Pine nut Custard with Matsutake and Wasabi

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Pine nut Custard with Matsutake and Wasabi

Here is a little appetizer I made a few weeks ago utilizing some matsutake mushrooms which are very limited and normally very expensive because of the lack of abundance in the wild. It sometimes can be called a pine mushrooms because they normally grow at the base of a variety of pine trees. The matsutakes have a firm, meaty texture with a earthy flavor. In this recipe I thought it would be fun to pair the matsutake mushrooms with pine nuts. I thought a warm savory custard with cooked and raw matsutake would go great with a smoked beef/mushroom broth. Topped with a little fresh wasabi. This was a fun dish that was loved by Jp and Eloise. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Pine nut custard

1 1/2 cup cream hot

2 eggs plus 2 yolks

3/4 cup toasted pine nuts

Salt to taste

Smoked bone broth

5 smoked beef rib bones

4 oz mixed mushrooms dried

1 leek

1 garlic bulb

10-12 cups of water

Salt to taste

6 matsutaki mushrooms quartered

2 tbsp butter

2 tbsp olive oil

2 matsutaki mushrooms sliced raw

1 wasabi fresh grated

Opal basil and cilantro

For the Smoked beef broth,

Place all the ingredients into large stock pot and bring to a boil. Turn down to a simmer and cook until you have about 4 cups left. Strain and season with salt. Set aside and keep warm

For the Pine nut custard, Preheat oven to 300 degrees

Place cream and roasted pine nuts in a pot and bring to a boil. Once it has come to a boil place in a vita mix and puree until smooth. While the blender is on add the eggs one at a time. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Strain (if desired) and pour into 6 small ramekins that have been sprayed or buttered. Place the ramekins into a baking dish and fill the dish half way up the sides of the ramekins with hot water. Cover with foil and bake 17-19 minutes or until the custard has just set. Take out and let it cool.

To Finish,

Place the custard back in the oven just for a 3-4 minutes to warm back up. Meanwhile in a small sauce pan add olive oil, butter, and quartered matsutake. Cook for 4-5 minutes and season with salt and pepper. Using a paring knife run your knife around the the inside wall of the ramekin. Flip the pine nut custard into the bowl. Add the cooked and raw mushrooms to the dish. Add a small fresh grated wasabi on top of the custard. Add the smoked bone broth and some herbs. Serve and enjoy!

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Strawberry and Rhubarb Tart

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Strawberry and Rhubarb Tart

Here is a classic combination of strawberries and rhubarb that is probably as old as the ingredients. This is typically a summer recipe depending on the harvest of each ingredient. A lot of times though you can get more than one harvest especially if you live in California.  I know also you can get strawberries all the way into November and December in Texas as well. Nothing too fancy here just straight forward classic flavors. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Rhubarb Strawberry tart 

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

Pie filling
3 cups of rhubarb small diced
2 cups of strawberries cut into quarters
1 cup of sugar
1/4 cup of flour
1 vanilla bean
2 rhubarb stalks shaved

Sorbet
1 1/2 cup of diced rhubarb
2 cups of strawberries
2 1/2 cups of water
2 cups of sugar
1 lemon juiced 

For the Tart dough

Using the food processor add flour to the bowl along with butter and salt.  Then turn the processor on for 30 seconds until the butter has been combined.  Drizzle in the cold water until the dough has come together.  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 15-18 minutes.  Take out the pie tart and take off the parchment and save the weights for another baking day.

 For the pie filling,

Place all the ingredients in a bowl except for the shaved rhubarb. Mix well with a spoon. Then spoon in the filling inside the pre-baked tart shells. Optional, take the shaved rhubarb and weave or braid on top of the pie filling. Then place in a 375 degree oven for 40-45 minutes. Take our and cool.

For the sorbet,

Place strawberries, rhubarb, water, and sugar in a pot. Bring to a boil and cook for 4 minutes. Then cool slightly and place in a blender and puree until smooth, and the lemon juice, then chill until completely cold. Place in your ice cream maker according to their instructions. Place in an airtight container and place in the freezer

To Finish,

Take some powdered sugar and sprinkle on top of the tart. Take a little crushed up cookie like (biscotti, graham cracker) and place on the plate. Take a scoop of the rhubarb sorbet and place on top of the crushed cookie (this helps anchor the sorbet so it doesn’t slide all of the plate). Serve and enjoy!

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"Lobster and Potatoes"

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"Lobster and Potatoes"

“Lobster and Potato” This is the vegetarian version using lobster mushrooms instead of actual lobster meat. These mushrooms not only look like the lobster meat in color before they are cooked but they have a very meaty texture as well. This is a great vegetarian dish with the exception of a meat broth. Obviously you can exclude that part of the recipe if you are a true vegetarian but Jp and Eloise both don’t mind broths and aren’t strictly vegetarian. It allows this recipe another layer of deep and rich flavors. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Lobster Mushroom Confit
1 1/2 lb lobster mushrooms, washed, cleaned, and cut into similar sizes
2 cup of olive oil
2 bay leaves
1 sprig of thyme
2 shallots
5 cloves of garlic
3 tbsp of sherry vinegar
salt and pepper 

Vegetables
1 cup of mini parisienne potato blanched for (30sec-1 min)
1 cup of mini parisienne carrot blanched (30sec-1 min)
1 cup of mini parisienne zucchini blanched (30sec-1 min)
1 cup of mini parisienne purple radish blanched (30sec-1 min)
2 tbsp of olive oil
1 tbsp of butter
1/2 tsp of fresh thyme 

Leek Sauce
1 lb of leek tops cooked in salted boiling water for 3-5 minutes until tender
1/3 cup of cream
4 tbsp of butter
salt to taste

Duck jus
2 quarts of brown duck stock
2 carrots medium diced
2 celery stalks medium diced
1 onion medium diced
5 garlic cloves
1/2 cup of mushroom stems
1 sprig of thyme
2 bay leaves
1 cup of red wine
2 tomatoes
2 tbsp of cornstarch and water (slurry)
salt and pepper to taste

For the Duck jus,

De- bone 3 whole squab. Brown bones on a sheet pan in an 400 degree oven for 30-45 minutes. Then take vegetables and brown in a stock pot with a little bit of olive oil until they are caramelized (10 minutes). Add garlic and herbs and cook for another minutes. Then add bones to the pot and deglaze the pan with some water to get all of the bits from the pan off and pour into the pot as well. Fill the pot with the rest of the water. Bring to boil and turn down to a simmer. Reduce by 3/4. Season with salt, strain and set aside. Keep warm. 

Mushroom Conserva,

Trim the mushrooms of tough stems if any and any dirt that may be on them.  Cut large mushroom into pieces and keep the small ones whole.  In a pot add the oil, bay leaves, thyme, rosemary, and verbena.  Bring the oil up to 170 degrees.  Then pour in the mushrooms carefully.  Turn the mushrooms periodically.  When the oil comes back up to 170 degrees cook for another 5 minutes.  Then turn off the heat and add the vinegar, salt and pepper.  Let the mushrooms steep in the oil for 45 minutes.   At this point you can serve them or keep them warm or conserve them by transfering to a container and keep in the refrigerator.  The mushrooms should be submerged in the oil.  Serve the mushrooms hot or cold and they will keep for a month.   

For the leek sauce,

Place leek tops in boiling salted water and cook until tender but still vibrant green (approximately 3-5 minutes). Meanwhile heat up cream in a small pot. Strain the leek tops and place in the vitamix with the hot cream. Puree until smooth, while the blender is still running add the butter. If the sauce is a touch thick you can thin out with a little of the blanching water. Season with salt and keep warm.

To Finish the dish,

Take the lobster confit mushroom and place in a 400 degree oven for 5-7 minutes. Meanwhile in a medium saute pan on medium high heat add butter, olive oil, and all of the parisienne blanched vegetables. Add thyme, salt, and pepper. Cook for 3-5 minutes until they are tender and hot. Take the leek sauce and place in a squirt bottle. Make a oval shape on the plate. Add the duck jus inside the oval. Then place the parisienne vegetables in the middle. Take the mushrooms out of the oven and place on top. Finish the dish with some fresh herbs, in this case it was oregano. Serve and enjoy!

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Salmon and Foie Terrine with Lemongrass and Canary Melon

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Salmon and Foie Terrine with Lemongrass and Canary Melon

Here is one of 6 courses I served from the Bloomingdale/Frans Drescher dinner. This was later in the summer when all of the melons are at the peak of ripeness. The Gala melon that was available during this time frame was absolutely amazing. Sweet, but still firm, none of that mushy texture when melons become over ripen. I was able to get my hands on white salmon or ivory and thought that I would make a terrine with the salmon, foie gras terrine, and the melon. I decided to take the scraps of the leftover melon and make a “broth” for the terrine. Now a days, for me, it is very hard to decide what to make for dinner guests. I get that people just want delicious food, but trying to decide who’s coming to dinner and sometimes I don’t know if people have allergies or not so I have to be sensitive to that when thinking about menus. But because foie gras normally will turn a lot of people off I actually gave all the guests the option for this first course. I gave them the option of this recipe or a watermelon gazpacho and in some cases I gave some people both. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

1 1/2 lb white salmon smoked and quick cure
1 cup salt
1 cup rice vinegar

10 oz of foie terrine see recipe sliced 1/4 inch thick slices
1/2 gala melon sliced thin on mandolin
2 cucumber (melon) peeled shaved on mandolin no seeds

Melon lemongrass broth
1/2 melon and scraps
1 cucumber and scraps
2 lemongrass stalks
1 lime
Salt to taste

Shiso leaves
Cilantro flowers
Chives
Cilantro oil

For the Salmon,

This is for quick curing and smoking. I just wanted to add a little extra flavor to the fish and didn’t make this a day in advance so it was all done on the same day. I placed the salmon in square baking dish and placed the vinegar on top of the salmon along with the salt. I cured the salmon like this for 30 minutes. Then I rinsed off the cure. I place the salmon in a stove top smoker with iced packed in side to simulate a cold smoked salmon. I filled the smoker with wood chips and smoked it for 2-3 minutes. Then I turned off the heat and let it sit in the smoker for 30 minutes to soak up any of the residual smoke. Then place the salmon in the refrigerator for 45 minutes. Then take out and slice thin on the bias and set aside to assemble the terrine.

In a terrine mold or loaf pan line the mold with plastic wrap allowing enough excess plastic to hang over the edges. Alternate layers of cucumber, then salmon, then melon, and foie gras. Continue that layering until you have used all of your ingredients or until your terrine is full. Wrap the left over plastic wrap on top of the salmon terrine. Place in the refrigerator to chill completely. You can weigh the terrine down or press it at this point with something heavy like canned food or something similar ( I normally have a thick piece of cardboard cut in the exact size of the terrine mold. I place that on top of my wrapped terrine, and place the weight on top of the cardboard. Place it in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours.

For the melon broth,

Place all of the lemongrass, melon, and cucumber in a vita mix. Puree until smooth. Strain out through a chinois. Season the broth with lime and salt and place in the refrigerator until ready to use.

To Finish,

Take out the terrine and unmold. Keep the terrine in the plastic wrap and using a sharp knife cut across the terrine and lay each slice down flat (You can cut this ahead of time and keep it on a plate in the refrigerator). Take the plastic off carefully and place in the center of the bowl. Season the terrine with fleur de sel, chives, shiso, and cilantro flowers. Then add the broth to the bowl. Finish with a little cilantro oil, serve and enjoy!

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Biscotti with Mulberry, Blueberry, and Ricotta Ice Cream

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Biscotti with Mulberry, Blueberry, and Ricotta Ice Cream

Jp loves biscotti,  and Eloise wanted me to make some for the week of his birthday.  I also love biscotti and I don't think I had ever made it before up until this point.  I thought I could make a good dessert out of the leftover biscotti that hadn’t been eaten yet. During the summer months in Malibu we have these wonderful mulberry trees that normally produce exception mulberries. This year we didn’t get a good crop and I happen to get these from the local farmers market. These mulberries I think were of turkish or pakistani variety and were very sweet. Here is the recipe using basically nothing but leftovers; ice cream, sorbet, and biscotti with fresh fruit! Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Biscotti
1 1/4 cup sugar
1 stick unsalted butter, melted
3 tablespoons Amaretto
2 teaspoons pure almond extract
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup whole almonds with skin, lightly toasted , cooled, and coarsely chopped plus 1/4 cup pistachio
3 large eggs
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Blueberry Sorbet
1lb of blueberries
2 cups of sugar
2 1/2 cups of water
1 lemon juiced

Strawberry gel
1 cup of strawberry juice or puree
1/4 cup of sugar
1 1/2 tsp of agar 

Ricotta Ice Cream (here)

1/2 cup Strawberries sliced, mulberries, and red vein sorrel to garnish

For the Biscotti,  Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle,

Stir together sugar, butter, amaretto, and extracts in a large bowl, then stir in almonds and eggs. Stir in flour, baking powder, and salt until just combined.  Chill dough, covered, 30 minutes.
Using moistened hands, halve dough and form 2 (16-by 2-inch) loaves on an ungreased large baking sheet. Bake until pale golden, about 30 minutes. Carefully transfer loaves to a rack and cool 15 minutes. Cut loaves into 3/4-inch slices with a serrated knife. Arrange biscotti, with a cut side down, on a clean baking sheet and bake until golden, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer to rack to cool completely. Then take a few pieces of the biscotti once completely cooled and place in a plastic ziplock bag with as little air as possible inside. Using a mallet crush the biscotti inside the bag, leaving rough pieces. Set aside for later use.

For the sorbet,

Place water and sugar in a pot.  Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes.  Then cool slightly and place in a blender with the 2 cups of blueberries.  Puree until smooth, and the lemon juice, then chill until completely cold.  Place in your ice cream maker according to their instructions.  Place  in an air tight container and place in the freezer until you need it.

For the strawberry gel,

Put all the ingredients in a small sauce pot.  Bring to a boil stirring consistently and cook for 5-7 minutes.  Then pour gel into a half sheet pan or baking dish.  Place in the refrigerator until the agar has set.  Then take a knife and cut the set gel into sections.  Place it all into a vita mix and puree until smooth.  Pour into a squeeze bottle and set aside until ready to use.

To finish,

On a plate add some of the strawberry gel in any design you want. Then add a hand full of the crushed biscotti on to the plate. Add the sorbet and ice cream. Finish with fresh strawberries, mulberries and red sorrel. Serve and enjoy!

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Smoked Confit Chicken with Yard long beans, Shiso and Wheat

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Smoked Confit Chicken with Yard long beans, Shiso and Wheat

Here is a recipe for dinner I made that was absolutely delicious.  This was Mike Michelson who is co owner of the fantastic gourmet company Blis. You want fantastic gourmet pantry products? Blis is the one you need to start with for great aged vinegars, sauces and other fine condiment products. The maple syrup and vinegars are truly top shelf. Even though Mike was coming to dinner I don’t think I had a plan to use any of their products even though now looking back maybe I should have. I bought some chinese long beans at the farmers market and wanted to do a chinese inspired dish. I say chinese because of the flavors but some of the techniques and ingredients aren’t truly chinese. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it as much as Mike and everyone else!

6 Confit chicken thighs see duck recipe

1 bunch Chinese long beans
2 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp minced garlic and 1 tsp of ginger
1 tbsp of samba chili paste

Ginger Hollandaise
4 egg yolks
10 tbsp butter melted
2 tbsp ginger juice and tbsp of white wine
1 lime juiced
1 tbsp of Korean chili flakes and salt to taste

1 cup of dried wheat berries cooked in chicken broth until done
1/2 cup chicken broth

3 tbsp of fried garlic
1/4 cup micro shiso leaves
Cilantro flowers

For the Chicken

In stove top smoker place apple wood chips along with pecan in the bottom of your smoker. Place the chicken inside and cover. Turn on the heat and allow the chips to start smoking. Have the heat on for 1-2 minutes maximum. Turn off the heat and allow the chicken to stay inside the smoker for 30 minutes. Then take the chicken out follow the rest of the directions for curing and cooking the chicken thighs with the above link. If you are in a rush and don’t want to cure overnight try to cure for at least 8 hours.

For the hollandaise,

Place egg yolks, white wine, and ginger juice 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, lime juice, and Korean flakes.  Cover and Keep in a warm place.  

For the Chinese Long beans,

One trick for the long beans is to actually fry them for the 1 minutes. You can blanch them in salted water if desired but long beans have a very tuff outer skin. One way to get around that toughness is to flash fry or blanch fry. Instead of blanching them in the salted water you are simply doing a quick fry to tenderize the outer skin. Fry for about 45 seconds to 1 minutes. I would suggest covering the pan you are frying in because of the water content in the yard long bean you will have a big mess in your kitchen. Take out and drain on paper towels.

To Finish

 Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Take your chicken thighs out of the duck fat once they have rested or completely cooled from the day before. In a hot cast iron skillet place the chicken thighs in the pan skin side down. You shouldn’t need any oil because there should still be a bit of duck fat on them. Cook in the pan for 1 minute and then place in the oven. Cook for 15 minutes until the skin is crisp and brown and the meat is hot all the way through. Meanwhile place the wheat berries in the small pot with chicken stock and some butter if desired. Bring up to a boil and cook for 3 minutes, season with salt and pepper and keep warm. In large saute pan add sesame oil, garlic, and ginger. Cook for 30 seconds and then add the flash fried long beans. Add the sambal chili paste and season the beans with salt (or soy sauce if desired). Cook the beans for 1-2 minutes until tender, hot, and delicious. Grab 3-4 long beans and place them in a circle in the middle of the plate. Then add a spoonful of the wheat berries in the middle of the plate. Take the chicken thighs out of the oven. Flip over the thighs and place one on top of the wheat berries. Finish the plate with the hollandaise, fried garlic, shiso leaves and cilantro flowers. Serve and enjoy! 

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Quail with Fennel and Turnip

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Quail with Fennel and Turnip

Here is a recipe I prepared last week for a dinner party with Mike Meldman, co owner of the casa amigos tequila brand.  This was one of 6 courses I served on this particular evening.  This was the only meat of the evening.  Since Jp and a lot of others seem to be steering away from red meat I’m always look for alternative to serve in the poultry or game category. Here is a very french style quail recipe. Here it is I hope you enjoy it!

16 whole quail legs cut off and breast deboned with skin intact

Quail leg mousse
6 oz of thigh leg meat
1 egg white
1/4 cup cream
1 tsp of tarragon fresh leaves
1 garlic clove
salt and pepper to taste

Quail Jus
16 quail carcasses
1 leek
2 carrots
2 celery stalks
1 small fennel
6 garlic cloves
1 onion
2 bay leaves, 1 sprig thyme, 1 sprig of oregano
2 cups of red wine
12-14 cups of water
2 tbsp of cornstarch
2 tbsp of water
salt to taste

Fennel purée
2 large fennel bulbs sliced thin
2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp oil
1-2 tbsp cream
Salt

1 cup of baby turnips
1 cup of duck fat
1 sprig of thyme
1 garlic clove
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp of salt

Roasted fennel
1 large fennel sliced thin
3 tbsp of olive oil
1 sprig of savory
salt and pepper to taste

Fennel pollen to garnish

For the Quail,

For the mousse. Making sure all the equipment and food is very cold (place in the freezer for 15 minutes. Take some of the leg meat off the bone and place in the food processor along with garlic, and herbs.  Puree until smooth, then while food processor is still running add egg white and then drizzle in the cream.  Season with salt and pepper and then place in the refrigerator.

Then for the quail breast. Place the deboned quail breast skin side down on your cutting board. (should be 2 breast from each quail) Then spoon or pipe the mousse in the middle of the 2 quail breast.  Then using the plastic wrap and your hands roll the quail up into a tiny log with the skin on the outside the breast and filling on the inside.  Using the plastic wrap roll as tight as can be and tie or twist up both ends.  Then place in a sous vide bag. Repeat until you have all of the breast rolled filled. Seal up the sous vide bag air tight with 3 tbsp of butter.   Place in the refrigerator for an hour to help firm up if you have the time.  Other wise place in a 135 degrees water bath for 45-55 min.   Then take out and rest.

For the Quail Jus,

Place bones on a sheet pan and brown in an 400 degree oven for 30-45 minutes. Then take vegetables and brown in a stock pot with a little bit of olive oil until they are caramelized (15 minutes).  Add garlic and herbs and cook for another few minutes.  Then add bones to the pot along with the wine and reduce by half. Meanwhile deglaze the sheet pan with some water to get all of the bits from the roasting pan off and pour into the pot as well.  Fill the pot with the rest of the water. Bring to boil and turn down to a simmer.  Reduce by 3/4.  Thicken the jus slightly with the cornstarch slurry by slowly pouring into the stock stirring continuously with a whisk. Cook for another 5-10 minutes. Season with salt, strain and set aside.  Keep warm.

For the Fennel Puree,

In a large saute pan on medium heat add olive oil, butter, sliced fennel, and 1/2 tsp of salt. Cover and cook for about 25 minutes stirring occasionally to ensure even cooking. The fennel should not have any color when they are done. You can add the 1-2 tbsp of cream at the end of the cooking process. Once they are done, place in a vitamix and puree until smooth. Adjust the seasoning if need be, set aside and keep warm

For the fennel,

Place the fennel on a sheet pan and drizzle with olive. Season with salt, pepper, and a sprig of savory. Place in the oven. Roast for 15 minutes and then flip over. The fennel should be golden brown. Roast on the second side for another 10-15 minutes until tender. Take out and set aside 

For the Turnips

Place baby turnips and the rest of the quail legs along with, garlic, herbs, and duck fat into a small pot. Bring to a boil and then turn down to a very very soft simmer. Cover and allow to cook for 20-25 minutes until the turnips and legs are tender. Set aside and keep warm.

To Finish,

In saute pan add a little duck fat on medium high heat. Take the quail out of the bag and season with salt and pepper. Place in the pan along with the cooked legs, to brown on all sides (about 3-5 minutes). Take out and let it rest on a cutting board. Meanwhile place a spoonful of fennel puree on the plate with some of the roasted fennel and turnips. Cut each quail “log” in half. Place 3 halves on each plate along with 2 legs. Finish with some of the jus and garnish with fennel buds. Serve and enjoy!

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S'mores

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S'mores

Sometimes you have to go with what works and what is delicious. There are classic recipes and combinations for a reason, because they delicious.  Of course this is my interpretation of the classic s'mores.  I served a small scoop of vanilla ice cream that isn’t shown in the picture. Jp said "this was one of the best s'mores he's ever had" The addition to this recipe is the feuilletine cookie and the honey ganache. Incorporate the meringue and it is a great version to the classic. Here it is I hope you enjoy it!

Homemade Feuilletine

4 1/2 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature 4 ounces brown sugar 1 Tablespoon baking soda 6 ounces molasses optional: vanilla bean, a teaspoon of your favorite spice or extract, orange zest, etc 1 egg 13 ounces flour, sifted 2 ounces milk

For the Feuilletine, Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment cream butter and sugar together. Add molasses, vanilla bean, egg, and milk. Mix well, scraping the sides. Then add the flour and mix until well incorporated. Add a few spoonfuls of the batter onto a silicone mat and using a offset spatula spread the batter very thin. Then place in the oven to bake for 8-10 minutes until dry and crisp. Take out and allow to cool completely. Then break up into pieces and store in an air tight container.

Honey ganache see recipe Meringue see recipe Graham crackers crushed (store bought)

To Finish,

Take a mini ice cream scoop and scoop out balls of the honey ganache once firm. Place in the refrigerator 20 minutes just to firm up a bit. Then place the meringue in a piping bag with a plane tip. Pipe in a circular motion around the ball of chocolate ganache. Then carefully using a spatula place it on top of crushed graham crackers on the bottom of the plate. Using a torch, brown the meringue and place pieces of the feuilletine around the smores. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream if desired. Serve and enjoy!

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Legume Salad with Truffle, Pistachio, and Butter Beans

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Legume Salad with Truffle, Pistachio, and Butter Beans

I was looking to make a vegetarian dish for dinner this evening and didn't get a chance to run to the market.  I had these ingredients on hand so this is what came out.  I love these types of salads where you have different textures and flavors with lentils, quinoa, and beans. Mix in some vegetables and other bold flavors and you have yourself a wonderful starter for dinner. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

1 cup of cooked italian butter beans (see merguez)
1 cup of beluga lentils cooked with leek tops
1 cup of cooked quinoa with leek tops
1 cup of diced cucumber
2 cups of roasted quartered brussel sprouts
2 red radishes sliced thin

1/4 cup of pistachio mint pesto
1 cup of mint leaves
2/3 cup of roasted pistachios
2 tbsp of parmesan
1 garlic clove
3/4-1 cup of olive oil

Chanterelle Truffle aioli
1 cup of cooked chanterelle mushrooms (cooked in olive oil and butter for 10 minutes)
1 tbsp of fresh black truffles
splash of truffle oil (if desired)
3/4 cup of veganaise or aioli (mayo)
splash of sherry vinegar
salt and pepper to taste 

Australian black winter truffles
chervil and amaranth 

Mint Pesto,

Place all of the ingredients except for the oil in a food processor. Turn on and puree, while the processor is still on slowly add the olive oil. Stop and scrap the sides if need by, season with salt and pepper once all the oil has been added. Pour out into a bowl and set aside for later.

For the Chanterelle aioli,

In a vitamix blender add all of the ingredients and puree until smooth. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Set aside for later.

To Finish,

In a large bowl add equal parts, of lentils, beans, and quinoa. Add the roasted brussels and cucumbers. Add 1/4 cup of pistachio mint pesto and mix well. Add a touch of salt if need be. Add sliced radishes to the salad. Place a spoonful of aioli on the plate. Add the salad on top. Top the salad with truffles, herbs, micro greens. Serve and enjoy!

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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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Vanilla Pavlova with Cara Cara and Candied Buddha Hand

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Vanilla Pavlova with Cara Cara and Candied Buddha Hand

Here is the classic meringue dessert. Meringue is actually not one of my favorite desserts but this one was really exceptional. I didn’t grown up on meringues and that is probably one of the reasons it isn’t my top dessert. My wife on the other hand loves meringue and gets it when ever she can. We just got back from Italy where she ordered a similar dessert twice. Pavlova is normally a meringue that is baked and the outer shell of the meringue is hard and crunchy while the center has that gooey, marshmallow type consistency. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Vanilla Pavlova with Cara Cara sorbet and anglaise 

Orange sorbet
2 1/2 cup water
2 cups sugar
4 Cara cara oranges peeled and deseeded
2 zested Cara Cara

Pavlova
8 egg whites
2 1/4 cup of sugar
1 tsp of vanilla bean
1 tbsp plus 1 tsp of corn starch
1/2 lemon juiced

1 cup of cara cara orange segments

Candied buddha hand
1 buddha hand sliced 1/8 inch thick
1 1/4 cup water
3/4 cup sugar

Creme Anglaise
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 2-inch piece vanilla bean, split
3 large egg yolks
3 tablespoons sugar

Preheat oven to 350

For the pavlova,

Add egg whites and vanilla to a stand mixing bowl.  Beat the egg whites until soft peaks start to form then slowly add the sugar to the egg whites and beat until the meringue is stiff and shiny ( about 3-4 minutes.  Then fold in the cornstarch and lemon juice. Once well incorporated place the meringue into a pastry bag with a plain tip. Then on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper you can pipe out individual meringues in a circular motion.

Place the sheet pan in oven and immediately turn down to 300 and cook for 1 hour and 15 mins.  Turn off oven and allow to cool completely in the oven.  Should look something like this.

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For the Preserve,

Bring small pot of water to a boil, place the sliced buddha hand in the boiling water and blanch for 3 seconds.  Strain off the water.  Repeat the same step two more times blanching and staring the buddha hand slices.  after 3 times add the measured water and sugar and bring to a boil.  Add the buddha's hand blanched slices to the pot.  Cook for 5-10 minutes and then pour into a preserve jar seal properly. 

For the Sorbet,

Place sugar and water in a pot and bring to a boil.  Turn down to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes.  Turn off the heat and cool completely.  Then puree with oranges and zest.  Strain the mixture if you desire.  Then pour into a ice cream maker and follow your instructions.  Take out and place in a container in the freezer. 

For the Anglaise
Combine milk and cream in heavy medium saucepan. Scrape in seeds from vanilla bean; add bean. Bring milk mixture to simmer. Remove from heat.  Whisk egg yolks and sugar in medium bowl to blend. Gradually whisk hot milk mixture into yolk mixture. Return custard to saucepan. Stir over low heat until custard thickens and leaves path on back of spoon when finger is drawn across, about 5 minutes (do not boil). Strain sauce into bowl. Cover and chill. (Can be made 1 day ahead.)

To Finish,

Place a spoonful of anglaise on the bottom of the plate. Add one pavlova and place on top. Add orang segments, and preserve around the meringue. Add the sorbet on top. Finish with leaves of basil. Serve and enjoy!

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Manti Pasta with Leek, Cauliflower, and Truffle

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Manti Pasta with Leek, Cauliflower, and Truffle

This dish comes from some leftover cauliflower mashed potato puree I had made from the night before.  In the south of Italy they all kinds of pasta that they stuff with potato so I thought why not take the leftovers and fill some manti shaped pasta with it.  This is one way that not only restaurants but even you at home can take something already made and turn it into a whole new dish that no one will ever know, not even if you served the puree the night before.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

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

Cauliflower Puree
1/2 head of cauliflower with most of the stem intact
1 large idaho peeled and large chopped potato
1 stick of butter
splash of milk if needed
salt and pepper to taste

Leek Sauce
1 lb of leek tops cooked in salted boiling water for 3-5 minutes until tender
1/3 cup of cream
4 tbsp of butter
salt to taste

2 leek bottoms sliced 1/4 inch thick and blanched
8 oz of Nameko mushrooms
2 tbsp of olive oil
4 tbsp of butter
1 black australian truffle rough chopped
salt and pepper to taste

basil flowers to garnish 

For the Cauliflower puree,

Place cauliflower and potatoes in a small pot and fill with water.  Add salt and bring to a boil.  Turn down and simmer for 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender.  Strain out the water well and using a hand blender puree the mixture adding butter and milk if needed.  Season with salt and pepper.  Use hot for another recipe, otherwise cool completely (overnight is best).

For the leek sauce,

Place leek tops in boiling salted water and cook until tender but still vibrant green (approximately 3-5 minutes). Meanwhile heat up cream in a small pot. Strain the leek tops and place in the vitamin with the hot cream. Puree until smooth, while the blender is still running add the butter. If the sauce is a touch thick you can thin out with a little of the blanching water. Season with salt and keep warm.

For the Pasta

Place 2 cups of flour and 1 cup of semolina in a bowl. Make a well in the center of the flour.  Add eggs, yolks, 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 number 6 or 7 setting depending on the strength of the dough.  Again, Use a little flour for dusting.  If you feel like the dough is very strong and good density to it you might be fine with a 7 setting.  If you feel like the dough is "loose" and doesn't have the structure to it then you might want to go a little thicker with a number 6 setting.  One you have the flat pasta all laid out you can take an adjustable pasta cutter (here) and cut 1 by 1 inch squares.  Then take your cauliflower puree and place in a plastic piping bag.  Cut the tip off and place a small dollop on each square.  Using a water spray bottle or a pastry brush, spray or brush lightly the pasta ends.  Then taking one side of the square in each hand, pinch the two ends together one in the left hand and the other in the right hand.  Then bring both hands to the cent pinch all 4 ends together forming a pyramid or a manti.  Continue the process until you have all the pasta shapes made.  It should look something like this.

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To Finish,

In a large saute pan add 1 tbsp of butter, olive oil, leeks and mushrooms.  Cook for 3 minutes.  Meanwhile place your pasta in salted boiling water and cook for 2-3 minutes until they float to the top.  Strain off and place the pasta in the saute pan. Add a little of the cooking water to the pan along with the rest of the butter to make a pan sauce.  Season the whole pan with salt and pepper.  Then add some of the sauce to the bottom of the bowl. Add leeks and mushrooms around the plate. Add the pasta on top of the sauce. Finish with chopped truffles, flowers and olive oil. Serve and enjoy!

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Tomato and Gala Melon "Terrine" with Blis Solera Vinegar

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Tomato and Gala Melon "Terrine" with Blis Solera Vinegar

This was a simple dish using just a few ingredients and take a little extra time to present it in a "fancy" way.   This is what summer eating should be about, less time in the kitchen and more time outside with friends and family.  I served this recipe for dinner guests late this summer as tomatoes were still in full swing and melons become ripen.  The garden had some amazing varieties of heirloom tomatoes that I normally wait until they are just ready to pick.  Tomatoes really only need salt and olive oil when they are that fresh.  Melon and tomatoes are a perfect combination that go together seamlessly with little added flavors to compliment one another.  In this case basil, olive oil, a really good aged vinegar and salt.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.

Galia melon sliced 1/8 inch thick  (Mold)
4 large heirloom tomatoes 1/8 inch thick
Blis aged Solera sherry vinegar (here)
Olive oil
Salt 

1 oz of sunflower sprouts
3 tbsp of sunflower seeds
3 tbsp of fresh basil leaves
Olive oil
Salt 

For the Terrine,

You will need a square pastry mold  or something similar to have the shape of the terrine.  I peeled and cut the melon into slices and then used the mold to cut perfect squares.  I continued until the majority of the melon was cut into squares (Set the scraps of the melon aside to eat later or maybe use in a gazpacho for another recipe).  Repeat the same process for the tomatoes insuring that you use only the center cuts of the tomatoes and not the skin.  Once you have the perfect squares of each melon and tomatoes, alternate melon and tomatoes inside your pastry mold until you reach the top.  Then carefully holding on the top remove the mold.  I then carefully wrapped them in plastic wrap somewhat tight and placed them in the refrigerator until I was ready to serve later that evening. Repeat the same process until you have 5 terrines.  You should have something that looks like this picture.

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To Finish,

Simply take all the ingredients for the salad and place them in a bowl.  Drizzle lightly with olive oil and salt and set aside.  Take the terrine out of the refrigerator and slice the terrine in half right down the middle keep the plastic wrap on to help keep the shape (continue with the others).  Then after the terrine is cut place each half on a plate carefully removing the plastic wrap (should have enough for 10 servings).  Drizzle the top with olive oil and salt.  Place the salad next to it.  Then add some of the age blis solera vinegar to finish the dish.  Serve and enjoy!

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Strawberry Pop-tarts

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Strawberry Pop-tarts

Who doesn't love pop-tarts? Well this is my version of a pop tart.  It's basically a filled pie crust but with strawberries at the height there sweetness it is a recipe that not only anyone can make but that everyone will love.  In the summertime it is hard not to over buy fresh fruit  at the farmers market.  When all the farmers are giving out fresh sample of their delicious fruit and they give you price breaks on the more you buy it is hard not too.  Well, that was the case on this particular occasion,  so I was forced to make some amazing strawberry jam that was a low sugar since the strawberries were so sweet naturally.  Here is the recipe, I hope you enjoy it!

Strawberry Pop Tarts

Dough
2 cups of ap flour
2 sticks of butter
1 egg
1 tbsp of sugar and salt
3 tbsp of milk 

Strawberry Jam
3 lb of sweet summer strawberries
1 2/3 cup water
1 3/4 cup of sugar
1 vanilla bean
7 1/2 tbsp of low sugar pectin

Topping
8 oz cream cheese
1/3 cup powdered sugar
4 tbsp of strawberry jam 

Fresh sliced strawberries 

For the Jam,  Link here for proper instructions for canning

Better if done a day or two ahead of time.  Place strawberries, water, sugar, and vanilla into a sauce pot.  Bring to a boil and then turn down to a simmer.  Once on simmer add the low sugar pectin.  Cook for another 3-5 minutes and then with a masher (if you want a chunky jam) or a hand blender (if you want a smooth jam) mash or puree the jam.  Then fill your canning jars with jam and preserve (according to link instructions)

For the dough, Preheat Oven to 375 degrees.

Using the food processor 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.  Add egg and drizzle in the cold milk.  Normally now you put the crust into the refrigerator to let the dough come together as it gets cold 45 minutes or If you can put the dough in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes it will really helps.  Then 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 in the shape of a rectangle.  Then with a knife or pizza cutter cut the dough into even rectangular shapes.  Place a spoonful of the cooled strawberry jam filling in the middle of the of dough. Brush the edges with egg wash.  Then take another piece 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. Place in the oven and bake for 22-25 minutes or until golden brown.  Take out the pies and allow to cool completely.  

To finish,

In a bowl mix together cream cheese, jam, and powdered sugar until smooth.  Then once the pop tarts have cooled completely top the tarts with the cream cheese mixture.  Add sliced strawberries on top and your done! Serve and enjoy!

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Artichoke and Black Truffle

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Artichoke and Black Truffle

Here is a summer artichoke and truffle recipe.  This is a fantastic vegetarian recipe that uses just a few ingredients.  Artichokes can be a intimidating ingredient but it really just takes a little time taking the outer leaves away and peeling the green stem.  Once you have done that you can remove the hearts on large artichokes.  Depending on how big the baby artichokes are, you can sometimes leave the heart intact because of the maturity of the vegetable.  This recipe is really simple in concept. You cook the artichokes in a flavorful broth, add some truffle and fat to the dish and that's basically the recipe.  Jp absolutely loved this dish and hopefully you will too.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Artichoke Baragouile
3 large artichokes and 12 small baby artichokes
4 lemons
1 cup of white wine
7 cups of water
1 onion
6 garlic cloves
1 sprig of thyme , 1 bay leaf
1 tbsp salt 

Artichoke and Black Truffle Puree
6 small artichokes cooked from above
1/3 cup of cream heated  
2 tbsp of black truffle (winter Australian)
splash of truffle oil (if desired)
1 tbsp of butter
salt and pepper to taste

Fresh black Australian truffle slices
Tarragon leaves and amaranth

For the Baragouile 

Take the artichokes and pull off the outer tough leaves of the large and small artichokes (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 pot filled with water, white wine, and 1 lemon juiced.  Continue until you have all the artichokes peeled; the large artichokes should just be the bottoms and the small artichokes should have some of the inner leaves intact and you can cut them in half. Then add the rest of the ingredients along with salt to the pot.  Take a piece of parchment paper and cut a large 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 simmer, 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.  

Take half of the small artichokes and place in a vitamix with cream, truffle, and oil.  Puree until smooth and add butter salt and pepper.  Take out and keep warm.  

To Finish,

Take the large artichoke bottoms and slice in 1/8 inch thickness.  Place them in the pan with a little of the artichoke cooking liquid, butter, and olive oil.  Take the baby artichokes and quarter them and add to the pan as well.  You are just heating the artichokes up and seasoning them with a little salt if need be.  Once hot, then add truffle puree to the plate.  Add the sliced large artichokes on the bottom.  Then add the quartered baby artichokes on top.  Add sliced fresh truffles, tarragon, and amaranth to garnish.   Drizzle with a little extra olive oil if desired.  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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Banana and Hazelnut Bomb with Cinnamon Banana Ice-cream

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Banana and Hazelnut Bomb with Cinnamon Banana Ice-cream

Here is a dessert that is a true winner if you want to take the time to bring it all together.  It really doesn't take as long as the recipe ingredients look, but of course that is coming from someone who thinks everything doesn't take that long.  The flavors are straight forward with banana, nutella, and caramel.  All of these flavors go together so harmoniously without having to go above and beyond.  The presentation looks amazing but that is deception using bomb molds.  In short the recipe consists nothing more than a hazelnut banana "bread" (cake), banana cinnamon ice cream, banana and nutella mousse and caramel sauce.  The end result is fantastic and I hope you enjoy this recipe!

Banana and Hazenut bomb with banana cinnamon ice cream 

Banana mousse
9 frozen bananas thawed and drained completely of water
8oz mascarpone
3 egg whites
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup powder sugar
1 tsp vanilla
12g gelatin
3 tbsp water 

Banana ice cream
1 1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cup cream
1 tbsp Mexican vanilla extract
4 ripe frozen banana
1 tsp cinnamon
5 egg yolks
3/4 cup sugar

Hazelnut banana bread
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil and 1 tsp of vanilla
4 eggs, beaten
1/3 cup water from thawed bananas
1 cup chopped hazelnut 

Nutella filling
1/2 cup Nutella
4 oz cream cheese room temperature
1/4 cup of ground hazelnut
1 tbsp of frangelico

Caramel sauce
4 oz butter
8oz brown sugar
4oz of xo patron café
6 oz of cream

2 ripe bananas
sugar to (brûlée)
1/4 cup of roasted hazelnuts cut in half and 1/4 ground

For the Banana ice cream go here

For the nutella filling,

Mix all the ingredients well in a mixing bowl until you have one homogenous mix and then fill a 15 cavity half sphere mold (here).  Freeze until completely solid.

For the banana mousse,

Take ripened bananas and puree until smooth with mascarpone cheese with a hand emersion blender. In a small separate bowl add gelatin and 3 tbsp of water to bloom. Meanwhile in a stand mixer add heavy cream.  Using the whisk start to whip the heavy cream. When the cream starts to thicken add the powdered sugar and vanilla.  Whip until stiff peaks.  Place the whipped cream in a bowl and place in the refrigerator.  Clean your mixing bowl out and place your egg whites inside ; make a quick meringue by mixing the egg whites on high with the whisk attachment and when the whites start to foam, slowly add 1/2 cup of sugar and whip until you have stiff peaks. Melt the gelatin over the double boiler and then pour into the banana mixture and mix well. Working quickly now fold in your egg whites in the banana mixture then fold in your whipped cream. You want to incorporate the whipped cream well, but you don't want to over work it.  Then take 2 6 cavity bomb molds that are 3 oz each (here) and fill almost to the top. Once you have all 12 filled, take your frozen nutella half sphere mold out the freeze and place one half sphere in the center of each of the 12 banana mousse.  Take an offset spatula and smooth out the top, you might need to  add a touch more mousse to completely cover the sphere in the middle.  Once completely smooth place in the freezer overnight to completely set up.  

For the banana hazelnut cake

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, nutmeg, baking soda, cinnamon and sugar. In a separate bowl, combine oil, vanilla, eggs, banana water, bananas . Mix wet ingredients into dry, add nuts and fold in. Pour on to a half sheet pan that has been sprayed with non stick spray.   Bake for 30-35 minutes until cake tester comes out clean.  Take our and let it cool completely.  Once completely cooled you can refrigerate if desired and take a cookie cutter that is the same size as your bomb molds.  Cut out 12 cakes for your 12 bombs and set aside.  

For the Caramel,

Simply place brown sugar and butter in a small pot and turn on medium heat.  Cook until sugar and butter are melted.  Then add the patron and flambé.  Let all the alcohol cook off and then add the cream.  Whisk until all is combined, cook for 1-3 minutes until you have the desired thickness and turn off the heat.  Set aside until ready to plate.

To finish,

Place a round cake of the hazelnut down on the plate.  Take a bomb out of the freezer and un-mold, place on top of the cake.  Take ripe bananas and slice on a sheet tray.  Then sprinkle liberally with sugar on the tops of the bananas.  With a torch, caramelize the sugar on top of the bananas.  Add some ground hazelnuts next to the bomb and add a scoop of banana ice cream on top.  Then spoon some of the caramel on top and around the bomb.  Add the hazelnuts on top and around the bomb.  Finish with the caramelized bananas around serve and enjoy!

NOTE:  To make things a little easier and to not have the mousse so frozen, you can un-mold the bomb and place on top of the hazelnut cake and place that in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve the dessert.  It will help serve everyone faster and it will help with the center not being completely frozen in the middle.  I hope you enjoy it!

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Rhubarb and Beet Terrine with Jalapeño Sheep Ricotta and Pickles

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Rhubarb and Beet Terrine with Jalapeño Sheep Ricotta and Pickles

Here is a recipe that took some great summer beets growing from the garden and turned it into a fantastic starter course for a lunch party.   Beets is always one of those vegetables that has either been engrained into someones brain that they either love or hate.  I can tell you that I have prepared beets many times and have had people tell me time and time again that they loved the dish but didn't like beets.  I love roasted/grilled whole beets that are charred on the outside it is one of the easiest ways to get great flavor out of the beets without doing much to them labor wise.  

I think I was like most of those people where my mom didn't always use or cook fresh beets, she probably used the ones in a can that had that nasty juice on them or the pickled beets, I didn't care for either one of them.  Both were unpalatable for me and most young kids.  I think that scerneiro plays out with a lot us and now when we hear or think of beets, that situation of our childhood comes back to haunt most of us.  This recipe might not be the dish that converts you to a beet lover but it is a fantastic dish with the spicy cheese, toasted raisin bread, and pickled vegetables.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Beet and rhubarb terrine
3 beets shaved 1/8 thick
6-7 stalks rhubarb shaved 1/8 thick
4 tbsp sugar
2 tsp salt
1 lemon zested 

4oz fresh sheeps milk jalapeño cheese
5 slices raisin walnut bread
2 tbsp butter and 2 tbsp oil

Pickled summer vegetables
1 head romanesco
3 radishes sliced
3 carrots sliced
12 oz baby zucchini and squash 

Pickle from Emeril

3 lbs of summer vegetables instead of cucumbers (cauliflower, radish, squash, zucchini, etc.)

 

Take a terrine or loaf pan and spray in the inside with non stick spray.  Then layer the pan with plastic wrap or parchment paper so that it hangs over the terrine.  Using a mandolin thinly slice the beets and rhubarb into the bowl keeping them separated.  After slicing place an even layer of beet in the terrine pan. Then alternate with the rhubarb.  After you have one layer sprinkle a little with salt and sugar.  Repeat until you have filled up the terrine.  Once you've filled the terrine, take the excess plastic wrap and fold over the top of the terrine.  Place the lid on the terrine and place it in a preheated oven at 375 degrees.  Cook for 50-55 min or until a cake tester can easily go to the bottom of the terrine without resistance.  Take out and let it cool completely.  Then place in a refrigerator overnight (you can press here if you desire by putting weight on top of the terrine. 

To Finish,

Un mold the terrine and slice into 3 oz portions.  In a large saute pan add olive oil and butter along with the raisin bread.  Toast until golden brown on each side.  Season with salt and then cut into 3 pieces and place on each plate.  Add the terrine slice to the middle of the plate and add a pinch of salt on top.  Add the jalapeño cheese and pickled vegetables.  Finish with nasturtium leaves. Serve and enjoy!

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Tomato "Salad" with Porcini, Hearts of Palm, Chrysanthemum

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Tomato "Salad" with Porcini, Hearts of Palm, Chrysanthemum

June, 2018 in California was a busy time for the Dejorias, with dinner parties nearly every day. That makes it a busy time for me, too, and a challenge to think of a variety of menus. It also happens to be the month of JP and Eloise’s 25th anniversary.  A few guests were invited for the evening. What to fix? JP was not eating red meat, and I had served fish many times in the week already. I didn’t want to serve chicken or run to the store for some other protein. Earlier in the week I had visited a local organic farm. I bought all kinds of vegetables and fruit, more than I actually needed, but summertime in California means abundance of fresh produce. Depending on the weather and month, you have many wonderful varieties of vegetables and fruit, week after week: berries, stone fruit, melons, squashes, blossoms, greens, peas, beans, tomatoes, mushrooms, citrus, onions, carrots, beets, salsify, corn, broccoli, asparagus, artichokes, potatoes, and I could go on. With so much to choose from, sometimes the hardest thing is actually deciding what to make. So I decided not to run to the store and buy a protein for the main course.  This was one of the 5 courses I served that evening for the special anniversary dinner. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!  

 

Tomato “salad” hearts of palm, porcini and chrysanthemum

1 cup of cherry tomatoes roasted
4-5 large heirloom tomatoes roasted (for tomato water see below)
1 yellow heirloom tomato sliced
1 large red radish sliced thin
1/2 cucumber shaved on mandolin
1 cup of sourdough croutons
1 porcini shaved
Mint leaves, radish flowers, chive flowers

8 1 inch pieces of hearts of palm
2 1/2 cup water
4 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 tsp salt

Chrysanthemums oil
1 large bundle chrysanthemum blanched
1 1/4 cup oil
Pinch of salt

Tomato water here

For the Hearts of palm,

Place all the ingredients into a pot and bring to a boil.  Turn down to a simmer and cook for roughly 20 minutes or until the hearts of palm are tender. (Time really depends on how thick and big the palms are).  Once tender allow to cool to room temperature and you can pour all the liquid into a container to keep and preserve the hearts of palm.

For the Chrysanthemum oil,

Place blanched chrysanthemum leaves and oil together in a vita mix and puree for 45 seconds.  Then pour into a chinos and let it strain without pushing the pulp through the chinos ( let it drip that way you don't get any of the pulp in your oil).

To finish,

Take a one slice of yellow heirloom tomato and place in the bottom of each bowl.  Season with a  pinch of salt.  Add slices of hearts of palm around the bowl.  Add the roasted cherry tomatoes, the sliced porcini, and radish the bowl.  Ladle 2 oz of tomato water to the bowl.  Finish with herbs, flowers, and croutons.  Serve and enjoy! 

 

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Summer Vegetable "Tikka Marsala" with Chutneys

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Summer Vegetable "Tikka Marsala" with Chutneys

This is really a summer vegetable dish with a tomato "broth"  The idea was to have like a vegetable "curry" bowl with a tomato butter sauce, but instead of a red, somewhat thicker tomato sauce I decided to make it out of the tomato water.  I wanted to have the consistency more like a broth than a thick sauce.  The color I was looking to be more clear as well.  I think overall it was a success.  The tomato broth didn't have that deep indian flavor I was looking for because it just simply wasn't cooking a long time like a traditional marsala might be.  Flavors were good and light which is what you want on a hot summer evening. The chutneys went well with it and gave a another layer of flavor.  Here is the recipe for my interpretation of a vegetable "tikka marsala" I hope you enjoy it

1/2 head of cauliflower sliced 1/8 inch thick roasted
12 oz of brussels cut in half roasted
8 oz baby squash blanched
6 oz of blanched green peas
8 oz of blanched chopped green beans
8 oz of roasted baby tomatoes
8 oz of baby carrots roasted and sliced
1 tsp of minced garlic and ginger
1 tbsp of curry powder plus 1 tsp
1 tbsp of cumin plus 1 tsp
1/4 tsp of cayenne
1/2 tsp of graham masala
1/4 cup of fresh mint and cilantro
1/4 cup of pea flowers and sorrel

Curry oil

1 1/2 tbsp of curry powder
1 cup of vegetable oil 

Mango Chutney
1 1/ 2 cups cider vinegar
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 tbsp of oil
1/4 cups raisins
1 cup sugar
1 clove
1 star anise
1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger and garlic
1 cinnamon stick
1 jalapeño cut in half
2 large fresh mangos medium diced

Tomato Chutney
1 cups cider vinegar
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 tbsp of oil
1/4 cups raisins
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp of cumin
1 tbsp of graham masala
1 star anise
1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger and garlic
1 cinnamon stick
2 jalapeño cut in half

Tomato Water
700g of tomato (7-8 tomatoes roughly)
4 tbsp of butter
1 tsp of curry, cumin powder, 1/2 tsp of cayenne
salt to taste

For the Tomato water

Juice tomatoes in a vegetable juicer.  Then take juice and place in a pot, heat over low heat. Simmer for 15 min until solids separate from the liquid.  Remove from heat skim the pulp from the top.  Then strain through a fine mesh strainer that is lined with cheese cloth or coffee filter.  You should be left with a clear tomato broth.  Then place tomato water back in the pot, add spices and cook for 5 minutes.  Then stir in the butter and until smooth. Season with salt and keep warm.

For the Chutneys,

In two different pots one for the tomato and one for the mango.  In a hot sauce pan add one tbsp of oil to each pan, and cook the onions with the ginger and garlic, cinnamon and star anise for about 3 minutes then add the raisins and mangos/and tomatoes for the other pot. . Add vinegar and sugar Bring to boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until mixture thickens but some juices remain, stirring frequently, about 25 minutes. Remove from heat and cool completely. Then (Can be prepared  days ahead.) Cover and refrigerate.

To Finish,

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a stainless bowl add cauliflower and drizzle with a little oil and 1 tsp of curry and cumin, and salt.  Place on a sheet pan lined with parchment and roast in the oven for 10-12 minutes.  Repeat the same process for the brussels and carrots although they might need a few more minutes in the oven than the cauliflower (17 min for the brussels and 25 minutes for the carrots).  In a small saute pan add olive oil and salt to the baby tomatoes.  Roast them in the oven as well for 18 minutes.  Take out and cool all the vegetables.  Then in a large saute pan add 2 tsp of curry oil, ginger, garlic, and all the vegetables with the remaining spices 1 tsp of cumin, curry, cayenne, graham marsala.  Cook for 3 minutes until hot.  Adjust seasoning with a some salt if need be.  Then portion out the vegetables in 4 separate bowls.  Add 4 oz of tomato broth to each bowl.  Top each one with the herbs and flowers.  Finish with a spoonful of each chutney with the vegetables.  Finish with another drizzle of curry oil around the bowl.  Serve and enjoy!

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