Walleye, Cranberry Bean, Lima, Swiss Chard

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Walleye, Cranberry Bean, Lima, Swiss Chard

Here is a great summer fish recipe using fresh shelling beans that are in season right now.  One of beans that I really enjoy cooking with are cranberry beans.  They have a vibrant color once shelled, but unfortunately like most beans they loose a lot of their color during the cooking process. Flavor wise, they are delicious.  I think cranberry beans are good mix between not overly starchy and not too creamy.  

During the mid years of my teens I lived in Minnesota (Land of 10,000 Lakes) and one of the fish that is very common in those parts of the country is walleye.  Whenever I see that as an option at the fish market I have to buy it.  Not only is it wild and not farmed raised but it is a fish that is a bit oily and a bit flakey, the result is fantastic.     

This recipe is inspired from a cassoulet, I had some duck leg meat left over from an appetizer which I will post in a few days that was a perfect compliment to the fish and beans.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Walleye

1 lb walleye cut into 4 oz pc
1 tsp of espelette 

1 1/2 cup fresh cranberry beans
1/2 onion charred, 2 cloves of garlic
4 cups chicken stock, 1 sprig of fresh thyme and savory
1 tsp of salt

1 cup of fresh lima beans blanched until tender (approx. 1-2 min)
1 bunch of young swiss chard
2 duck legs smoked and grilled
6 red cipollini onions cut in half and roasted
2 large yukon potato confit (see recipe)
8 pc of confit garlic
2 tbsp blis9 sherry vinegar
2 tbsp of confit oil, 1 tsp of chopped thyme and savory
Salt and pepper to taste

Chive flowers, nasturtium, savory, and oregano flowers

For the beans,

In a small sauce pot, add fresh cranberry beans, charred onion, garlic cloves, chicken stock, herbs, and a tsp of salt.  Bring to a boil, cover, and turn down to a simmer.  Cook for 20 minutes or until beans are tender.  Turn off the heat and allow to cool to room temperature in its cooking liquid.  

For the vegetables, 

In a pot of salted water blanch lima beans for 1-2 minutes and then place in an ice bath.  For the cipollinis onions cut in half and drizzle with olive oil and salt.  Place cut side down in a small saute pan on medium high heat.  Cook for 2 minutes and then place in a 400 preheated oven.  Roast for 15 minutes until onions are tender.   For the garlic confit.  Place a cup of oil (vegetable) and a half cup of peeled garlic in a small pot on medium heat.  Once the oil starts to simmer turn down to low.  You want the oil to barely percolate.  Cook until the garlic is golden brown and tender.  (You don't want to cook the garlic too fast where the garlic browns but is not tender all the way through).  

To finish, 

In a large saute pan on medium heat place 2 tbsp of olive oil.  Season walleye with salt on both sides.  Place the walleye skin side down into the pan.  Now season the fillet side with a little espelette pepper. Cook the fish for 4-5 minutes on the skin side.  Meanwhile in another hot saute pan with 1 tbsp of confit oil add the small diced duck leg meat. Cook for one minute and then add swiss chard and a cup of the beans with a cup of the bean stock.  Bring to a boil and add the lima beans, potatoes, onions, and garlic.  Turn down to a low, adjust seasoning with sherry vinegar, confit oil, salt.  Place a few spoonfuls in each bowl along with some of the broth.  Flip over the walleye for 5 seconds and then place on top of the vegetables.  Finish the dish with herb flowers, serve and enjoy!

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Smoked Black Cod, Cucumber Sorbet, Yogurt, Coconut

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Smoked Black Cod, Cucumber Sorbet, Yogurt, Coconut

Here is an appetizer I served just the other day for a small dinner party. This dish is light, refreshing, and absolutely delicious.  This was a huge hit, one definitely to keep in the vault of recipes.  This recipe is really highlighting the cucumbers that grow wild in the garden along with the stalks of celery we had as well.  Combined these flavors with a buttery smokey black cod and the result is really fantastic.  Lastly you get a bit of acid from the yogurt which has been foamed a  little bit to create a yogurt cloud

 

1 whole fillet Smoked Black Cod recipe here (Done at least 3 days before)

Cucumber sorbet
4 cups cucumber juice
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
3 tbsp inverted sugar
2 tbsp glucose
1 lemon juice
1 tsp salt

Aerated Yogurt
5oz fage yogurt
1 lemon juiced
4 tbsp of water
1 tsp of salt
2 cartridges of n2o 

Cucumber Compote
3/4 cup of brunoise cucumber
1/2 cup of brunoise celery
1/2 cup of brunoise young coconut meat
2 tbsp of capers
1 tsp of white balsamic
1 tsp of lemon oil
Salt to taste 

Chive oil
8 oz of chives blanched
1 1/2 cup of vegetable oil
pinch of salt

Cucumber Celery Broth
1 large cucumber
6 large stalks of celery
1 lemon
Salt to taste

Garnish Celery leaves, dill, chive blossoms, borage flowers 

Cucumber Sorbet,

Place water, sugar, glucose, and inverted sugar in a small pot.  Turn on medium high and bring to a simmer.  Cook for 2 or 3 minutes until sugars dissolve.  Pour into a bowl and chill completely. Once completely chilled add lemon juice, cucumber juice, and salt to the simple syrup.  Pour into ice cream machine and use according to your machines instructions.  Once sorbet is done place in the freezer.  

For the Aerated Yogurt,

Place all the ingredients into a isi foamer.  Add one n2o cartridge and shake the canister for a good 30 seconds to distribute the gas. Then add the 2nd cartridge and do the same.  Then place in the refrigerator until ready to use.  

For the Chive oil,

In a hot salted pot of water blanch the chives for 10-15 seconds.  Then place in a ice bath to stop the cooking process.  Allow to cool for 5 minutes.  Drain off the water from the chives, squeeze the chives to release any excess water.  Place in a vita mix and add the oil.  Puree smooth for 30-45 seconds.  Then strain through a fine mesh strainer (do not push the oil through the strainer, allow to drip, this way you won't get any of the pulp in your oil.

For the Cucumber-celery broth,

Juice cucumber and celery in a vegetable juicer.  Squeeze in lemon juice and salt.  Set aside and keep cool.

For the Coconut compote,

Add diced cucumber, celery, young coconut meat, and capers into a a small bowl. Drizzle with lemon oil, white balsamic, and a bit of salt to season. 

To finish

Slice black cod thinly and place 6 slices in the middle of the bowl.  Using a round cookie cutter add a few spoonfuls of the cucumber compote.  Then add the cucumber sorbet.  Foam the yogurt using the isi siphon.  Then pour in the cucumber broth.  Add the flowers and herbs.  Finish with the chive oil in the cucumber broth.  Serve and enjoy!

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Tuna, Zucchini Pakora, Curry, Finger Lime

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Tuna, Zucchini Pakora, Curry, Finger Lime

Here is an appetizer I made a few days ago that Jp absolutely was in love with.  He had one after another.  He just loved the hot, spicy pakora (fritter) with the buttery wild tuna.  I try not to buy and serve a lot of tuna because of the years of overfishing but this was wild and from the area of fiji and looked way too good pass to up. This is a very easy appetizer or hors'd oeuvre that packs a big punch, here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Tuna appetizer 

1 cup shredded zucchini
1/2 cup shredded carrots
2 tbsp tandoori spice or ras al hanout
1/2 cup garbanzo flour
1/3 cup rice flour
4 tbsp sparkling water
1/4 tsp of baking powder
1 tsp curry powder and 1 tsp salt 

6 oz tuna sliced thin (think half the size of sashimi)
2 tbsp of curry/turmeric oil (recipe here just change butter for oil)
Salt
1/4 lime juiced
4 finger lime 

1 cup curry mayo ( 2 tbsp of curry powder, 1 cup of mayo, 1/2 lime, salt to taste)
Coconut julienne
Chives

Oil for frying 325 degrees

For the Pakora,

Place both flours in a bowl with spices, salt, and baking powder.  Add zucchini and carrots to the batter.  With a whisk add in the water until a smooth batter is formed.  In a small sauce pot heat oil for frying to 325.  With a small spoon or mini ice cream scoop place batter into the frying oil. Fry for 2-3 minutes flipping the pakora half way through.  Strain out the pakora onto a paper towel and season immediately with salt.  Continue in batches to keep the pakoras warm until your out of batter.

For the Curry mayo,

Place all the ingredients in a bowl and stir with a whisk until well combined.  Adjust seasoning if need be.  Place in a squirt bottle

To finish 

Take your tuna slices and drizzle with curry/turmeric oil.  Squeeze lime juice over the top of the tuna.  Then season lightly with salt.  Then take pakoras a dozen or so at a time and place one slice of tuna on top of each pakora.  Then add a dollop of curry mayo.  Add finger-lime "caviar" , a sliver of young coconut, and finish with a chive "stick".  Serve and enjoy this hot and cold appetizer!

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Halibut, Fennel, Porcini and Nonzero Rice

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Halibut, Fennel, Porcini and Nonzero Rice

Here is a great summer dish that is light and absolutely delicious. I got lucky at the farmers market in Santa Monica and got some of the last porcini's of the season.  The mushroom monger said it wasn't the last of the season it was more like they were having a second season because of the rain they had been getting. Normally the season would be over by this time of the year but lucky for me it wasn't.  I made a mushroom stock and cook the rice with in it with fennel.   The rice variety was one that my boss was giving from Asia and it was called nonzero, this rice was straight from the farm and it was absolutely delicious. It was not a sticky rice per se, it had a little starch that give a tiny hint of creaminess but not quite like a risotto.  At the end of the day the rice was fantastic.  I also grilled the porcini's on my hibachi grill which gave a great smoked flavor the the meaty mushrooms.    Simple sear to the fish with a bit of fennel to finish.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

1 1/2 lb halibut cut into 4 oz pieces 

1 1/2 lb of Porcini’s
1 fennel cut in half sliced thin
1 small onion sliced thin
2 tbsp of butter and olive oil

Mushroom Stock
3 oz of dried porcini
3 oz of dried shiitake mushrooms
3 oz of dried morel
4 oz of cremini mushrooms
4 oz of button mushrooms
4 garlic cloves
2 tops of leeks
10 cups of water
Salt to taste 

1 1/2 cup of mushroom stock
3/4 cup of nonzero rice
1 tsp of salt 

Mushroom froth
2 cups of mushroom stock
4 tbsp of butter
1 tbsp of verswhip
Salt to taste 

Micro dill or fennel fronds, fennel pollen, borage to garnish

For the mushroom stock,

Place all the ingredients in to a pot and fill with water.  Bring to a boil and turn down to a simmer. Cook for about an hour to an hour and half until the stock has reduced by half and the water taste like mushrooms.  Strain out the mushrooms, season with salt and set aside and keep warm.

For the porcini's,

Start grill (hibachi in my case) bring up to 350-400 degrees.  You want to give a smokey flavor to the mushrooms without completely cooking the mushrooms all the way through.  Porcini's are very meaty and dense in texture.  They should still be a bit firm after grilling.  Simply toss with olive oil and salt, cook them for just 2 or 3 minutes on each side.   Then take off the grill and cool.

For the fennel and onion,

Slice thin fennel and onion.  In a small sauce pot on medium low heat add butter, oil, fennel, onion, and salt.  Add the top to the pot and cook for 15 minutes without browning.  Stir the pot by shaking the pot and keeping the lid on every few minutes.  Try not to take the top off and allow the steam to escape.  The onions and fennel should sweat in the their own juices until they are soft. Once tender turn off the heat and look to cool

For the rice,

Add mushroom stock and salt to a pot.  Bring to a boil and pour in the rice.  Cook for 25 minutes or until the water has been absorbed and the 

To finish,

In a medium hot saute pan add olive oil.  Season the halibut pieces with salt and place fillet side down in the pan.  Cook on that one side for 5 minutes.  Meanwhile combine the fennel, onions, mushroom stock, and rice in a small pot.  Season with salt and pepper and cook until hot and the broth has evaporated; finish with a little butter if desired. In another saute pan add butter and porcini's.  Cook for 3-4 minutes until the mushrooms are tender.  Season with salt and pepper. Place a few spoonfuls of the rice in the in the middle of the plate.  Flip over the halibut and cook for 20 seconds, then take out.  Place on top of the rice.  Add the porcini's on top the rice.  Add  verswhip, butter, and salt to the mushroom stock with a hand blender for a 1 minute.  Then froth the stock and pour around the plate.  Finish the dish with fennel pollen, fronds, and borage.  Serve and enjoy!

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Nectarine (Hostess) Pies

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Nectarine (Hostess) Pies

We have a huge Yellow nectarine tree here in Malibu that has easily over a 100 fruit on the tree. I think I have grown to love nectarines more than peaches because I'm not the biggest fan of the fuzzy skin.  I love peaches but nectarines are almost the same flavor without the fuzzy skin.  My favorite nectarine is probably the white nectarine, those tend to have the most sweetness of all the varieties.  But in this recipe I used the yellow flesh nectarines.  Try to get ones that are firm but perfectly ripened.  You want to be able to peel them but also have the sweetness from a ripened stone fruit.  

  This recipe is one I made for the fourth of July a few weeks ago, looking for a down home recipe that would bring you back to those child hood memories of hostess pies.  I served this dish the following night for comedian Ron White, warm with grilled nectarines and double vanilla ice cream. It was a huge hit to say the least.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Nectarine pie

10 medium size nectarines peeled and medium diced
1/2 of vanilla bean cut in half
1/8 tsp of cinnamon
3 tbsp of flour
1/2 cup of sugar
2 tbsp of butter
1 tsp of salt 

Pate brissee (You will have a little dough left over for another use)
3 cups plus 3 tbsp of flour
3 sticks of cold butter
1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp of ice cold water
1 1/2 tsp of salt

1 egg for eggwash
5 tbsp demerara sugar

 

For the Nectarine filling,

In medium size saute pan on medium high heat add butter, nectarines, and vanilla bean.  Cook for 3 minutes and then add sugar, cinnamon, and salt.  Cook for 3 minutes and then sprinkle the flour over the fruit.  Cook for another 5 minutes so the flour cooks out, the fruit break down a bit and the mixture is somewhat thick. Taste and adjust the seasoning if need be.  Then pour into a shallow dish to cool completely.  Once cooled you are ready to make the pies.

For the Pie dough

Preheat Oven to 375 degrees. Using the food processor again add flour to the bowl along with the salt.  Pulse a few times to combine well.  Then turn the processor on and begin to add all the butter a tbsp. at a time.  Once the butter has been combined.  Drizzle in the cold water.  Finish with a few tbsp. of flour if needed.  Normally now you put the crust into the refrigerator to let the dough come together as it gets cold.  I don't like when my dough is so cold I can't roll it and usually I am in a rush.  If you can put the dough in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes it will really help; if not simply take the dough and put a light dusting of flour onto the parchment paper and place the dough on top.  Then dust flour on the top of the dough and put a second piece of parchment paper on top of the dough. With a rolling pin roll out your dough to a thin crust consistency.  Take a medium size round ring mold (cookie cutter) and cut out pie crust.  Place a spoonful of the cooled nectarine filling in the middle of the round disk of dough. Brush the edges with egg wash.  Then take another round disk of dough and place on top. Pinch the edges to seal and then with a fork press the dough all over the edges and prick the top of each pie.  Place a piece of parchment paper on a sheet pan and place the finished pies on top. Once all are done brush with more egg wash and sprinkle with Demerara sugar Place in the oven and bake for 22-25 minutes or until golden brown.  Take out the pies and allow to cool completely or serve and enjoy!

A little irregularity to the pies gives that really home made look

 

 

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Chilled Cucumber Soup with Dill, Yogurt, and Roasted Poblano

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Chilled Cucumber Soup with Dill, Yogurt, and Roasted Poblano

Here is a simple dish that you can make in less than 30 minutes.  Quick, easy, and screams summer.  This is a perfect recipe for a vegetarian that is light and refreshing on those hot summer days.  We have a huge garden in Malibu and during the summer just a few plants of cucumbers can turn into at least 30-40 cucumbers growing wherever they can find room.  Nothing fancy here with this one, just added a little bite to the dish by adding a roasted poblano.  Add a little yogurt to the soup for body and acid.  Here is the easy summer recipe, I hope you enjoy it.

Cucumber soup

2 cucumbers
1 roasted poblano
1 1/2 cup of yogurt
3 tbsp of mint
3 tbsp of dill
3 tbsp of parsley
1 tbsp of tarragon
3 tbsp of chives
1 lemon juiced
Salt and olive oil to taste

1 cup of cherry tomatoes cut in half
1/2 cup of small diced cucumbers
3 radishes julienned
1 cup of thin bagel chips
Cucumber flowers, chive flowers, dill 

 

For the soup,

Place all the ingredients except the olive oil in a vita mix blender.  Puree until smooth (30-45 seconds).  Season with salt and place in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.  

To finish

Simple take the cherry tomatoes, cucumbers and julienned radishes into a small mixing bowl.  Drizzle the "salad" with olive oil and salt.  Add the "salad" to one side of the bowl.  Then pour the cold soup into the bowl.  Finish with cucumber flowers, chive flowers, dill, and bagel chips.  Drizzle with another touch of olive oil, serve and enjoy!

 

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Foie Gras, Sable, Poached Pear and Horseradish Mustard Jam

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Foie Gras, Sable, Poached Pear and Horseradish Mustard Jam

Here is a fantastic appetizer I served at a recent party that was absolutely amazing.  This recipe definitely straddles the sweet and savory line. Sable brenton is a great french cookie that is very similar to a shortbread with the addition of egg yolks.  So this is a fantastic way to get rid of egg yolks if you have been making a lot of meringues or egg white omelets in my case.   You should chill the dough before cooking.  This would be my only complaint if I had one about this recipe is that I didn't chill the dough. So if you are looking for perfect consistent shapes on your cookies this would be the step not to pass on. They still stay within reason, uniform, and no one would know the better if I didn't say something.  In the end if you work fast you can get away without chilling the dough and you will still end up with great looking and tasting sable cookies.  I made a mustard horseradish jam that I spread a thin layer on the cookie.  Then I added the foie gras torchorn and topped with poached pear.  Simple and delicious!.  You are going to love this recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Sable Cookies

2/3 cup (5.2 ounces, 150g) best-quality salted butter, at room temperature
2 teaspoons flaky sea salt, such as fleur de sel or Maldon
4 large egg yolks
1 cup (200g) sugar
1 3/4 cups (210g) all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons aluminum-free baking powder
1 egg
1 teaspoon of water

Poached Pears

4-5 bosc or anjou pears peeled
1/2 cup of white wine or sweet if you have it
6 cups of water
1 cup sugar
1 lemon juiced and zested
1 cinnamon stick
1 bay leaf, 2 star anise, 2 cloves, 1 tbsp of whole allspice
1 teaspoon of salt

Mustard horseradish jam

3 oz of whole grain dijon mustard
1 large horseradish root peeled and grated
2 cups of water
2/3 cup of sugar
1-2 tsp of salt

Foie Gras Torchorn recipe here (Done at least 1 day in advanced)

Garnish of edible flowers and herbs (mustard, chervil, etc...)

For the Poached pears,

Cut peeled pears in half and take out the cores.  Then place them in a pot with water, sugar, wine, lemon peel and zest, all the spices.  Then take a piece of parchment paper and cut a square.  Then fold it over in half into a triangle and then fold it again diagonally into a smaller triangle.  Then fold two more times continuing the triangle.  Then cut the point of the triangle off and cut around the outer edge to fit the size of the pot. Open the paper up (This is called a Cartouche), the paper should be a round circle that fits inside the pot with a whole in the middle of the paper.  This is basically a lid for the pears so they stay submerged.  Slowly bring the pot to barely simmering.  Cook for 20-30 minutes or until the pears are tender all the way through.  Check them with a cake tester or toothpick.  Cool to room temperature. 

For the horseradish jam,

Place all the ingredients in a small pot.  Bring to a boil and turn down to a simmer.  Cook for 15-20 minutes or until most of the water is gone, the horseradish is softened, and the mixture has thickened. Adjust seasoning if needed.  Cool to room temperature.  

For the Sable cookies,

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a mixing bowl combine sugar and egg yolks and whisk until light and fluffy (2 min).  Then in a stand mixer cream together butter and salt for 2 minutes.  Then add the egg yolks to the butter, stopping to scrape the sides of the bowl so all is incorporated.  Sift flour and baking powder into a bowl.  Then add the flour mixture to the egg mixture until completely incorporated (10-15 seconds), but without over whipping.  Take dough and place onto a parchment paper and form into a rectangle.  Place in the freezer for 15 minutes.  Take our and place another piece of parchment on top of the dough and roll the dough out with a rolling pin until the dough is 1/3 and 1/2 inch thick.  Using your cookie cutter of choice cut out cookie shapes and place on a sheet pan lined with parchment or silpat (you will probably need a spatula to help transfer the dough to the sheet pan)  Place back in the freezer for 20 minutes.  Then combine the water and egg to make an egg wash.  Brush the cookies with the egg wash (you can also prick with a fork to make patterns here if you want) and place in the oven.  Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden brown.  Take out and cool completely.  

To Finish,

Simply spread a thin layer of the horseradish jam on the cook.  Take some of the foie gras torchon and cut a thin slices and place on top of the jam and cook.  Slice the poached pears and place on top of the foie gras.  Finish with micro chervil, radish flowers, and other edible flowers.  Serve and enjoy!

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Pistachio Cream Puffs

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Pistachio Cream Puffs

If you were me pistachios are one of those ingredients that you really have a hard time disliking.  Whether they are simply roasted with salt or pureed and made into ice-cream, this is one ingredient that I always love.  This recipe is a simple cream puff (Pate a choux dough), stuffed with pistachio pastry cream and topped with a white chocolate glaze.  This recipe is easy and absolutely delicious.  I hope you enjoy this one because this recipe is one you will come back to time and time again.  Classic pate a choux dough that can be baked ahead of time and filled with pistachio cream that also can be made a day in advance.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Pistachio pastry cream
7 oz pistachio paste or cream   
3 cup milk
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste or half of a vanilla bean
6 egg yolks
1/4 plus an 1/8th cup corn starch
3 tbsp butter

Pate a choux (cream puff)
1 cup milk
1 cup of flour
1 tsp of sugar
1/4 tsp of salt
4 eggs
1 stick of butter

White Chocolate Ganache/Glaze
1/4 cream
1 cup of white chocolate chips

For the Cream Puffs 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees,  In a small pot add milk, butter, sugar, and salt.  Bring to a simmer. As soon as the butter has completely melted stir in the flour with a wooden spoon and turn down the heat to low.  Incorporate all the flour thoroughly and cook for about 1 minute.  Transfer the dough to a stand mixer with a paddle attachment. Turn on medium speed for a minute and then turn down to low speed.  Crack the four eggs into a measuring cup and add them to the dough one at a time.  Make sure the egg completely incorporates before adding the next egg.   Continue until all the eggs have been added.  Then take the dough and place in a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip.  On a sheet pan lined with  parchment paper pipe small rounds of the dough.  If the tops of the rounds have a tip from piping take your finger with a little water on it and push it down lightly.  If you don't have a piping bag just use two spoons or ice cream scoop.  Place in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes until golden brown.  Try not to open the oven door once you have put them in the oven because the cream puffs might deflate a bit.  Take out and let them cool completely.

For the Pistachio Pastry Cream,

Scald the milk with pistachio paste and vanilla bean paste in a medium sauce pot, stirring often with a whisk. Turn off the heat when the milk starts to a boil.  Beat the egg yolks and sugar in a stand mixer set to high, until the eggs and sugar form pale white ribbons (3-4 minutes).  Add the cornstarch to the eggs and beat for 30 seconds.  Temper the eggs by whisking in one ladle of milk at a time until all the milk is incorporated with the egg mixture.  Place all of the egg/milk mixture back into the pot on medium low heat.  Whisk continually until it thickens, allow about 10-12 minutes, but don't boil.  Once it has thickened incorporate butter, then pour the pudding into a bowl through a fine mesh sieve to cool.  Place a piece of plastic wrap on the surface of the pudding so it doesn't form a skin, and place in an ice bath or the refrigerator.  Cool completely. Once cooled completely place the pastry cream in a pastry bag fitted with a small plain tip.  

Then take your cream puffs and your pistachio pastry cream.  Take your cream in the pastry bag in one hand and take a cream puff in your other hand.  Using the metal point or tip of the pastry cream poke a hole in the bottom of the cream puff.  Squeeze about a half an ounce or until you can feel the cream puff getting full in your hand.  Continue until all the puffs are done.

For the White chocolate ganache,

Place white chocolate in a heat proof bowl.  Place cream in a small pot and bring to a boil.  Pour the cream over the chocolate and allow to sit for 1 minutes.  Then with a whisk stir until the mixture is completely melted and smooth.

Once the ganache is smooth you can take each cooled cream puff and coat the tops of the puffs by simply dipping them halfway into the ganache.  Once all of the tops are coated with white chocolate top with finely chopped pistachios.  Place in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve.  Serve and enjoy!

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Summer Fruit Tart with Cherries

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Summer Fruit Tart with Cherries

Here is a classic fruit tart with an addition of cherries to the fruit mix.   Summertime is an explosion of fruits and vegetables and this recipe is no exception.  This is a recipe that I have done in the past with slight variations if you want to revisit it here .   It is a basic vanilla pastry cream, inside a pate brissee crust, topped with local fresh berries and finished with a little apricot glaze.   This is another one of my favorite desserts that is bound to be a show stopper.  Nothing better than vanilla pastry cream with fruit and pie crust.  I hope you enjoy this classic fruit tart.

Pate Brissee (Crust

2 sticks of butter
2 cups of flour plus 3 tbsp
1/4 cup of ice water
1 tsp of salt
pinch of sugar

Pastry cream 

2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, seeds scraped
Pinch of salt
4 large egg yolks
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small piece

Fruit

2 cups blueberries
2 cups of raspberries
1 cup of blackberries
1 cup of cherries halved
2 cup of strawberries halved if big
1/4 cup apricot jam

For the Pastry Cream,

Scald the milk and vanilla bean in a medium sauce pot. Turn off the heat when the milk starts to a boil.  Beat the egg yolks and sugar in a food set to high, until the eggs and sugar form pale white ribbons.  Add the flour to the eggs and beat for 30 seconds.  Temper the eggs by whisking in one ladle of milk at a time until all the milk is incorporated with the egg and flour mixture.  Place the egg mixture back onto low heat and whisk continually to thicken the pudding.  Allow about 10-12 minutes, but don't boil.  Once it  has thickened finish by whisking in the cold butter.   Pour the pudding into a bowl through a fine mesh strainer.  Place a piece of plastic wrap on the surface of the pudding so it doesn't form a skin, place in the refrigerator. Leave the vanilla bean in the pudding until everything has cooled,  then discard the bean.

For the Tart dough

Preheat Oven to 375 degrees. Using the food processor again add flour to the bowl along with the salt.  Pulse a few times to combine well.  Then turn the processor on and begin to add all the butter a tbsp. at a time.  Once the butter has been combined.  Drizzle in the cold water.  Finish with a few tbsp. of flour if needed.  Normally now you put the crust into the refrigerator to let the dough come together as it gets cold.  I don't like when my dough is so cold I can't roll it and usually I am in a rush.  If you can put the dough in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes it will really help; if not simply take the dough and put a light dusting of flour onto the parchment paper and place the dough on top.  Then dust flour on the top of the dough and put a second piece of parchment paper on top of the dough. With a rolling pin roll out your dough to a thin crust consistency.  Take your tart mold and carefully place your tart dough inside the mold.  Using a rolling pin roll the pin over the mold to trim off any excess dough.  With a fork prick the dough all over.  Place a piece of parchment paper on top of the tart and add pie weights or dried beans to weight the paper down on top of the tart.  Place in the oven and bake for 22-25 minutes.  Take out the pie tart and allow to cool completely.  Take off the parchment and save the weights for another baking day.

To Finish  

Arrange the berries in whatever fashion you desire.  You can alternate berries and colors on the first level.  Then you can pile on the berries to fill in the gaps.  Once completely full.  Take your apricot jam and warm up slightly in the microwave so that it become very watery. With a pastry brush, brush the tops of the fruit so it will have a nice glaze on the fruit.  Place the tart back in the refrigerator until ready to serve.  Right before serving add fresh basil or mint leaves.  Serve and enjoy!

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Rose, Beet, Rhubarb, Foie Gras

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Rose, Beet, Rhubarb, Foie Gras

Here is a recipe completely stemmed from the garden roses growing outside.  A gorgeous variety of white, pink, and red roses line the property during the spring months.  Roses, as you know, have that wonderful floral sweet perfume, that really translates well to culinary applications.  Roses have a long history in food, including candied petals, to rose water, to teas.  The natural sweetness and aroma comes through to enhance every part of this dish. I've really fallen behind in my posts because of the busy pace of life but here is the latest installment.  I hope you enjoy! 

Rose, Rhubarb, Foie, and Beet

Rose Pana Cotta
4 cups of heavy cream
3/4 cup of sugar
2 cups of fresh rose petals
4 1/8 tsp gelatin
2tbsp of water

Rose syrup
1 cup of water
1 cup of sugar
2 cup of fresh rose petals 

Beet and Rhubarb Compote
2 red beets roasted and small diced
2 stalks of rhubarb peeled and small diced
1 cup of apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup of rose syrup
salt to taste

Rhubarb sous vide
4 rhubarb stalks peeled cut into 2 inch pieces
1/8 cup of rose syrup
1/4 cup of rose petals
cooked for 30-40 minutes until tender

Tart tatin
1 sheet puff pastry cut into small rounds
Sous vide rhubarb
1 tbsp of butter
1 egg for wash

4 4oz of pieces of foie scored
salt and pepper

For the panna cotta,

Place cream, sugar, rose petals into a pot.  Bring to a simmer then turn off the heat.  Allow the cream to cool slightly and steep the roses.  Then in another bowl mix water and gelatin and allow it to bloom for 3 minutes.  Then take some of the warm cream and strain it over the bowl of gelatin.  Once melted you can add all of the gelatin mixture back into the cream mixture and stir well.  Then strain the pana cotta onto a sheet pan and place into the refrigerator until set ( at least 2 hours). After about 30 minutes, I topped the whole pana cotta with fresh rose petals.  The mixture was still a little warm which wilted the rose petals just enough to help them stick on top.

Rose syrup

Place water and sugar in a pot. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes.  Turn off the heat and add the rose petals.  Allow to cool to room temperature.  Then puree rose petals if desired or strain out.

For Beet and Rhubarb Compote

Place all the ingredients into a pot.  Bring to a boil and turn down to a simmer.  Cook until mixture becomes thick (about 10-15 minutes. ) Adjust the seasoning if needed. Set aside to cool.

For the Rhubarb Tart Tatitin 

Place rhubarb stalks cut into 2 inch pieces, syrup, and rose petals in a sous vide bag.  Seal air tight.  Place in a water bath set at 160 degrees.  Cook for 30 to 40 minutes or until tender.  Take the rhubarb out of the bag.  On a sheet pan lined with parchment paper place 4 to 5 small pieces of the cooked rhubarb on the sheet pan.  Then place a small dollop of butter on top.  Then add the small round of puff pastry on top of the rhubarb and butter.  Repeat the steps until you have the sheet pan full.  Then with the egg brush the tops of the puff pastry.  Place in a preheated oven at 400 degrees.  Cook for 35-40 minutes until puff pastry is golden brown

To finish

Simple score the foie gras on both sides with a paring knife.  Then season with salt and pepper.  In hot saute pan add the foie gras.  Cook on the first side about 3 minutes.  Then flip over and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Take out and let it drain on a towel.  Meanwhile on the plate add a little of the rose syrup on the bottom. Add the beet compote.  Use a small round cutter and cut the panna cotta and place on the plate.  Add the tart tatin and the foie gras to the plate.  Finish with micro green, serve and enjoy!

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Nasturtium Pasta, Merguez, Olive, Manouri

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Nasturtium Pasta, Merguez, Olive, Manouri

Spring is a wonderful time of year when you look forward to beautiful days, sunshine, and spending time outside after baring the winter temperatures.  In Texas winters are not so severe and in southern California they finally got the rain they desperately needed.  Spring is always a time for lamb and in California the hills are covered in wild nasturtiums.   Here is a pasta dish inspired by the wild nasturtiums and mediterranean flavors of merguez, olive, and manouri cheese.  Jp absolutely loved this dish and it is definitely a keeper.  I absolutely love these flavors especially manouri cheese with the spicy sausage.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.

Nasturtium pasta

Green olive tapenade (see recipe)

Pasta
2 cups of nasturtium leaves
3 eggs
2 1/2 cup flour
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt 

1 cup Peas blanched
1 cup Snap peas blanched and cut in 1/3
2 oz manouri cheese
8 oz of merguez sausage (see recipe) or store bought
1/4 cup capers fried

Nasturtium to garnish 

 

For the Pasta

Take two cups of nasturtium leaves and place the in a blender with the eggs and olive oil.  Puree everything until smooth and green.  Pour the mixture into the center of a bowl.  Place 2 1/2 cups of flour around the outer edge of the spinach in the bowl.  With a fork stir the flour into nasturtium mixture until it starts to form a ball of dough.  Then use your hands to form the dough.   Add more flour if the dough is wet.  Knead the pasta for 5 minutes and then cover and rest for at least 30 minutes. 

Take your pasta and cut in half.  Leave one half covered while you work with the other half.  Take one half of the pasta with a rolling pin and roll until the dough is thin enough to fit inside the biggest setting on your pasta machine.  Then run the pasta all the way down to the lowest setting twice.  Then on the third time run it down to the second to last setting.  Use a little flour for dusting.  Then you can make any shape you want pappardelle, fettuccini, farfalle, garganelli etc... I made fettuccini and cavatelli.    

To Finish

Take a pot of salted water and bring to a boil.  Meanwhile in a hot saute pan add little oil and the merguez sausage.  Cook for 3-4 minutes and then add the pasta (4 portions) to the water.  Boil for 2 minutes or until it floats to the top of the water.  Strain out the pasta and place in the pan with the merguez.  Add the peas, snap peas, and 2-3 tbsp of green olive tapanade.  Toss for another minute and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Divide pasta into 4 bowls.  Finish with fried capers, grated manouri cheese, and lots of nasturtium flowers and petals.  Serve and enjoy!  

 

 

 

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Salt Baked Celery Root with Lotus Leaf and Sea Bean

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Salt Baked Celery Root with Lotus Leaf and Sea Bean

Here is a vegetarian dish I did a few weeks ago shooting for a dish that was light and subtle in asian flavors.  One of the main ingredients is lotus leaf.  Lotus leaf is obviously not a local ingredient,  it is native to Asia and the national flower for India.  In most Asian stores you can find dried lotus leaf.  They are normally very large and the cost is reasonable.  In this recipe I soaked the lotus leaf in hot water.  This water, after it soaked taste very much like a delicate tea.  I took the softened leaf and wrapped it around the celery root.  Then covered the whole thing in salt.  Then placed it all in a wood burning oven for about an hour. I made a sauce out of the leftover lotus water along with leek and celery.  I finished the dish off with sea beans, baby radish, and finger limes.  A great vegetarian appetizer to start off a dinner.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.

Celery root lotus leaf salt baked

4 dried lotus leaf
6 cups hot water
5 small celeriac (1.5 lb total weight)
4 cup salt

Sauce
2 cups of lotus water
4 stalks of celery diced
1 garlic cloves
1 leek diced
2 tbsp of butter and olive oil

Salt to taste

1/4 cup of sea beans
Pickled shallots ( Link here substitute stems for onions)
1 bunch of baby radishes
Celery leaves hearts
Mustard leaves
3 finger limes 


For Lotus "Tea"

Put lotus leaves in a large roasting pan or heat proof container.  Take water and bring to a simmer.  Pour hot water over the leaves.  Let it stand for at least 10-15 minutes until the leaves soften.  Place 2 leaves in a bottom of a cast iron pan.  Place the celery root in the pan and cover with the two remaining lotus leaves.  In a small bowl add salt and 6-8 tbsp of lotus water until the salt feels like wet sand.  Then cover the whole thing with the salt.  Place in the wood oven for about 1 hour ( the oven was heated around 425-450 degrees).  Let it keep cooking for 10 minutes and then crack the salt crust and take the celery out.  Allow to cool and then peel celery root.  Use a cookie cutter to cut celery root into a cylinder shape.  Set aside

For the Sauce,

In a small sauce pot add 2 tbsp of olive oil, leek, and celery.  Add 2 pinches of salt and cover the pot.  Cook for 5-7 minutes without browning.  Add the garlic and cook for another minute.  Add the lotus water and bring to a boil.  Turn down to a simmer and cook for 5-7 minutes.  Pour into a blender and puree until smooth.  While the sauce is still pureeing add the butter.  Season with salt and keep warm.

To Finish,

In a bowl add some of the celery-lotus sauce.  Warm up the celery root in the oven and season with salt.   Add it to the bowl.  Top with pickled onion, celery leaves, radish, finger limes, and sea beans.  Add mustard leaves.  Serve and enjoy! 

 

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Sea Bass, Confit Apples, Turmeric, Cabbage (Frances Fisher)

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Sea Bass, Confit Apples, Turmeric, Cabbage (Frances Fisher)

I went to the farmers market in Malibu last week and there was a fishmonger there who had some great looking fish for sale.  I talked to her and she was apart of a small operation where her husband and his friends go out to catch the fish and then she goes to the markets or restaurants to sell it.  The fish isn't out of the water for more than a day or two before you are eating it.  Unless you're catching the fish yourself, that is about the best you can do these days as far as getting fresh fish.  Well it just so happened that the famous mother (Frances Fisher ) from the movie titanic was coming over for an impromptu dinner.  She said she really didn't eat a lot of fish anymore but that she would try a piece.  I told her it was very fresh I just bought it and they had just caught it.  I told her I didn't want to force her to eat it because Eloise wasn't going to eat it either.  She decided to eat it and thanked me for it after because she said it was one of the best pieces of fish she'd ever had.  The real star of this plate besides the cabbage was the apples.   I confit or cooked the apples in turmeric butter (ghee or clarified) and the results were really amazing.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

 

Santa Barbara sea bass with confit apples

1 lb sea bass cut into 4 oz pieces

1 head of red cabbage sliced 1/2 inch thick grilled
1 bunch of broccoli grilled
1 large bunch of leeks blanched
1 tsp of cumin
2 tsp of curry
1 tbsp of butter

Red Cabbage purée
1/2 of grilled cabbage
1/4 cup of oil (substitute cream, butter, creme friache, yogurt, veganaise, mayo)
Salt to taste


Confit apples
8oz of turmeric ghee
3 Fuji apples melon balled
Salt

Turmeric ghee
6 fingers of turmeric grated fine or purée
2 lbs of unsalted butter 

Bok choy flowers
 

For the turmeric ghee, (better to make in advance if possible)

Peel turmeric and grate fine ( you might want to use cloves and parchment paper not to get everything stained orange including your fingers ) Combine butter and turmeric in a small pot on medium low heat.  Cook for 30 minutes or so until the foam from the butter has cooked off and the milk solids have separated to the bottom of the pot.  Strain off if desired or pour into a jar and it should last for a few weeks.  

For the Cabbage,

Heat up your grill or green egg if you have one.  I sliced mine whole in 5 slices.  Drizzled it with olive oil, salt and pepper.  Grill the cabbage until it is tender (10 -12 minutes flipping it half way through).  I tossed any of the outer pieces that were really burnt.  Take half of the cabbage and puree with the oil or any of the other substitutes (Originally I was trying to make a cabbage oil, but the puree just emulsified and became a smooth puree. It didn't tasted oily at all and was not greasy so I went with it as a puree.  I would probably just use cream or butter if I were to make it again but maybe not)   The rest of the cabbage I diced very small.   

For the Broccoli,

Slice the broccoli heads in half or even three times and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper.  Grill until tender (7-10) minutes.  Then cut away the stems and reserve for another purpose or dice them too.  Take the heads and dices small and set aside.  

For the Apples,

Simply take a melon baller ( I used one that looked like gnocchi or shell) and ball out the apples.  Place them in a pan with the turmeric ghee.  Add a pinch of apples and turn on medium low heat.  You can put a cartouche (parchment paper lid on top) if you desire.  Cook for 15 -20 minutes until the apples are tender but not mush.  Set aside and keep warm. 

To finish,

In a cast iron or non stick pan add olive oil to the pan.  Season fish with salt on the skin side.  Season with salt and pepper on the filet side. Place the skin side down of the bass in the pan.  Push down slightly for 15 seconds until the fillet won't curl up any more and lays flat in the pan.  Cook for 5 minutes in the pan.  Meanwhile place olive oil and butter in another saute pan along with blanched leeks, broccoli, and cabbage.  Saute for one minute and then add cumin and curry powder.  Cook for another 2 minutes and then finish with salt.  Place a spoonful of the cabbage puree on the plate.  Then add the vegetables to the plate.  Add some of the apples around the puree.  Flip the fish over for 20 seconds in the pan. Finish with flowers and one piece of the fish on top skin side up.  Drizzle a little of the turmeric butter around the dish.  Serve and enjoy! 

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Asparagus, Olive, Hollandaise, Radish

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Asparagus, Olive, Hollandaise, Radish

Here is a simple spring appetizer that anyone can do.  It takes minimal prep and this is really something that can be put together in no time.  I made this one just the other day at the peak of Asparagus season.  I just landed off the plane and had a dinner to make that evening for guests.  By the time I made it to work I had two hours to basically make a 3 course dinner.  Here was the first course in that dinner.  It takes a classic pairing of asparagus and hollandaise.  I added a few other ingredients to put a little twist on a classic dish.  I added olive, petite basque cheese, and some radish.  There is only a few ingredients to use in this dish so the execution must be perfect.  Nothing to hide behind in this dish. When these ingredients all come together it is a perfect marriage of flavors. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy!

 

2 bunches of large asparagus peeled

2 red radish juilenned

2 oz of petit basque 

1 cup of black beldi olives de-seeded and pureed 

 

Hollandaise

4 egg yolks

2 tbsp of white wine

8 oz of melted butter (clarified if you have it)

1 small lemon juiced

Salt to taste

 

Radish and chive flowers to garnish

 

For the asparagus,

Bring a small pot of heavily salted water to a boil.  The salt needs to be very heavy so the water taste salty. Trim the asparagus of the bottom stalks and peel the rest of the stalk up to the tip.  Place the asparagus in the water and cook until they are just done.  This is the crucial point.  You want to cook them for about 1 1/2 - 2 minutes until they are just tender.  You don't want a heavy crunch to the asparagus.  Believe me this was one thing I learned from a french chef.  The way I was taught normally was to blanch them so they are still crunchy.  But leave these ones in just a little longer until they just have cooked all the way through without over cooking and turning to mush (shouldn't happen in 2 minutes).  I know this might sound contrary to what most teach.  But believe me when the asparagus still have their integrity and cut almost like butter paired with the olive and hollandaise it truly is magical.  Immediately take out and place in a water bath.  Take out and drain on a paper towel.  Place beldi olives in a food processor and pure until smooth (I didn't add any oil).  I trimmed the stalks of the asparagus a little more and used them as little pieces on the plate.  Take a piece of plastic wrap and place flat on the counter.  Take a tiny off set spatula and place a small rectangle of olive puree on the plastic wrap.  Then take one asparagus and roll the olive around the asparagus using the plastic wrap.  Use your fingers to flatten and make it unified.  Then unwrap the plastic and place on a plate for later.  Continue until 2/3 of the asparagus are done.  I left a few without for the top of the dish.

For the hollandaise,

Place egg yolks and white wine into a stainless steel bowl.  Place over a double boiler or a pot with a little water in it simmering.  With a whisk continuously stirring, whisk the egg yolks until they are thick and a airy but not scrambled.  Take the bowl off the heat.  Make a ring with a towel and place the bowl in the ring (this allows you to pour the butter with one hand and stir using the other hand without holding the bowl).  Slowly pour in the butter, a ladle at a time stirring constantly.  Season with salt and lemon juice.  Keep in a warm place.  

To finish,

Place a large spoonful of hollandaise on the plate.  Place two asparagus on the hollandaise.  Then place a few of the stalks around the sauce and in between the asparagus.  Add the radish and finish with strips of petite basque cheese, radish, and chive flowers. Serve and enjoy this simple but delicious dish!

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Turnips, Koji, Pickled Plum, Mizuna

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Turnips, Koji, Pickled Plum, Mizuna

Here is another course in the Smoky Robinson dinner. This one was all about turnips and preparing them in different ways.  Grilled, Pickled, Sautéed, and preserved.  Turnips to me seems like always a bit of a challenge because of the overwhelming earthy taste.  But turnips can be really good as well. I wasn't brought up on turnips so for me it is a bit of a challenge to be over joyed with passion for these root vegetables.  This dish has a very asian approach to the recipe giving some surprises with the pickled plum.  Here is the recipe and I hope you enjoy!

 

Grilled Turnips

12 baby turnips 

2 tbsp of koji

2 tbsp of olive oil

Grill on egg for an hour and 1/2 at 300 degrees 

 

Pickled Turnips

3 baby round turnips white sliced thin

1/3 cup rice wine vinegar 

1/3 cup white balsamic 

1/4 cup water 

1 tbsp salt 

1/4 cup sugar

1 tbsp sechuan pepper 

1 ginger 

2 garlic cloves

 

Marinated Turnips

5 baby purple turnips sliced thin

1/4 cup of kasu 

1 tbsp ginger

2 garlic

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar

1/3 cup water

 

Saute Turnips

6 baby turnips cut in half sliced thin

1 onion sliced thin

2 tbsp koji

1 tbsp of oil and 2 tbsp of butter

Pinch of salt if needed

 

2 pickled plums or umbeosha

12 small plums

2 tbsp of salt

3 tbsp of sugar

1 cup of rice wine vinegar

1/2 cup of apple cider 

2 star anise

1 cinnamon stick

1 ginger

2 cloves  

 

Green Kimchi (at least 2 weeks done ahead of time)

1 head of napa cabbage julienned

1 daikon radish julienned

1 carrot shredded

2 tbsp ginger and garlic minced

2 1/2 tbsp of pickling salt

2 jalapenos, 2 serranos, 2 poblano, 2 thai chiles

1 bunch of cilantro 

splash of rice vinegar

 

Green kimchi chips

4 cups of water

1 cup of sushi or Jasmine rice 

2 cups of kimchi 

 

1/4 cup of mizuna 

1 bunch of broccoli or radish flowers

 

For Grilled baby turnips,  Preheat big green egg to 325 degrees

Mix olive oil, koji, and 12 baby turnips all together.  Sprinkle with a few pinch of salt.  Pour onto a sheet of aluminum foil and place on your green egg or grill.   Cook for 45- 1 hour or until tender.  Set aside until later.  

Pickled Turnips,

Place sliced turnips in a small container.  Place all the other ingredients in a small pot and bring to a boil.  Once it comes to a boil pour over the turnips.  Cover and let it sit until room temperature.  

Marinated Purple Turnips,

Place the sliced turnips in a bowl.  Place the rest of the ingredients in vita mix and puree until smooth.  Pour the puree over the turnips and allow the the turnips to marinate for at least 2 hours.  

For the Green Kimchi,

Place the cut napa cabbage, daikon, and carrot into a bowl.  Place the rest of the ingredients into a vita mix and puree until smooth. Pour over the vegetables and mix well.  Allow to sit for 30 minutes and then pack into a preserve jar with a weight.  Allow to ferment for at least a week up until a month.   

To make the kimchi chips

Take water and rice and place into a pot.  Cook for 30-35 minutes until the rice is overcooked.  Then place half of the rice into a vita mix with the kimchi.  You might have to add a touch of water if all the water has evaporated during the cooking process. Puree until smooth.  Pour into a bowl and you can pour the rest of the over cooked rice in with the puree (this will give you a little texture to the chip).  Pour the rice-kimchi mixture on to a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and smooth evenly in a thin layer (you might need two sheet pans)  Place into a dehydrator or an oven set at 140 degrees or 150 degrees if that is the lowest your oven will go if you don't have a dehydrator.   Allow to completely dry 6-8 hours.  Once completely dried you can break the "chips" up into smaller pieces.  

To make the chips take the dried rice-kimchi and place into a fryer oil set at 325 degrees.  The chip should puff up a little and fry up fast.  Drain out on paper towels and season with salt.  Set aside until ready to use.  

For the pickled plums

Place plums in a preserve jar or container.  Place all the other ingredients into a small sauce pot.  Bring to a boil and then pour over the plums.  Cover and allow to sit for at least one week.

To finish,

Place onions and sliced turnips in a small pot with oil, butter, koji, and pinch of salt.  Cover and cook for 15-18 minutes until the onions and turnips are tender and soft.  Place a spoonful of the sautéed turnips in the bottom of the bowl.  Then place a few halved grilled turnips on top.  Add some of the marinated and pickled plumbs to the bowl.  Add two small pieces of pickled plum to the bowl.  Add the kimchi chip on top.  Finish with mizuna and the flowers.  Serve and enjoy this in depth turnip dish!

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Black Cod, Dill, Fermented Pear, Fennel

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Black Cod, Dill, Fermented Pear, Fennel

Here is a recipe I was trying some different techniques with.  Sometimes playing around with food and different techniques can result in something great.  I was trying to make like a cold torchon or terrine of fish without using Transglutaminase (meat glue) to hold the fish together.  I ended up with a warm "terrine" that was really delicious.  I first cured the fish for a few hours to firm up the fish.  Then added gelatin, dill, and rolled up the fish into a log and sous vide it.  I paired it with fermented pear, fennel, and buttermilk sauce.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Black cod
3 fillets cod fillet
2 cups salt
2 cups sugar

1 bunch of dill chopped fine and 1 tsp of gelatin

Fermented pear
3 pears sliced
1 lemon juiced
2 tbsp of salt

Pickled fennel
4 stalks of fennel sliced thin, fronds removed
1 cup rice wine vinegar
1 tsp fennel
2 garlic cloves
1 Serrano
1/3 cup of sugar
2 tsp of salt

1 cucumber shaved
2 baby zucchini shaved
12 slices of fermented pear
1/4 cup of pickled fennel
1 fresh horseradish
1 bunch of fennel pollen
Handful of dill sprigs
Lemon verbena oil
Salt to taste

Buttermilk sauce
1 cup of buttermilk
1/2 cup of creme fraiche
1 lemon zested
Salt to taste

Lemon verbena oil
2 bunches of lemon verbena
3 cups of oil

For the Black Cod

Take your 3 fillets of Black cod and cut the skin off.  Then cut out the bones that runs down the center of the fillet (So you basically cut the fillet in half lengthwise and cut out the bones) Then mix salt and sugar and cure the fish for 4 hours.  Then rinse off the cure mixture and pat dry.  Place in a stove top smoker and smoke on high heat for 1 minute and then turn off the heat and let it sit inside for 20 mins to penetrate the fish without heat .  Take the black cod loins and coat with chopped dill and sprinkle with gelatin.   Take two long pieces of plastic wrap and overlap them.  Then try and place the loins on top of each other and roll the loins using the plastic wrap into a log.   Poach in 120 degree water for 25-30 mins.  Take out and let it rest.

Meanwhile while the fish is curing

Lemon Verbena Oil,

Take the oil and place in a small pot along with the verbena.  Slowly bring the oil up to where it just starts to bubble slightly.  Turn off the heat and allow to cool completely to room temperature.  Strain off and set aside.

For the Fermented Pear, (needs to be done at least 2 days in advanced)

Take pear and slice thin on a mandolin, place in a bowl with salt and lemon juice.  Then pack the pear into a preserve jar with a weight.  Close the lid and allow to sit in a dark place at room temperature for at least 2 days.  After 2 days you can stop the fermentation by placing in the refrigerator and it will keep up to a month.  

For the Buttermilk Sauce,

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.  Adjust seasoning and set aside.

For the Pickled Fennel, (can be done at least a day in advanced)

Place slice fennel into a preserve jar or small container.  Combine the rest of the ingredients into a small pot and bring to a boil.  Pour over all of the contents of the pot over the shaved fennel stalks.  Cover and allow to come to room temperature.   

To Finish,

In a bowl add shaved cucumber, zucchini and a little of the verbena oil.  Season with salt and place on the plate.  Then add the pickled fennel, fermented pear, and fennel pollen.  Take the fresh horseradish and grate over the top of the salad.  Then take your black cod and slice a nice slice and place on the plate.  Finish the plate with dots of the buttermilk sauce.  Serve and enjoy! 

 

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Spring Onions, Lentils, and Cauliflower

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Spring Onions, Lentils, and Cauliflower

Here is a great vegetarian dish that I made using the spring onions, beluga lentils, and cauliflower.  There is no frills on this dish.  The overwhelming flavor that makes this dish is the wood roasted spring onion sauce, along with the wood roasted cauliflower. The wood flavor really makes this dish, without it would be a good dish but not a great one.  Straight forward recipe that makes simple ingredients better.   Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.

 

2 cups of water or vegetable stock

1/2 cup of beluga lentils

1 thyme sprig

2 garlic cloves

1 tsp of salt

Splash of sherry vinegar

 

1 head of caulfower

3 tbsp of olive oil

1 tbsp of zaatar spice

salt to taste

 

6 spring onions

2 tbsp of olive oil

1 serrano

salt to taste

1/3 cup veganise or mayo

Micro cilantro to garnish

 

For the Beluga Lentils,

Place all the ingredients in a pot and bring to a boil, turn down to a simmer and cover with a lid.  Cook the lentil for about 25-30 minutes until they are tender all the way through but not over cooked.   Set aside to cool.

For the Spring onions,

Get your wood oven or grill up to 450 degrees.  Cut the spring onions in half where the white begins to turn green.  In one pan add all the green tops of the green onion along with a serrano chili pepper.  Drizzle olive oil and salt.  Roast in the oven for 10-12 minutes until they are tender and start to brown.  Try not let them char too much if you want your sauce to be nice and green.  If you don't care about the color then char the tops.  For the bottoms cut in half lengthwise, place in a pan, drizzle with olive oil and salt.  Roast them in the wood oven for 15-20 minuted or until tender all the way through.  Take out and set aside.

Combine the green roasted tops with the serrano, and veganaise or mayo or aioli in a vita mix.  Puree until smooth and adjust season with salt.  Set aside.

For the Cauliflower,

Take a head of cauliflower and slice in 1/2 inch pieces.  Drizzle olive oil, zaatar, and salt.  Place on a sheet pan and roast for 15-20 minutes until done.  Take out and set aside.

To finish,

Simply heat up the lentils and finish with a little salt, pepper, sherry vinegar, and butter.  Place a few spoonfuls of the green onion sauce around the bowl.  Add a few spoonfuls of the lentils.  Then place the roasted cauliflower on top along with one half roasted spring onion.  Top with olive oil and micro cilantro.  Serve and enjoy!

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Belgium Endive, Buerre Rouge, Marcona Almond

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Belgium Endive, Buerre Rouge, Marcona Almond

Another vegetarian dish that was really a great surprise.  Endive and bitter greens in general aren't my favorite ingredients to use but sometimes when cooked they take on a milder flavor.  Pairing bitter greens with a sweet balsamic vinegar is always a great easy direction to take when trying to mask the bitterness of the green.  In this case I made a buerre rouge or a red buerre blanc mixing half red wine and half balsmaic vinegar.  The result is a luscious sauce that goes perfect with the roasted endive.  The rest of the dish is a little crunch from bread crumbs, marcona almonds and a quick pickle radish with verjus.  This recipe is very simple and really takes minimal time.  Here it is, I hope you enjoy!

 

4 belgium endive cut in half

2 tbsp of butter and olive oil

salt to taste

1/2 cup of toasted panko bread crumbs

1/2 cup of marcona almonds

 

Buerre Rouge

1 cup of red wine

1 cup of balsamic 

1 sprig of thyme 

1/3 cup of heavy cream

10 tbsp of butter

salt to taste

 

1 watermelon radish slice thin

1/4 cup of verjus

1 tbsp of salt

Micro cilantro to garnish 

 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees,

In an oven proof pan on medium high heat add 2 tbsp of butter and olive oil.  Cut the endives in half and place them face down into the pan.  Season with salt and cook for 3 minutes and then place into the oven.  Roast for 20-25 minuted until the endive is tender all the way through.  Test with a cake tester to make sure it can go through the endive easily all the way through.  Take out and let it rest.

For the Buerre Rouge Sauce,

Place red wine, balsamic, and thyme into a small pot on medium high heat.  Reduce by 2/3 and then add the cream.  Reduce that by half and then add the butter.  Season with salt and keep warm.  

For the Radish,

Slice the radish thin and season with salt.  Allow to sit for 10 minutes and then add the verjus.

To finish,

Simply Add the belgium endive to the plate.  Top with toasted bread crumbs.  Drizzle the buerre rouge around the plate.  Add almonds and radishes to the plate.  Finish with a little micro cilantro, serve and enjoy!  Try adding a little blue cheese to this dish and it is amazing!

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Sunchoke Chawanmushi, Truffle, and Pickled Mushrooms

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Sunchoke Chawanmushi, Truffle, and Pickled Mushrooms

Chawanmushi is a typically a Japanese steamed custard that normally has seafood, dashi, and mushrooms.  This dish is taking that concept and trying to highlight the sunchokes or jerusalem artichokes.  This recipe is definitely a unique one.  You have the subtle flavors of sunchoke throughout, I added just a hint of truffle as well.  Then I topped it with a sweet ginger sauce that I think was the real star of this dish.  Finish the dish with sunchoke chips, cilantro and pickled mushrooms.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy!

 

Sunchoke Chawanmushi

1 lb sunchoke  430g peeled

4 cup vegetable stock

1 piece ginger 

1 tsp salt 

Simmer until tender puree until smooth 

 

400 ml  2 1/2 cup puree

4 eggs

1 tsp truffle oil

Salt to taste

Steam for 8-10 minutes until just set

 

Ginger agave dressing

2 tbsp ginger juice

1/4 cup agave 

2 tbsp soy sauce

1/3 cup white balsamic 

Salt to taste

 

Pickled mushrooms recipe here

Fried sunchokes- shave thin and fry in oil at 315 degrees

Flowering Cilantro 

 

For the sunchokes,

Place peeled sunchokes in a small pot with ginger, stock, and salt.  Bring to a slow simmer and cook until the sunchokes are tender.  Then puree until smooth.  Measure out 2 1/2 cups of the puree and mix with the eggs, truffle oil, and salt to season.  Then place in ramekins or tea cups.  Place the cups into a steamer that can hold them flat.  Steam the custards until just set about 8-10 minutes.

Meanwhile for the ginger agave dressing, place all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.  Adjust seasoning with salt if need be.and set aside.

To Finish,

Take the chawanmushi out of the steamer.  Top the custard with a few spoonfuls of the ginger dressing.  Then add the sunchoke chips, pickled mushrooms, and flowering cilantro.  Serve and enjoy!

 

 

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Blue nose Sea Bass with Cara Cara Orange and Buckwheat Risotto

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Blue nose Sea Bass with Cara Cara Orange and Buckwheat Risotto

Here is a great fish dish using a lesser known bluenose sea bass. This sea bass is normally found around the waters of Australia and New Zealand.  Limited in the amount they can catch, It is not the highly over fished chilean sea bass. For this recipe I paired this delicate fish with cara cara orange butter sauce.  Simple and delicious, but when citrus season rolls around its hard not to through this in fruit in everything.  I found some great local buckwheat groats at the farmers market and made a risotto with it.  I finish the dish with some dill oil, fennel, fried brussel sprouts and baby squash.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

1 1/2 lb blue nose sea bass cut into 4oz-5oz pieces

Cara Cara Sauce

3 cara cara oranges pulp and juice

1 tbsp of cara cara zest

1/4 cup cream

1 stick of butter 

salt to taste 

 

Buckwheat Groats "Risotto"

1/2 cup of buckwheat (kasha)

1 shallot minced 

1 garlic clove minced 

3-4 cups of chicken or vegetable stock 

1oz of parmesan shredded

2 tbsp of butter and 2 tbsp of olive oil

2 tbsp of snipped chives 

salt and pepper to taste 

 

Orange and Fennel Salad

2 cara cara oranges supremes  (segments)

1/2 of fennel shaved thin

1 oz of mustard fronds 

1 tbsp of olive oil

salt to taste

 

4 oz of brussel sprouts cut in half and fried until golden brown

4 oz of baby yellow squash blanched (patty pan)

Dill Oil

2 bunches of dill blanched 

1 cup of vegetable oil

pinch of salt

 

For the Dill oil,

simply blanch dill bunches for 15 seconds in boiling water then immediately shock them in a bowl of ice water.  Once cooled completely take out and ring of any excess water.  Place in a vita mix with oil and puree for about a minute until vibrant green. Strain and season and place in a squirt bottle until ready to use.

For the Buckwheat risotto,

In a small sauce pot add olive oil, shallot, and garlic.  Saute for 1 minutes then add in your buckwheat groats with a 1  1/2tsp of salt. Cook for one minute and then add 1 cup of the stock.  Cook until all the liquid has evaporated, then add another cup.  Continue the process until the groats become tender (about 30 minutes).  Then finish the risotto with the butter, cheese, chives, salt and pepper.  Set aside and keep warm.

Cara Cara Sauce,

In a small sauce pot add juice, pulp, and zest.  Reduce the liquid by half.  Then add the cream and reduce that by half.  Then pour everything in a blender or using a hand immersion blender puree until smooth and finish by adding to the sauce the butter 1 tbsp at a time until it has emulsified. Season with salt and set aside.  (strain if desired)

To Finish,

In a large saute pan add 3 tbsp of olive oil.  Take your blue nose sea bass and season generously with salt on both sides of the fish.  Then place the fish skin side down into the pan (not you can score the skin with a knife if you so choose, I did not) The fish will want to curl up, so take your fingers or spatula, carefully not burning them, and push down on the fish for about 10 seconds.  This will help "set" the skin of fish flat in the pan so a nice even crispy skin can be achieved.  Cook for 4-5 minutes on the skin side. Meanwhile heat up your baby squash in a small saute pan with a little butter and olive oil.  Season with salt.  In a mixing bowl add shaved fennel, orange supremes. and mustard greens.  Season with some of the juice from the orange and olive oil.  Season with salt.  On a plate take a spoonful of the orange sauce. Then place a spoonful of the risotto down on the plate.  Flip the fish over for 20 seconds in the pan just to finish the fish the rest of the way.  Then place down on to the plate.  Top the fish with fennel orange salad.  Place a fried brussel sprout on top along with a baby squash.  Drizzle a little dill oil on to the plate and serve and enjoy!

 

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