If you can’t get out of the house for date night, bring these French-inspired recipes into your home

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The holidays are full of family time, but somewhere in there it's important to make time for a date night. Fox 4 food scout Stewart Lane says one of his favorite local day spots is Ça Va in Wesport at West 42nd and Pennsylvania Avenue.

Classic Cocktail: French 75 (unless you want a Ça Va classic)

1.5 oz Gin (I suggest J.Rieger & Co. Midwestern Gin)
.5 oz lemon juice
.5 oz simple syrup (1:1, sugar: water)
Top with sparkling wine, I suggest Cava, a category of sparkling wines made in Spain.

Build all ingredients except the wine in a shaker. Vigorously shake with ice until the shaker tins are cold to touch. Strain into a flute glass. Top with 2 oz. of sparkling wine. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Ça Va Cocktail: Saddle and Briddle

Saddle and Bridle
soju, fino sherry, jasmine green tea, aloe vera, lime (prosecco)

Base Cocktail:
1.5 oz jasmine green tea soju
1 oz aloe syrup* (1:1)
.75 oz fino sherry
.5 oz lime juice
Wet shake, strain into white wine glass. Add 3 oz prosecco. Top with ice. Garnish with a lime wheel.

Jasmine Green Tea Soju:
30 g jasmine green tea to 1 (750mL) bottle of Soju
Infuse for two hours and strain

Aloe Syrup:
Equal parts aloe vera juice and sugar, bring to a boil. Remove from heat.

Caviar Butter

4 Tablespoons of Whipped Butter

1/2 Tablespoon chopped parsley

1/2 Tablespoon diced hard-boiled egg white

1/2 Tablespoon sieved hard-boiled egg yolk

1/2 Tablespoon very small diced shallot

1/4 Tablespoon of capers

5 g Show-Me Caviar (available at Broadway Butcher)

lemon zest

pinch of black sea salt

Place a smear of whip butter on the plate. Sprinkle a pinch of black sea salt on top of the butter. Then sporadically place the remaining ingredients over the butter. Zest lemon over it evenly. Serve with slices of  warm baguette

Pairing: Huré Frères Invitation Brut Champagne (available at Gomer’s Midtown)

This cuvée (blend) is a mixture of mostly Pinot Meunier, some Pinot Noir, and a little Chardonnay from the Montage de Reims region of Champagne. It has great balance of freshness with depth.

Tasting of Domestic Hams

4 slices of each: Fantasma's Finest Pit Ham (available at The shop at Paradise Meat Locker)

Burger's Smokehouse Country Ham (available at Broadway Butcher)

Casella's Proscuitto (available through Heritage Foods USA)

3 pickles: I'm really liking curried pickle cauliflower, spicy green beans, cornichons, carrots, shallots. Check out KC Canning Co. products!

2 radishes, halved and served with whipped butter and black sea salt.

Arranged on a wood board or slate. Served with thick slices of toasted brioche.

Pairing: Strohmeier Schilcher Frizzante Rosé Pet-Nat (available at Gomer’s Midtown) This unique Austrian wine reminds me of a sour beer. It’s tart with a little bret, some would classify as ‘weird wine’. I think the update sour berry notes and the slightly forest floor funk work well the saltiness of the hams. Plus this is a great wine for the beer lover in your life.

Chocolate Pot de Creme

12 oz   cream

2 T       sugar

3 ea     large egg yolks

1 t        vanilla

10 oz   Christopher Elbow 63% dark chocolate

4 oz     hot coffee

½ t       kosher salt

Put the cream in a small saucepan with the sugar and set on medium heat.

In medium-sized bowl combine the chocolate, vanilla, egg yolks and add the hot coffee in a couple of additions to temper the yolks and start the chocolate melting process.

Once cream comes to a simmer remove from heat, stir to make sure sugar is dissolved.  Add the hot cream to the chocolate mixture in three additions using a whisk to get it all incorporated.  You want to gently whisk it taking care to not whip air into the mixture, then season with a pinch of salt.

Pour mixture between 6 lowball glasses and set on a level surface in a refrigerated place to set.

Pink Peppercorn Rose Sablé Cookies

1#                    Butter (cubed, frozen)

7 oz                 Granulated Sugar

1# 12oz           AP Flour

3/4 t                 Salt

1/4 c                Pink Peppercorns (crushed)

1/2 t                 Rose Water

4 ea                 Egg Yolks

112 g Heavy Cream

Combine flour, salt, sugar and cold butter in small mixer with paddle attachment.  Mix on low speed until flour is 75% cut into the flour - or pea sized.

Add peppercorns

Add rose water, yolks and heavy cream all at once and mix on low speed until dough comes together completely.


Roll out with green bans, using as little flour as possible without dough sticking to table and pin.  Transfer to parchment paper. Cut width of ruler with a fluted cuter.  Transfer to sheet tray and chill until hard.  Brush with egg white and sprinkle on fleur de sel.  Bake at 325* for 20 minutes, spinning pan halfway through.

To serve once pot de creme is set:

Place a quenelle of whipped creme fraiche on top of the pot de creme. Sprinkle black sea salt on top. Serve with 3 sable cookies.


Portamaro Punch

Build all together

1 bottle (750mL) Ruby Port

15 oz J.Rieger & Co Caffe Amaro

15 oz simple

1 bottle (750 mL) moscato

Stir ingredients together except the moscato, chill in fridge till guests arrive. Serve out of a punch bowl topping with the moscato. Enjoy!


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