Ask me about the year my family lived in Madison,Wisconsin,and memories of the Saturday nights spent listening to music in the hotel's piano bar are at the top of list. The music, a glass of wine, and the knock-out views of Lake Mendota were as important as the conversation.
Years later, when my daughter was graduating from the University of Wisconsin, I waited by the phone until the stroke of midnight on the day the hotel started taking reservations for the graduation weekend. Reservations secured, I looked forward to both the event and the opportunity to revisit a happy memory. I wasn't disappointed.
The Edgewater, which is locally owned and operated, underwent an extensive update in 2014. I was planning to do a story about the hotel this summer,but it was one of the victims of my computer troubles. I do have pictures of the dishes I planned to use, however. When I update the story, this time using fall and winter dishes and recipes, I'll include the recipes for the peach and tomato salad and the corn ravioli. Tuck them away for next summer; they're as good as they look.
EDGEWATER PEACH AND HEIRLOOM SALAD (Serves 1)
6 OZ VARIETY OF HEIRLOOM TOMATOES CORED AND DICED
4 OZ PEELED AND DICED FRESH PEACH
2 OZ TORN FRENCH BREAD DRIED IN OVEN
2 EA LARGE FRESH BASIL LEAVES TORN
¼ TSP FRESH ITALIAN PARSLEY LEAVES
1 OZ BABY ARUGULA
½ OZ AGED SHERRY VINEGAR
1-2 OZ EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
A/N SEA SALT, FRESH GROUND BLACK PEPPER
3 OZ BURRATA CHEESE
1. COMBINE ALL EXCEPT FOR BURRATA CHEESE IN A MIXING BOWL, BEING SURE TO UTILIZE JUICE FROM PEACHES.
2. GENTLY MIX BY HAND.
3. ALLOW TO SIT FOR 3-4 MINUTES.
4. TASTE AGAIN AND SEASON WITH SALT AND PEPPER TO TASTE. ADUST SEASONING TO PREFERENCE.
5. PLACE CENTERED IN SERVING DISH.
6. PLACE BURRATA CHEESE ON TOP OF SALAD AND DRIZZLE THE CHEESE WITH OLIVE OIL AND SEASON WITH SALT AND PEPPER.
SWEET CORN RAVIOLI (Serves 8)
With Prosciutto Broth, Popcorn Shoots, Garlic Scapes
Corn ravioli filling:
• 8 oz fresh corn kernels
• ½ oz minced shallot
• ½ oz minced garlic
• 1 oz whole butter
• ½ tbsp fresh thyme
• 2 oz boursin cheese
For the filling:
1. Sweat garlic and shallots in butter in a small pot until transluscent.
2. Add fresh corn.
3. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Cook until corn is tender.
5. Add fresh thyme and cook one more minute.
6. Remove from heat and cool.
7. Puree in blender but leave some texture.
8. Fold in boursin cheese.
9. Place in pastry bag for piping into ravioli.
• 8 oz all purpose flour
• 11 ea. egg yolks, fresh
• ¼ tsp extra virgin olive oil
• Pinch kosher salt
• ¼ tsp water
1. Place flour in stainless steel bowl
2. Form a well in the center
3. Add remaining ingredients
4. Beginning with a fork, slowly incorporate wet into dry
5. When necessary, switch from fork to using hand to knead
6. Knead until smooth
7. Using a pasta roller, form into sheets
8. I use a ravioli mold to shape, fill and cut the ravioli into the desired shape
9. I also add a pinch more boursin cheese into each ravioli as well as a drop of ramp pesto.
The prosciutto broth is made using scrap pieces of prosciutto which are first caramelized in a pot. The pot is deglazed with white wine and then chicken stock and fresh bay leaves are added. The broth is then allowed to simmer for 3 to 4 hours.
Garlic scapes are basically the flower bud of the garlic plant. They are available in summer months. We clean them and cut them very thin on a bias. These are sautéed in a small amount of butter with some fresh corn kernels. We then add prosciutto broth to these vegetables and allow the broth to reduce to the desired consistency.
We take additional prosciutto pieces and crisp them up slowly in oil. These are also used as a garnish.
Popcorn shoots are literally popcorn seeds allowed to sprout. They are usually sprouted in a controlled light environment to produce a yellowish white stalk. They are tender and sweet and have the flavor of fresh corn. We use these also for garnish on this dish.