Paula Deen Would be Proud

27 Sep

Anyone who watches The Food Network knows that celebrity chef Paula Deen loves nothing more than butter and mayonnaise. And this is why I love Paula Deen.

In the post Atkins Friendly French Food: Not a complete Oxymoron, I (ironically enough) shared with you my fondness of mayo and how delighted I was to learn how to make it from scratch, although the reality that it was mostly fatty oil hit me like a tonne of bricks. Well, last Friday those bricks seemed to move right into my stomach, or at least that’s what it felt like, after we made and sampled 6 cold sauces all with a mayo base! On one hand I was in mayo heaven, but the feeling of about a cup of oil sitting in my gut was more like hell. Sublime or subterranean, the experience was important none the less, as all of these sauces are delicious and useful accompaniments to many other dishes we’ve been learning to make.

As mentioned above, all the following sauces use a mayonnaise base. Marie-Blanche referred to this as the “mother” and all the variations as her “daughters”, then adding that she must be a promiscuous mother to have such different children. This comment made me smile, and so did the yummy sauces, which were the following…

  1. Sauce Verte: a combination of finely chopped spinach or watercress mixed with our mother mayo, suggested to be served with salmon
  2. Sauce Tartare: we’re all familiar with this fried fish adjunct, but there was something just so much lighter and more fresh about this recipe, which combined finely chopped chives, capers, and pickles with the mayonnaise.
  3. Sauce Choron: basically just Will Farrell’s “fancy sauce” in the movie Step Brothers, this one combines mayonnaise and freshly made tomato paste, but I’m sure you could sub in ketchup if you felt so inclined.
  4. Sauce Maltaise: a simple combination of fresh squeezed OJ and mayo, served traditionally over asparagus.
  5. Sauce Provençal: finely chopped and sautéed garlic, red peppers, and blanched deseeded tomatoes make up this agreeable sauce that goes with everything from meat, veggies and eggs.
  6. Sauce Mousseline: more forearm-building, as this sauce has you whisk up some egg whites and fold them together with the mayo for a light and fluffy fish topping.

Now before all this mayo mayhem, we had to make ourselves some real food for sustenance. The menu of the day was:

  1. Crème de Poivrons Rouges
  2. Quiche au Thon
  3. 4/4 Cake (aka “quatre-quatre”)

The soup was a mild and pleasant combination of red peppers, leeks, butter, chicken stock, and cream, which we delicately seasoned with salt, pepper, thyme and bay leaf.

Unlike the rustic roasted red pepper soup I’m more accustomed to seeing, this recipe has you straining the mix so that all that’s left is a brightly coloured bowl of smooth creaminess, perfect for dipping our daily baguette in.

With its big protein hit, the tuna quiche was extremely filling and relatively low call as it uses minimal cream, eggs, cheese and puff pastry to hold together the chunks of canned fish within.

The 4/4 cake is a classic and basic recipe all chefs should probably know if they’re ever going to touch baking. It’s basically four ingredients (sugar, butter, eggs, flour) all in equal proportions to each other. The trick of course is combining them in the correct order, and the excitement comes with the flavouring or topping of your choosing. To keep things simple in class, we used vanilla powder to flavour, and shredded almonds and confectioners sugar to top. But who knows, maybe there’s some sort of mayonnaise variation we didn’t explore that would go well with a 4/4 cake. If anyone could do it, it would probably be this mayo enthusiast right here or better yet, the lipids loving Miss Paula Deen herself.

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One Response to “Paula Deen Would be Proud”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Getting Sauced at School « Shortt and Sweet - 28/09/2011

    […] my previous post Paula Deen Would be Proud, I discussed both the celebrity chef and my passion for mayonnaise, but added that even I can be a […]

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