Hash Over: Home for the Holidays, Cut-Rate Lobster, Etc.

Who knows why everyone takes such delight in gingerbread houses? The fate that befell Hansel and Gretel--or nearly befell; we only know the story through Bugs Bunny--when they encountered such a structure was none too pleasant.

But last night, the Rosewood Crescent Hotel put the final bit of icing on their holiday centerpiece, a ten foot tall gingerbread house designed by pastry chef Eric Perelli and constructed over 240 hours by his team of overtime-hungry assistants.

Essentially, this means the Crescent's bakery staff could finish, say, Dallas' long-planned signature bridge in 50 days or so...and rebuild it again after German grade school kids dismantle it.

The presumably edible house contains over 500 pounds of flour, butter, eggs, sugar, honey, spices and other good stuff--not counting the peanut brittle chimney.

No word on whether kids from the Starlight Starbright Children's Foundation, present at the unveiling, attacked and devoured Perelli's creation.


Also last night, some of the finest Park Cities residents and a handful of dour, frumpy media types, attended a somewhat more adult (in that it involved free booze) unveiling: the new extension of Shinsei. Hard to tell with all the bumping and banging of elbows and inflatables around the bar, but it kinda looks just like the extension of an Asian themed restaurant/lounge.


You may have seen this elsewhere, but TJ's Fresh Seafood Market is dispensive with live lobsters for $12.99 a pound until January 1. Proprietor Jon Alexis passes along this potential recipe, with a reminder that TJ's will par steam, crack or remove the meat, free of charge:

Coconut & Curry Thai Lobster


Two Maine lobsters, par-steamed & meat out

1 pound unsalted butter

1 tablespoon Thai yellow curry paste

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/4 cup lobster stock

4 tablespoons fish sauce

4 tablespoons granulated sugar (white)

1 tin unsweetened coconut milk (approx. 10 oz.)

Zest from one small lime

1 cup cooked jasmine or brown rice

Garnish (see below)

Thai Yellow Curry Sauce

Sauté yellow curry paste in vegetable oil with a little coconut milk until
fully dissolved. Add fish sauce and sugar, then add remaining coconut milk
and lime zest, and gently bring to a boil. Simmer for 10 minutes.


Put par-steamed lobster meat into stockpot with a ¼ cup of the lobster stock
and enough butter to completely cover meat. Simmer on low heat for 10-15
minutes. If your stove top burns hot, be careful not to overcook.

Place cooked rice in center of serving dish. Remove lobster from simmering
butter and arrange over rice. Pour curry sauce over lobster meat and around
rice. Garnish ideas include grilled zucchini, lime leaves, shredded
scallions, sprouts, tofu and thinly sliced red jalapeno peppers (seeded).
Compliment the plate any way that you would like and enjoy!

As you know, all traditional Thai lobster dishes start with shellfish pulled from the cold Atlantic waters off America's northestern coast...

--Dave Faries

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