Diner à l`orange –
Cooking for friends is one of my greatest pleasures. Two weeks ago after the yellow dinner I cooked a whole five course menu for friends who are real gourmets and gourmands. This dinner was cooked with a lot of orange flavours, decorated with orange acessories and shortly before easter there had to be orange wrapped nougat eggs for sure:-) It was my first time cooking quails as main course. This main course I surrounded by french oriented little creations with duck pasty, orange goat cheese, flowered-orange-curry-butter and the meanwhile famous cannéles à l`orange as desert (you can find the recipy for cannéles two blog entries before this one).
the orange dinner
Foie gras de canard with orange peel
Another dear friend of mine was travelling through France last summer. He broungt me a avery fine foie de gras from a famous french butcher in the South of France. This foie gras de canard was so refined concerning the taste, that I only added a bit black pepper and pureed fresh orange peel.
For the little canapés I used frech dark bread baked in a baked in a wood-fired oven, added a generous level of butter and then covered it with a more generous level of foie de canard. The orange peel refined the taste a little bit in a fresh direction and connected it to our marvellous crémant de loire.
Another fine and very simple recipy is fresh goat cheese with black crushed pepper, seasalt, very fine orange peel silces and 2 teaspoons of freshly pressed orange juice. All you need is a good orangic fresh goat cheese as basis. Add the listed ingredients to the cheese and let it rest for at minimum 2 hours. That´s necessary that the aromas merge well.
Quails filled with dates, nuts and white bread
Quails are a really nice and delicate white meat. They have a very fine taste so the filling for this bird should not overwhelm the taste of the meet. Orange peel is also one ingredient of my quail filling. Furthermore you need very fine sliced fresh dates, seasalt, cruched dried rose leaves and chili flakes. Moreover you need a few chopped peacans and very small cubes of dry white bread like baguette. Heat a little pot with a soup spoon of butter and add all the ingredients except for the bread cubes. Add a soup spoon of orange liquor and simmer it on very low heat for about 15 minutes until the nuts and dates are smooth. Stir it from time to time.In the end add the bread cubes.
The quails are very small birds, therefore the body of one quail can hold at most one or mximum two tea spoons of the filling. After you have filled your quails close their backsides with a thoothpick or better with a cooking twine and a needle.
Heat a good organic sunflower oil in a big pan and sauté the quails from every side. Put them in an earthen baking mold, lid on and cook them for maximum 25 minutes in the preheated oven.
We had a fine orange shallot wine sauce wth the quails and spicy little bavarian bread dumplings with thyme. The thyme, the dates and the orange flavours went together marvellouslly with the quails. My gourmand-gourmet friends were very content afterwards:-)