Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

1993 Year's Favorites

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

1993 Year's Favorites

Article excerpt

BEFORE we move ahead to the new ideas, new foods and new recipes of 1994, the Food section's staffers invite you to join us in a fond look back at our favorite recipes of 1993.

Some of these recipes are for dessert, some are for main dishes and one is for a condiment. Some are easy - one calls for only three ingredients - and others are a bit more time-consuming. Some make great family fare, while others are perfect for entertaining.

We selected these recipes from the pages of the Food section and from the St. Louis Gourmet feature, which appears in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch Magazine. Our selection method was decidedly nonscientific - we took note of what our readers liked, what our testers liked and what we liked, then narrowed down the list to come up with these recipes. We hope you enjoy them as much as we did. This is a perfect company dish, saucy sirloin steak with asparagus and red pepper strips. When asparagus is out of season, you can substitute another vegetable, perhaps steamed whole green beans. The recipe is from Zia's, 5256 Wilson Avenue.

***** BISTECCA ALLA ASPARAGI Zia's Restaurant, St. Louis For steak:

4 (10- to 12-ounce) center-cut strip sirloin steaks

Olive oil to cover steaks (about 1 cup)

2 cloves garlic, minced For sauce:

1 cup sweet Marsala wine (Zia's uses Rallo brand)

1/2 cup drained crushed canned tomatoes

1 beef bouillon cube

1/4 teaspoon dried basil

1/2 teaspoon minced garlic

1/8 teaspoon salt, or more to taste

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup ( 1/2 stick) butter

1/4 cup all-purpose flour For vegetables:

12 spears asparagus

1 red bell pepper

Place steaks in a self-sealing plastic bag or glass dish. Cover with oil; sprinkle with 2 cloves minced garlic. Marinate at least overnight, turning meat occasionally.

To make sauce, heat wine in saucepan. When hot, carefully light with match. Flames will go out when the alcohol has been burned off. Set aside.

In another saucepan, combine tomatoes, 3/4 cup water, bouillon cube, basil, 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic, salt and pepper; bring to boil. Add wine and let simmer.

In separate saucepan, combine butter and flour. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and browns. Stir tomato mixture into flour mixture; bring to a boil and let thicken. Remove from heat; let cool.

Remove steaks from marinade. Discard any remaining marinade. Grill steaks.

Meanwhile, cook asparagus. Slice red bell pepper into thin strips. Arrange asparagus and bell pepper on platter or individual plates. Add steaks to platter or plates. Top with cooled sauce.

Yield: 4 servings.

Bourbon-laced bread pudding is pure comfort food. Try the sauce on other foods, too - it would be delicious over ice cream or apple desserts. The recipe was shared by Patty Long's Ninth St. Abbey, 1808 South Ninth Street.

***** OLD FASHIONED SOUTHERN BREAD PUDDING IN BOURBON CARAMEL SAUCE

2 tablespoons bourbon

1/3 cup raisins

1/3 cup dried apricots, cut into 1/4-inch pieces

1 1/2 pounds day-old bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (see note)

3 cups milk

1 1/2 cups half-and-half

3 eggs, lightly beaten

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, plus more for whipped cream, if desired

3 tablespoons melted butter

1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 cup whipping cream

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Caramel sauce (see recipe)

In a small bowl, pour bourbon over raisins and apricots; let sit 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, grease a 9-by-12-by-3-inch baking pan. Put bread cubes in a large bowl. Stir together milk, half-and-half, eggs, 1 1/2 cups sugar, melted butter, vanilla and cinnamon. Pour over bread; stir until well mixed. …

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