Confession time – while I eat pretty much anything now, I definitely had my particular food preferences right up until I went to college. No raw fish (including oysters, which are now my FAVE), blue cheese of any kind, spicy food – man, I was missing out! All of these things are on my very extensive list of favorite foods now, along with another later-in-life favorite: caviar. I had my first try of caviar during NYC Restaurant Week at The Russian Tea Room, and I was hooked. The fresh, briny taste that reminds me of the sea, the “pop” texture – caviar is known as a luxury, but such a wonderful indulgence. Plus, who can resist the feature of caviar in one of my favorite scenes in one of my favorite movies – “What ARE you doing? You’re taking all the caviar? That caviar is a garnish!” (Bonus points if you can name that movie).
Given my love for this decadent and delicate treat, I’m super excited to partner with Pearl Street Caviar in their How to Caviar campaign. Pearl Street Caviar was founded in 2017 with the vision of offering delicious, well-priced, and approachable caviar to a diverse group. Though it’s a relatively young brand, it has already generated quite the buzz with its two offerings – the Siberian Select caviar (a clean and smooth flavor sourced from 8-year-old sturgeon) and Keluga (a beautiful hazel caviar with a more complex flavor, sourced from 12-15 year old sturgeon). PSC sources all of its caviar from an aquafarm on a lake in central Asia, close to the original roots of sturgeon.
For PSC’s How To Caviar campaign, I decided to explore their “Power Up” theme – incorporating several “power food” ingredients that I thought would work well with this delectable caviar. I used:
- Sweet potatoes (chock full of vitamins C and A, antioxidants, and a proven blood sugar regulator)
- Turmeric (with anti-inflammatory properties, another blood sugar regulator, and digestion aid)
- Lox (high in protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamins B5-6 and B-12)
- Protein rich egg whites
Not to mention the superfood properties of caviar – which I wasn’t aware of until recently! Caviar is high in potassium to help with heart health and blood pressure, vitamins A (bone strength), B and E (healthy skin, hair and nails), D (protecting teeth and bones), and omega fatty acids.
For my recipe, I focused on the amazing Keluga variety (whose clean but dimensional flavor I LOVED). I played around with a few iterations, and the one that I’m excited to share with you today is caviar on sweet potato blini with lox and truffle meringue foam. The blini is a nod to my first caviar experience, the lox is a nod to my home city of NYC, and truffles – well, I love truffles :). And though the finished product might sound a little fancy, it’s 100% doable in a tiny NYC apartment kitchen – speaking from experience! Do you want to give this a try? See how below!
Caviar on Sweet Potato Blini with Lox and Truffle Meringue Foam
- 2 large sweet potatoes
- 1/2 tsp salt, plus 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp honey
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter, plus 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 cup milk
- 2 eggs
- 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
1. Peel and cut sweet potatoes into 1-2″ pieces. Place pieces in saucepan and cover with water with 1/2 tsp salt. Boil until potatoes are soft. Drain water from the saucepan. Add the honey and butter and mash until smooth. Add milk and eggs to the mashed potatoes and combine.
2. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, 1 tsp salt and turmeric. Add the dry ingredients to the sweet potatoes and stir until blended (do not overmix).
3. In a non-stick skillet over medium-heat, melt the butter. Drop a generous tablespoon of the sweet potato mixture into the skillet. Cook ~1 minute per side, flipping once, until blini is crispy and golden. Remove from heat.
Truffle Meringue Foam
- 4 egg whites at room temperature
- Pinch of cream of tartar
- 1/2 tsp truffle salt
Beat egg whites with the cream of tartar in a spotlessly clean bowl until they are foamy and hold soft peaks. While beating, gradually add the salt until the whites are shiny and the peaks are stiff.
To serve, arrange blinis on plate, and garnish with a slice of lox, dollop of meringue foam, and a small spoonful of caviar. Garnish with sprigs of dill.