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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Some Valentine Value in Harford County

As I am writing this post I notice I am talking about Outback Steakhouse. Again. Hmm..Im looking back through my posts and I seem to have several posts regarding Outback Steakhouse or some of their other restaurants in their corporation. Bonefish Grill, Carrabas, Roy's, Flemings. I'm thinking Harford County needs to step it up and and get some more variety..but for now here we go.

This Saturday is Valentines Day and for those of you who like to go out for dinner (more power to you) I saw these deals online in the past few days. Outback Steakhouse is offering a dinner for 2 for $49.99. This includes a Blooming Onion to share, 2 7 oz. fillets, 2 sides, 2 salads and 2 slices of cheesecake. Hmmm..after that much food you can go home and be sick. Very romantic. Bonefish Grill is also serving up a special as well. For $22.50 you get surf and turf"..a sirloin and lobster tail, along with a salad and a side. They have also partnered with Lindt chocolate and diners will get a 1.2 ounce dark chocolate bar at the end of their meal.

We will not be patronizing any restaurant this Valentine's Day. We are not believers in dining out on Valentines Day. Places are always packed and restautants usually limit their menus and jack up the prices. I like to make dinner that night. It's my time to go all out with decadent ingredients and cook up a storm. This year, I'm thinking of doing a "Kitchen Clambake" which I have made in the past. It's one pot, but very indulgent with good seafood. The recipe comes from Ina Garten and could not be easier. You start by sauteing some onions and leeks in a big pot..layering potatoes, sausage, corn, shrimp, clams, mussels and lobster. You pour a half of bottle of white wine on it and let it simmer until everything is cooked perfectly.

Kitchen Clambake (recipe courtesy of Ina Garten)
(Serves 6-8 people)

1 1/2 pounds kielbasa
3 cups chopped yellow onions (2 large onions)
2 cups chopped leeks, well cleaned (2 leeks, white parts only)
1/4 cup good olive oil
1 1/2 pounds small potatoes (red or white)
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1/2 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
2 dozen littleneck clams, scrubbed
2 dozen steamer clams, scrubbed
2 pounds mussels, cleaned and debearded
1 1/2 pounds large shrimp, in the shell
3 (1 1/2 pound) lobsters
2 cups good dry white wine

Slice the kielbasa diagonally into 1-inch thick slices. Set aside. Saute the onions and leeks in the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed 16 to 20 quart stockpot over medium heat for 15 minutes, until the onions start to brown.

Layer the ingredients on top of the onions in the stockpot in this order: first the potatoes, salt, and pepper; then the kielbasa, little neck clams, steamer clams, mussels, shrimp, and lobsters. Pour in the white wine. Cover the pot tightly and cook over medium-high heat until steam just begins to escape from the lid, about 15 minutes. Lower the heat to medium and cook another 15 minutes. The clambake should be done. Test to be sure the potatoes are tender, the lobsters are cooked, and the clams and mussels are open. Remove the lobsters to a wooden board, cut them up, and crack the claws. With large slotted spoons, remove the seafood, potatoes, and sausages to a large bowl and top with the lobsters. Season the broth in the pot to taste, and ladle over the seafood, being very careful to avoid any sand in the bottom.

Serve with lots of crusty bread to sop up all that sauce. Delicious!


Candy Girl said...

I love your site - especially all of the helpful tips on saving money and getting best value with our precious eating out $. Thanks!

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