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Sweet Potato with Thai Red Curry, Black Garlic, and Myoga

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Sweet Potato with Thai Red Curry, Black Garlic, and Myoga

“Twist on Thai”

Want a new and exciting sweet potato dish that is not only delicious but healthy too? If you are like my wife and not the biggest fans of sweet potato this is a recipe bound to convert all those haters into believers. Not only is it easy but it is absolutely delicious!

This recipe could be served as an appetizer or an entree. This was a huge hit with Jp and his guests that I served recently. This dish has everything from sweet, to spice, to crunch and acid. A great balance of flavors and textures that is bound to make any guest extremely please. This is a fantastic vegetarian recipe that could easily be a whole meal in itself. This a not a time consuming recipe as well and the sauce can be made ahead of time and just reheated when you need it. Here is the recipe on a asian inspired sweet potato. I hope you enjoy it!

Red Curry Sauce

1 finger of ginger sliced

1 lemongrass stalk sliced

1/2 onion sliced

4 garlic cloves

1 star anise, 1 cinnamon stick, 3 limes Kaffir lime leaves (if you have them)

2 red peppers chopped

2 cans of coconut milk

4 oz of red curry paste

2 1/2 oz of palm sugar or granulated sugar

1 tsp of fish sauce (optional)

2 tsp of sesame oil

1/4 cup of each fresh thai basil, mint, cilantro leaves

4 white sweet potatoes roasted

1 cup of wild rice fried (see recipe)

Pickled Myoga Ginger

6 myoga ginger cut in quarters

1/2 cup of rice wine vinegar

1/3 cup of sugar

Black Garlic Mayo

2 bulbs of black garlic peeled

1 cup mayo

salt

micro cilantro

For the Red Curry,

In small sauce pot on medium heat add sesame oil, onion, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, cinnamon stick, red pepper, star anise and kaffir lime leaves.  Cook for 10 minutes without browning.  Then add sugar and red curry paste and cook for 1 minutes or until the sugar dissolves.  Then add the coconut milk and bring to a simmer.  Cook for 5 minutes and then turn off the heat, add fish sauce and your herbs to steep for 10 minutes.  Strain through a fine mesh strainer, keep warm until ready to use. You might need to adjust the seasoning with a pinch of salt.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Take sweet potato and drizzle with olive oil and salt.  Place the sweet potatoes in a roasting and place in the oven.  Cook sweet potatoes for about an hour or until tender.  Take out and let them rest. 

For the black garlic mayo,

Add all the ingredients into a blender and puree until smooth. Adjust the seasoning with salt. Place into a squeeze bottle until ready to use.

For the pickled myoga,

Place vinegar, salt, and sugar into a pot. Bring to a boil, place sliced myoga in a heat proof bowl. Pour the hot vinegar over the ginger. Cover and allow to come to room temp.

To Finish,

Simply take the sweet potato and cut it into 1 inch thick pieces. Place it in the bottom of the bowl. Add some hot red curry sauce around the sweet potato. Take the black garlic mayo and place dots of the sauce around the bowl. Add the fried wild rice on top along with myoga, and cilantro sprigs. Serve and enjoy this sweet and spicy vegetarian dish!

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Ying Yang Pasta  (summer and winter)

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Ying Yang Pasta (summer and winter)

This recipe is a little bit of Ying and Yang. It is basically two pasta dishes in one. Lemon and ricotta and Braised Beef with its jus. When I originally made this recipe it was a little bit of spring mixed with a little bit of winter. The inspiration is that time period during the spring harvest and weather turning from cold to warm. That moment when your almost out of winter but heading into spring and you want something a little light and a little heavy. Just getting back from Italy a few days ago this recipe really hits home with me because of all the pasta I had each and every day. You could also easily translate this from summer to fall. I love pasta and I hope you enjoy this one too!  

Basic Egg Pasta
2 eggs
3 egg yolks
2 tbsp warm water
2 cups flour
1 cup semolina
1 tsp of salt 

Ricotta filling
1 lb of home made ricotta  (see here)
2 oz of grated parmesan
1 lemon zested
Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup of cream 1 lemon juiced 1 lemon zested 4 tbsp of butter

3 lb of boneless kobe short ribs cut into 2 inch pieces ( if you have them on the bone that is fine, more flavor)
1 onion
6 garlic cloves chopped
2 carrots
2 stalks of celery
3 tbsp of tomato paste
3 cups of red wine
5 cups of  beef stock or chicken
1 sprig of rosemary
1 large sprig of thyme and parsley
3 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper

 For the short ribs,

Season the short ribs with salt and pepper on both sides.  In a medium size braising pot on high heat add oil and short ribs.  Sear for roughly 5 minutes on the first side and then turn over.  Then add all the vegetables and cook for another 5 minutes.  Then add your wine and tomato paste.  Reduce the wine by half and then add your stock or water.  Bring to a boil and then turn down to a simmer, add your herbs and cover.  Cook for about 2- 2 1/2 hours or until they are tender and almost falling apart.  Take the meat out of the pot and place in a bowl while it is still hot.  Then take half of the liquid and puree in a vita mix with all the vegetables from the braising pot.  Puree and pour over the short ribs.  Let the meat rest in half of the puree liquid to cool completely ( the short ribs should be completely covered so not to dry out..  Place the other half of braising liquid  with the left over puree sauce into small sauce pot and reduce it by half or until is starts to thicken or glaze a spoon.  Strain and season with salt and set aside and keep warm.  When the short ribs have completely cooled take them out of the pureed sauce and chop or shred somewhat fine.  It should be able to almost do this with your hands because they will be so tender.  Once you have a bowl of fine shredded or chopped (could do it in a food processor as well but don't puree too much so you don't end up with baby food mashed meat).  Season the meat with salt and pepper, and add a few spoonfuls of the pureed sauce into the meat mixture.  You want to make the meat taste delicious and moist.  You don't want dried un-flavorful meat for your agnolotti filling.  So I would add maybe 8 oz of the sauce to the meat to make it juicy but not runny.  Once you have a moist, not soaked, meat filling place it back in the refrigerator until the  sauce has adhered to the meat and congealed. ( about 2 hours)

For the ricotta filling,

Place all the ingredients except the egg into a food processor. Puree everything until smooth.  While the food processor is still running add your egg.  Season with salt and pepper and place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

To make the agnolotti,

For the Pasta

Place 2 cups of flour with semolina in a bowl. Make a well in the center of the flour.  Add eggs, water, and salt.  With a fork stir the egg 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 raring

Take your pasta and cut in half.  Leave one half covered while you work with the other half.  Take the 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 ( I use the kitchen aid attachment).  Then run the pasta all the way down to the lowest setting twice.  Dusting the dough with flour if it is too wet. Then on the third time run it down to the second to last setting.  Again, Use a little flour for dusting.  You should have long sheets at this point.  Using your pastry bag pipe the cheese mixture along the bottom of the pasta leaving about a 1/2 inch from the edge.  Run it along the whole length of the pasta sheet leaving about an inch or two at the ends (one long tube of filling).  Then take a pastry brush or spray bottle of water and brush the top portion of the pasta sheet.  Take the bottom part pasta closest to the filling and roll over to the brushed top portion.  You should now have a long tube like pasta running all the way down the length of the pasta.  Now, at every 1/2 inch use your index fingers and press down with with each index finger to create a little "ravioli"  Continue the same thing all the way down the pasta sheet.  Then using a pinwheel cutter cut away the excess pasta at the top.  Then cut in between each press that you make with your fingers to create each agnolotti.  Place on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and extra semolina flower to help prevent sticking.   Set aside while you aside while you repeat the same process with the other half of the pasta ball.  

This time you want to fill with the pasta with the short rib filling but instead of using a continuous line of cheese filling we want to leave about a 1/8 inch gap every 1/2 inch to create the same size agnolotti as the cheese ones.  Because the cheese filling is easy to manipulate you can make one continuous line but with the meat being cold and being meat it is a little easier to leave a space between each agnolotti (the space I/8 inch is where you will press your fingers to make the shape.  Continue this the whole length of the pasta and repeat the same steps from above with the cheese.

To Finish,

Place your beef agnolotti pasta in salted boiling water and cook for 2-3 minutes until they float to the top.  Strain off and place in the saute pan with the beef sauce, add a touch of butter and season with salt and pepper, set aside and keep warm.  Place your ricotta pasta in the water and cook for 2-3 minutes. Strain off the lemon ricotta pasta and place in a saute pan with cream, lemon juice, 1/2 cup of pasta water Let it simmer for 1-2 minutes and then add the rest of the butter to make a pan sauce.  Season the whole pan with salt and pepper.  Place 3 of each pasta in a bowl and garnish with basil and parmesan. Serve and enjoy!

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Wild Salmon with Mustard Foam, Bone Marrow Croquette

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Wild Salmon with Mustard Foam, Bone Marrow Croquette

This recipe you utilizes a classic condiment mustard as the glue that holds this dish together.  The French cuisine has always loved mustard in their recipes whether it be on a fish, meat, sandwich, vegetable.  I remember making this mustard crusted salmon over 20 years ago when I was just starting out in the industry.  This take the old concept and takes more of a modern approach to the sauce.  

1 lb of wild salmon cut into 4 oz pieces
1 bunch of swiss chard chopped into 1/4 inch
8 oz of trumpet royal mushrooms cut in half
1 onion sliced thin
1-2 tbsp of whole grain mustard
2 tbsp of butter and 2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Bone Marrow and Potato Croquette
4 oz of bone marrow medium diced
1 idaho potato peeled and boiled and riced
1 cup of water
4 oz of bone marrow melted or tallow (beef fat rendered)
1 cup of flour
4 eggs
1 tbsp of salt and pepper to taste

3 cups of panko crumbs

Mustard bechamel (2 is cartridges for foam)
2 tbsp of butter
2 tbsp flour
4 cups of milk warm
3-4 oz of dijon mustard
Salt and pepper to taste 

Sprigs of dill and chive blossoms

For the Mustard béchamel,

In a sauce pot on medium heat add butter to melt. Once the butter has melted add the flour to make a roux with a whisk.  Once the roux has formed add the milk one cup at a time stirring constantly with a whisk.   Keep adding the milk until a thick sauce has formed.  Cook for 5-7 minutes on medium-low to cool out the flour.  Then add the mustard and whisk in.  Finish the béchamel with salt and more mustard if needed.  Once it has been seasoned together pour into an isi canister and charge with 1-2 charges.  Keep in a hot water bath to ensure the "foam" will be hot.

For the Croquette,

In a small pot add water, beef fat, and salt.  Bring to a simmer. As soon as the fat 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 bowl along with the riced potato. Using a paddle attachment, turn on the mixer to 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 and you have a smooth dough. Then spoon (mini ice cream scoop) or pipe the mixture into silicone moulds approximately 3cm deep,

Push a marrow cube into each one, followed by a dab of Dijon mustard, then cover with more of the mix. Place the croquettes in the freezer until hard, then press them out of the moulds.

Roll the croquettes in panko breadcrumbs. Half-fill a large saucepan or a deep-fat fryer with oil and heat the oil to 350 F. Fry the croquettes a few at a time until crisp and hot inside.  Take out, drain, and season with a pinch of salt and keep warm

To Finish,   Preheat oven to 275 degrees.

In a large sauté pan add olive oil and turn on medium low heat.  Season salmon with salt and place in the pan fillet side down. You want to cook the salmon very slow, after 2 minutes on the stove you can place in the oven for 6-8 minutes.  Then take out and let it rest.  You want the salmon to be rested, and an internal doneness of medium- medium rare center.   Meanwhile in another large saute pan add butter, olive oil, mushrooms, and onions,  Cook for 5 minutes and then add swiss chard.  Cook for another 4 minutes and then add mustard.  Stir well, Season everything with salt and pepper and keep warm.  On a plate add mushroom mix to the bottom of the plate.  Then take your isi canister with mustard béchamel and foam it over the top of the vegetables.  Then take a piece of salmon and place on top.  Add your marrow croquette to the plate.  Finish with herbs and flowers and a drizzle of olive oil.  Serve and enjoy!

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3 Cheese ravioli with Porcini Mushrooms

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3 Cheese ravioli with Porcini Mushrooms

Fresh pasta I could probably eat almost every day and so could my wife.  We both love Italian food and me being part Italian only makes since to love it.  There is something about it, the versatility, the endless combinations, the filled compared to the shaped, the variety of sauces, I could go on and on about my love of pasta but I will spare you.  Lately I have leaning even more and more towards pasta.  With Jp and Eloise eating more and more vegetarian pasta is always a safe bet.  Here in this recipe I am simply taking advantage of the fantastic porcini mushrooms.  Great mushrooms and great cheese pasta with a little butter and your good to go.   


12 oz fresh Ricotta cheese drained of water
5 oz fresh scamorza
3 oz petite Basque
salt and pepper to taste

Basic Egg Pasta
2 eggs
3 egg yolks
2 tbsp warm water
2 cups flour
1 cup semolina
1 tsp of salt 

12 oz of porcini mushrooms sliced
12 oz of baby spinach
1 bunch of chives snipped with flowers
1 tbsp of olive oil
4 tbsp of butter
1 garlic clove minced
1/4 cup of white wine, sherry or marsala
1/4 cup of cream
1/4 cup of pasta water
salt and pepper
2 oz shaved fresh parmesan


For the Pasta,

place the flours in a bowl, make a well or hole in the center of the flour.  Mix both flours in a bowl then make a well indention in the middle of the flour) Place the eggs, yolks, warm water, and salt,  into the well.  Using a fork, beat the eggs until smooth.  With the fork,  gradually stir in the flour little by little until the egg isn't so sticky, taking the flour from the outside and working into the middle egg mixture.  Using your hands instead of the fork, begin forming the dough by folding the flour into the mixture.  Continue the folding action until the dough is smooth and not sticky.  Adjust the amount of flour depending. You may need a little more or less depending on whether you included the puree.   Once the dough is formed,  knead it for 5 minutes,  wrap it in plastic and let it rest for at least 30 minutes.  

Take the full amount of dough and cut it in half keeping one half wrapped in plastic. Roll the dough flat with a rolling pin.  Place the flattened dough in the pasta machine on the thickest setting,  and pass it through.  Adjust the thickness of the setting with the knob.   For filled style pasta, I adjust the setting to a 6.   Pass the pasta through the machine down to a 6 and then fold the dough back up and repeat the process,  a total of 3 times.  You might need to add a little flour if the pasta is sticking.  Repeated folding and passing the dough through the pasta machine builds structure into the pasta which will enable it to attain the the aldente when boiled.  On the last pass through,  don't fold the pasta.  You should have long sheets at this point.  Using your pastry bag pipe the cheese mixture along the bottom of the pasta sheet leaving about a 1/2 inch from the edge.  Run it along the whole length of the pasta sheet leaving about an inch or two at the ends.  Then take a pastry brush or spray bottle of water and brush the top portion of the pasta sheet.  Take the bottom part pasta closest to the filling and roll over to the brushed top portion.  You should now have a long tube like pasta running all the way down the length of the pasta.  Now, at every 1/2 inch use your index fingers and press down with with each index finger to create a little "ravioli"  Continue the same thing all the way down the pasta sheet.  Then using a pinwheel cutter cut away the excess pasta at the top.  Then cut in between each press that you make with your fingers to create each agnolotti.  

To Finish,

Place a pot of salted water on the stove.  Meanwhile in a large saute pan on medium high heat add 1 tbsp of butter and olive oil along with the sliced porcini mushrooms.  Cook for 5 minutes and then season the mushrooms with some salt and pepper then add garlic and cook for 1 minute.  Deglaze with white wine and reduce by half.  Meanwhile drop your pasta in the boiling and cook for 1-2 minutes until they are tender and float to the top.  Add spinach to the pan and cook for a minute and then the cream, simmer.  Strain out the pasta and place in pan.  Add a little pasta water to the pan, season everything with salt and finish with 3 tbsp of butter.  Add 3-4 raviolis with sauce and mushrooms to each plate.  Finish with parmesan, chives, and flowers on top.  Serve and enjoy!

porcini ravioli 1.JPG

 

 

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Slow Smoked Duck with Cipollini and Wood Sorrel

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Slow Smoked Duck with Cipollini and Wood Sorrel

Jp said this duck was one of the best ducks he has ever eaten.  This was the meat course for the Jim Belushi dinner.  The trick to this dish is really slow cooking the duck over the big green egg. I mean it, the secrete is really babying this duck to cook really slowly. You want to put the duck skin side down on in the low heat zone of your egg.  This way the duck fat on the skin side slowly renders while infusing the duck with the wood flavor of the oven.  All the while it is barely cooking the meat, you are cooking the fat slowly which is cooking the meat on that side very slowly.  You want your egg around the 300 degree zone and you don't want to put the duck breast right on top of the fire.  The results of cooking it this slowly is truly amazing. They all said it was absolutely delicious!

1/3 cup of coarse coriander seed
4 duck breast cleaned of sinew and extra fat

Foie sauce
1/2 cup Perigord sauce
4 oz of foie gras
Salt to taste

12 oz of cipollini onions
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt 

12 oz of yellow foot mushrooms
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt to taste 

Wood sorrel leaves

For the Duck,

Season heavily with salt and crushed coriander seeds on the skin side.  Place in the egg set around 300-325 degrees not on the hot spot.  Cook 30-45 minutes watching it periodically.  You want to render the skin as much as possible without burning it or the coriander as well as without cooking the meat.  You when you look at the duck breast it should look almost like it did when you placed it in the egg (raw).  Once the skin is well rendered take out and rest the duck breast.

For the Onions

For the cipollinis onions drizzle with olive oil and salt and place in a small saute pan on medium high heat.  Cook for 2 minutes and then place in a 400 preheated oven or in the egg.  Roast for 20-25 minutes until onions are tender.  Cool and then peel the outer tough layers

For the Sauce,

Season foie gras with salt and pepper.  In a hot pan add the foie gras and sear on both sides for 1 minute.  Meanwhile place warm perigord sauce in a vita-mix and puree on medium.  Pour the seared foie and melted fat into the perigord sauce in a slow stead pace until emulsified smoothly. Set aside and keep warm.  Adjust seasoning if need be with salt and splash of sherry vinegar.  

To finish,

In a saute pan add oil, butter, and yellow foot mushrooms.  Cook for 5-7 minutes.  Meanwhile place in hot cast iron skillet or non stick the duck breast skin side down.  Cook for 1-2 minutes on the skin side to help re-crispen the skin and heat up.  Then flip the duck breast over on the flesh side for 20-30 seconds.  Take out and let the duck breast rest.  Spoon some of the sauce down on the plate.  Add the warm mushrooms next to the sauce.  Add a few onions next to the mushrooms.  Trim the ends of the duck breast and then slice the duck breast lengthwise down the middle.  Turn on the its side and place on top of the sauce.  Garnish with the wood sorrel leaves.  Serve and enjoy!

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Smoked Short Rib with Green Garlic, Guac, and Marble Potatoes

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Smoked Short Rib with Green Garlic, Guac, and Marble Potatoes

This recipe uses the big green egg to smoke the short ribs into perfection! Here is a recipe I served a few weeks ago to Cheech Marin, Angus Mitchell, Mr. Capra and Jp.  It was a guys night that came down to meat and potato.  It was a little more to this dish than just meat and potato, I also incorporated the green garlic which is in season and a little fresh guacomole.  Rounded out the dish with a little crunch from fried onions. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Short rib
4 lb wagyu boneless short ribs cut into 5-6 oz blocks
1 cup soy
1 Cara cara orange
1 ginger
6 garlic cloves
2 kafir limes juiced
3 tbsp of cilantro
1 tbsp of ssam jang
1 tbsp of sirracha and sambal
2 tbsp of sesame oil
1/4 cup oil
1/2 onion

Guacamole
3 avocados
1/2 grilled red onion chopped fine
1 tbsp Tabasco, 1 tbsp lime juice, 1 tbsp of chopped cilantro
Salt and pepper

Green garlic gel
3 cups water
4 tsp of agar
2 cups of green garlic tops blanched
Salt

Pickled green garlic
1/2 cup sliced 1/8-1/4 inch thick green garlic stalks
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
1/3 cup sugar
1 tbsp salt

Marble potatoes
12 oz marble potatoes
2 cups of duck fat
2 sprigs of thyme 

Fried shallots

For the Short rib,

Heat Big green egg to 250 degrees. Place all the ingredients into a blender to make a marinade.  Then take 2-3 sheets of aluminum foil and make a little boat.  Place the short ribs inside the aluminum "boat".  Then pour the marinade overtop the short ribs in the foil.  Place the short ribs in the green egg and baste them every 45 minutes.   Cook for about 4-5 hours until they are completely tender

For the Guacamole,

Place all in a bowl and mix with a whisk until somewhat smooth.  I like to have chunks of avocado in my guacamole and not a smooth puree.  Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

For the Marble potatoes,

Place fat and potatoes in a small pot.  Bring to a light simmer and cover.  Cook for 20 minutes until potatoes are tender all the way through.  Let them keep warm until ready to serve.

For the Pickled green garlic,

Place green garlic in a small bowl.  Place vinegar, sugar, and salt in a small pot.  Bring to a boil until sugar and salt have dissolved.  Then pour hot liquid over the green garlic.  Cover until completely cooled.  Can be done ahead of time

For the Green garlic gel,

Place water, blanched tops into a blender and puree until smooth.  Strain out into a pot and add agar agar.  Bring to a boil for 3-5 minutes.  Season with salt and then pour onto a shallow pan.  Place in the refrigerator until it has cooled and set.  Then take a knife and cut little squares all over the gel.  Place all of that back into a blender and puree until smooth.  It should be thick.  Adjust the seasoning if need be, then pour into a squirt bottle. 

To Finish,

Place a oval ring of the garlic gel around the plate.  Place a little spoonful of the guacamole in the center of the plate.  Add a few potatoes around the edge of the gel and place a pickled garlic on top of each potato.  Then add two pieces of the short rib and drizzle some of the reduced marinade and juices from the cooking "boat".  Finish with some fried shallots and cilantro.  Serve and enjoy!

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Cheese Agnolotti Chestnut Pasta with Brussels and Basil

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Cheese Agnolotti Chestnut Pasta with Brussels and Basil

Here is pasta dish that I wanted to highlight with chestnuts.  Chestnuts are fantastic ingredient in the winter that have that natural kind of sweetness to them.  Chestnuts can be very versatile from simply roasting them to ground up into pastry or in this case pasta.  I had an impromptu dinner and decided to serve this as one of the courses.  Here is another great vegetarian recipe that will please any guests you might have over for dinner or lunch.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Chestnut pasta
200g or roughly 1 1/3 cup chestnut cooked and peeled
2 1/2 cup flour
1 cup semolina
4 eggs plus 2 yolks
2 tbsp water
Salt

8 oz petit basque finely grated
4 oz Comte finely grated
2 oz  sartori bellavitano Espresso coating removed and finely grated
8 oz creme fraiche
Salt  and pepper 

10 oz Brussels sprouts slice in thirds and fried
8oz mitake mushrooms
1/2 cup chestnuts halved
8 oz chicken broth or vegetable (vegetarian)
1 stick of butter
Salt and pepper 

Basil leaves

For the Cheese Filling,

In a bowl mix all the finely grated cheese with creme fraiche and season with salt and pepper.  Then place in a plastic disposable pastry bag.  Set aside in the refrigerator until the pasta is ready.  

For the Pasta

Place 2 cups of flour and chestnuts in a food processor.  Puree until completely smooth.  Then add the rest of the flour with semolina in a bowl. Make a well in the center of the flour.  Add eggs, water, and salt.  With a fork stir the egg 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 the 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 ( I use the kitchen aid attachment).  Then run the pasta all the way down to the lowest setting twice.  Dusting the dough with flour if it is too wet. Then on the third time run it down to the second to last setting.  Again, Use a little flour for dusting.  You should have long sheets at this point.  Using your pastry bag pipe the cheese mixture along the bottom of the pasta leaving about a 1/2 inch from the edge.  Run it along the whole length of the pasta sheet leaving about an inch or two at the ends.  Then take a pastry brush or spray bottle of water and brush the top portion of the pasta sheet.  Take the bottom part pasta closest to the filling and roll over to the brushed top portion.  You should now have a long tube like pasta running all the way down the length of the pasta.  Now, at every 1/2 inch use your index fingers and press down with with each index finger to create a little "ravioli"  Continue the same thing all the way down the pasta sheet.  Then using a pinwheel cutter cut away the excess pasta at the top.  Then cut in between each press that you make with your fingers to create each agnolotti.  

For the Brussels 

In a small sauce pot add 1/2 cup of grape-seed oil and bring up to 325 degrees.  Take your brussels that are sliced and quickly add them to a pot and immediately cover the pot.  Cover the pot for about 20 seconds until all the natural water in the brussels has been cooked out.  If you don't do this the oil will splatter everywhere ( just think water and hot oil, bad combination) After 3-5 minutes the brussels will become nice and crispy and golden brown.  Take a strainer and strain out.  Season immediately with salt.  Set aside

To Finish,

In a large saute pan add 1 tbsp of butter, oil, and mitake mushrooms.  Cook for 3 minutes.  Add your chestnuts and cook for another 2 minutes and then pour in the chicken or vegetable broth.  Meanwhile place your pasta in salted boiling water and cook for 2-3 minutes until they float to the top.  Strain off and place in the saute pan.  Let it simmer for 1-2 minutes and then add the rest of the butter to make a pan sauce.  Season the whole pan with salt and pepper.  Place a few spoonfuls of pasta and mushroom into each serving bowl.  Finish with the fried brussels and fresh basil leaves, Serve and enjoy!

 

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Walleye with Potato Terrine, Brown butter, Grapes

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Walleye with Potato Terrine, Brown butter, Grapes

Walleye is one my favorite fresh water fish.  Living in Minnesota when I was in my mid teens to early adulthood was an ingredient that was local and common on the menus.  When you go to the south or out west it is a fish that isn't so common and hard to find.  Walleye is a delicious, delicate fish that can prepared in multiple ways.  This recipe is a simple one just uses brown butter, capers, and grapes to enhance the fish.  I also served a potato terrine, a vegetable compote and celery root puree to round out the dish.  The vegetable compote I was really happy with because I had not quite done this combination before.  I had fava beans that I pulsed in a food processor and then combined them brunoise celery root, zucchini, and leek.  The result was really delicious and something I can't remember doing before.  I finished the dish out on a bed of celery root puree.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy

1 1/2 lb of Walleye fillet cut into 4 oz portions
1 stick of butter
1 cup of Grapes halved
3 tbsp of Capers

Vegetable compote
1 cup Bruniose zucchini
1 cup Bruniose leeks melted
1 cup Bruniose celery root
1 cup fava beans blanched then food processed course
Salt and pepper

Celery root puree (recipe)

Potato terrine (pave)
4 Idaho potatoes peeled shaved thin
1/2 cup cream
4tbsp truffle butter
Salt pepper

Or (alternative)

Potato terrine (pave)
1 Terrine Mold
8-10 medium size potatoes peeled and slice thin
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 onion small diced
4 garlic cloves shaved thin
1/2 cup white wine
1 cup of cream
2 tbsp horseradish
1 tbsp chopped thyme
8 leaves basil
salt and pepper
Cheese is (optional)
3 oz fresh asiago
2 oz pave cheese

Dill to garnish and Fried Celery root (recipe )

For Potato Terrine, Preheat oven 400 degrees

For the first version, place cream in a bowl.  Then shave potatoes on a mandolin into the cream.  Line a terrine dish with plastic wrap or spray with non-stick spray.  Lay potatoes in the terrine mold and season each layer with salt, pepper and truffle butter.  Continue the process until all the potatoes are in the mold.  Then place a cover on the terrine and bake for an hour or until a cake tester comes out clean.

or Alternative recipe that is a little bigger and bolder
In a small sauce pot add a olive oil and onions and saute for about 3 minutes on medium high heat.  Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute; deglaze with white wine and reduce by half.  Add the cream and horseradish and bring to a boil.  Season with salt and pepper and pour into a large mixing bowl.  Take a mandolin and slice potatoes into the hot cream mixture.   Season the potatoes as you go with a little salt and pepper.   

In the Terrine mold take a large piece of plastic wrap and place inside the mold to line it and have some overlapping it.  Place the first layer of potatoes on the bottom making it all one level. Sprinkle with chopped thyme and shaved asiago.  Repeat with another layer of potatoes.  This time place the basil leaves and some of the Pave cheese.  Repeat with previous steps alternating until you have come to the top all the time pressing down on the potatoes to try and make it as tight as possible.  This will bring some of the cream to the top of the mold.  Once you have the potatoes to the top of the mold add a little more cream to cover all the potatoes.  The cream will cook into the potatoes and be left moist.  Cover with the top and place in the over for about 1 hr and 15 minutes.  Let it stand for 20 minutes.  Then you can carefully un-mold the terrine and flip it up side down on to a plate taking all the plastic off the terrine.   You can serve it hot, warm, or chilled with a salad.  

For the vegetable compote,

In a small sauce pot with 1 tbsp of each butter and olive oil, add leeks and celery root.  Add 2 pinches of salt and cover.  Sweat the vegetables (shaking the pot without lifting the lid periodically) for about 8 minutes.  Then add zucchini and cook for another 5 minutes.  Make sure the heat is on medium to med-low.  You don't want to brown the vegetables.  Place the blanched fava beans into a food processor and pulse on an off for 30 seconds.  You don't want the whole thing to puree but you also don't want gigantic pieces of fava beans either.  Somewhere about the same size as the brunoise vegetables. (if a little bit gets pureed during the process it is fine because it actually helps hold the vegetables together).  Add the beans to the pot and cook for another 3-5 minutes.  Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper.  (Feel free to add an herb if you have them and want them ex chive, tarragon, or dill would be great)  Set aside and keep warm.

To finish.

Go to links to finish other parts of the recipe.  Then In a big saute pan add 2 tbsp of oil.  Season the walleye with salt on both sides.  Season with pepper only on the fillet side (not skin side).  Place the walleye skin side down in the pan, hold your fingers (or spatula) on top of the fish to press the fish down so the all the skin gets browned. (fish has a tendency to curl up when you place it in a semi-hot pan, when you push each fillet down for 10 or so seconds the fish will relax and the lay flat allowing the skin to cook evenly, resulting in perfectly crispy skin ). Cook the fish for 4-5 minutes only on the skin side.  When you see the fish is almost cooked on the fillet side and the skin is browned flip it over for 30 seconds, then take out of the pan.  Immediately add the stick of butter and allow it to brown.  Once browned, add capers (with a little juice), and grapes. Season with salt and turn off the heat.  To plate place a spoonful of celery root puree.  Then cut a small piece of potato terrine out of the mold.  Cut it in half again and place on the plate.  Take 2 spoons and make a quenelle of the fava bean compote and place it next to the potatoes.  Place a piece of walleye on the plate.  Then spoon over the browned butter with capers and grapes. Finish with dill and fried celery root.  Serve and enjoy!

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Legume Salad with Green Goddess

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Legume Salad with Green Goddess

Here is a great salad that was a huge crowd pleaser a few weeks ago when I served this recipe for lunch.  It is a simple salad that is grounded in the basis that the majority of the ingredients are legumes.  Legumes are basically vegetables and or fruit that are grown in a pod (beans, peas, peanuts...).  This salad takes a lot of simple ingredients and turns into a fantastic salad that leaves you not only satisfied but also feeling great.  There a few variations that you could easily add to this recipe like cheese or lettuce which I did on another version but not seen in the photo.   I remember everyone cleaning their plates and saying that this was a fantastic dish.  What a great way to either start the meal or if you are a vegetarian as a main course, either way this is one you want to keep in your back pocket for unexpected surprise.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.

Legume salad 

1 cup of beluga lentils cooked with charred onion,1 sprig of rosemary, 2 garlic cloves, salt
1 cup of rice beans cooked with charred onion,1 sprig of rosemary,2 garlic cloves, salt
1 cup of heirloom (black) beans cooked with charred onion, 1 sprig of rosemary, 2 garlic cloves, salt

1 cup of fava beans blanched and peeled
1 cup of snap peas blanch and chopped and hulled
1 cup of green beans blanched and chopped small
1/2 cup roasted peanuts salted
4 tbsp of olive oil
2 cured egg yolks (4 yolks, 1 1/4 cup of sugar and salt)
2 oz of manouri cheese (optional not shown in picture)
1 oz of pea sprouts 

Garlic Goddess dressing 

3 anchovy
1/4 cup roasted garlic with oil
1/4 cup white balsamic (good quality) 
1 bunch of parsley
1 bunch basil
1 cup veganaise or mayo
Salt and pepper to taste

Chive flowers

For cured egg yolks,

In a bowl mix together salt and sugar.  In shallow dish add enough of the salt and sugar mix to coat the bottom.  Then make 4 indents and carefully place the yolks in each indent.  Then cover the yolks with the remaining cure mix.  Place in the refrigerator for 4 days.  Then take out and carefully remove all of the salt and sugar from the yolks.  Heat oven or dehydrator to 150 degrees.  Spray wire rack with non stick spray and place yolks on them.  Place in the oven or dehydrator for 2 hours until the yolk has firm up.  Let it cool, then keep in an air tight container in the refrigerator until needed.  

Cook beans, lentils, and heirlooms filled with water in 3 separate pots with charred onion, rosemary, garlic, and salt.  Cook until tender (lentils aprox 30 min, beans aprox. 1 hr)  Set aside to cool in their cooking water. 

Blanch snap peas and then shock in an ice bath.  Repeat for the green beans and fava beans.  Cut to desired shapes and set aside.  Keep a few snap peas whole and take off one side for garnish.

For the Green Goddess

Place anchovies, roasted garlic, white balsamic, and herbs in a vita mix.  Puree until smooth.  Then fold puree into veganaise or mayo.  Season and set aside.  

To finish the dish,

Strain out the beans, keep the water for another purpose.  Place 1 cup of each rice bean, heirloom, lentil, fava, green bean, pea, snap peas in a mixing bowl.  Add olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Place a generous spoonful of green goddess on the plate.  Then add all the legumes to the plate.  Add peanuts to each plate.  Grate cured egg yolk on top.  Add (cheese if desired, not shown) pea sprouts, 1 pea pod, and chive flowers.  Serve and enjoy! 

 

 

 

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Tea Smoked Duck, Pickles, Pear

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Tea Smoked Duck, Pickles, Pear

Tea Smoked Duck, a classic recipe.  Of course my take on it is probably not completely authentic but the results where amazing.  I also incorporated the Big Green Egg to grill the duck after it was smoked.  I did a few preparations with the duck.  First I smoked it with all of the tea and aromatics.  Then I took the legs off and kept the breast on the bone.  I did that because the time for each is different.  If you were to put the whole duck on the grill after you smoked it the breast would be done and the legs would be medium rare.  A whole lot of flavor was squeezed into this duck by using this method as well.  The final product was absolutely a huge hit.  The combination of quick pickles, crunchy asian pear, leeks and all that tea and smoky duck was great.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Tea smoked duck
2 whole ducks
1/4 cup cherry wood chips
3 tbsp of black or tea bags cut (lapsang)
3 tbsp oolong or tea bags cut
2 cups of rice
3 star anise
2 cinnamon sticks broken in half
1 tbsp of allspice
1 tbsp of fennel
1 tsp of cloves
2 tbsp of zechuan peppercorns
1 tbsp of coriander seeds
1 finger of ginger
1 lemongrass stalk
1 orange zested

5 spice
2 tbsp zechuan peppercorns
1 tbsp allspice
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp coriander
1 tsp clove

Leek sauce
3 tops of leeks
4 cups of vegetable stock
2 garlic cloves minced
2 tbsp of oil
1 cup of spinach leaves

Celery root purée (see recipe)

Quick pickles
3 Persian cucumbers sliced 1/4 inch
1 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup mirin
3/4 cup of sugar
1 tbsp of salt

1 Asian pear sliced thin 

2 leek bottoms sliced 1/2 in thick blanched
8 oz of cremini mushrooms

Micro cilantro, Sorrel

For the Duck, 

Place all the spices, rice, wood chips, and aromatics into the bottom of a stovetop smoker or wok ( the rice is to help with the tea, and spices not to burn.) Take your 5 spice and place in a spice grinder.  Pulse until coarse.  Then season duck with salt and 5 spice liberally.  Place the whole ducks on top of a rack and place on top of the smoker and cover with foil.  Turn the heat on low and allow to smoke for 15- 20 minutes.  Then let it sit in the smoker for another 20 minutes with no heat.  Take out the duck and cut the legs off.  Place the duck legs on the big green egg, mine was around 400 degrees.  Let them cook 30-35 minutes with the majority of the time on the skin side not directly on top of the hot spot but off to the side.  Then flip over and cook for another 5 or so minutes.  With the breast on the bone place the ducks on the grill and cook for 15 minutes on the skin side.  Then take off and let it rest for 20 minutes.  Then place back on the the grill for another 15 minutes and let it rest again. Right before your ready to serve put the duck breast ( on the bone ) back on for another 10 minutes or until the meat is a medium rare to medium temperature (130ish range) and let it rest again before you cut it off the bone. 

For the Quick Pickles 

Place all of the ingredients except for the cucumbers in pot and bring to a boil.  Place the cucumbers in a small bowl and pour the boiling vinegar over the cucumbers.  Cover and allow to cool to room temperature.  

Celery root puree see recipe.  

For the Leek Sauce,

Chop up leek tops and place in a small pot on medium high eat with oil and garlic.  Saute for 5 minutes and then pour in vegetable broth.  Bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes.  Then puree in a blender with spinach and season with salt. Set aside and keep warm.  

To Finish,

Saute mushrooms in a little butter and oil for 5 minutes.  Add the blanched leeks.  Season with salt.  Place a spoonful of leek sauce down on the place.  Add the leeks and mushrooms.  Add a spoonful of the puree.  Cut the duck meat off of the leg and place a slice on top of the mushrooms.  Then take the breast off the carcass and slice one good piece and place on the plate.  Add the pickles,  pear, and micro greens.  Serve and enjoy!

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Lamb Loin with Cocoa nibs, Coffee, and Confit Potato

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Lamb Loin with Cocoa nibs, Coffee, and Confit Potato

This dish just came about from really thinking about coffee.  I'm really not a huge fan of coffee, I don't drink it normally ( I can with 3 tsp of sugar, and cream and/or chocolate) I don't really like the smell or the bitter taste of it.  I don't know if I was scarred at an early age from flying but that is one of my fond memories of flying, as soon as you step on the plane you walk by the waiters area with that awful smell of plane coffee.  But, for me, I can tolerate it when you add sweetness to it or spice.  In this case I did both.  I made a marinade/glaze for the lamb using Anaheim chile peppers, garlic, coffee, and sugar.  Then sous vide the lamb loin and then crusted it with coarse ground cocoa nibs.  The dish was absolutely delicious.  Little spice, little slight sweetness, and a lot of lamb flavor.  Finished the dish off with confit potatoes that just melt in your mouth.  Here is the recipe and I hope you enjoy it.  

2 lamb loins cleaned of any fat

2 tbsp of butter

4 Anaheim chile with seeds removed

1 large cup of hot coffee

2 garlic cloves

1 tsp of tarragon leaves (or cilantro works well)

2 tbsp of sugar

1 tbsp of corn starch 

1 tbsp of water

1 tsp of salt

 

6 yellow wax potatoes sliced 1/2 inch thick

3 cups of duck fat or vegetable oil

1 onion, 4 garlic cloves, 2 sprigs of thyme, 

1/2 cup of purslane

1 red radish slice thin

 

1/2 cup of coarse ground cocoa nibs

 

For the Sauce,

Pour the coffee, garlic cloves, tarragon, sugar, and anaheim peppers into a vita mix. Puree until smooth.  Then pour into a pot and bring to a simmer and add the cornstarch-water slurry to thicken.  Turn down to small simmer and cook for 5 minutes.  Strain into a bowl.  Place the bowl in an ice bath and chill completely.  

For the Lamb,

Place the lamb into a cryovac bag with 3 tbsp of the coffee sauce.  Add the butter and seal tight. Place the lamb in a water bath at 140 degrees.  Cook for 20-25 minutes.  Then take out and let it rest.

For the confit potatoes,

Place potatoes in a pot with all the ingredients and fill with duck fat or (oil).  Bring the pot barely to a simmer and cook for 20-25 minutes or until the potatoes are just done.  Set aside and keep warm.

To finish,

Take the lamb out of the cryovac bag and season with salt and pepper.  Then coat the top of the lamb with coarse ground cocoa nibs.  In a hot sauté pan with a tsp of oil and sear the lamb for 1 minute on each side.  Take out and let it rest while you plate the rest of the dish.  Place a spoonful of sauce down on the plate.  Take the sliced potatoes out of the oil and using a cookie cutter punch out 3 small rounds for each serving.  Season with salt and place on the plate with sliced radish and purslane.  Drizzle with a little bit of the duck fat or oil on top.  Then take the lamb loins and cut each in half.  (this give you 4 portions)  Place the loins on top of the sauce.  Serve and enjoy!

 


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Venison Rack with Kabocha and Molasses Pepper Glaze

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Venison Rack with Kabocha and Molasses Pepper Glaze

Fall is officially here and that means time for some wild game and lots of pumpkin.  I recently purchased a big green egg out here in L.A. and have only used it a few times and was anxious to get back on it.  I thought this dish would be the perfect, simple dish, to utilize this wonderful grill/smoker.  I Didn't want to spend a lot of time cooking so I went with a few basic ingredients to try and add as much flavor with minimal effort.  Kabocha squash is basically a Japanese pumpkin that has a dark green skin and a sweet meaty texture.  This recipe is very easy and anyone can easily replicate or vary from this basic recipe.  Great dish for all those game enthusiasts out there.  Here's the recipe and I hope you enjoy it.  

1 rack of venison cleaned

1 sprig of sage and thyme

butcher twine

2 tbsp of olive oil

Salt and pepper

 

Molasses Glaze

1 cup of dark molasses (grandmas)

2 tbsp of whole grain dijon mustard

1/4 cup of fresh coarse ground black pepper

 

1 Kabocha Squash 

1 cup of mache

1 small candy striped beet and red beet shave thin raw

3 tbsp of olive oil

2 tsp of sherry vinegar 

salt and pepper

 

For the Kabocha Squash,

To start add your lump coal to the big green egg and start your fire.  I immediately added the kabocha squash directly to the coals and let the green egg come up to temperature and cook the squash.  I let that cook for about an hour or so and let the green egg come up to about 400 degrees.  Then I took the kabocha squash out of the coals and set it on top of the rack while I prepared the Venison rack 

For the Venison rack,

Get your butcher or with butchers twine tie each chop with the twine.  Then drizzle with olive oil, season with salt, pepper, and herbs.

Then place directly on the grill and cook for about 8 minutes.  Then flip over and spoon on a little bit of the glaze.

Cook for another 8-10 minutes or until your meat thermometer reads 125 degrees in the middle of the rack.  Take off and let the rack rest for at least 5 to 10 minutes.  Take the Kabocha squash off as well.  

Cut the Kabocha squash in half and scoop out the seeds, drizzle with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper.  Then cut into wedges.  In a small bowl add olive oil, vinegar, and salt and pepper.  

To finish,

In a small bowl add beets, mache, salt, pepper, and a little of the vinaigrette.  Then cut the strings off of the venison rack and slice in individual portions.  Drizzle a little of the molasses glaze onto the plate.  Add the Kabocha, the chop, and the salad.  Serve and enjoy!


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Snake River Kobe Ribeye Cap with Fennel, Onion and Artichokes

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Snake River Kobe Ribeye Cap with Fennel, Onion and Artichokes

This is one of the only few dishes I made this summer that I didn't lose on my phone.  I had about a dozen recipes that I lost all because I didn't back it up; which is technology for you.  Stinks because I had some really great dishes with black summer truffles and toro.  But I guess I'll just have to do them all over again.  This one I did salvage and boy was it a winner but not for the faint of heart especially when it comes to your wallet.  One the great advantages of working with my employer is they don't mind spending a little extra on the gourmet items.  JP recently went to vegas and at a spago and had a cut of beef that he said was amazing.  He called up the chef a few weeks later and I had the opportunity to talk with him about where he sources a lot of their ingredients.  Snake River Farms is where they get a lot of their american kobe beef and I have tried theirs before and knew of their reputation.  Well I ended up ordering two Gold grade ribeye caps and two gold grade briskets.  The briskets where out of this world good but that's for another post.  This recipe is all about cap.  One of the most tender and flavorful parts of the whole cow in my opinion.  You don't want to over due this cut because you really want to taste the beef.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

1 whole ribeye cap cut into 5-6  4 oz pieces (depending on size)

3 tbsp of butter (any compound butter would be great ex. truffle, olive, herb, marrow etc.)

 

5 baby artichokes cleaned and cooked (recipe here)

10 pearl onions 

1 tbsp olive oil 

1 sprig of rosemary

 

Fennel Espuma

2 fennel bulbes core removed and sliced thin

3 tbsp of butter

1/4 cup olive oil plus 1 tbsp 

1/4 cup heavy cream

2 isi cartridges 

salt and pepper to taste

 

4 shallots shaved thin

1 cup of flour 

3 tbsp of cajun seasoning (blackening)

2 cups of oil for frying

 

Browned Butter Reduction Sauce 

8 cups of chicken stock

1 stick of butter browned 

1 tbsp of sherry vinegar

salt to taste

 

For the Kobe Ribeye Cap,

Trim the cap of any excess fat, and then cut into 4 oz portions.  Place in a cryovac bag with any flavored butter of your choice or just plain butter with a tsp of truffle oil (optional).  Seal the bag air tight and place into a water bath at 125 degrees for 35 minutes.  Then take out and let it rest.

For the Pearl Onions,

Preheat Oven to 400 degrees.  Take the pearl onions and cut them in half lengthwise.  Then in a small oven proof pan add oil.  Then place the onions face down into the pan along with the rosemary.  Sear for 2-3 minutes and then place in the oven.  Cook for 15-20 minutes until the onions are soft and caramelized.  When cooled you can take the out peel off of the onion and separate the individual layers of the onions.  Set aside for later

For the Fennel Espuma,

Add 1 tbsp of butter along with 1 tbsp of olive oil in a small sauce pot.  Then add the sliced fennel to the pot.  Season the fennel with salt and place a lid on top of the pot.   Sweat the fennel for 15-20 minutes until tender.  Keep the heat on medium and shake the pot and lid every 3 minutes to make sure there is nothing burning or caramelizing.  You don't want to brown the fennel just sweat in its own juices.  When tender pour all of the contents into a vita mix.  Add cream and puree until smooth.  Add the remaining butter and slowly drizzle in the olive oil to emulsify the puree.  Season with salt and pepper and pour into a isi container.  Charge with two cartridges and keep warm in a water bath.

For the Fried Shallots,

Simply toss shallots in the seasoned flower and fry in oil at 325 degrees until golden brown.  Strain off on paper towel and season with salt. (Alternatively you could add the onions to buttermilk first and then into the flower before you fry them).  Keep warm until ready to serve.  

For the Reduction sauce.

Place 8 cups of chicken stock in a pot and reduce down until you 1 1/2 cups.  Meanwhile brown 1 stick of butter and keep warm.  Pour the reduced chicken stock into a vita mix and turn on medium low.  While the blender is running pour in the browned butter and vinegar.  Season with salt and pepper.  Set aside and keep warm.  ( you can add a touch of soy lecithin to help with froth)

To finish,

Take the ribeye cap out of the bags and season aggressively with salt and pepper.  In a hot cast iron skillet add a little oil to the pan and sear the meat on both sides for 3 minutes.  A natural crust should form from the amount of marbling in the meat.  Meanwhile heat up the onions, and artichokes in the oven until they are just hot.  Using the whipping canister add the fennel espuma (foam) to the plate.  Then place the vegetables on top.  Add the meat to the plate.  Froth the browned butter sauce with a hand blender and pour over top the steak.  Finish with the fried shallots, borage and micro chervil.  Serve and Enjoy!


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Beef Tenderloin with Huacatay verde, and White Sweet Potato

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Beef Tenderloin with Huacatay verde, and White Sweet Potato

Here is a recipe with a peruvian flare to it.  I served this for lunch a week or so ago for a bunch of guys and they absolutely loved it.  The sauce for the beef is made from huacatay, which is sort of like a cross between peruvian mint and epazote.   There is a farmer in L.A. who grows it fresh so it is easy to find every week at the santa monica farmers market but you can find it preserved in jars in speciality grocery stores or online.  The sauce is really versatile and can be used for fish, meat, vegetables or anything else you can think of.  I served it with white sweet potato seasoned with cumin along with cauliflower, beets, and artichokes.  Here is the recipe and I hope you enjoy it.  

1lb of beef filet cut into 4 4oz pieces

1 garlic clove

2 tbsp of butter

8 leaves of huacatay

 

Huacatay Sauce,

3 roasted poblanos peeled and deseeded

2 roasted jalapeño peeled and deseeded 

1 can of evaporated milk

10 white crackers

1/4 cup of parmesan cheese shredded

1/3 cup of veganaise (mayonnaise)

1 large bunch of huacatay leaves (2 cups)

Salt to taste

 

2 large white sweet potatoes

3 tbsp of butter

2 tsp of cumin

 

1 small head of cauliflower 

4 small artichokes (see Recipe)

4 baby red beets

Olive oil

Micro beets and chervil

 

Set sous vide machine to 133 degrees

For the Beef,

Place the beef in a cryovac bag along with huacatay, garlic, and butter. Seal the bag air tight and place in the water bath.  Cook for 25 minutes and then take out of the water bath and set aside.

For the Artichokes,

Take the artichokes and pull off the outer tough leaves (wearing gloves helps you not to get pricked). Then take a pairing knife, cut off the tops and trim the bottoms of the green outer skin trying to keep the stem intact.  Trim the stems as well of all the green tough skin.  Immediately take one half of a lemon and wipe the artichoke all over to stop the oxidation process.  Place in a bowl of water with 2 cups of water and 1 lemon juiced.  Continue until you have all the artichokes peeled.   Then in a pot on medium low heat add olive oil and artichokes.  Cook for 1-2 minutes without browning then add the wine and water and the rest of the vegetables.   Take your parchment paper and cut a square.  Then fold it over in half and then in half again.  Then fold it diagonally into a 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 artichokes to keep them submerged under the water.  Bring the pot up to a slowly to up to much to temperature where the water is just barely bubbling.  Cook the artichokes until they are just tender all the way through.  Test the artichoke with a cake tester to check the doneness.  Take off the heat and let the artichokes cool to room temp.

For the Beets,

Simply wash them and place them in a pot with salt and water.  Bring to a boil and turn down to a  simmer.  Cook for roughly 45 minutes or until tender.  Peel and set aside.  

Preheat oven to 425 degrees

For the Cauliflower 

In a bowl toss all three colored cauliflower with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Place on a sheet pan and roast in the oven for 20 minutes. Then take the pan out of the oven and set aside.

For the Sweet Potato Puree,

Peel and dice the sweet potatoes and place in a pot.  Fill with water and add salt.  Bring to a boil and turn down to a simmer.  Cook until all the sweet potatoes are tender.  Strain off all the water completely, then add butter, cumin, and salt to adjust the seasoning.  Puree until smooth either with a food processor or hand blender.  Keep warm and set aside.

For the Huacatay Sauce,

Place huacatay leaves, roasted chile's, evaporated milk, into a vita mix.  Puree until smooth and then add crackers, cheese, and veganaise. Season with salt and puree until smooth and a little thick.  Adjust the seasoning if necessary and place into a squirt bottle.  

To finish,

Take the beef out of the bag and season with salt and pepper.  In a hot sauté pan add little olive oil and sear the steaks for 1 1/2 on each side then take out and rest the meat.  Add the sweet potato puree to the plate.  Then add dots of huacatay sauce all over.  Add the vegetables to the plate.  Slice the meat and finish the meat with sea salt.  Garnish with micro beet and chervil.  Serve and Enjoy!


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Quinoa Crusted Copper River Salmon with Chrysanthemum

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Quinoa Crusted Copper River Salmon with Chrysanthemum

Love coming to L.A. during the summertime because of the bounty of produce.  Going to the farmers markets you fine so many different ingredients from all over the world that is grown right here in California.  Because of the great climate and the wonderful farmers that have proven they know how to grow and what to grow.  Each farmer takes the initiative to find either one or two things or many things and specialize in just those things, and they become experts in growing and a lot of the times get the natural or heirloom seed of that ingredient which is nothing like you find in the supermarkets.  For a chef it really is inspiring to get to work with all of these bread ingredients, that's why you see so many chef's and restaurants at the farmers market week in and week out.  Here is a dish with copper river salmon with some left over quinoa and fresh peas with a red pepper dashi romesco.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy

1 lb of Copper river salmon cut into 4- 4 oz pieces

1 cup of cooked quinoa 

2 tbsp of whole coriander seed coarsely crushed

3 tbsp of olive oil 

 

Red Pepper Dashi

3 whole roasted red peppers

1/2 onion sliced

1 1/2 tsp of chopped ginger

3 garlic cloves chopped

1/2 cup of sake 

1/4 cup of marcona almonds

1 large red jalapeño sliced (with seeds)

2 cups of dashi or chicken stock

3 tbsp of butter

1 tbsp of grape seed oil

salt to taste

 

1 cup of fresh peas blanched

1 bunch of broccolini stems removed

1 cup of mitake mushrooms cut in half

1 bunch of chrysanthemum greens stems removed

1 tbsp of sesame oil

1 tsp of chopped ginger

1 tbsp of butter

 

1 persian cucumber shaved thin

1/4 cup of rice wine vinegar 

1/4 tsp of salt

4 red radish sliced thin

2 limes juiced 

1 tsp of salt

micro cilantro

 

For the Red Pepper Sauce,

In a medium sauce pot on medium high, add grape seed oil, jalapeños, onions, and ginger.  Cook for 3 minutes and then add chopped garlic, marcona almond, and roasted peppers. Cook for 2 more minutes then deglaze with sake.  Reduce until there is very little sake left and then add the dashi or stock.  Cover and cook for 15 minutes.  Then transfer to a blender and puree until smooth.  Add the butter to the blender until smooth.  Adjust the seasoning with salt and set aside to keep warm.

Place sliced cucumbers in a small bowl with salt and vinegar.  Set aside for later. In another bowl add sliced radishes with limes juice and salt.  Set aside for later.

For the vegetables,

In a large saute pan on medium heat add sesame oil, ginger, and mitake mushrooms.  Cook for 3 minutes and then add broccolini.  Cook for another 2 minutes and then add the chrysanthemum and peas.  Cook for another 2 minutes then finish with salt, pepper and butter.  Set aside and keep warm.

For the salmon,

in a small bowl mix coarse ground coriander seeds and quinoa.  Drizzle salmon fillets with 2 tbsp of olive oil.  Season with salt on both side of the fillet.  Then on the fillet side add a layer of the quinoa mixture.  Then in a non stick pan with the remaining olive oil place the salmon quinoa side down into the pan on medium low heat.  Cook for 6-7 minutes on that one side. Meanwhile take a ladle of the sauce down on the plate.  Add the vegetables on top of the sauce.  Then flip the salmon over and let it sit in the pan for 20 seconds then take out and place on top of the vegetables.  Finish the dish with pickled cucumber and radishes.  Top with micro cilantro, serve and enjoy!


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Sous Vide Salmon, Swiss Chard, Ginger Aioli, and Dashi Veloute

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Sous Vide Salmon, Swiss Chard, Ginger Aioli, and Dashi Veloute

Here is a dish that I serve a little bit ago and it was a huge hit with Jp.  This dish definitely takes a little time but some of the things can be done ahead of time.  Salmon is a great fish that can be "poached" or sous vide and also that can be eaten at a medium doneness.  I got a great piece of wild salmon and decided to also use the skin as a chip.  One of the rules in a chef's kitchen is to hardly ever through anything away and the skin of the fish being one of them.  I decided to make ginger aioli and a Dashi sauce.  To round out the dish I made a white miso and eggplant puree along with roasted spring onions. Very French in approach but flavored with Asian ingredients that married beautifully.  Jp couldn't get over how tender and melt in the mouth the salmon was.  This is also a great use of the swiss chard by wrapping the salmon in it.  Here is the recipe I really hope you enjoy it.

1 1/2 lb salmon fillet with skin scaled

1 bunch of swiss chard leaves blanched

 

Ginger Aioli

3 tbsp of fresh squeezed ginger juice

3 egg yolks

1 1/2 cup grape seed or vegetable oil

1 tsp of sesame oil

4 tbsp of rice wine vinegar

1 tsp of Aji Roja puree or sriracha  sauce

4-5 tbsp of honey

Salt to taste

 

Dashi 

3 cups of bonito flakes

1 piece of kombu (optional)

8 cups of water

2 tbsp of butter 

2 tbsp of flour

 

4 spring onions

1 bunch of blanched asparagus tips

1 tbsp of olive oil

1 red radish sliced thin

 

1 large eggplant peeled and diced

3 tbsp of white miso

3 tbsp of cream 

 

For the Salmon,

Preheat oven 350 degrees.

If you can, try and get one whole piece of salmon that weighs around 1 1/2 lbs.  Then take the skin off cleanly or have your fish monger do it for you.  Clean the fish skin of all the flesh so that it is really clean with no meat.  Make sure all of the scales are off on the outside of the skin.  Lay the skin flat on a cutting board and cut with a very sharp knife even strips of the skin.  Then take a piece of parchment paper and lay it flat on a sheet pan. Place the skin flat on the parchment paper and season lightly with salt.  Take another piece of parchment paper and lay on top of the salmon skin.  Place another sheet pan on top to weigh the paper down.  Place in the oven for 15 minutes.  Then flip over the skin and place in the oven for another 10-15 minutes or until the salmon skin is like a chip.  Set aside to cool and place in a air tight container.  

To make the salmon rolls, cut the salmon fillet down the middle of the fish length wise (you can follow the natural "white line" in the salmon) Then cut salmon into 4-5 oz "blocks".  Make sure that you trim any of the brown part of salmon bottom off (For the visual purposes). The goal here is try and get pieces of salmon that are the same size all the way around or as close as possible.  Then take one piece of salmon block and slice on the bottom 1/3 of the salmon all the way to the end of the other side of the salmon without cutting through it. (basically a butterfly cut) Then do the same slice with the 2/3 part of the salmon fillet (another butterfly cut).  So basically you should end up with a flat rectangular fillet of salmon.  Here at this stage you could use Transglutaminase (meat glue) if you wanted to make a seamless fillet.  I chose not to, I lightly season the flesh side up of the salmon and then roll the salmon up into a tight roll.  Then place the salmon roll in plastic and wrap really tightly, twisting both ends of the plastic until the salmon is a perfect tube.  Continue the process with the rest of the salmon pieces.  Place in the refrigerator to help set the shape for at least 2 hours.  

Then take a stove top smoker and place cherry chips in the bottom of the smoker.  Get a big plastic zip lock bag and fill it with ice.  Place in the stove top smoker on the tray. Take the salmon cylinders out of the refrigerator, cut one end of the plastic off and slide the salmon out of the plastic.  Place all the salmon cylinders on top of the ice.  Place the lid on top of the smoker and turn the heat on for 1-2 minute to get the smoker rolling.  Then turn off the heat and allow the smoke to penetrate the salmon for 15 minutes. ( without cooking the salmon, this is essentially cold smoking)

Then take the blanch chard leaves and remove the stems.  Make sure that you pat the leaves with a towel to completely dry them.  Then roll the chard leaves around the salmon.  Place the salmon back in a piece of plastic and roll it up tight, tying up both ends tightly to form a perfect cylinder.  Then place in a sous vide bag.  Set a water bath to 125 degrees.  Get the other mise en place prepped before you cook the salmon.  

For the dashi veloute, 

Soak kombu in fresh water to soften it a bit and get rid of any impurities for 20 minutes.  Then add kombu to a pot with water and bonito flakes.  Bring to a boil and turn down to a simmer and reduce by 1/2 or until the stock is rich and full of flavor.  In a small sauce pot add butter on medium heat.  When the butter has melted completely add the flour to make a roux.  Cook for one minute and then strain the dashi into the roux stirring continuously.  Start with 2 cups of dashi and small amounts until the dashi thickens to a nice consistency for a sauce or veloute.  Simmer for 15 minutes and then strain and season.  Set aside and keep warm.

For the Ginger aioli, 

Place egg yolks, ginger juice, vinegar, honey, and aji into a vita mix.  Turn on medium low and puree until smooth.  Then slowly add the oils until the aioli thickens to sauce consistency.  Adjust the seasoning with salt and place in a squirt bottle.  

For the eggplant puree,

In small pot of salted water add peeled and diced eggplant.  Boil for about 8 minutes or until the eggplant is soft. Place in an ice bath. Discard any brown pieces and squeeze out excess water.  Then place the eggplant in the vita mix with miso, and a little cream.  Puree until smooth and adjust seasoning if needed.

Place the salmon rolls in the water bath and cook for about 20-25 minutes. Meanwhile in a sauté pan on medium heat add olive oil and spring onions.  Cook for 5- 10 minutes until tender.  Then add the asparagus and warm through.  Season with salt and pepper and keep warm.  

To finish,

Take the ginger aioli and make an oval on the plate.  Then spoon in the dashi in the middle of the oval.  Take the salmon out of the water bath and out of the plastic bags. Cut the salmon using a sharp knife in 3 pieces.  Season the tops of the salmon with fluer de sel and place them on top of the sauce.  Place two spoonfuls of the eggplant puree next to the salmon pieces.  Add the spring onions, aspargus and shaved radish.  Finish with the salmon skin chip, serve and enjoy!

 

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Sea Bass with Salt Roasted Sunchokes and Leek Brown Butter

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Sea Bass with Salt Roasted Sunchokes and Leek Brown Butter

Here is a dish that was a big hit the other night.  I know sea bass has been on a list for endangered species for a long time.  There are places selling sea bass that is fished responsible.  The problem lies when poaching occurs or when people fish over the allotted amounts.  If you can get the fish from a responsible source with documentation then you know its coming from a reliable source that is fish responsibly (read here).  With that being said I still try not to buy it very often at all.  Sea bass is definitely a star though in the kitchen because of its meaty texture, with butter flavor. The natural crust that you can achieve from this fish is really superb.  I literally serve it maybe 2 or 3 times a year (serving 4 people) so that amount is not something should be frowned upon.  With that being said you can easily substitute another fish for the sea bass if you feel strongly about it.  Two of my favorite things about this dish other than the fish is actually the sauce and the puree.  I roasted the sunchokes in a salt crust.  This technique really intensifies that natural flavor of the vegetable.  You can do this with any root vegetable or protein of your liking.  The sauce is a simple one but delicious.  You take leeks and chicken stock and then emulsify it with brown butter.  Absolutely delicious.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.

1 lb of sea bass cut into 4, 4 oz pieces

1 lb of sunchokes

2 lb of salt

2 egg whites

5 tbsp of water

1/4 warm cup of cream

2 tbsp of butter

 

Leek Emulsion 

1 large leek washed and sliced

1 tbsp of olive oil

1 garlic clove

1/2 cup of green onion tops 

1/4 cup of white wine

3 cups of chicken stock

1/2 cup of blanched parsley

1 1/2 sticks of butter, browned

 

Vegetables

6 baby carrots blanched and cut in half

6 baby turnips blanched and cut in quarters

6 baby zucchini blanched in cut in thirds

1 tbsp of olive oil

2 tbsp of butter

3 tbsp of verjus

1 tsp of chopped thyme

 

Preheat Oven to 400 degrees

For the sunchokes

Wash the sunchokes thoroughly under cold water.  Then in a bowl add salt, water, and egg whites.  Whisk together everything with a whisk until the salt resembles wet sand.  You can add a touch of water if it is not wet enough. In a small saute pan that is oven proof place a small layer of the salt to coat the bottom.  Then place the sunchokes on top of the bottom coat of salt.  Take the remaining salt and completely cover the sunchokes leaving no exposed vegetable.  Then place in the oven and roast for an hour. Take out and let it continue to cook for another 20 minutes.  Then crack the salt crust with a mallet to break it up.  Remove all of the salt.  Take the sunchokes out and dust off any of the left over salt.  Peel them if you want ( I did not) and place them in a blender.  Pour in the warm cream and butter.  Puree until completely smooth.  Adjust seasoning if need be.  Set aside until ready to plate.

For the Leek sauce

In a small sauce pot add oil, leeks, and garlic.  Season lightly with salt and sweet the leeks.  Do not let them brown.  Add your green onions and white wine.  Let the wine reduce by half and then add your chicken stock.  Bring to a boil and then turn down and simmer for 10 minutes.  Then pour everything into a vita mix.  Add the blanched parsley and puree until smooth.  Turn down to a low speed and gradually add your browned butter until incorporated. (To make brown butter simply put butter into a pan and when the milk solid start to brown, smell toasted, and the butter turns brown take off the heat).  Let it blend of a minute and then strain out into a holding container.  Keep warm.

To Finish,

In a hot saute pan add 2 tbsp of olive oil.  Season sea bass on both side with salt.  Place the sea bass fillet down into the pan.  Turn down the heat to medium high.  Cook for 5 minutes so the fish gets a really deep dark crust.  Meanwhile in a another saute pan add 2 tbsp of olive oil, carrots, turnips, and zucchini.  Cover and saute for 3 minutes and then add verjus and butter.  Cook uncovered for another minute, finish with thyme salt and pepper.  Flip the fish over after 5 minutes and then cook for 1 minutes.  Turn off the heat and let your fish finish cooking.  Place a spoonful of the warm sunchoke puree down on the plate.  Place the fish on top.  The ladle some of the sauce around the fish.  Place the vegetables next to the fish and finish the dish with sorrel and vegetable flowers.  Serve and enjoy!

 

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Wagyu Short Rib with Turnip and Ssamjang

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Wagyu Short Rib with Turnip and Ssamjang

Here is a dish I did for lunch about a week ago for Edwardo Verastegui and Roberto Slim which they absolutely loved.  It is always hard trying to figure out what to make people especially when you have never met them.  There we two other men in the entourage and about the only thing I knew is that they were from Mexico.  So the question as a chef is do you go with trying to make something with familiar flavors from their home land or do you try to give them flavors from a different cuisine.  I ended up doing a little of both.  I gave them a little amouse of home made spaghetti with jalapeño pesto and fresh cashew foam.  They loved that as well.  Then I follow up that with an asian inspired short rib with some seasonal veggies.  It looks and tasted a little more exciting than I am describing it.  Here's the recipe I hope you enjoy it. 

3 1/2 lb of wagyu short rib (boneless) trimmed of excess fat cut into 2 inch blocks

1 onion

2 stalks of lemongrass

1 finger of ginger

1 bunch of leek tops ( if you have them or green onions)

1 stalk of celery

2 carrots

2 jalapenos

8 cloves of garlic chopped

2 lime leaves if you have them

1 tbsp of szechuan peppercorns

1/2 cup of ssamjang soybean paste

1/2 cup soy sauce

1/2 cup of mirin

1 cup of teriyaki sauce

6 cups of chicken stock or water

2 tbsp of sesame oil

 

2 tbsp of cornstarch

2 tbsp of water

 

Turnip Puree

4 turnips peeled and diced

1 potato peeled and diced

4 tbsp butter

1/8 cup of cream

salt and pepper

 

1 bunch of green onions grilled

1 head of young cauliflower blanched

1 cup of pearl onions blanched and peeled cut in half

1lb of brussel sprouts blanched

1 baby zucchini shaved thin

2 tbsp of olive oil

2 tbsp of butter

Salt to taste

 

Pickled sea beans

1/2 cup of sea beans

3/4 cup of rice wine vinegar

1/3 cup of sugar

2 garlic cloves

1 tbsp of coriander seeds

1 arbol chile

 

For the wagyu short ribs

Season short ribs very lightly with salt.  In a hot braising pan add sesame oil and short ribs.  Sear on on both sides for 3-4 minutes to brown.  Then add all of your vegetables and aromatics and cook for 2 minutes.  Deglaze the pan with mirin.  Add the rest of the wet ingredients and bring to a boil.  Turn down to a simmer and cover.  Cook for roughly 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until the short ribs are fork tender.  Turn off the heat and all to cool at room temperature.  Then strain out  half of the liquid into a sauce pot.  Bring to a boil and turn down and simmer.  Reduce by 1/2 and then thicken with cornstarch slurry.  Cook for another 5 minutes and then strain through a fine mesh strainer.  Set aside and keep warm. 

For the pickled sea beans

Place all the ingredients except the sea beans into a pot.  Place sea beans in a bowl or jar.  Bring liquid to a boil and then pour over the sea beans, cover and set aside to cool.

For the vegetables,

In a medium hot saute pan add olive oil and pearl onions face down in the pan.  Cook for 5 minutes to attain a golden brown caramelized bottom.  Then add brussel sprouts and cauliflower to pan.  Cook for 3 minutes and then add the butter.  Season everything with salt.  Set aside and keep warm.

For the turnip puree,

Place turnips and potatoes in a pot and fill with water.  Add salt and bring to a simmer and cook for 20-25 minutes until both the turnips and potatoes are cook through.  Strain off and place in a vita mix or food processor.  Add butter, cream, and puree until smooth.  Add a little more butter or salt to adjust the seasoning.  Set aside and keep warm.

To finish,

In a pan add a little of the braising liquid and short ribs just to heat through if they aren't warm anymore.  On a plate add a spoonful of turnip puree. Then add the short rib to each plate.  Spoon a big ladle of sauce over the short ribs.  Add the vegetables around the plate.  Finish with a few sea beans and grilled green onion.  Garnish with sorrel and broccoli flowers.  Serve and enjoy!


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Trio of Lamb

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Trio of Lamb

Here is a dish that I did a few weeks ago and finally getting around to posting it.  It was a lamb tasting of sorts.  I had a few different cuts of lamb and wanted to use some subtle Mediterranean flavors, mainly olives.  Believe it or not you can actually get local olives here in Texas.  There is actually quite a few olive oil companies that produce some decent olive oils not far from Austin.  Thought I didn't use any of the local product this time I have used it in the past.  Thought this dish really turned out well with some great contrasts between fatty, braised, and steak like textures.  Paired with a few olive sauces and sunchokes.  Here is the recipe and I hope you enjoy!

1 Lamb rack frenched

2 tbsp of pink peppercorns coarse grinded

3 tbsp of chopped fresh rosemary

3 tbsp of olive oil

Salt

 

2 whole lamb breast bone in (2 1/2 lb)
Salt and  pepper

1 sprig rosemary

1/2 onion, 1 carrot
5 garlic cloves

8 cups of duck fat if you have it or substitute veg oil if you can't 

Sherry onion jam

200 g onion sliced
70 g sherry vinegar
70 g sugar
3 g oil
Salt to taste

2 large lamb shanks
1 onion
2 leek tops
1 garlic bulb
1 sprig rosemary 2 fresh bay leafs
4 carrots
2 stalks celery
Bones from belly
1/2 bttl red wine 
Stock or water to fill (2 qt)
1 Tbsp of olive oil

1 tbsp of cornstarch and 1 tbsp of water

Sunchoke purée
1 lb sunchokes peeled and large diced
1 cup cream
Salt

 

Sunchoke fondant
1lb of sunchokes peeled and Use small cutter to cut small rounds. 

 

2 cups of chicken stock or veg stock

1 sprig of thyme and 2 tbsp of butter

1 lemon juiced

 

Olive nage

60 g onions
100 g castelvetrano
75 g poblano
8 g garlic clove
450 g whey
95 g white wine
125 g cucumber juice
2 tsp water and cornstarch
Few sprigs basil

100 g pitted beldi olives
150 g water
Pinch of xanthum gum

 

For the lamb belly confit,

Season the boned in lamb breast aggressively with salt and pepper.  Add onion, garlic, and rosemary and let it cure over night.  The next day drain off any blood and place all of the ingredients in a pot, including the carrot.  Cover with duck fat and bring to a boil.  Turn down the heat to low and let it gently cook for 3-4 hours or until it is tender.  ( you can also place it in a 275 degree oven and let it cook 3-4 hours ).  Once the meat is tender and cook let it cool to room temperature.  Then carefully take it out of the oil and place on sheet pan lined with a parchment paper. Now the bones should be extremely easily to take out of the breast, so go ahead and debone it.  Then take another parchment paper and place on top.  Place another sheet pan on top of that.  Find a brick or a really heavy object that can be refrigerated (canned items) and weigh down the breast overnight.  The next day take the breast out and cut into small blocks.  Set aside until ready to cook

For the lamb shank,

Season the lamb shank with salt and pepper.  In a pressure cooker add 1 tbsp of oil and turn on medium high.  Sear the shank for a few minutes on each side then add all of your vegetables and herbs.  Cook for another minute and then add your wine.  Cook for 2 minutes and then add your stock or water.  Place the lid on the pressure cooker and bring to high pressure.  Cook for 45 minutes and then let the pressure release naturally.  Take the shanks out and cool for 3 minutes .  Meanwhile strain all the braising liquid off into another small pot.  Reduce the broth down to 3 cups, season with salt,  and thicken with corn starch slurry.  Cook for another 5 minutes and then strain through fine mesh sieve.  While the sauce is reducing go back to your shanks and shred all the meat off the bone, discarding the fat and bones.  Take a large piece of plastic wrap flat on your counter top.  Then take your shredded meat and season lightly with salt and pepper.   Place your shredded meat on the bottom part of your plastic wrap.  Then roll the meat up into a tight log.  Poke holes in the plastic wrap randomly to allow air pockets to escape.  Tighten each end of the meat log and tie with twine.  Place in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours to set.  

For the Sunchoke Puree,

Place peeled diced sunchokes into a small pot with cream and a tsp of salt.  Bring to a simmer and then cover and turn down to low.  Cook for 15-17 minutes or until tender.  Strain off cream and reserve.  Place sunchokes into a vita mix and puree until smooth.  Add a little of the cream if the puree is too thick. Adjust the seasoning if need be and strain through a tamis.  Set aside and keep warm.

For the Lamb Rack,

Preheat oven to 375

Drizzle lamb rack with 1 tbsp of olive oil.  Then generously season with salt, rosemary, and coarse pink peppercorn on both sides of the rack.  Then in a medium hot pan add the remaining olive oil.  Then place the rack meat side down in the pan.  Sear for 2 minutes without burning the herbs or peppercorns.  Then turn over and place in the oven for 9-10 minutes.  Then take out and let the rack rest. 

For the Sunchoke Fondant,

Place the cut out rounds of sunchokes into a small pot. Cover with chicken stock, lemon juice, thyme, a tsp of salt.  Bring to low simmer where the stock is barely moving and cover.  Cook for 10-15 minutes until just done.  Then strain out and reserve the liquid and keep the pot empty.  Let the sunchokes dry and cool completely.  Then take 1/2 cup of oil and bring it up to 335 degrees for frying.  Place the sunchokes into the fryer and brown lightly.  Then strain out the sunchokes and place them in the empty pot.  Continue until all are fried and in the pot.  Then add a 1/2 cup of the chicken broth you simmered the sunchokes in to the pot.  Turn on high, add the butter and reduce the liquid until there is almost nothing left.  Keep warm.

For the Onion jam,

In a medium saute pan on high heat add oil and sliced onions.  Cook for 10-15 minutes caramelizing the onions.  You might need to turn down the heat a bit so they don't burn. Then add your vinegar and sugar to the onions.  Cook until there is just a little bit of liquid left in the pan.  Then season the onions with salt and set aside.  

Beldi Olive puree,

Place olives and water into a blender.  Puree until smooth and then add a pinch of xanthum gum to thicken slightly.  If it is too watery add another pinch.  Strain through a fine mesh strainer and place in a squirt bottle.

For the olive nage,

In a small sauce pan on medium heat add 1 tbsp of olive oil, onions, poblano, garlic, and castlevetrano olives.  Cover and cook for 5-7 minutes.  Then take the lid off and deglaze the pan with white wine.  Reduce the wine by half and then add whey and cucumber juice.   Bring to a boil and then turn down and simmer for 10 minutes.  Then add your cornstarch slurry and cook for another 5 minutes.  Then pour everything into a blender and add basil leaves.  Puree until smooth and strain through a fine mesh strainer.  Adjust the season with salt if needed. 

To finish,

In a hot saute pan add your breast with a tsp of duck fat.   Cook on both sides until golden brown.  Place your Lamb rack back in the over to warm up (3 min).  Take your shank log and slice into rounds.  Sear in the same pan as the breast on both sides.  Then take out your breast and place on a paper towel.  Then add a few ladles of sauce and cover until the shank is warm all the way through.  Then spoon some of the olive nage on the plate.  Add the sunchoke puree.  Then add shank on top of the puree.  Slice the lamb rack and place next to the shank.  Add the breast confit with onion jam.  Finish with the sunchoke fondant, beldi puree, some more lamb jus, and some rosemary flowers.  Serve and enjoy!


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Hoja de Santa Short Rib

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Hoja de Santa Short Rib

This is recipe is one that is definitely inspired south of the border.  I had a coworker who is from Honduras and her mother, who lives there, sent me a jar of anchiote. Now you can find anchiote in any Latin market and it is what is used in making the color ,yellow, in cheddar cheese.  It doesn't have an overwhelming flavor unless you use an extreme amount.  Now the jar that was sent me wasn't the normal seed like anchiote you find in the store.  It was a smooth bright red purée.  The purée was made by cooking the seeds in water for a long time until the seeds thickened the water to make a smooth paste. 

We have hoja de Santa growing every year in the spring and summer months.  It is a great herb that is great for wrapping things in because the size of the leaf.  For this recipe I cooked the short ribs in the pressure cooker with the anchiote and then wrapped the short rib in the hoja de Santa to finish the dish. Here is the recipe. 

3lb short rib
1 onion
4 tomatoes
2 tbsp anchiote paste
6 garlic cloves chopped
3 red jalapeños
1 tbsp of ground cumin
2 dried anchos chiles
4 dried New Mexico chiles
1 cup of white wine vinegar
6 cups of chicken stock

1 tbsp of grapeseed oil

10 leaves hoja de Santa blanched

1 head of green cabbage shredded fine
1/2 tomatillo salsa

1 jicama julienned

1/4 cup of mayo

For the Slaw,

In a bowl add jicama, tomatillo salsa, mayo, and green cabbage.  Season with salt and mix well.  Set aside for at least 30 minutes to let the flavors mend together. 

For the short ribs,

I cooked mine in a pressure cooker but you can do the same steps with out one and simply braise in a pot.  Season short ribs with salt and pepper.  Place your pot on the stove over a medium high heat with 1 tbsp of oil.  Sear the short ribs on each side for 3 minutes, you might need to do this in batches if your pot isn't big enough.  Then add onions, fresh and dried chiles, garlic, and cumin.  Cook for 2 minutes and then add achiote, vinegar, and tomatoes.  Cook for 1 minute and then add your chicken stock.  Place the lid on the pressure cooker and bring almost to full pressure.  Cook for 45 minutes and then let the steam release naturally if you have time.  ( If braising in a pot, bring to a boil and turn down to a simmer.  Cook for 2 1/2 hours until tender).  Then take the short ribs out of the liquid, remove the bone along with any excess fat and set aside to cool to room temperature.  Place all of the liquid into a blender and puree until smooth.  Season with salt and set aside.

Once the short rib has cooled to temperature you can handle, wrap each short rib in hoja de santa leaf.  Continue with same process until all have been wrapped.  To finish the dish simple place the short rib in the oven or on the stove to warm through, then add a spoonful of the sauce down on the plate.  Cut the short rib in half and then place on top of the sauce.  Place a spoonful of the slaw behind the short ribs and garnish with a few cilantro leaves.  Serve and enjoy!


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