I don't do sappy. I don't do years-in-review (unless they're hilarious, like this one). I also don't do resolutions. I just kind of do what I want. And I wanted to start this year off right--with a delicious dinner followed by a delicious dessert. So yesterday I did just that. And it comes with a story.
I planned this most wonderful sandwich Thursday night, starting the biga for my asiago ciabatta before I went to bed. My brain conjured up a sandwich of roasted garlic, fresh dungeness crab, succulent shrimp, lots of pesto, and crispy shallots. I was so excited with the prospect that I forgot to decide on a side dish. Whatever. So here I am last night getting ready to cook some shrimp and fry some shallots, when my brother tells me he's going to pick up his friend, who I have previously referred to as The Chef. The Chef is a 6-foot-plus Korean dude who dyes his hair funky colors and is in possession of his very own medical marijuana card. I told my brother to tell him that I didn't have enough to feed him, but he could go after whatever was in the fridge. You see where this is going?
So The Chef and my brother arrive--both with cups of frozen yogurt, and The Chef with three Jack in the Box tacos and some sort of burger. I proceed to make dinner as The Chef douses his tacos in ketchup. After eating, he goes outside to take care of "business"--I should have locked him out there--and then I convince him and my brother to take the dog out while I clean up. Anyway, an hour and a dog walk later, he's in the kitchen looking for something to munch on. I happen to mention that I had planned to make Nutella crepes when my friend showed up, and he jumps on it. Bad idea.
Instead of waiting like a "normal" person, he commandeered the Nutella and smothered gobs of it on leftover asiago ciabatta. I even offered him plain bread!
It didn't end there, either. He spent a good hour sitting 3 feet in front of our very large television watching Avatar while commenting on the quality of our TV. And then I fed him a Nutella and banana crepe and ushered his ass out of my house before he ate the rest of the jar. I had a crepe too, and it was as good as you think it was.
By the way, The Chef, cause he's a real chef, will be the mastermind behind my attempt to cook pork shoulder number two next week. It apparently involves coconut milk.
Seafood Pesto Sandwich with Crispy Shallots
1 roll (asiago ciabatta)
2 cloves roasted garlic
3 Tbsp. pesto
4 large shrimp, cleaned
2 oz. lump crab meat*
1 small shallot, sliced
2 Tbsp. all purpose flour
freshly ground pepper
*Use fresh if possible.
To Prepare Seafood:
Start with clean, tailless raw shrimp. Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper. Heat saute pan on medium with a little olive oil. Cook until both sides are pink, flipping halfway through. Set aside.
Add crab to pan. Crab should be cooked, so heat until just warm, being careful not to overcook or break up crab chunks.
Gently mix shrimp and crab in with warmed pesto. Set aside.
To Prepare Shallots:
Slice shallots thinly and dredge in flour. Heat about 1/4 inch vegetable or canola oil in pan until it sizzles. Add in dredged shallots. Cook shallots until they've browned, no darker than a lunch bag. Remove from oil to a paper towel to let drain. Sprinkle with a pinch of kosher salt.
To Assemble Sandwich:
Slice bread in half and spread with roasted garlic. Stack with crab, then shrimp, cutting shrimp in half lengthwise if necessary. Sprinkle with shallots, a little pepper & devour.