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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Beignets Mastered by Marc Meyer!

Cookshop's Maine red shirmp beignets; to go

Tuesday night, after my final wine class, I decided to bring home some dinner to share with David. Knowing that Cookshop is one of my new favorite restaurants, my boss had given me a gift certificate for the place as a thank you for a small favor I'd recently done for him.

my beautifully set table, in three minutes flat!

David and I began our "tapas" dinner with Cookshop's market salad of radicchio, escarole, red wine vinaigrette and toasted bread crumbs. The completely simple salad had the most beautiful escarole I'd even seen!

Cookshop's starters were our mains

For our main course of 'small plates,' we enjoyed: Maine red shrimp beignetspulled pork croquette with beluga lentils; and spaghetti squash with hazelnut cream, dried cherries and fried kale.

pulled pork croquette topped with kumquat and Meyer lemon relish
over beluga lentils

I found the spaghetti squash tasty, slightly sweet and very rich while David loved the beluga lentils in the pulled pork croquette dish.

a shrimp beignet dressed in gribiche dressing

But what I was absolutely mad about was the shrimp beignets! Not only did they look like they were going to be absolutely delicious, but with my first bite I was in near disbelief over the amazement of their taste! (translation: they were so good!)

interior view;
I count at least two shrimps

First off: the shrimp beignets were so much more flavorful than I expected them to be. (I almost thought they'd simply be a less-sweet version of the brunch beignets, with shrimp mixed in) The "red" shrimp beignets nearly tasted red--David had said that he seemed to notice a very interesting combination of both Cajan and Indian spices. And the beignets--which are four to an order--were nearly as filling as the spaghetti squash, yet nicely balanced with a gribiche dressing made using hard boiled eggs (mainly the whites, it seemed) and mustard. I'd, now, been a long-time fan of Chef Marc Meyer's brunch beignets--but I didn't know that Cookshop served beignets that were equally as good at dinner too!

Cookshop's menus tend to change a bit, from day to day, but they seem to be serving the tasty shrimp beignets this week!
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