Hello everyone, and welcome to the first installment of "Eating Thru the Alphabet." Let's get started on this adventure with the letter A. We chose artichoke as our ingredient since we could not recall anything specific we had eaten with artichoke in it. The recipes for these dishes can be found at the end of this post.
The side dish we made was an asparagus, artichoke and mushroom saute with a tarragon vinaigrette. It started off with sauteing shallot, garlic, mushrooms, asparagus and artichoke hearts. After everything was nice and tender it was removed from the heat and the tomatoes were added to just let them warm through. We made the vinaigrette with olive oil, white wine vinegar, fresh tarragon and salt and pepper.
|Shallot, garlic and sliced mushrooms.|
|All heated through, just waiting for vinaigrette.|
The vinaigrette was amazingly fragrant. The fresh tarragon added so much flavor to the vinaigrette. I highly recommend using fresh herbs any chance you get. Until you cook with fresh, you will never know what you are missing.
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The main course was a creamy artichoke soup. We were not quite sure if this soup would be hearty enough to stand about the side dish, but it turned out to be quite deserving of "entree status. The soup began by sauteing thinly sliced leeks, a potato and garlic. Next we added the artichokes, chicken stock and salt and pepper and let it simmer for about a half hour. Once finished, it was pureed with some mascarpone cheese until nice and smooth. We topped it with a dollop of mascarpone and some chives.
The veggie saute had a wide range of flavors that should appeal to all tastes and we felt between the potatoes and the artichokes, that the soup had a hearty and meaty quality even though it was meatless. Both dishes were simple to make and to prepare simultaneously. This would be a great meal for even a beginning cook to make. All of the ingredients were found easily our local grocery store.
Enjoy the final presentation of these delicious foods below. The recipes for these dishes can be found by clicking the following links, Creamy Artichoke Soup and Asparagus, Artichoke and Mushroom Saute with Tarragon Vinaigrette. Keep your eyes peeled for the "B" entry, coming soon. Please leave comments, questions and suggestions for upcoming letters in the comments below. Feel free to "like" and "share" this post on your social networking sites!! We greatly appreciate it.