Do you need a fancy recipe for date night? A romantic dinner for two? Are your in-laws or boss coming over for dinner, and you need to impress? Periodically, Champagne Tastes will be featuring ‘Gourmet’ recipes. These will still be budget friendly and relatively simple, but will help you confidently serve a gourmet meal without hiring a chef.
Three years ago last July, I dressed up all fancy-like, and went to dinner with my parents at a tiny French restaurant downtown. When I opened the door, I thought, “Did they just start playing the love song from Phantom of the Opera?” I walked in farther and thought, “Huh.. We’re the only ones here. That’s nice.” Then I walked a little farther in, past a little half-wall, where I stopped in confusion. “What’s the boyfriend doing here? Why is he crouched down on his knee? Why is he holding that sparkly ring? (Pause for mental comprehension)– HE’S HOLDING A SPARKLY RING!” What else do I remember from that night? For one, trying to convince my parents to try escargot (they declined), trying to eat said escargot with shaky hands, and the wonderful, decadently delicious Portobello Wellington that I attempted to eat while recovering from shock. We’ve been back to that little French bistro several times since that night, however (both fortunately and unfortunately) it’s one of those wonderful places where the chef changes the menu seasonally. The seasonal changes mean that, while I’ve always left ecstatically food happy, I’ve never seen my beloved Portobello Wellington again. The solution to the Case of the Missing Mushroom? Cook it myself!