January 30th 2015
Blood oranges are the sexiest of the citrus family! When I see them in season I always get excited, and most stores up here pimp out the best that Cali has to offer, since our climate doesn't suit growing them. Today's dish is my interpretation of the shrimp and French lentils I had at Cabezon which is a dish I can't stop thinking about, it's a great restaurant in the Northeast Portland, reservations are available on OpenTable.com. Basically they took some lovely shrimp that they wrapped in phyllo and pan fried and served them with French lentils, my spin is blood orange supremes, bacon, and some microgreens. The orange compliments the sweetness of the shrimp and adds a bit acid to the final act. I found some great wild caught U15 prawns from Mexico, so it's pretty hard to screw those up, unless you overcook em'. The secret to good food at home is....buy GOOD product in the first place! If you are experiencing fine dining you can usually bet (if the restaurant is worth your patronage) that they source great product to prepare, good protein will cost you a bit more, but still far less than dining out would after drinks and tip.
For 4 big servings or 6-8 appetizer sized portions you will need:
8 nice shrimp, peeled clean, deveined, I like larger for this.
1 sheet of phyllo
3/4 cup French lentils
2 cups stock
3 strips bacon
1 rib celery small dice.
1 carrot small dice.
2 cloves garlic, minced.
1 shallot, minced.
1 blood orange, segmented, rest juiced.
1/4 cup dry white wine
pinch crushed red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper
Microgreens or tender raw green of choice.
a few Tbsp olive or canola oil
Cut bacon in large pieces and cook in a skillet over medium heat until crispy, remove from pan, drain, set aside. Reserve a tbsp or so of bacon fat and add celery, carrots, shallot, and garlic, cook for 5 minutes, add a pinch of salt and pepper flakes, deglaze with wine. Add stock and lentils, bring to a boil. Reduce meat to medium low, and simmer for 45 minutes. While the lentils simmer prepare shrimp, cut phyllo into eight strips, season shrimp with salt and pepper and wrap shrimp with phyllo, leaving tail end exposed. Heat oil in frying pan (about 2 Tbsp, might take a bit more or less) over medium high heat till it shimmers, add shrimp two at time, flip after about 2 minutes per side or until golden and shrimp are pink, set shrimp on paper towel to drain the oil off. Take the reserved juice from the blood orange and add to lentils, checking for seasoning add salt and pepper if needed. Plate by putting the lentils down, top with shrimp, micros, orange supremes,and bacon. Don't wanna make it yourself or wanna try the real version first go directly to http://www.opentable.com/portland-restaurants and make a reservation, honestly, it the fast and simple way to make reservations so you can enjoy this for yourself....