Recipes From Cuba Libre, Tramontana, Reata, and ST Cafe: Nov/Dec 2004

Readers request their favorite recipes from the best local restaurants.

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Popular Recipes From Hot Dallas Restaurants

I’m looking for something chic to serve at my next dinner party. The ceviche at Cuba Libre would be perfect. How can I make this in my own kitchen?
     Sherry Grogan , Uptown

Cuba Libre Ceviche Martini
(serves 4)

 1     pound 26/30 count shrimp
 1     pound tilapia filets
 1     quart lime juice
 1/2  fresh pineapple, diced
 4     medium tomatoes, diced
 1/2  red onion, diced
 1/2  cup cilantro, chopped
 1     medium jalape
 1     cup pineapple juice
 1     teaspoon chili powder

Cut tilapia into 1/2 inch cubes. In bowl, combine shrimp, tilapia, and lime juice.  Cover and marinate for 24 hours, or until fish is opaque. Drain seafood mixture and mix with pineapple, tomatoes, red onion, cilantro, jalapeño, pineapple juice, and chili powder. Mix well and marinate for 30 minutes. Serve in a martini glass on top of shredded iceberg lettuce. Garnish with fresh sliced avocado, tortilla chips, and lemon wedge.

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I have been taking cooking classes and want to make something impressive for my friends. Tramontana makes a luscious pumpkin soufflé, and I think I’m up for the challenge.
     Kim Hall, Plano

Tramontana Pumpkin Soufflé
(serves 1)

EQUIPMENT
 8     ounce soufflé mold, buttered and dusted with sugar
        Rubber spatula
        Whisk
        Stainless steel bowl
 3/4  ounce shot jigger
        Baker’s spatula
        Electric mixer (KitchenAid type)

BASE
 1  egg yolk
 1  tablespoon sugar
 1  tablespoon amaretto
 1  teaspoon pumpkin pie filling

FILLING
 2  egg whites
 1  tablespoon sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine soufflé base ingredients in stainless steel bowl and whisk until well-incorporated. Set aside. Combine whites and sugar, and whip with electric mixer until soft. Fold into egg yolk mixture quickly. Overfill prepared soufflé mold, and wipe level with baker’s spatula. Wipe rim of mold clean. Bake in preheated oven for approximately 12-15 minutes. Soufflé should be golden brown on top and rise 3-4 inches above the mold. Top with powdered sugar and serve with desired sauces.

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My wife and I recently lunched at Reata in Fort Worth, where I had a wonderful creamy jalapeño soup. I’d love to add it to my collection of jalapeño recipes.
     Jeff McCommas, Granbury

Reata Jalapeño and Cilantro Soup
(serves 6)

 5        jalapeño peppers, stemmed and seeded
 1 1/2  tablespoons unsalted butter
 1/2     cup red onion, finely chopped
 3        cloves garlic, minced
 1        avocado, peeled and diced
 2        cups tomatoes, diced
 8        cups heavy cream
 1        bunch cilantro, stemmed  and chopped
           Kosher salt, to taste
           Freshly ground pepper, to taste

Mince jalapeños and set aside. In large saucepan, heat butter over medium heat.

Add jalapeños, onions, and garlic. Sauté, stirring until vegetables are soft. Remove pan from heat, and stir in avocado, tomatoes, and cream. Lower the temperature and return pan to heat, watching and stirring to keep cream from separating. Bring soup slowly back to simmer and cook about 30 minutes. Stir soup occasionally to prevent sticking or scorching. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in cilantro leaves, reserving some for garnish. Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with remaining cilantro.

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With the holidays right around the corner, I feel the need to bake. The best desserts I’ve ever tasted come from ST Café. I especially like their Dutch coffeecake.
     Mattie Bruner, Dallas

ST Café Gevulde Speculaas
(serving size: one cake)

 2 1/4  cups self-rising flour
           Pinch salt
 2        teaspoons cinnamon
 1        teaspoon powdered cloves
 1/4     teaspoon nutmeg
 3/4     cup light brown sugar
 3/4     cup butter
           Milk as needed

FILLING
 1/2  cup plus 2 tablespoons ground almond flour
 1/2  cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
 1     egg, lightly beaten with pinch of salt

GARNISH
     Whole almonds
 1  egg yolk mixed with 1 tablespoon milk

Grease and flour deep, round baking pan (about 8 inches in diameter and 2 inches deep). Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Mix flour, salt, spices, and brown sugar. Rub in butter and about 1 tablespoon to 1/4 cup milk, just enough to make a smooth dough. Divide dough in half. Place one half in prepared baking pan, pressing down well. Mix filling ingredients and spread over dough, leaving 1/2 inch border from sides of pan. Place remaining dough over filling and press down well. Garnish top with whole almonds, pressing them in well. Brush with egg-milk glaze. Bake for 45-60 minutes or until top is brown and springs lightly when tapped.

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