Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Harry's Coastal Cuisine: A Longboat Key Landmark

A Longboat Key institution and a mini gourmet empire, Harry’s offers fine globally inspired cuisine in its charming dining room, and also catering services, plus a corner store, deli and wine shop. Located on the corner of Gulf of Mexico Drive and St. Judes Drive, Harry's serves wonderfully fresh and beautifully prepared food — what they call “coastal cuisine” — in a white-on-white dining room and pleasant outdoor patio, serving popular favourites such as their famous Crab Cakes, Chunky Gazpacho, Shrimp-Cargot, Florida Gulf of Mexico Grouper pan seared with tropical risotto and mango gastrique, Roast Duck with wild berry sauce, in addition to their decadent dessert and specialty coffee list including Banana Cream Pie, Chocolate Mousse Cake, Vanilla Crème Brûlée  and popular Key Lime Pie. The bar knows its way around a dry martini, and there are a handful of good wines by the glass, as well as a more extensive list by the bottle. Harry’s incredible creations are available at Harry and his wife Lynn's award-winning restaurant, as well as Harry’s Gourmet Deli & Wine Store which offers gourmet food to-go and through Harry’s Coastal Catering. Delighting diners on Longboat Key for years, Harry's continues to attract a dedicated clientele with a spoonful of love and splash of panache. 

Harry's fresh white-on-white Florida-style interior with wooden banquettes and illuminated back garden

Harry's menu features globally inspired coastal cuisine

Hendricks Martini with a slice of cucumber

Sweet butter and roasted garlic to accompany the fresh warm bread

Fresh baked sliced baguette

Harry's famous Crab Cakes with rémoulade

'Paté Maison' - a smooth mixture of liver, truffles and cognac with toast points,
sliced egg, tomato, onion and gherkins

House Smoked Gorgonzola and Heirloom Tomato Salad with Florida sweet onions, baby arugula and finished with a roast garlic balsamic vinaigrette

Oysters Rockefeller topped with spinach, candied bacon, fresh parmesan and Pernod

Each oyster was almost a meal in itself

Santadi Villa Solais Vermentino di Sardegna, 2014

Florida Snapper with Coconut Curry Sauce

Chicken Florentine with sautéed breast, baby spinach, garlic, basil, sun-dried tomatoes, fresh parmesan mornay sauce and wild rice

Baked Macadamia Nut Crusted Salmon with orange poppy seed sauce, smooth grilled corn polenta 
and grilled asparagus

Harry's Key Lime Pie made with florida key limes and topped with meringue

Harry’s Gazpacho with Baby Shrimp
Serves 10-15
Recipe courtesy of Chef Harry Christensen

1 cucumber
1/2 green pepper
1/2 onion
4 plum tomatoes
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1 tbsp chopped fresh tarragon
1 tbsp chopped fresh basil
White Pepper and salt to taste
1 tbsp paprika
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
1 46 oz. can tomato juice
1 lb cooked Florida Gulf shrimp
Seasoned croutons and chopped parsley for garnish, optional

Seed and dice the cucumbers, green peppers and tomatoes Dice the onion and place all the vegetables together in one large bowl with a sprinkle herbs on top. In a small bowl combine and dissolve the paprika, lemon juice and olive oil. Pour over diced vegetables and herbs, add the baby shrimp and tomato juice. Mix together and chill for 2-3 hours. Serve with croutons if desired.

Harry’s Fish Tacos with Pico de Gallo and Baja Sauce
Serves 2
Recipe courtesy of Chef Harry Christensen

Pico de Gallo:
3 tomatoes, diced
1 Anaheim pepper, diced
1 red onion, diced
1 lime, squeezed
Salt to taste

Baja Sauce:
8 oz sour cream
8 oz mayonnaise
1 tbsp minced chipotle with Adobo sauce
1lime, juiced
2 oz cilantro, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

Fish Tacos:
Cajun seasoning 
12 oz of local red grouper
1 cup Colby Jack cheese, shredded
6 six-inch flour tortillas
2 cups shredded napa cabbage and sliced red pepper, mixed together

Combine the ingredients for the Pico de Gallo and Baja Sauce in two separate bowls bowl, season with salt to taste then cover both and chill until needed. Heat a non-stick skillet on high heat. Dust the grouper with seasoning and sear on both sides until cooked through. Warm the tortillas in oven or on grill. To assemble the fish tacos, place some cheese on each tortilla, top with grouper, a dollop of Pico de Gallo, a handful of cabbage pepper mix and and finish with a spoonful of Baja sauce.