Monday, July 28, 2008

Bánh mì & mignon


Met a good friend for lunch today at Les Givral on Milam. With sandwiches for $4 or less, this is a great place to get full for cheap. They're famous for their Vietnamese sandwiches called bánh mì, which literally translates to "bread."

Handheld heaven

This particular one is the "đac biet" or "special." Stuffed inside a warm, baked-fresh-daily French baquette are sliced meat (BBQ pork, chả lụa and French ham), pâté, pickled carrots, cucumber, jalapeno, cilantro, butter, mayonnaise, soy sauce and ground black pepper. As if this wasn't already enough mm-mmm in a bun, I add a couple of spoons of chili garlic paste to make my forehead sweat. The last two sentences just made my mouth water.

As I always say, if it doesn't have kick, it ain't worth a lick.


On the commute home from work today, my wife and I agreed to not work out. So to celebrate our reaching an agreement, we made steak and scallops for dinner.

Yes, the sea scallops really were that big.

This 10 oz filet started off just under 3 inches thick but after cooking it shrank to roughly 2 inches...shrinkage sucks. I cooked the steak just like I did on last week's post. As you can see, I delivered on my promise to have steak again this week. Correcting last week's mistake, I got a thick cut and broiled it for 3 minutes each side, after searing of course. The result was a perfectly medium rare steak. Yay me!

The huge sea scallops were seared on medium high heat for about 4 minutes each side. The fleur de sel with dried basil and garlic was sprinkled on after cooking. The spinach, onion and mushroom mixture was also prepared just like last week.

This time around, I added tomatoes, both for added veggies and for more color on the plate. Thoroughly wash and wipe the plum tomatoes dry (this will reduce oil splattering later). In a hot pan on medium heat, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, minced garlic and 1 teaspoon of dried basil; toss to evenly coat the pan. Add the tomatoes and constantly shake to keep the red rounds moving. Continue until the skin on all the tomatoes have burst, about 5 minutes. Serve dinner.

So before you start your own scallop and steak dinner, I leave you with this closing thought: If scallops were blue, would it be called "smurf and turf"?

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