Hello everyone! Happy Labor Day weekend, it seems like the summer just started. It's still pretty hot outside, but you can definitely feel fall on the way in the morning and evenings. Pretty soon we will all be donning Lederhosen at Angie's Oktoberfest Celebration and drinking pumpkin spice-flavored everything.
First of all, Monday is Labor Day. Like with all major holidays we will be having a single buffet in the Dining Room from 11-1:30. For Labor Day we keep it pretty traditional, you can enjoy barbecued ribs, chicken, shrimp, hamburgers, franks and more. I hope you have some room for a glass or two of House beer, we need to make room for our newest batch; a Double Bock that will be introduced at Oktoberfest. We are of course not open for dinner, so the regular weekly menu will start on Tuesday.
Ok. So anyway, the soup of the week is Mushroom and Miso. Miso is a fermented paste of soybeans, that adds an enormous amount of Umami to dishes. If you've never heard of Umami, don't worry-- you're not alone. Umami is the fifth basic flavor that is easily perceived by our taste buds. Think about it, we know sweet, salty, sour, and bitter, but which of these would you use to describe a steak? What about a mushroom? A Japanese scientist isolated this basic but elusive flavor from amino acids in the early 20th century and revolutionized the way we look at foods. Umami, found in beans, meats, cheeses, mushrooms and more contribute to our perception of good food as much as any other. Fascinating stuff. Anyway, with the miso, wild mushrooms, garlic, and herbs this soup is an Umami bomb that I hope you will love as much as I do, and it's vegetarian too!
The appetizer of the week is a Lamb and Mint Kofte with Sesame Yogurt sauce. A kofte is a Middle Eastern kabob made from grilled, ground meats. Ours has Colorado lamb, mint, lemon, honey, bread crumbs and sea salt. The sauce is cold and has fresh basil, garlic, lemon and sesame. Try this one, I really think you will like it.
The Cheese is a White Cheddar. Unlike supermarket cheese, real Cheddar has a lifespan, it changes as it ages the same way we do. Most of us start out sharp and unpolished, full of opinions and ready to take on the world. As we age, we soften a bit, lose some of that certainty, and begin to mellow. This is a young Cheddar, meaning it is very sharp and fresh. It is very certain that you will like it and isn't afraid to start your meal with a bold flavor profile. We have chosen Granny Smith apples to accompany it as we know that this tangy whippersnapper isn't intimidated by the sweet and sour fruit and welcomes the challenge of your palate. I recommend a nice Sauvignon Blanc with this, or if you're feeling adventurous, maybe even a Single Malt or Irish whiskey, Lora has some stashed away... don't tell her I told you.
At Dinner, look for Crispy-Fried Walleye with lemon and garlic aioli. Walleye is a freshwater fish with very mild flavor and flaky texture. It's good no matter how you cook it but I think simple cornmeal crusted and fried is best here. Of course we have Olathe corn on the cob to go with it, and cheese grits made with Brie. Yum. Try a good Chardonnay or even Pinot Grigio with this, or quite frankly an ice-cold beer.
We have slow-cooked Beef Brisket this week with a sauce made from caramelized onions and sherry, served with roasted rosemary potatoes and soft-cooked green beans. Now when I was young, I was taught never to bring up three things in conversation; politics, religion, and how to cook green beans. Anyone who knows me understands that I ignore the first two rules, but green beans are very controversial. In one camp you have those who like their beans bright and green, with a little snap when you bit into them and tasting fresh from the garden. In the other camp you have those who like theirs spoon soft, a bit salty, Army tent green, preferably with bits of ham or bacon. These will be more to the soft side, but not too mushy, simmered in butter and chicken stock. Usually I don't like to get involved with this contentious debate but with brisket I feel that this is correct. Feel free to let me know your preference in the future.
Try this week's grilled Pork Tenderloin with honey and beer glaze, accompanied by orange- glazed baby carrots and an herb and garlic stuffing. The beer and honey will be our own, as will the herbs in the stuffing. This one would be great with Pinot Noir.
As a vegetarian option, we offer Wild Mushroom and Truffle Risotto, topped with fresh garden chives and Reggiano cheese. This northern Italian dish would be great with a nice Barolo, tell Bob you want one on the wine menu...
And of course as a pasta we have Macaroni and Jack Cheese topped with grilled beef tenderloin, braised leeks and crispy onions, Honestly, I don't know how you could go wrong with this one, all the ingredients are awesome, I personally will be having this one for dinner Tuesday night, with a side of Garlic Bread.
For nightly specials, look for Broiled Flounder, Grilled Pork Chops, New York Strip, Beef Short Ribs, and Carved Pork Loin.
At Lunch, look for Ribeye Steaks, Steamed Lobster Tails, Meatloaf Sandwiches, Grilled Cheese, and finally Carved Rack of Lamb.
Don't forget to join us on Friday morning (wear purple and show your support) on The Commons for Angie's Alzheimer's Awareness Walk-- accompanied by great food and drinks. The entire cabinet will be there, and we all look forward to seeing you and coming together for a great cause.
See you then!