Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Black Bean, Corn and Avocado Salad

My favorite time of year for salads is over. With no more fresh tomatoes and cucumbers from the garden, I am looking for a some new ideas. Tonight's salad is a started with a can of black beans with lots of flavors and color added. The highlight of the salad is the sweet, Silver Queen corn, fresh cut from the cob and used raw.

Tonight's salad is a variation of the Guacamole Salad

Black Bean, Corn and Avocado Salad

1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
3 ears corn, cut from the cob
3 green onions, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 avocado, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely minced
2 cups chopped tomatoes, fresh or canned
Zest from 1 lime
1 1/2 limes, juiced
1 tablespoon cilantro, chopped
Salt and fresh ground pepper

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and allow to sit for 30 minutes before serving. Yield: 6 servings

Monday, November 2, 2009

Woodfire Grill

It doesn't get much better that having a Top Chef cook your birthday meal! And that is just what happened for Cheryl and me. Nan arranged an evening at Woodfire Grill and my favorite Top Chef, Kevin Gillespie, was kind enough to stop by our table for photos and questions about his experience in the competition.

The Woodfire Grill is a warm and inviting restaurant filled with the wonderful aroma of the hardwood burning in the open grill. The menu is planned daily around the freshest available ingredients. Our meal started was a tasty tarragon and fall veggie amuse-bouche.
The first course featured one of my favorite vegetables, fried okra served with white acre peas and tarragon aioli.

Pan seared scallops followed, cooked to perfection on a blackeyed pea puree with fried carrots and braised bacon.

Kenny selected the wood-grilled strip loin with horseradish greens and duck fat roasted fingerling potatoes while I had the wild Alaskan halibut both beautifully plated and equally delicious.

Cheryl's dessert was the most interesting dish of the night. The moist banana bread was topped with a bacon butter cream icing. Yes, I said bacon butter cream! The sweet icing included the smokey taste of bacon.

It was a lovely evening spent with good friends enjoying good food.