I am mildly obsessed with the Le Creuset mini cocottes that my brother Jeff and sister-in-law Lisa gave us for our birthdays two years ago. They’re colorful, they’re mini, and you can put food in them: I fell instantly in love. My friend Erica is a fellow cocotte lover, and this weekend, we combined our collections for a dinner inspired by and served entirely in our cocottes.
Appetizer: Seven Layer Crazy Greek Dip
Allison brought this over in a Le Creuset find from the outlet that was a great prelude to the cocottes. She customized this dip with a few of her own twists – the base recipe is a great starting place for making up your own dip.
Course I: Ina Garten’s Beef Bourguignon
We made this hearty and satisfying beef stew in the Dutch oven, which could be considered the granddaddy of a cocotte. Best part: pouring in Cognac and lighting it on fire. This burns off the alcohol and is hard core awesome. The cognac mingles with its friends red wine and beef broth to create an earthy and sublimely delicious sauce. We served it up in the cocottes… perfect portions.
Courses II and III: John Legend’s Mac and Cheese and Roasted Butternut Squash
Yes, we realized our vision of making mac and cheese in cocottes. Baking mac and cheese makes it infinitely better… Erica’s recipe worked perfectly in mini portions. We roasted butternut squash in olive oil, kosher salt and pepper in the oven. It was supposed to be accompanied by some Brussels sprouts, but sadly they came out a bit too toasty (re: incinerated). Lesson learned: 450 degrees is too hot.
Erica dazzled me by making her homemade salted caramel… whoa. If you’ve never seen this done, it’s impressive. She piped the cooled caramel into cocottes filled with lava cake batter, and popped them into the oven after dinner was finished for a warm, gooey, sweet and salty stunner. We served it with vanilla ice cream – perfection.
What else could we make in cocottes?
Until We Eat Again,
Two Happy Cooks