Goodbye Bellingham, Hello Germany!
We ate like Kings and Queens. My table was covered with delicious things. We had grilled black cod and rockfish, salmon cakes, quiche, nettle pesto, a vegan stew, and many more savory dishes. For a sweet finish there were gluten free lavender lemon custard tartlets, truffles, and a whole meyer lemon tart.
We held our glasses to camaraderie and good times, drinking wine, beer, and spirits shared by all. Cheers! Brost! Salut! And we laughed and remembered like old friends. The evening was full of smiles, heart felt speeches, some tears here and there, but mostly its was full community. The little family I have built in Bellingham was there to represent, and it was beautiful!
Thank you for the good times! I will miss you all!! Watch out for postcards :)
For the party I made two decadent treats; chocolate goat cheese truffles and the gluten free lavender lemon custard tartlets. Here are the recipes:
Chocolate Goat Cheese Truffles
Makes about 18 truffles
6 oz. Goat Cheese (plain)
1/3 cup bittersweet chocolate (chopped)
1/4 cup toasted almonds (chopped)
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp vanilla (or any other flavor, mint, lemon zest, raspberries)
rose petals (optional for decoration)
1. Put the goat cheese into a food processor and blend until smooth.
2. In a medium sauce pan fill abou 1/4 of the way with water and place inside a small bowl. This will be your double boiler. Into the bowl put the chopped bittersweet chocolate and melt the chocolate, stirring occasionally to make sure all is incorporated.
3. Add the molten chocolate and the vanilla into the food processor with the goat cheese. Blend until smooth.
4. With a spoon scrape out the goat cheese mixture into a bowl and stir in the chopped almonds.
5. Refrigerate for about an hour or two until the mixture is solid.
6. Once solid make truffles by hand and roll them in the cocoa powder. Place on a plate and refrigerate until served.
Lavender Lemon Honey Custard Tartlets (Gluten Free)
Makes about 10 tartlets
2/3 cup rice flour
1/3 cup coconut flour
1/4 cup arrowroot flour
1/4 cup tapioca starch
2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp sea salt
1/8 tsp xantham gum
1 stick cold butter (sliced)
3 Tbsp ice water
1. Place all ingredients except for butter and water into a food processor and pulse to aerate.
2. Slowly add in butter. Pulse between adding a few slices at a time.
3. Then add 1 Tbsp of ice water. Pulse. Add 1 Tbsp of ice water. Pulse. Add last if needed to bind. (Make sure to feel the dough after each added Tbsp of water to see if it is binding.
4. Once dough is binding place onto a counter and form into a ball. Flatten the ball and wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 2 hours. (This can be done a night in advance)
5. Once the dough is chilled take a medium sized chunk at a time and roll between two sheets of parchment until about 1/8 of an inch thick or less. Cut out circles that fit to your tartlet molds. I used typical pint beer glass to cut the dough. Continue to make your circles until all the dough is finished. Refrigerate between parchment paper for best results. In the mean time you can make the custard.
1 cup whole milk
1/2 stick butter
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup honey
1 whole egg
1 egg yolk
zest of 1/2 lemon
1/2 vanilla bean
2 tsp lavender
pinch of sea salt
1. Place the milk, butter, lemon zest, lavender, vanilla bean into a saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and let it steep for at least 10 minutes, then strain the herbs and spices.
2. Whisk eggs and honey together, slowly add in cornstarch until a smooth cream is formed.
3. Temper the warm milk into the egg base while whisking.
4. Allow to cool to room temperature.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Butter the tartlet form and then take the dough from the refrigerator and gently press into the molds. Take a fork and poke little holes into the bottom. Fill the tartlets with the custard filling and bake for 15-20 minutes until the crust is golden brown.
Allow the tartlets to cool before taking them out of the form. Then dust with powdered sugar and top with fresh berries. Enjoy!