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Do You Like Tarragon? How About Some Soup?

Do you ever feel like throwing up your hands, twirling around, screaming at the top of your lungs and laughing like it’s just you and the trees?

Or the rain drops?

That’s what yesterday was like. For about 10 minutes. I didn’t do it, but I felt like it. My $540 white pumps could NOT get dirty from the rain water that was about to come down, so I just ran to my car instead and sang my heart out on my ride home.

I spent a short moment yesterday morning writing a recount of my trip to St. Maarten for my travel blog, and remembered I still needed to share with you one last bit of that trip. The real good part.

FOOD, you wouldn’t say. And a whole lot of eye-candy on this one!

But then the 11 am and 1 pm meetings were going off on my phone so I had to stop.

I got back & sat at this computer (I think I’ve told you how much I love my iMac) and started looking at pictures. I’ve developed an appetite at this point, so looking at the artistic sexiness does nothing for me. Especially since they were all food.

But they reminded of how just 3 weeks ago I was in lala land, indulging in excellent food, savoring every bite and using my culinary knowledge to decipher what ingredients were each individual entree. Upon inquiring to the Chef de Cuisine, I was mostly right. Good.

If you read my post on the general experience, you’ll read how we travel writers are very spoiled people. We sorta have this unwarranted sense of entitlement. But it’s never revoked by the real powers that be, so why not exercise it?

writers

And we did just that on the first night on the island. We pull up at the Holland House and I’m in love. A certain song by a certain “ex” was playing in the speaker box and it instantly made my heart skip. That set the mood. We’re seated, ocean front, to smacking lunar tides and palm trees. Chic, but not stuffy.

I won’t go into flavoring detail. I’ll just show you.

filetmignon

These are the two recipes I’m sharing with you today. To start the eve, we sipped on the “island lover” cocktail (pictured above) that was more than orgasmic, if such an experience exists, and a butternut-orange soup with tarragon foam that was good enough for the die hard carnivore. The silky texture of the soup was supped from a modern demitasse. That went down with a warm sensation, but when the foam touched my lips, I experienced something new. Different, yet comfortable. The dense foam packed with flavor and notes of a singing lily made me tingle. Really. I know it sounds crazy, but it’s what it emoted. I sat in quiet awe for about 90 seconds as I tried to make sense of what had just happened. Gastronomic sexiness had just occurred in my mouth. So good, I had it, times 3.

That was Stage I of the spoiled writer syndrome. But I wasn’t the only one. We all ordered 3 rounds of drinks before our main course even arrived. I highly encourage you to make both these sensually thriving recipes.

Appetizer was a succulent halibut atop spinach in lemon wine sauce with grilled mushrooms. We’re all still being so greedy so we ordered the same appetizer, twice. GREEDY ASS WRITERS! Dinner was the juiciest piece of filet mignon with purple colored mashed potato and a plantain oval chip. Of course I had to opt out of the crab meat topping. Sigh.

The rest of the trip, from a food perspective was a challenging adventure. I’m taking pictures of everything and my fellow journalists don’t get it. “Damn B, another picture? Just eat it!” I annoy the hell out of them asking to please hold off on taking that first bite until I paparazzo the dishes.

Come on guys, this is for my blog readers! 🙂

I hope I’ve established somewhere these past 8 months, that I’m not really a drinker (ignore the 3 I had above). Doesn’t call my name. But I find myself very attracted to mojitos, of any kind. It’s a real Cuban girl’s drink. And tho I make a killer one, I like to taste others’.

After a 90 minute long 32-challenge zip line course, wouldn’t you say that’s the perfect quencher? I ordered one. And a chocolate espresso martini, too, which is my favorite American trago. That started a feast like you’ve never seen one among strangers! And because we’re not paying for anything, we went to town on ordering tapas. The “treehouse”, where we broke bread was perfectly and quaintly situated. A super sexy sunset & imperfect palm trees laced the perimeter of the compound. The mood setter this time: another certain song by that same certain “ex”. What the hell!!! REALLY!?

He was following me in spirit, I think. So I called him and exchanged some I love you’s. Sugar Honey Iced freakin’ Tea! Why!!

Thank God the food came when it did. My phone bill could have easily crept up to the hundred mark. This is what I ate instead of staying on the phone:

  • wood grilled fresh mozzarella pizza (Oh MY GOODNESSSSSS, this right here people!! wow!)
  • camembert with almonds and glazed pears (I’ve got loads of this cheese in my fridge right now!)
  • tuna ceviche (will be served at my next party)
  • peanut sauce chicken satay (perfectly seasoned; great balance)
  • mozzarella balls with basil pesto and tomato (a sexy take of a classic)
  • smoked crab and portobello quesadilla (oops, I didn’t try this one–shellfish, remember)
  • (for these smaller images, click on them to see full size)

batch12

batch21

batch5

Even the mastiff was hungry.

By day 3, I had eaten enough fish to become a monger. But I continued. I spent the entire trip excessively bloated so I had to eat as little starch as conceivably possible. I’m on an island, so all the fish in the world is just fine.

But because St. Maarten rightfully boasts two different cultures, naturally there are many options in the culinary realm. I would say I was best satiated on the French side. Nothing foo-foo shi-shi but definitely of high caliber. There are also some condiments akin to the natives.

Like Guavaberry.

guavaberry

(beautifully hand-painted Guavaberry bottles can be seen all over the island)

On a rainy afternoon, timing couldn’t have been more perfect than to be stuck inside the Guavaberry factory, participating in tastings. 10 different flavors and rum notes I’ve never considered. Like almond banana. I walked away with the organic guavaberry. I figured there a lot of other delectables that can be doctored up.

A five minute stop at a Dutch chocolate house was well worth the rain drenching my new pocket book.

After scuba diving, we made our way to another beach front resto. More like an open air Cheesecake Factory. Too many options on the menu. Mojitos and fish please guy. But only after I fought the OC writer for 5 chips from her plate of nachos. I swear I had no business even looking at them.

nachos

It just doesn’t get any better.

Especially when my last morning on the island was completed by an hour-long sensual massage by the finest man I’d seen in all of 5 days. Damn he worked by back!

I’d tell you so much more about all the food and everything else we did (like seeing a man fully undressing at Orient beach), but I’m sure you’ve had enough!

(One of these days, I’ll be able to invite ONE of you on one of these lavish trips! What would YOU pack?)

BUTTERNUT-ORANGE SOUP w/TARRAGON FOAM

Courtesy of The Holland House, St. Maarten

Ingredients:

For Soup

  • 1 whole butternut
  • 3 oranges for juice
  • 1 orange peel for grate
  • 10.5 oz heavy cream
  • 10.5 oz vegetable stock

For Tarragon foam

  • 5.25 oz milk
  • 5.25 oz dl heavy cream
  • 1 head of tarragon
  • 1 tsp. spoon Pernod

Instructions:

1. Clean the butternut and cut it in small pieces
2. Boil butternut in a little hot water until it’s done
3. When boiled butternut is ready, put it (including water), vegetable stock and heavy cream in blender and blend it until it’s smooth
4. At the same time put milk and cream in a sauce pan on a low fire
5. Add the head of tarragon and let it draw as tea for about 5 minutes
6. Add the Pernod after which you use a mixer to create the foam
7. Serve the soup in pre-heated deep plates and add the fresh squeezed orange juice and the orange grate to it
8. Before serving add fresh grounded pepper and salt for extra taste
9. Finally add the foam on top and serve immediately

ISLAND LOVER COCKTAIL

Courtesy of The Holland House, St. Maarten

Ingredients:

  • 1 oz Rum Jumbie coconut splash rum
  • 1 oz Rum Jumbie mango splash rum
  • 1 oz Malibu rum
  • Lime juice splash
  • Cranberry juice
  • Pineapple juice

Instructions:

1. Shake in mixer with ice
2. Serve in a martini glass
3. Add some garnish for decoration

*RELATED POSTS*

Lots of Cheese Give-Away (still going on

Plantains, Maduros & Tostones

St. Maarten is for the Lover in You

Spicy Tilapia With Kalamatta Olives & Tomatoes

The Best Cuban Soup Ever!

My 30 Minute Meal! What!


Eat well, love unapologetically, pray with true intention, and take care of yourself.

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11 thoughts on “Do You Like Tarragon? How About Some Soup?

  1. When you drop these lavish travel posts in, I have no choice but to get extremely jealous. It looks like you had an amazing time–the food, the activities–when can I quit my job and join in? 😉 And both of those recipes sound great–I’d never seen butternut with orange before!

  2. Sexy tarragon foam..ahhhhhhh…that made me laugh so hard, like a maniac really.  And $540 pumps, I hope you could make them a tax-write off as wardrobe expense.

  3. I love cocktails, this must be try. Next week my friends will be coming over to my house and I might tried it.Thanks for sharing.
    ___
    Gratitude is the sign of noble souls. – Aesop

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