Sunday, December 9, 2012

Best Thing I Ever Ate: Meat

Gnocchi Genovese
Luca's Ristorante
Somerset, NJ

For my birthday my parents decided to choose a new restaurant in the area to take me to dinner.  They stumbled upon Luca's Ristorante.  It was voted in the top 20 best fresh pastas in all of New Jersey and I can definitely agree with that.  The decor is beautiful, the service is fantastic, and the food is some of the best I have ever eaten.

The dish I ordered was gnocchi with braised sirloin steak and caramelized onion in a white wine beef reduction.  It came out hot in the disk it had been cooked in and was steaming at the table. This was an absolutely beautiful presentation because the smell perfumed the entire dining room.

The sirloin was absolutely tender, I didn't need a knife at all.  It had an extremely meaty flavor without being too overpowering of the gnocchi underneath.  The gnocchi were light as a cloud and the perfect complement to the braised meat.

Definitely check out this restaurant if you are in the area.  Everything else my family ate was fantastic and you can tell everything is extremely fresh and homemade!

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Earl Grey Shortbread

1 cup all purpose flour
4 tea bags
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter (1/2 cup)
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar

In a bowl, mix together the flour and salt.  Open the tea bags and sprinkle in the leaves.  Set aside.

In a separate bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Slowly pour the flour mixture into the butter and sugar mixture and beat on low speed using an electric mixer.

Roll the dough into a log about 1 1/2 inches in diameter and wrap in plastic wrap.  Freeze for at least a half hour.

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

Cut log into 1/4 inch slices and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet about 1/2 inch apart.  Bake for 13-15 minutes or until slightly golden.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar after they come out of the oven.  Serve and enjoy!

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