Sunday, September 20, 2020

Everything is Better with Butter


In honor of Julia, butter…lots of butter!

The Marco Island Woman’s Club met recently at

CJ’s on the Bay for a very special luncheon featuring a cooking demonstration by Chef Laura.

“Today, we are celebrating the woman and inspiration behind my love of cooking. We are honoring Julia Child and the featured recipes are straight out of Mastering the Art of French

Cooking,” explains Chef Laura, General Manager of CJ’s on the Bay. “Today’s menu consists of Sauté de Boeuf a la Parisienne, Haricots Verts a la Maître d’hôtel, and Clafouti aux Cerise.”

Chef Laura’s love of

Julia Child was evident throughout her entire demonstration where she gave the women tips and step-by-step instructions for preparing each recipe to perfection.

Dorothy Harkness (left) and Andrea Battaglia

Dorothy Harkness (left) and Andrea Battaglia

“And, of course, this recipe calls for heavy cream and butter. Ladies do not substitute these for a healthier version. Stick to Julia’s masterful recipe,” cautions Chef Laura. “Besides, it’s not like you are going to eat this way every day,” she continues with a smile.

Following the cooking demonstration, the ladies enjoyed the scrumptious samplings of the day along with a glass of wine.

“This is the fifth year in a row I organized this special summer luncheon with Chef Laura,” explains event organizer Vini Just. “To accommodate our ladies, we divided into two groups of about 18 women each day.”

Woman’s Club President, Priscilla Penn, shows the special ingredient in the batter of the dessert.

Woman’s Club President, Priscilla Penn, shows the special ingredient in the batter of the dessert.

“We just love Chef Laura. She puts a lot of fun and heart into these informative cooking demonstrations,” explains Woman’s Club President Priscilla Penn.

Chef Laura’s demonstrations are available to groups of 8-20 people and may be scheduled May- November. For more information, contact CJ’s on the Bay at 239-389-4511.

Sauté de Boeuf a la Parisienne

1/2 lb. Fresh Mushrooms, sliced
2 Tbs. Butter
1 Tbs. Canola Oil
3 Tbs. Shallots, minced
1/4 tsp. Salt and pinch of pepper
2 1/2 lbs. Filet of Beef
2 Tbs. Butter
1 Tbs. Canola Oil
1/4 cup Madeira
3/4 cup Beef Stock
1 cup Heavy Cream

Event Organizer, Vini Just (left) with Caitlin Robinson.

Event Organizer, Vini Just (left) with Caitlin Robinson.

2 tsp. Cornstarch blended with 1 Tbs. of the cream
2 Tbs. Softened Butter
Parsley to garnish

Sauté the mushrooms in a skillet in hot butter and oil for 4 to 5 minutes to
brown them lightly. Stir in the shallots and cook a minute longer. Season the
mushrooms and scrape them into a side dish.
For the meat, remove all the surrounding fat and filament, and cut the filet into
two-ounce pieces, about 2” across and 1/2” thick. Dry thoroughly on paper towels.
Place the butter and oil in the skillet and set over moderately high heat. When
the butter foam begins to subside, sauté the beef, a few pieces at a time, for 2 to 3
minutes on each side to brown the exterior but keep the interior rosy red. Set the
beef on a side dish and discard sautéing fat.
Pour the wine stock into the skillet and boil it down rapidly, scraping the coagulated cooking juices, until liquid is reduced to about a 1/3 cup. Beat in the cream,
then the cornstarch mixture. Simmer a minute. Add the sautéed mushrooms and
simmer a minute more. The sauce should have a slight liaison (be lightly thickened). Taste carefully for seasoning.
Season the beef lightly with salt and pepper and return it to the skillet along
with any juices which may have escaped. Baste the beef with the sauce and
mushrooms; or transfer everything into a serving casserole.
When you are ready to serve, cover the skillet or casserole and heat to below
the simmer for 3 to 4 minutes, being very careful not to overdo it or the pieces of
filet will be well done rather than rare. Off heat and just before serving, tilt casserole, add butter to sauce a bit at a time while basting the meat until the butter has
absorbed. Decorate with parsley, and serve at once.

Debbie Roddy (left) and Rosemary Wick

Debbie Roddy (left) and Rosemary Wick

Diane Bostick enjoys the Clafouti.

Diane Bostick enjoys the Clafouti.

Haricots Verts a la Maître d’hôtel

3 lbs. Hot, Blanched Green Beans 6 to 8 Tbs. Butter, softened, cut into 4 pieces 2-3 tsp. Lemon Juice 3 Tbs. Parsley, minced

Sauté de Boeuf a la Parisienne with Haricots Verts a la Maître d’hôtel, plated and ready to be served. Chef Laura shows the ladies thedelicious flavor bits before demonstrating how to deglaze a pan.

Sauté de Boeuf a la Parisienne with Haricots Verts a la Maître d’hôtel, plated and ready to be served. Chef Laura shows the ladies the delicious flavor bits before demonstrating how to deglaze a pan.

Toss the hot beans in the saucepan or skillet over moderately high heat to evaporate their moisture. Toss briefly again with salt, pepper and a piece of butter. Add the rest of the butter gradually while tossing the beans; alternate with drops of lemon juice. Taste for seasoning. Turn into a vegetable dish, sprinkle with parsley and serve immediately.

Clafouti (aux Cerise)

3 cups Black Cherries, pitted
1 1/4 cup Milk
1/3 cup Granulated Sugar
3 Eggs
1 Tbs. Vanilla
1/8 tsp. Salt
2/3 cup Flour, sifted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Use fresh, black, sweet cherries in season. Otherwise use drained, canned,
pitted bing cherries, or frozen sweet cherries, thawed and drained.
Place milk, sugar, eggs, vanilla, salt and flour in your blender jar in the order
which they are listed. Cover and blend at top speed for one minute.
Pour a ¼” layer of batter in the baking dish or pie plate. Set over a moderate
heat for a minute or two until a film of batter is set in the bottom of the dish. Remove
from the heat. Spread the cherries over the batter and sprinkle with 1/3 cup sugar.
Pour on the rest of the batter and smooth the surface with the back of a spoon.
Place in the middle position of the preheated oven and bake for about an hour.
The clafouti is done when it has puffed and browned, and a needle of knife is
plunged into its center comes out clean. Sprinkle the top of clafouti with powdered
sugar just before bringing out to the table. (The clafouti need not be served hot,
but should still be warm. It will sink down slightly as it cools.)

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