to the bottom).  Top with squeeze of fresh orange.  Garnish with a cherry.

Pineapple Daiquiri

2 oz white rum
1/2 tsp powdered sugar
1/4 oz lime juice
2 - 3 dashes pineapple syrup
1 slice pineapple

Prepare in a blender with crushed ice. Pour into a chilled cocktail glass, and serve.

Simple Sangria

2 bottles (750 ml each) red wine
1 cup Grand Marnier or triple sec, for richer flavor
2 cups orange juice
1/2 cups simple syrup
7-UP, to taste
1 orange, cut into wheels
1 cup strawberries, hulled and sliced

  1. Combine all the ingredients (except the 7-UP) in a large jar.
  2. Keep covered and refrigerate overnight. (If you're running short on time, make it at least a few hours in advance and keep out at room temperature.)
  3. Add the 7-UP just prior to serving, but only as needed. (The longer the sangria sits out, the sweeter it gets, so you may not even need it.)

Lobster Salad in Lettuce Wraps

1 lb fully cooked lobster meat (or 5 lbs live lobsters)
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 or 3 small scallions (white and green parts), thinly sliced
Freshly ground pepper
Boston or bibb lettuce leaves, washed and dried

  1. If using live lobsters, steam them until fully cooked and then cool to room temperature. Use a cleaver to crack and remove the meat from the claws, knuckles and tails. 
  2. Remove the cartilage from the claws and the intestine from the tails of the cooked meat. Cut the meat into 1/2-inch to 3/4-inch dice. 
  3. Combine the lobster, and mayonnaise. If the salad is to be served within the hour, add the scallions. 
  4. Season with salt and pepper if needed. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes before serving.
  5. For serving place salad on a platter or bowl surrounded by the lettuce. 
Pupu Platter

This is a Polynesian style Hors d’Oeuvres, it is made up of a blend of crisp, soft, and chewy textures, it combines a parade of flavors sweet, salty, beefy , which just makes this platter an irresistible hit at any party.

Shrimp Toast

1/2 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 Tbsp finely chopped peeled ginger
1 Tbsp sesame oil
1 Tbsp dry Sherry
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 large egg white
2 Tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
2 scallions, finely chopped
6 slices firm white sandwich bread, cut into 1 1/2-inch rounds (24 total)
About 6 cups vegetable oil for frying

  1. Pulse shrimp, ginger, oil, Sherry, soy sauce, and egg white in a food processor to a coarse purée. Stir together with cilantro, scallions, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Spread on bread (a scant tablespoon each).
  2. Heat 2 inches vegetable oil to 360° in a 4-quart saucepan over medium-high heat.
  3. Fry 8 bread rounds, shrimp sides down, until browned, about 1 minute. Turn and fry until golden, about 30 seconds. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Fry remaining rounds.

Bacon-Wrapped Pineapple

12 slices bacon (about 3/4 pound), halved crosswise
1 (1 1/2-pounds) pineapple, peeled, cored, and cut into 24 (1-inch) chunks
1 bunch scallions, greens cut into 5-inch-long pieces and halved lengthwise

  1. Preheat oven to 450°F with rack in middle. 
  2. Wrap 1 piece of bacon around each pineapple chunk, then wrap scallion around outside, securing with a wooden pick. Arrange in a parchment-paper-lined 4-sided sheet pan. Bake, turning once, until bacon is crisp, 15 to 20 minutes.

Beef Teriyaki

3 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp seasoned rice vinegar
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp grated peeled ginger
1 medium zucchini
1/2 lb flatiron steak, cut across grain into 1/8-inch-thick slices

  1. Stir together soy sauce, vinegar, garlic, and ginger.
  2. Thinly slice zucchini lengthwise with slicer. Put each slice of steak on a slice of zucchini, then thread lengthwise onto a skewer. Brush with soy mixture. Arrange skewers, meat side up, on an oiled broiler pan. 
  3. When pineapple has finished cooking, preheat broiler. Broil skewers 5 to 7 inches from heat until browned, 2 to 3 minutes.
To serve:
Arrange skewers, bacon-wrapped pineapple, and shrimp toasts on a platter.

Cooks' notes:
•Shrimp toasts can be assembled 1 hour ahead and chilled.
•Pineapple can be wrapped with bacon and scallions 4 hours ahead and chilled.
•Skewers can be chilled 2 hours ahead; brush with soy mixture before broiling.

 Chocolate Molten Lava Cakes

6 oz dark chocolate
6 Tbsp butter
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup flour
Optional: Whipped cream or Powdered Sugar

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. 
  2. Lightly grease four 4-ounce ramekins. Meanwhile in a double boiler, melt chocolate and butter. Stir in sugar. 
  3. The in a small bowl, lightly beat eggs. Add some chocolate mixture to eggs to temper them, then carefully, stir egg mixture into chocolate mixture. Add flour and combine completely. 
  4. Add batter to ramekins and place on baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Centers should be soft but sides should be done. 
  5. Carefully invert ramekins on serving plate, then after about 2 minutes remove cup. Serve warm with whipped cream and or powdered sugar. 

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