Trying to distinguish the sheep from the goat.
I enjoy the occasional innards, and kidneys may be my favorite, but last night was the first time I had prepared (or eaten, for that matter), goat kidneys. I have to say they weren’t much different from, and at least as good as, those of their fellow bovids.
What was different, making the dish more enjoyable than ever, was the fact that, I think for the first time ever, I had some dry Marsala in the house, so I was able to prepare the kidneys exactly as I had always wanted to (I normally use a white wine). The sauce was even more delicious than it looks in the picture.
Making a note to the cook: if there’s going to be sauce, think twice before excluding potatoes from the meal; fortunately this time I had exactly the small number I wanted on hand, four fingerlings not needed for a previous meal.
- four goat kidneys, totaling 8 oz, from Consider Bardwell Farm, sautéed in butter (in this case in a tin-lined copper pan) until brown all over on the outside but still very rare in the center (about 4-5 minutes, turning every minute or so), removed and kept warm while introducing into the pan one large sliced garlic clove from Healthway Farms & CSA, cooking it for one minute, adding just under a quarter cup of Florio Fine (dry) Marsala, and reducing the wine by half over high heat, quickly slicing the kidneys in the meantime, removing the pan from the burner and slowly swirling into it 2 tablespoons of chilled butter, salt, and pepper, returning the sliced kidneys and all of their juices to the pan, sprinkling sauce and kidneys with chopped parsley from Eataly, then carefully warming the sauce over very low heat for a minute or two to warm them without allowing the sauce to simmer, arranging the sauced kidneys on 2 plates and scattering some micro purple radish from Two Guys from Woodbridge on the side
- four Red French fingerlings (less than 8 ounces) from Race Farm, halved lengthwise, tossed with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, rosemary leaves from Whole Foods, a little chopped sage from Eataly, and a small amount of crushed orange-gold home-dried habanada pepper (acquired fresh last season from Norwich meadows Farm), arranged cut side down on a small Pampered Chef unglazed ceramic pan, roasted at about 375º for 15 0r 20 minutes, sprinkled with cut chives from Phillips Farm
- most of one bunch of collard greens from Phillips Farm, stripped of most of their stems, torn into small sections, washed several times and drained, transferred to a smaller bowl very quickly, in order to retain as much of the water clinging to them as possible, braised inside a heavy oval enameled cast iron pot in which 2 halved garlic cloves from from Healthway Farms & CSA had first been allowed to sweat in some olive oil, finished with salt, pepper, a little crushed dried Sardinian pepperoncino from Buon Italia, and a drizzle of olive oil
There was a small cheese course.
- the cheeses all from Consider Bardwell Farm, were, from the bottom,‘Manchester’ goat milk, ‘Bark’ cow cheese (“bloomy rind pasteurized, wrapped in spruce bark”, and aged in Brooklyn), and ‘Barden’ blue cow cheese
slices of a delicious small, seedy baguette, ‘Mediterraneo’ from Eataly
- the wine through this part of the meal was a wonderful California (Clarksburg) red, David Akiyoshi Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Clarksburg 2014
We ended with some delicious small Satuma mandarins.
- the music throughout was various pieces by violinist, composer, and héros de la république, Joseph Boulogne, Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges (1745-1799), ‘Le Mozart Noir’, performed by Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra under the direction of Music Director Emerita Jeanne Lamon
1788 portrait of Saint-Georges by William Ward, after Mather Brown, mezzotint on laid paper, now in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art