Thursday, October 11, 2012

an inadvertent surf and turf

I didn't make these two dishes together, but they were each made in unique opportunity situations: 

Joe's veal chop

This recipe calls for chanterelle mushrooms. I love chanterelles, but they are sort of like unicorns. I'm never really sure when of if I'm going to see them.

So when I saw a Facebook post from the 14th & U Farmers Market that Takoma Mushrooms was going to have them on a recent Saturday morning, I got on the train and picked up enough to make the dish. Then I went to the meat vendor next to them to pick up a choice veal chop.

They didn't have any.

No problem, I can find a veal chop somewhere else. I had just read a story in the Post about Stachowski Market in Georgetown. So I went over there fully expecting to find it.

"We just sold our last one, like 10 minutes ago," the guy behind the counter told me. He seemed to think it was humorous that he had had veal chops at the ready seemingly since the dawn of time, until 10 minutes before I came in asking for one. I found it less humorous.

Who knew it was going to be easier to get wild mushrooms than a piece of meat.

I went to Wagshal's, where I previously found sweetbreads, and, if I ever need it, rattlesnake and kangaroo. They had veal chops. 

The dish was good. The Campari sauce was a little strong for me, but I'm a wuss. I liked the mushrooms. And here is what the veal chop looked like when I was done: 

So, clearly, the sauce didn't slow me down too much.

Scallop crudo

The opportunity here was much less complicated. Pam was going to be out of town. I knew she would not want to eat this dish. She doesn't like scallops. She doesn't like raw things.

This dish was a raw scallop.

I have a personal policy that whenever I am eating something raw, I try to pay as much as possible for it. So for the scallops, I went to Balducci's, where I have found you can pay a whole lot for almost anything. 

This dish was all about the olive oil, really. I use good olive oil. So it was a good dish. I don't know that I've ever eaten raw scallop before, and it wasn't my favorite texture. But it tasted fine.