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    Flowery Branch, GA
  1. Try braising your shortribs in orange juice and star anise, chicken stock and a touch of honey; and then top the cooked short ribs with a kumquat gelee and some sea salt, and pour the sauce around the base. Gelee's are pretty straightfoward - just cooking the fruit adding pectin and referigerating till firm, cut into squares or just scoop in on (see the Christmas Bon Appetite if you still have it around). Mashed sweet potatoes would be good with that and maybe some roasted beets, parsely root or turnips. Hope that helps
  2. Yes, for an elegant presentation, cut the end of the drumstick bone off & then you can scrape the meat toward the other end to make a really plump, round portion of meat. I've seen the same technique used for the 'drumette' portion of the wing. ← Thanks everyone for the great advice - I combined a bunch of it. I did the drumstick lollipop thing (after cutting off the end of the bone and removing the tendons)- salt, pepper and flour, pan seared and then finished roasted in the oven (with shallots) with a parchment lid. I loved the presentation -- it was exactly what I was looking for. Many thanks!!! (this site is amazing) ← I too love Coq au vin with the "lowly chicken leg." However my favorite of all time is MOLE! Braised leg in chocolate, chilis and cylantro served over rice can't be beat! Besides Mole and Coq au vin any type of braising would be good, but make sure to crisp up the skin in a broiler otherwise you have unsavory soggy skin with yummy fall off the bone meat. Cheers
  3. chefjack

    All things RAW

    Thanks all for the replies, I bought the Trotter (add to my 4 other books of his (first is my fav) Thanks again Jack
  4. Hey all as Halloween aproaches I have been requested by my employer to create a kids & adult halloween party with cakes, cupcakes, cookies, and finger foods. I have a few ideas but was wondering if anyone else is doing this and has any bright ideas or web sites with bright ideas and recipes. Just wunderin, you bunch of ghouls, goblins, ghosts and pastry cooks...
  5. chefjack

    All things RAW

    Well I never thought Id start a topic about Raw foods but here we go... I'm a chef that through his whole life's work of cooking has done nothing raw except oysters, tartare, carpaccio and salads.... I know that the raw foods thing has been out for awhile and I think it's still going pretty strong (in the more metropolitan areas,) however I call myself a cook with a chefs "hat" telling people what to do instead of someone else giving me the orders, and a cook is well... a cook, he cooks things... he doesn't sprout, dehyrdrate and puree raw veggies and stuff in a Vita-prep. That said, I am learning how to un-cook things. I have read a few books but I am still a bit puzzled. I have experimented with sprouting, dehydrating and Vita-prep blender...ing: mung bean sprouts, made my own soy bean and seed cracker - came out o.k., and pureed fruits, vegetables and such. This is all new to this cook and I am looking for some inspritation... I am learning this for my employer who likes these things. I have read nutritional books and herbal holistic stuff and can make a good smoothie or two. But I am looking for a beginners guide to this and any tips or new techniques would be helpful. By the way, I am still going to cook - but for some I will un-cook. ( I actually own the T-shirt that says stop tofu abuse eat foie gras - I guess that item is still in question too)
  6. chefjack


    I love watercress, especially when it comes without snails. The A&W variety that is iced not bagged, always has little snails climbing through, eew, gotta wash it! Things to do: 1. watercress pesto/pistou - yummy on anything just replace cleaned watercress instead of basil 2. any kind of salad you could think of especially with bleu cheese, walnuts, bacon and sherry vinaigrette (maybe add some endive for color and fun) 3. watercress oil - flavorful and colorful for your plating needs by the way to negate the bitter flavor a tad add a pinch of sugar if you have really peppery cress 4. warm potato and watercress salad with cornichons, mustard dressing maybe some hard boiled eggs, toss the watercress in last 5. a bed for any grilled meats or fish or a great tournedos dish from the last restaurant I worked for:VERT-PRE TOURNEDOS – WATERCRESS SAUCE, STRAW POTATOES, WILTED WATERCRESS WITH BACON AND BATONS OF SAGE DERBY CHEESE 6. watercress and apple risotto 7. speck (smoked prosciuto type ham), watercress, tomato pizza with truffle oil Many, many other possibilites, and of course many great soup purees that could be enhance by a puree of watercress. Or puree of potato with watercress and garlic.... endless really. Cheers
  7. I don't know if everyone has covered a more modern way to do Coquille St. Jacques beside the whip cream method, but heres my opinion on the matter. Prepare a cream clam stock and shallot reduction to a nappe (coat the spoon) consistency, season with pinches of cayenne salt white pepper and nutmeg (I add pinches of those spices to all my cream sauces (not too much just a hint.)) Now if you are lucky to get scallops in the shell or buy scallops and buy the shells seperately, use the liquor from the scallops to the above sauce. Make sure you clean the shells and the scallop muscle. Make some pipe-able potato puree (this is where I add Gruyere chesse to (makes a tasty mash!) also flavored with pinches of nutmeg, white pepper and salt to taste. Chop finely some shallots and mushrooms (I like chanterelles when in season but oysters would work (I don't like buttons .) and saute them lightly in butter s&p and deglaze with white wine. I like to quick sear the scallops (ok if you got really good scallops all you need is salt and pepper if you don't make sure they are dry and sprinkle them with a little sugar with s&p) and quick sear them on high heat. Split them in half if they are biq scallops if not leave them whole. OK - Scallop shells ----->in go the scallops, topped with sauteed shallot mushroom mixture, now if you want some color in this you could add some tomato concasse (peeled seeded finely diced tomato,) pipe your mash around the shell making a circle (not too close to the edge, but close enough to make the shell closed when baked.) Then finally the cream clam juice reduction, some fresh herbs of choice (chives, tarragon (easy on that one if you are going to use it,) or chervil would be great) and close the shell making a tight little package. Bake for about 10 -15 minutes (depending on shell size and scallop size (you can always pop one open and look then re-seal it with some left over potato puree,) until scallops are just cooked and steamy. Place the shells on a neatly folded linen towel. Serve tableside, opening the shells in front of your guests and look at the responses. A nice Alsacian white would be great something with acidity to cut through the fattiness. Now if you don't have scallop shells invest in some nice gratin dishes and follow the same process however bake them and then broil them (gratineeing them) And serve as above. Cheers! Bon Appetite!!
  8. chefjack

    Valdivieso Wines

    Hey all you new world wine drinkers! I've been drinking Valdivieso wines for two years now and I just love them. They have a great sparkling wine (which was their original wine produced,) plus a great Pinot Noir, stainless steel Malbec, and a very nice Cabernet Franc (don't listen to Sideways on this one I love Cab Francs!) I was wondering what others think about their wines and if anyone has feedback about them. I think Valdivieso sparkling Brut would compete well with Napa and other regions sparkling wines (the mousse is that fine!) Cheers and libations!
  9. I like using beef remoulage (second boil of the veal stock) and reducing the stock by 1/4-1/2 before using it. And instead of slicing the onions, I rough chop/dice them giving the soup more onion to see and your tongue to slip over. I flavor my soup with balsamic and tamari to enhance the color and "punch" up the flavor. The tamari I use as a great flavor profile instead of adding a lot of salt, however I love a lot of black pepper in mine. Dry or fresh thyme leaves I believe are essential and a pinch of honey if the onions didn't yield enough caramel sweetness (but not too much.) Sherry is a great addition but don't use too cheap a bottle for the soup will taste cheap. Once the soup is finished, let it cool overnight to deepen the flavor and reheat. I like to serve my onion soup with a toast instead of a heaping globe of gooey cheese. Use good Emmental or Gruyere and toast or lightly grill your bread with a bit of garlic oil, salt & pepper. I also like David Rosengartens recipe from his old cooking show. MAN I MISS THAT SHOW!!!
  10. I thank all of you for your wonderful suggestions, I have this so far for a menu, all in small plate format" Summer Antipasti - roasted asparagus, fresh mozz, prosciuto and evoo Tomato Salad - slice vine ripe tomato, tarragon vinegar essence, herb salad Sliced Roasted Pork Tenderloin - roasted red onion yellow corn relsih and Saba Pizzetta du jour Roasted Duck Pancakes - hoisin sauce, scallions, cucumber and sesame Cheese - possibly starting soon when I get Atlanta foods to get going with their abundance of great cheeses Well that's just a start on oven only cooking, thought about sous vide however have to invest in the cryovac machine and not ready to invest just yet. They have a flat top type thing (electric) would love to sear some tuna but don't think it would get hot enough. Cheers all and thanks
  11. Hello Egulleters, Heres an interesting question for the pro-cooks out there... I am helping a restaurant owner as a consultant they have no hood, no stove, and no fryer. Trying to create a wine bar menu to create better night-time sales, which is little or none for this restaurant is a coffee house type place. So my question is how to create a fun menu that can be made without a stove or creating too much smoke to be without a hood ventillation. I thought about pizzettas or cheese plates.... antipasti, maybe a roast that could be sliced to order and rewarmed, ie duck, pork etc. Any ideas (I don't need actually recipes but maybe some exciting ideas on how to cook without a stove top!)
  12. Purple Haze (from Cypress Grove Farm) Sung to the tune Purple Haze by Jimi Hendrix Purple haze on my plate Thank God, American cheese just don't seem the same Smelling yummy, what I just ate 'Scuse me while spread some more Purple haze with fennel pollen & lavender Serve it up with cornichons & toasts Actin' funny, but I don't know why 'Scuse me while I kiss this cheese Purple haze all around Don't know if got more in the fridge Am I happy or just dizzy Whatever it is that cheese put a spell on me (well it doesn't neccessarily rhyme, but it works for me (its really great cheese!!!!)
  13. Since you are promoting those restaurants what about mine?? Well if you guys want to come north of Atlanta, in Flowery Branch is the restaurant where I am chef: The Flowery Branch Yacht Club. http://www.flowerybranchyachtclub.com We are not really a yacht club but a restaurant with that name. Its a 1800's ranch style home with a wrap around porch, we do wine dinners once a month, we've got one coming this October with Ravenswood's wines (looking forward to the Big River single vineyard and their Cab Franc!) I cook seasonal foods and fine dinning, but with a part casual-ness for it is in the boonies! Well heres a sample menu: DINNER MENU APPETIZERS SEARED HUDSON VALLEY FOIE GRAS - Served with seared Parmesan polenta cake and poached huckleberries in their syrup with sugar cured country ham SEARED TOGARASHI AHI TUNA - With cucumber noodles, sesame seed brittle, shitake mushroom salad and lemon soy vinaigrette ESCARGOTS BOUCHEE - Helix escargots sautee with chanterelle mushrooms, shallots, garlic, Pernod and demi-glaze served in a puff pastry shell PEAKY TOE CRAB VIETNAMESE SPRING ROLL - Filled with cellophane noodles, scallions, almonds and basil with dipping sauce (soups & salads) MAINS PAN ROASTED BABY VEAL RACK Served with house-made black pepper fettuccine with Puttanesca sauce and shaved Reggiano cheese. GRILLED AGED FILET OF BEEF Served with a double double hash and garlic braised spinach, sauce Foyot and red wine reduction POULET a la BASQUAISE Pan roasted chicken breast with basques style stew of flageolets, peppers, onions, speck prosciuto and garlic GRILLED PEPPERED HANGER STEAK With potato leek gratin topped with Raclette cheese, fennel wild mushroom ragout and truffle oil. SEARED AHI TUNA Autumn roasted vegetables, sautee spinach with garlic, autumn spiced demi-glaze and butternut squash sauce Well enough self promotion for one post!
  14. Referring to the question about smaller brigades, I am a pure witness to that, my staff is so small I can count it on one hand! However, the restaurant I work for is not a high tier restaurant (yet? at least in acclamations and reviews) but serves fine dinning, however I don't have a paco-jet or use foam or any high tech gadgets or put granitee on veal cheeks or other "avant garde" as in the other topic, but thats another story. I do see "sous vide" on menus (I think Seegers in Atlanta uses it quite a bit) but the whole idea sounds Red Lobster-ish! Not like some restaurants I make 80% of my sauces ala minute, for the freshest flavor possible and that's what I think is lacking in pre-packaged foods. Does it decrease food waste yes, is it easier probably, but does that = customer satisfaction?
  15. I agree with Ruth: I think to pay $1000 for a wine that may be spoiled or just as good as a $100 - $200 bottle. I would take the $1000 and spend it on a meal, for I cook for a living so to go out and eat and let someone else cook is ideal!
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