Last night my husband attended a dinner meeting at The Lodge at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, CA. The group dined in the Lodge’s A. R. Valentien restaurant on yummy things like seared halibut with baby red artichokes; warm lobster salad with Little Gem lettuce; and chicken cooked under a brick and served with wilted spinach.
When my husband walked in later carrying the traditional doggie bag – in this case, a small shiny paper box, Geena and I both sat up expectantly. Lucky for me, it was the human who got the treat this time, not the dog.
And what a treat it was. Tres Leches Cake, from the kitchen of Executive Chef Jeff Jackson, is a sublime creation of sponge cake soaked in condensed milk, whole milk and heavy cream. A popular dish on the potluck and church-social circuit, this traditional Latin American dessert (translation: three milks) is often soggy, overly sweet and piled high with frosting.
But the A. R. Valentien version, by pastry chef John Harmeyer, is an elegant, individual, dome-shaped package with a deliriously smooth, moist texture and a rich, caramelized creamy taste. Topped with cinnamon-scented whipped cream and tangy pomegranate seeds, it’s served with a fresh quince-apple puree and a weensy poached apple.
By the way, we did give Geena a dog biscuit so she wouldn’t feel left out. She ate it, but not before giving us a look that said “You cheated me!”