Sunday, December 21, 2008

Chili Cheddar Shortcakes

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons double-acting baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into bits
1/4 pound sharp Cheddar, grated coarse (about 1 1/2 cups)
2 jalapeño chilies, seeded and minced
1 cup sour cream

Into a bowl sift together the flour, the baking powder, the baking soda, and the salt, add the butter, and blend the mixture until it resembles coarse meal. Stir in the Cheddar and the chilies, add the sour cream, and stir the mixture until it just forms a soft but not sticky dough. Knead the dough gently 6 times on a lightly floured surface, roll or pat it out 1/2 inch thick, and with a 3 1/2-inch cookie cutter cut out 6 rounds. Bake the rounds on an ungreased baking sheet in the middle of a preheated 425°F. oven for 15 to 17 minutes, or until they are golden.

Horseradish Cream Sauce

1 cup sour cream or Creme Fraiche
1/4 cup grated fresh horseradish
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Place all of the ingredients into a medium mixing bowl and whisk until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Place in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or overnight to allow flavors to meld. Sauce can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 2 to 3 weeks.

Mushroom Duxelle

3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 c minced Shallots
5 sprigs of Thyme Chopped
1 pound mushrooms, Small dice
1 tablespoons White Truffle oil (optional)
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 c White wine, Sherry or Maderia
S & P
Saute Shallots in Butter until soft then add Mushrooms & Thyme and continue to saute for a few mins more. Add Wine and reduce. Add Cream and reduce until desired consistency. Season and finish with Truffle oil.

Shallot Jam

1 1/2 lbs shallots, peeled
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 cups Sherry vinegar
1/2 cup Red wine
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 bay leaves
3 sprigs fresh thyme

Slice the shallots. Mix sugar, 1cup water, vinegar, wine, & salt in a large saucepan. Place over low heat; stirring often to dissolve the sugar. Add shallots, bay leaves, and thyme.
2Raise heat to medium-high; bring mixture to a boil. Lower heat; simmer for 1 1/2 hours, stirring often.
3Remove from heat and allow to cool. Serve at room temp., or store chilled up to 2 weeks.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Most Labor Intense Burger EVER! PART 2.

So here it is. I served my Braised Short Rib Burger wrapped in Caul Fat with Brioche Bun, Truffle Aioli, Irish Bacon & Cashel Blue Cheese. AWESOME!!! Also some Tri- Color Roasted Cauliflowers at Pintxo.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Miracle Cure or Just Salt Water?

Mainstream food punditry maintains that brining the turkey practically guarantees a moist, tender roast. I agree, it does. But I’m still a no-briner.
Brining has plenty of advocates, and understandably so. It’s a flexible technique that makes a remarkable difference in the moistness of the meat, especially the breast. All you have to do is dissolve a few tablespoons of salt in a few quarts of water, keep the turkey covered with the solution for a few days, then let its surface dry out uncovered for a day or two before roasting.
What simple brining does to meat turns out to be complex and pretty cool. The main driving force is osmosis, the natural shifting around of water and substances dissolved in it so as to even out any imbalances in their distribution. Meat contains a lot of water and very little salt. When we first immerse it in salty brine, salt moves from the brine into the meat, and water from the meat into the brine. The meat becomes saltier and drier.
But then the salt begins to modify the meat. The sodium attaches to the long, intertwined muscle proteins and causes the proteins to push apart from one another. This makes room for more water, and salt, and weakens the muscle fibers. The water flow reverses, so that water and more salt move from the brine into the meat.
All this shifting around takes time, especially in a cold refrigerator. In one laboratory study, little meat logs about a half-inch square and an inch long were still gaining weight after three days in the brine.
Brined meats end up gaining 10 percent or more of their original weight in water and salt. Then when they’re cooked to well done, their swollen muscle fibers can lose moisture and still have enough left to seem juicy. And the weakened fiber structure makes them seem tender as well.
So what’s not to like about a brined turkey?
To begin with, the unrelenting saltiness, which it shares with its commercial cousins, the so-called “moisture-enhanced meats.” These ready-to-cook supermarket roasts can be up to 10 percent brine, with eight times the sodium content of the original meat. And saltiness doesn’t necessarily enhance turkey flavor. When I made two turkeys and compared brined and unbrined breasts side by side, the unbrined meat tasted meatier, more intensely turkey-like. That’s not surprising, because the added juiciness of brined meat comes from tap water, not the meat itself.
Worst of all, you can’t use a brined turkey to prepare one of the highlights of the Thanksgiving meal: gravy. Roast a plain turkey and you end up with a panful of browned turkey juices, which you can defat and deglaze and aromatize into a delicious pan sauce. But juice up the turkey with tap water and salt, and its drippings become too salty to use.
The best way to keep an unbrined turkey breast moist is to cook it separately, gently and precisely. It’s just done at around 145 degrees, and getting dry at 155.
But to me Thanksgiving is an occasion for roasting the whole bird, and as unfussily as possible. I’ve tried many methods for keeping the breast meat under 155 degrees while getting the tougher legs to 165 degrees and up. None has worked reliably.
So I’ve shifted tactics. Instead of trying to avoid what’s pretty much inevitable, I try to make the best of it. My current approach takes its inspiration from the world of barbecue and its ways of dealing with well-cooked meat. In particular, pulled pork.
Roast an unbrined turkey as you wish. While the turkey rests, make a delicious pan sauce from the drippings. Keep it runny. When it’s time to carve, start with the breast. Either slice it very thin, to an eighth of an inch or less, or cut thick pieces and pull them to shreds, to create as much surface area as possible. Then turn and coat the meat thoroughly with some of the pan sauce, and keep it warm while you carve the leg and thigh.
Unlike casual last-minute saucing at the table, an extended and intimate bath gives the sauce a chance to penetrate into the meat’s smallest crannies and seams. The meat fibers may have been cooked dry in the oven, but they end up on the plate with abundant moisture clinging to them.
And it’s their own meaty moisture, genuinely enhanced.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Google Cooking Competition Pulls ‘Top Chef’–Worthy Judges

Google has some serious pull with chefs — in the past they’ve gotten Anthony Bourdain, Ferran Adrià, Masaharu Morimoto, Marco Pierre White, and Mario Batali to sit around shooting the shit with employees. So we’re impressed but not exactly shocked to hear that the company, in planning a charity cooking competition for its office drones, has managed to snag judges no less prestigious than Martha Stewart, Marcus Samuelsson, Marc Murphy, Top Chef’s Dave Martin, Rick Smilow (president of the Institute of Culinary Education), and Susie Fogelson (V.P. of Marketing for the Food Network). A hundred bucks says they get Jean-Georges to cook for the holiday Christmas party.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Short Ribs.

Double cut short ribs with red miso and Dr. Pepper marinade. Originally we worked root beer into the marinade though the complex flavor of the Dr. Pepper blends quite well with the red miso. We added a splash of brewed coffee to round out the mixture and then allowed the ribs to marinate for three days. Once the ribs were marinated we cooked them sous vide for 24 hours at 65 degrees C. While the steps are time consuming they are currently worth the efforts

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Smoked Beer at Suppenkuchen SF.

Great Brunch beer find it at

Old Knights Catering pics on the wall from 1994.

This was my first job in the US. Napa Valley Lunch for 1000 Guests with Chef Boy Mc Govern.

old Pintxo Pics

Dessert & Cheese Station.
Eddie using protection

Pushing some fat.

Kev and his Halibut Skin.

Saul " The Reciever" He aquired that name before he got into food?????????????

Fresh Kaffir Lime.

My Sous Chef/ Abalone Fisherman John Hayes.

Sea Urchin and Crabs.

This is one of his many catches that we have shared together.

The Most Labor Intense Burger EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The name is Braised Short Rib Slider. The Googlers shall be hounding on them tomorrow. Let me start with 40lbs Browned Short Ribs, Mirepoix, Herbs, Aromatics and 2 bottles of Red Wine and Braised for 14 hours. Pull meat apart and mix with 20lbs of raw Ground Beef, Minced Shallots, Thyme, Garlic, S&P. Form patties and encase with Caul Fat. Grill or Sear served on Brioche Buns with Sweet Potato Shoestring Fries & Truffle Aioli. Here is the product in the raw form.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Pan-Seared Petrale Sole with Local Winter Vegetables

4 (6- to 8-ounce) fillets Petrale sole*
3 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 small leeks (white and pale green parts only), halved lengthwise, rinsed, and thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 bunch broccolini (6 to 8 ounces), quartered
1/2 cauliflower Florets
1/2 pound green beans, trimmed
*Lemon sole, gray sole, or flounder may be substituted.

Sprinkle fillets with 2 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon pepper. In large nonstick skillet over moderately high heat, heat 1/2 tablespoon oil until hot but not smoking. Working in two batches (wipe pan clean and add 1 1/2 teaspoons oil between batches), fry fish until golden, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to platter and loosely cover with foil to keep warm.
In large nonstick skillet over moderate heat, heat remaining tablespoon oil. Add leeks and garlic and sauté 2 minutes. Add butter, broccolini, cauliflower, and green beans and sauté until vegetables are crisp-tender, about 8 to 10 minutes.
Transfer vegetables to serving platter and sprinkle with remaining teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Top with fish and drizzle with any butter and pan juices remaining in skillet.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Buttermilk, orange and cardamom ice cream

There's something about the tang of this buttermilk and the fragrance of the oranges that reminds me of cheesecake.

250 ml whole milk
finely grated rind of 2 oranges
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup vanilla sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 Tablespoon orange liqueur (I make my own by stuffing a vodka bottle with lengths of fragrant orange rind...)
1 whole egg
600 ml buttermilk

combine all ingredients but the buttermilk in a medium saucepan. Use a heavy duty immersion blender to thoroughly blend everything. If you use a wimpy one, the egg won't get totally combined with the milk and you'll end up with lumpy custard. Heat over medium low heat stirring frequently, until it begins to thicken. Pour in the buttermilk and thoroughly blend again. Continue to heat for a few more minutes, blending at the end.
Pour into a metal bowl and apply cling film to the top of the mixture. Chill for at least 2 hours.

Sticky Toffee Pudding

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened, plus additional for greasing pan
1 cup self-rising cake flour plus additional for flouring pan
1 cup pitted dates (5 oz), finely chopped
1 1/4 cups packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour an 8- by 2-inch round cake pan.
Simmer dates in 1 cup water in a 1-quart heavy saucepan, covered, until soft, about 5 minutes. Let stand, covered, off heat 5 minutes.
Beat together 1 stick butter and 1/4 cup brown sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Beat in egg until combined. Add flour and 1/8 teaspoon salt and mix at low speed until just combined. Add dates and mix until just combined well.
Pour batter into pan and bake until a wooden pick or skewer inserted in center comes out clean, about 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, melt remaining stick butter in a 2-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat and stir in remaining cup brown sugar, 1/3 cup water, and a pinch of salt. Boil over moderately high heat, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until sugar is dissolved and sauce is reduced to about 1 1/4 cups, 2 to 8 minutes. Remove from heat and cover.
Transfer pudding in pan to a rack and poke all over at 1-inch intervals with a chopstick. Gradually pour half of warm sauce evenly over hot pudding. Let stand until almost all of sauce is absorbed, about 20 minutes.
Run a thin knife around edge of pan. Invert a plate over pudding and invert pudding onto plate. Pour remaining warm sauce over pudding and serve immediately.


1/2 cup soy sauce
2 teaspoons dark sesame oil
2 oranges, juiced
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons ginger, peeled and minced
1/2 cup scallion, chopped
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
2 teaspoons sesame seeds, toasted

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Refrigerate for 1 hour. May also be used as a great marinade for chicken, shrimp or beef.

miso glazed salmon

1 lb of Salmon Fillet
3 Scallions Chopped
1 cup White Miso
1/2 cup of Sake
3 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
1 Tablespoon of Soy Sauce
1 Teaspoon of Mirin Vinegar
1 Teaspoon of Sesame Oil

In a saucepan, heat all ingrediants together and bring to short simmer. Turn heat off and let stand until cooled.Rub salmon with 1/4 teaspon of sesame oil and set aside.Once cooled, put 1/2 cup of marinade aside pour sauce over the salmon and place in a shallow dish in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours (may be made a head of time and marinated for up to 6 - 8 hours)Pre-heat broiler. Add salmon skin side down in the broiler and brush or spoon the set aside marinade onto the salmon.Broil for 7-8 minutes, pouring the rest of the marinade onto the salmon. The salmon should have a dark glaze on the top.Take out of the oven and garnish with chopped scallions. Serve with Coconut Rice and Asian Cucumber salad.

Creme Fraiche

1 cup (240 ml) heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon buttermilk

Note: If possible, use pasteurized heavy whipping cream, as ultra pasteurized will take longer to thicken.

In a medium saucepan over low heat, warm the cream to 105 degrees F (40 degrees C). Remove from heat and stir in the buttermilk. Transfer the cream to a large bowl and allow this mixture to stand in a warm place, loosely covered with plastic wrap, until thickened but still of pouring consistency. Stir and taste every 6 - 8 hours. This process takes anywhere from 24 to 36 hours, depending on your room temperature. The creme fraiche is ready when it is thick with a slightly nutty sour taste. Chill cream, in the refrigerator, for several hours before using. Creme fraiche may be made and stored in the refrigerator for up to 10 days

Creme Fraiche Frosting:
In bowl of electric mixer, with whisk attachment, beat the Creme Fraiche with 1-2 tablespoons (14-28 grams) of granulated white sugar until stiff peaks form. Can be used in desserts instead of whipped cream.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Traditional Indiana Persimmon Pudding

  • 2 cups persimmon pulp
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 6 cups milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the persimmon pulp and eggs using a whisk. Stir in sugar. Combine the flour and baking soda; stir into the persimmon alternating with milk until smooth. Pour into a large greased crock or casserole dish. Drop dabs of butter on top.
  3. Bake for 2 hours in the preheated oven, stirring every 15 minutes. Pudding will be dark brown when finished. Serve hot or cold.

Tasty Bacon Floss. Yum!

Heather's Momma's Killer Pumpkin Pie...

This is the best Pumpkin Pie I have had to date. Thanks Ladies!!!!!!!!

Preheat oven: 425

1 15oz can pumpkin
1 can Eagle Brand condensed milk
1 egg
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon each: ginger, nutmeg, salt
Mix well and pour into prepared (uncooked) pie crust;
Bake for 15 minutes, take pie out of oven and add topping (below).

Reduce oven heat to 350

Mix: 1/4 cup brown sugar, 2 tablespons flour, 3/4 teasponn cinnamon; cut in 2 tablespoons cold butter; stir in 3/4 cup chopped pecans and crumble all over pie.

Bake 40 mins or until set.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Roasted Pecan, Cranberry & Sausage Dressing

Serves 8-10

Watch the top and edges of the brioche so the dressing doesn't get too dark. You can cover with foil until the dressing is moderately warm, then remove the foil to crisp the top.

  • 7 to 8 ounces unsalted butter
  • 2 loaves brioche, about 1 pound each
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons turkey fat reserved from gravy or substitute butter
  • 1 pound uncased mild pork breakfast sausage
  • 1 large yellow onion, finely diced
  • 8 ounces celery, about 6-8 stalks, peeled and finely diced
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 4 ounces pecans, about 1/2 cup, chopped
  • 4 ounces dried cranberries, about 1/2 cup, chopped
  • -- Large pinch Bell's Seasoning or other poultry seasoning
  • -- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • -- Leaves from 1/2 bunch parsley, minced
  • -- Leaves from 1/2 to 1 bunch sage, minced
  • -- Leaves from 1/2 to 1 bunch thyme, minced

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350º. Heavily coat a 9-by-13-inch ovenproof casserole dish with 2-3 ounces of the butter; set aside.

Cut brioche into 1-inch cubes.

Add reserved turkey fat or butter to a large saucepan over medium heat. When hot, add sausage and brown, breaking sausage up into very small pieces. Add 4 ounces butter, cut into pieces. Add onion and celery and cook until soft, stirring frequently. Add the milk, chicken broth and remaining 1 ounce of butter; bring to a simmer. Stir in brioche cubes, pecans and dried cranberries. Season to taste with the poultry seasoning, salt, pepper and herbs.

Firmly pack into the buttered baking dish. Bake until hot and crisp, about 30-40 minutes.

Pumpkin Custard Pie with Green Cardamom Ice Cream

Serves 8-12

  • The pie dough
  • 21/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 pound cold butter, cubed
  • 1/4 pound shortening
  • 1/2 cup ice water
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • The pumpkin filling
  • 2 cups pumpkin puree, fresh or canned (if fresh, finely pureed and passed through a food mill or strainer)
  • 2/3 cup maple syrup
  • 11/3 cups heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup whole milk
  • 5 eggs
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/3 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 11/3 teaspoons cinnamon
  • -- Green Cardamom Ice Cream (see recipe)

For the pie crust dough: Preheat oven to 350°. In a small mixing bowl, add flour, butter and shortening. Mix with a fork until you achieve a cornmeal-like consistency. Add ice water and salt, and mix together with hands until combined. Turn out onto a flour surface, form dough into a disk, and wrap in plastic. Allow to rest for 1/2 hour.

Roll out dough to about 1/8-inch thick and place into a 9-inch pie pan, crimping the edges decoratively. Cut parchment paper into a circle the size of the bottom of the pie pan and place on top of the dough. Fill pan halfway with dried beans. Bake in the oven until crust is golden brown, about 35 minutes. Remove the parchment and the beans and allow the crust to cool completely.

For the pumpkin pie: Heat the pumpkin puree in a stainless-steel pot over medium-low heat. Add maple syrup, cream and milk, and stir until combined. Bring just to a simmer. Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, whisk eggs and sugar until well combined. Add flour and spices and whisk all lumps out. Slowly add the warm pumpkin mixture, whisking constantly. Pour into the prebaked pie shell and cook at 375° for 45 minutes or until outside is set and middle is a little jiggly. Serve with Green Cardamom Ice Cream.

Per serving: 475 calories, 7 g protein, 47 g carbohydrate, 30 g fat (14 g saturated), 147 mg cholesterol, 401 mg sodium, 1 g fiber.

Green Cardamom Ice Cream

Makes about 1 quart

Green cardamom pods can be purchased in Asian markets such as 99 Ranch. The ice cream base can be made a day ahead, then churned in an ice cream maker on Thanksgiving Day.

  • 1/4 cup green cardamom pods
  • 6 cups heavy cream
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
  • 10 egg yolks

Instructions: Toast cardamom in a pan over medium heat for 3-4 minutes until fragrant; set aside.

Combine cream and sugar in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil, and add cardamom and vanilla. Remove from heat and steep for at least 15 minutes.

In a large bowl, whisk yolks until smooth. Slowly pour cream mixture into the yolks in a steady stream, whisking constantly, then return the entire mixture back to pot, whisking. Simmer over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon.

Pour through a strainer and into a container. Cool down either in an ice water bath or off the heat, stirring occasionally. Once it has reached room temperature, place in the refrigerator to cool completely.

Place in ice cream machine and process according to manufacturer's instructions. Store in freezer if not serving right away. Serve with Pumpkin Custard Pie.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Spiced Candied Kumquats

The sprouts can be prepared ahead, then reheated, covered with aluminum foil. Add kumquats just before serving.
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 red onion, sliced thin
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated on a microplane
  • 2 pounds Brussels sprouts, quartered
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated star anise
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt + more if needed
  • -- Spiced Candied Kumquats (see recipe)

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350°.

In a large ovenproof saute pan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and cook until tender and caramelized, about 10-15 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 3 minutes. If vegetables get too brown, lower heat, add a little water and cook, stirring. Add Brussels sprouts, star anise and salt, and stir to combine. Roast in oven for approximately 30 minutes, until sprouts are tender. Season with salt to taste.

Transfer to a serving dish. Allow to cool or serve immediately, topped with kumquats (spoon out kumquats only and not syrup).

Per serving: 160 calories, 4 g protein, 29 g carbohydrate, 5 g fat (3 g saturated), 12 mg cholesterol, 697 mg sodium, 6 g fiber.

Spiced Candied Kumquats

Use to top Roasted Brussels Sprouts.

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves, bruised
  • 1 Hunan chile
  • 1 teaspoon green cardamom pods, cracked
  • 1/2 inch ginger, peeled, sliced and smashed
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups kumquats, sliced

Instructions: Combine sugar and 1 1/2 cups water in a saucepan. Add the kaffir lime leaves, chile, cardamom, ginger and salt, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat and allow syrup to steep for 15 minutes. Add kumquats to syrup, return the pan to the heat and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and cool in liquid. If preparing in advance, cover and store in the refrigerator.

Hoisin Glaze

Makes about 2 cups

This can be made several days ahead and stored in the refrigerator. Sweet soy sauce (kecap manis) is available at Asian markets.

  • 1 cup sweet soy sauce (kecap manis)
  • 1/2 cup black bean paste
  • 2 tablespoons Champagne vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and grated on a microplane
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sriracha sauce (hot sauce)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup grated ginger (best done on the microplane)
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup lime juice, to taste

Instructions: Combine all ingredients, except sugar and lime juice, in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cook until mixture is reduced by half. Whisk in brown sugar. Add lime juice to taste. Simmer for another 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand 15 minutes. Strain three times through a fine chinois, discarding solids. Transfer glaze to a jar or container, cover and refrigerate.

Quince Cobbler with Ginger Ice Cream

Serves 8-10

The quince and streusel can be prepared a day or two ahead. Refrigerate until ready to use.

  • The poached quince
  • 5 cups sugar
  • 3 to 4 medium quince
  • -- Lemon juice
  • The almond streusel
  • 1 tablespoon butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • The cobbler
  • 1/4 cup butter + more for baking dish
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 tablespoon dark rum
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • -- Ginger Ice Cream (see recipe)

For the quince: In a large pot, make a simple syrup by combining the sugar and 5 cups water. Cook over medium heat until sugar is completely dissolved, 3-4 minutes. Set aside.

Peel and core a quince. Reserve the peels and core, and thinly slice the quince about 1/4-inch thick, and place the slices in a bowl of water with a few squirts of lemon juice to avoid oxidation. Repeat with remaining quince.

Place reserved peels and cores in a cheesecloth and tie the ends with twine. Add to the pot with simple syrup and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce to a low simmer and cook until the liquid becomes light red in color, about 45-50 minutes. Discard the cheesecloth pouch. Strain syrup though a fine-mesh sieve or clean cheesecloth.

Quickly rinse quince slices, then transfer to a large pot. Cover with the quince syrup. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a bare simmer. Poach quince until tender but not mushy, about 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer quince and syrup to a metal bowl set in a larger bowl of ice to stop the quince from cooking further.

For the streusel: Melt the butter in a microwave or small saucepan, and set aside. Combine the sugar, flour, almond meal and salt. Stir in half the melted butter, and mix in until it begins to clump, then add the rest of the butter, and blend with your fingertips until little crumbs form. Set aside until ready to assemble cobbler.

For the cobbler: Preheat oven to 350°, and butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or a portable mixer), cream 1/4 cup butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, scraping down the sides of the bowl often. Lower speed to medium and add the egg, mixing until well incorporated. Add rum and increase speed to high and cream until fluffy again.

In a separate bowl, combine almond meal and flour. With mixer at low speed, add the almond meal mixture to the butter mixture in thirds, scraping down the bowl between each addition.

Spread batter about 1/2-inch thick in prepared baking dish. Strain quince, reserving syrup. Layer quince evenly over the batter. Scatter streusel over the top.

Bake cobbler until golden, about 30 minutes. Serve warm with Ginger Ice Cream and a drizzle of reserved quince syrup.

Ginger Ice Cream

Makes about 1 quart

The ice cream base can be made a day ahead, then churned in an ice cream maker on Thanksgiving Day.

  • 3 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup peeled, minced fresh ginger
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 large egg yolks

Instructions: In a small nonreactive pot, bring 1 cup milk and the cream to a boil. Turn off heat and add ginger. Steep for 2 hours then strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a small nonreactive bowl and reserve. Discard ginger.

Add remaining milk, sugar and salt to a heavy-bottomed nonreactive pot; scald by bringing just to the boiling point, then immediately remove pot from heat and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk egg yolks. Slowly pour half the hot milk mixture from the pot into the yolks in a steady stream, whisking constantly, then return the entire mixture back to the pot, whisking.

Simmer mixture over low heat, stirring constantly with a rubber spatula, until temperature reaches 168º on an instant-read thermometer.

Strain the mixture through a fine sieve into a nonreactive stainless steel or ceramic bowl that is set into an ice bath. Stir occasionally; when mixture is cool to the touch, add ginger-infused milk.

Refrigerate until very cold. Place in an ice cream machine and process according to manufacturer's instructions. Store in freezer if not serving right away. Serve with Quince Cobbler.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Texas Beef Brisket Chili

A cold-weather favorite, this all-beef, no-bean chili gets added appeal from a seasonal ingredient: butternut squash. For best results, make the chili at least one day ahead so that the flavors have time to meld.Yield: Makes 8 to 10 servings

6 large dried ancho chiles
6 ounces bacon, diced
4 Cups onions, chopped
1 5-pound flat-cut (also called first-cut) beef brisket, cut into 2 1/2- to 3-inch cubes
6 large garlic cloves, peeled
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
1 1/2 10-ounce cans fire-roasted diced tomatoes
1 12-ounce bottle Mexican beer
1 7-ounce can diced roasted green chiles
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro stems
4 cups 1 1/2- to 2-inch chunks seeded peeled butternut squash

Garnishes:Fresh cilantro leavesChopped red onionDiced avocadoShredded Monterey Jack cheeseWarm corn and/or flour tortillas

For chili:
Place chiles in medium bowl. Pour enough boiling water over to cover. Soak until chiles soften, at least 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350°F. Sauté bacon in heavy large oven-proof pot over medium-high heat until beginning to brown. Add onions. Reduce heat to medium; cover and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle beef all over with coarse salt and pepper. Add to pot; stir to coat. Set aside.
Drain chiles, reserving soaking liquid. Place chiles in blender. Add 1 cup soaking liquid, garlic, chili powder, cumin seeds, oregano, coriander, and 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt; blend to puree, adding more soaking liquid by 1/4 cupfuls if very thick. Pour puree over brisket in pot. Add tomatoes with juices, beer, green chiles, and cilantro stems. Stir to coat evenly.
Bring chili to simmer. Cover and place in oven. Cook 2 hours. Uncover and cook until beef is almost tender, about 1 hour. Add squash; stir to coat. Roast uncovered until beef and squash are tender, adding more soaking liquid if needed to keep meat covered, about 45 minutes longer. Season chili to taste with salt and pepper. Tilt pot and spoon off any fat from surface of sauce. DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 days ahead. Cool 1 hour. Chill uncovered until cold, then cover and keep chilled.Garnishes:Set out garnishes in separate dishes. Rewarm chili over low heat. Ladle chili into bowls and serve.

pumpkin chocolate chip bread

2 C Flour
2 Tsp bake powder
1 Tsp bake soda
1 Tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 Tsp cloves
1/2 Tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 Tsp ground ginger
1/4 Tsp salt
1 stick butter
3/4 C sugar
1/4 C honey
2 Lg eggs
1 C pumpkin puree
1/2 C plain yogurt
1 Bag chocolate chip morsels(preferably mini chips)

Preheat oven to 350. Grease loaf pan(s) Combine all ingredients except the chocolate chips into a processor or mixing bowl and mix until well combined. Fold in chocolate chips. Pour batter into prepared pans and bake until center comes out clean (approx 1 hour) Let bread cool 15 minutes.

Oyster Sauces

Hog Wash

1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar
1/4 cup natural rice vinegar
1 large shallot, peeled and finely diced
1 large Jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely diced
1/2 bunch of cilantro, finely chopped
juice of 1 lime

Classic French Mignonette

1/4 cup quality red wine vinegar
1/4 cup Champagne vinegar
1 larger shallot, peeled and finely diced
cracked black pepper to taste

A lil' spicy, a lil' sweet Oysters BBQ

1 cup ketchup
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 Tbs honey
2 Tbs fresh squeezed lemon juice
Dash tobasco

White Chocolate and Yogurt Ice Cream

As for the process, I heated the half and half and salt together to just below a boil and slowly poured it over the chopped white chocolate and then stirred it to melt it and make it into a silken emulsion. I then folded the drained yogurt into the white chocolate emulsion until it was completely incorporated, strained the mixture and let it chill. When the mixture was cold I sent it for a spin in our ice cream maker. While the base is delicious in its chilled state, it takes on a whole different nature when frozen as ice cream.

The ingredients:
1/2 c half and half
1/4 t salt
8 oz chopped white chocolate
11 oz non-fat Greek Yogurt

Friday, October 3, 2008

A week in Food.

While we were in Mexico we discovered a Taco Stand in town and they give us the best food memories of Mexico especially the Head and Tongue Tacos. I also had a Huaraches (pic above)for the first time and they were excellent. Closer to home we had Prawn and Potato Torta which is a simple lunch item. Cut seasoned Shrimp into medium pieces and flash saute. Cut and steam medium dice yukon gold Potatoes. Add Scallion, Basil, Blanched Spinach or Asparagus. Layer together in a greased ovenproof dish and cover with beaten seasoned eggs ( fill 3/4 with egg does not need to be totally covered). Bake in a 350f oven in a water bath for 30 to 45 mins. let it rest flip it out, cut and serve with a Romesco Sauce.

Romesco Sauce
2 large tomato Roasted (1/2 lb)
1 t dried ancho chile
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons hazelnuts, toasted
2 tablespoons blanched almonds toasted
3 thick slices firm white bread, cut into 1/2-inch cubes, toasted
2 large garlic cloves roasted
1/2 yellow onion roasted
1/8 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes
1/4 cup drained bottled pimientos,
2 tablespoons Sherry vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
Adjust consistency with water.
With Food Processor pulse nuts then onion, tomato, garlic, bread. Add the rest but the oil then emusify by drizzling in at the end while blade is running.
Beef Cheek Ravoli's with Red Wine & Herbs YUM!!
2 pounds beef cheeks
2 tablespoons grapeseed or vegetable oil
2 onions, coarsely chopped
2 carrots, peeled
1/2 bunch of thyme
8 peppercorns
2 bay leaves
1 piece of Star Anise
1 (750-ml) bottle red wine
2 cups of Veal Demi Glace
6 (3- by 1-inch) strips of orange
Preheat oven to 350°F. with rack in middle.

Pat beef dry and season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Heat oil in a 4- to 6-quart heavy pot over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Brown beef on all sides. Transfer to a plate with tongs.
Add onions, carrots to pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Add wine, zest,Spices,thyme and demi glace and bring to a boil. Add beef Cheeks and return to a boil. Cover pot and braise in oven until meat is very tender, 3 to 4 hours . Remove Beef and let it cool. Pull Cheek meat and season. Using fresh pasta make ravioli and freeze. Skim Fat of Braising liquid and reduce sauce to 1cup then whisk in a little cold butter to finish sauce. Cook Ravioli and mix with sauce and finish with chopped herbs.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Duck's Nest Parties ~ Berkeley, CA

The highlights of the evening were sipping on Scotch at 4.30pm while doing Mise En Place ( prep ). But I think Eddie's Chair collapsing half way through dinner was my favorite.

Goat Cheese & Green Olive Tapanade Crostini paired with Basil Gin Gimlet
Green Gulch Arugula, Black Mission & Brown Turkey Figs- Port wine & Balsamic Reduction

Howard's Buttermilk Biscuits
Poulet Saute Chasseur
White Truffle Roasted Fingerlings
Tricolor French Bean Saute
Handpicked Napa Valley Apple Pies, Blackcurrants & Honey Cream.

*** The Crostini & Basil Gin Gimlet are the perfect match. Try it sometime its so easy. If you need help just contact me.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Basil Gin or Vodka Gimlet.

This is a Favorite of mine.

8 basil leaves (Try using Thai Basil)

1 lime

1/2 Lemon

1/2 ounce Simple Syrup or Agave Nectar

2 1/2 ounces vodka or gin

Pinch of Salt.

Muddle first four ingredients. Add ice & Gin, Shake, Strain twice. Serve in Martini Glass. Pairs nicely with a Goat Cheese & Tapanade Crostini.

Eat These Three Things to Live Longer

1. Broccoli
Johns Hopkins researchers found that a broccoli compound, applied to the skin, helps cells fight UV radiation. You can’t buy such a product yet, but experts say it can’t hurt to eat more broccoli. Why? Another one of its chemicals seems to boost the immune system.

2. Grapes
This fruit has lots of resveratrol, a plant chemical that Spanish researchers found can lengthen the lives of flies and yeast. Will it work for you? It’s too soon to know, but red grapes (plus berries, peanuts, and a little red wine) are the best sources of this promising ingredient.

3. Salad
Vitamin K—found in lettuce and spinach—seems to boost skin elasticity in patients with a rare disorder that leads to severe wrinkling. Some researchers think the effect may be universal. Plus, leafy greens help you get more fiber and keep your appetite in check.

A Man of Taste. A chef with cancer fights to save his tongue.

Good Article.

Here's my old St.Pats menu from Pintxo.

Pintxo Menu for (3-17) to (3-21)


40 Shades of Green
green vegetable chopped salad with green garlic dressing

Roasted Fingerling Potato and Apple Salad
With brie dressing and bacon bits

R**Spring Mix
R**Romaine Lettuce
R**Baby Spinach
Grilled Chicken Breast
Roasted Tofu
**Roasted Cauliflower
R**Baby Watemelon Radishes
R**Julienned Carrots
R**Sunflower Sprouts
**Dried Cherries
*Parmesan Reggiano
Roasted Hazelnuts
**Candied Pecans

Pintxo Classic Vinaigrette
Chipotle-Lime Vinaigrette
Creamy Green Garlic Dressing
Meyer Lemon-Dill Buttermilk Vinaigrette
Pink Peppercorn Dressing


Beef and Guinness Soup
With toasted barley

Farmhouse Vegetable Soup
With a herb puree

Potato and Leek Soup
With roasted garlic

Gingered Carrot and Parsnip Soup
With a sage cream



Smoked Salmon Mousse
With Belgian Endive and a meyer lemon-dill creme

Poached Leeks Vinaigrette
With a pink peppercorn sauce

“Cheese and Crackers”
Irish Cheddar with Rhubarb Orange Chutney


Roast Beef Sandwich
With caramelized onion, horseradish and arugula

Tofu Salad Sandwich
On potato bread with pickled onions


Mixed Marinated Olives
Piquello Peppers
Marinated Chickpeas

All week
Colcannon Paella
Savoy cabbage, yukon gold potatoes and melted leeks

“Irish Breakfast”
Baked beans with back bacon, black pudding, fried tomatoes and an egg

Orchiette Pasta
With PEI mussels, fennel in a saffron-orange cream sauce

Roasted Broccoli Fideo
In a pesto broth with parmesan

Butternut Squash Quinoa
Organic red quinoa with roast squash and sage


Corned Beef and Cabbage
With a parsley cream sauce

Roasted Steelhead Salmon
With a Vegetable “surf and turf”


Traditional Shepherds Pie
Stewed lamb in a savory gravy with mash

Seared Day Boat Scallops
With Irish Cider Dressing and parsnip puree


Traditional Irish Stew
Meaty chunks in a yummy gravy

Seared Ling Cod
With a tomato-leek fondue


Grilled Pork Tenderloin
With a rhubarb and ginger chutney

Roasted Sea Bass
With a beet-arugula salad and horseradish vinaigrette


Roasted Free-Range Chicken
With a Bushmills Cream Sauce

Roasted Idaho Trout
With sautee’d spinach, bacon and eggs



Beer Braised Brussel Sprouts
With garlic and onions

Mashed potato Champ
Russet potatoes with milk braised scallions and a tomato-watercress dressing


Creamed Savoy Cabbage
With spring onions and caraway

Roasted Root Vegetables
With fresh herbs and olive oil


Roasted Assorted Fingerling Potatoes
With clover honey, rosemary and sherry vinegar

Minted Roast Cauliflower


Wild Mushroom Shepherdless Pie

Steamed Broccoli
With orange sea salt


Turnip and Apple Gratin
With caramelized onions

Monday, August 18, 2008

27 Tips to Optimize Your Brain Power

1. Avoid a big breakfast. Breads, muffins, bagels or pastries block your brain barriers.

2. Avoid eating big meals during the day. Big meals slow you down, and make you feel exhausted or sluggish.

3. If you are hungry or light-headed, eat small amounts of lean protein such as poached or boiled eggs, light cheese or yogurt. Proteins eaten alone (on an empty stomach) can pick up your neurotransmitters, such as dopamine and acetylcholine.

4. Minimize your eating during the day to mostly live raw fruits and veggies and their juices. This will help you detoxify and nourish your brain with essential nutrients and antioxidants to protect your brain from daily free radicals assaults

. 5. Eat fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, and swordfish or sardines. The fish oil contains essential fatty compounds Omega 3, DHA and EPA that play critical roll in brain development as well as improving memory, learning ability and metal capacity.

6. Flaxseeds are another excellent source of Omega 3 essential fatty acid (EFA). Most people today lack Omega 3 in their diet. EFA deficiency or imbalance is believed to be the cause of some brain diseases and mental aging.

7. Take EFA supplement to ensure essential fatty acid nourishment to your brain.

8. A glass of red wine with your evening meals can help protect your brain.

9. Avoid binge drinking. Excessive alcohol is toxic and is believed to destroy brain cells.

10. Eat lecithin granules. Soy lecithin is a great source of choline, inositol and phosphorus that are critical for optimum brain function.

11. Minimize your sugar consumption. Stay away from sweet cereals, candy bars or sodas. They cause blood sugar fluctuation, which leads to insulin insensitivity. Insulin insensitivity is believed to be the main cause of an inefficient supply of energy to the brain.

12. Supplement yourself with multivitamins and antioxidants to guarantee optimal brain function. Vitamins such as the B vitamin play a critical roll as catalysts in the production of essential brain neurotransmitters and hormones. A deficiency of even one vitamin may impair brain function.

13. Take ginkgo biloba (standardize for 24% ginkgo flavon glycosides) to improve brain circulation and memory.

14. Panax ginseng during the day works as a tonic and is believed to help boost mental activity. Siberian ginseng should be taken at the end of the day. This particular ginseng is believed to have a calming effect on the brain.

15. Eat carbohydrates at night. Complex carbs will relax your mind before going to sleep. Carbs boost serotenine, a brain neurotransmitter protein that is responsible for the feeling of well being and calming down.

16. Eat tryptophan-rich foods before bed time such as hot milk with honey or bananas. Tryptophan is a building block protein for serotenin and the melatonin hormone, which regulate healthy sleeping cycle. Melatonin is believed to protect the brain from aging-related diseases. It works as an antioxidant and anticancerous agent.

17. Make sure to supply your body with multi-minerals. Minerals such as calcium and magnesium play a vital roll in regulating optimum mental capacity, steady mood and protection from tension headaches. Minerals protect your brain from toxic metals such as lead or mercury.

18. Avoid rancid fats, hydrogenated fats and transfatty acids as found in margarine or hydrogenated oils additives to different food products. Bad fats impair optimum brain function and may causes brain damage.

19. Follow a progressive exercise routine. Exercise will help you with your blood circulation, stress, and overall mind and body performance.

20. Get The Warrior Diet book at The Warrior Diet, which is based on following a daily cycle of underrating and overeating, will help you reach your peak mental performance during the day and full relaxation followed by a healthy sleeping pattern at night. The Warrior Diet guides you to the best practical ways to nourish your brain and set you free from over-restrictive and over-controlling diet rules.

21. Coffee can boost your dopamine. The ideal time to drink coffee is on an empty stomach with a little or no sugar. Drinking coffee in moderation helps boost brain function and elevates your mood.

22. Green tea is one of the best beverages to boost mental power and protect the brain from toxins and free radicals.

23. Chocolate, YES! Some researchers believe that cocoa (chocolate) has a potent antioxidant, protective effect on your brain.

24. Eat blueberries, they have the highest ORAC (antioxidant value), thus considered to be one of the best brain foods.

25. Don't worry, be happy! Avoid anger. See your glass as half-full.

26. Be romantic. Love in your heart makes your mind blossom.

27. Make sure you sleep enough. Your brain is rejuvenating during those sleeping hours.

The Healthiest Supermarket Foods.

11 Superfoods.

1. Beets: Think of beets as red spinach, Dr. Bowden said, because they are a rich source of folate as well as natural red pigments that may be cancer fighters.How to eat: Fresh, raw and grated to make a salad. Heating decreases the antioxidant power.

2. Cabbage: Loaded with nutrients like sulforaphane, a chemical said to boost cancer-fighting enzymes.How to eat: Asian-style slaw or as a crunchy topping on burgers and sandwiches.

3. Swiss chard: A leafy green vegetable packed with carotenoids that protect aging eyes.How to eat it: Chop and saute in olive oil.

4.Cinnamon: May help control blood sugar and cholesterol.How to eat it: Sprinkle on coffee or oatmeal.

5. Pomegranate juice: Appears to lower blood pressure and loaded with antioxidants.How to eat: Just drink it.

6. Prunes: They are packed with antioxidants.How to eat: Wrapped in prosciutto and baked.

7. Pumpkin seeds: The most nutritious part of the pumpkin and packed with magnesium; high levels of the mineral are associated with lower risk for early death.How to eat: Roasted as a snack, or sprinkled on salad.

8. Sardines: Dr. Bowden calls them �health food in a can.'� They are high in omega-3�s, contain virtually no mercury and are loaded with calcium. They also contain iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, copper and manganese as well as a full complement of B vitamins. How to eat: Choose sardines packed in olive or sardine oil. Eat plain, mixed with salad, on toast, or mashed with dijon mustard and onions as a spread.

9. Turmeric: The �superstar of spices,'� it may have anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties.How to eat: Mix with scrambled eggs or in any vegetable dish.

10. Blueberries: Load up on fresh blueberries when in season and freeze for cold-winter months. Even though freezing can degrade some of the nutrients in fruits and vegetables, frozen blueberries are also available year-round and don�t spoil; associated with better memory in animal studies.How to eat: Blended with yogurt or soy milk and sprinkled with crushed almonds.
11. Canned pumpkin: A low-calorie vegetable that is high in fiber and immune-stimulating vitamin A; fills you up on very few calories.How to eat: Mix with cinnamon and nutmeg.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

The Bay Area's visionary chefs

Best part off waking up !!!

An alarm clock that wakes you up with the smell and sizzle of cooking bacon.
WHY: No one likes to wake up, especially by an alarm. This clock gently wakes you up with the mouthwatering aroma of bacon, just like waking up on a Sunday morning to the smell of Mom cooking breakfast. Unless you're Jewish.
HOW: A frozen strip of bacon is placed in Wake n' Bacon the night before. Because there is a 10 minute cooking time, the clock is set to go off 10 minutes before the desired waking time. Once the alarm goes off, the clock it sends a signal to a small speaker to generate the alarm sound. We hacked the clock so that the signal is re-routed by a microchip that in responds by sending a signal to a relay that throws the switch to power two halogen lamps that slow-cook the bacon in about 10 minutes. Buy it NOW.

The Best Damn Pancakes EVER !!!

1 cup bread flour
1 1/2 T baking powder
1/2 t kosher salt
2 T sugar

1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup milk
1 egg
1/4 t vanilla paste or extract
2 T Vegetable oil

Whisk dry together. In a seperate bowl mix wet ingredients. Add wet to dry, cook and enjoy. Let me know what you think.

A few kind words....

Just a short note to let you know how much Annette and I have enjoyed all of the meals you have prepared for us and our family. Your culinary mastery never ceases to amaze us – from your Chipotle sauces to our Chocolate Wedding Cake. We so appreciate the extra time and effort you put in to providing the freshest ingredients available. Besides your food tasting terrific, we also appreciate the energy you bring to our family gatherings and social events. Thanks for providing us with great food and great fun! We both look forward to many more dining experiences with you and our family in Chicago and Scottsdale.

Warmly, Dr. Frank & Annette Wolf

How dare you move to California…how are we going to have the Annual Lobster Fest up in Northern Wisconsin? The cooking and food are only out done by how much fun you make the event.Thanks for all of the great cooking you have done for me over the years.
Warmly Terry Graunke.

Jimmy's cooking:
Well crafted, sophisticated, layers of flavor, stylish or earthy as the dish requires; this has been my experience of Jimmy's cooking. As an employee he was a superb leader also reliable, economical and high spirited. My only complaint is that he left Chicago!
Lisa Gershenson Former owner of J & L Catering Director of Greater Chicago Food Depository Community Kitchens.

5-22-08 From Eddie O' Sullivan
Thanks for spoiling me on my Birthday! The Peaches were amazing!

Bacon Scented Bacon Print Tuxedo

Next time i renew my vows I'm slipping in to this bad boy.
There's a theory that everything is better with bacon. We believe that theory with all of our heart. To that end, we are introducing our line of bacon formal wear with Uncle Oinker's Bacon Scented Bacon Print Tuxedo. You can get married in bacon, get confirmed in bacon or go to the Oscars in bacon! Wait until Joan Rivers gets a whiff of you. Each Tuxedo is tailored from chemically treated latex print fabric in one of four different sizes. Best of all, it smells just like bacon sizzling in the pan. Dry clean only. Click here to buy!!!

Lazy man food.

Going Camping have no fear. Take along your Can Opener and one of these. Or one of these Or lastly what everyone loves by the campfire, one of these.

Google Chefs In The News Again.

About two months ago, Food Gal reported here that Google’s John Dickman had quit his job as global food services director for the search engine dominatrix.
Sources tell us that he didn’t go far. Dickman has joined Apple in Cupertino. Apparently the makers of the nifty iPhone and iPod not only want to feed their hard-working employees better, but want to give Google a run for its money in the gourmet cafeteria arena. Oooh, let the food fight begin.
Nate Keller, a former executive chef at the Google Mountain View campus, had recently moved to the Google facility in San Francisco to oversee Google’s Bridges cafe near the Embarcadero. Guess killer views weren’t enough, as Keller now has resigned from Google, according to sources. No word yet on what his plans are.
And what about Charlie Ayers, the first Google executive chef who set the original high bar for food there? Besides promoting his first cookbook, “Food 2.0, Secrets From the Chef Who Fed Google” and working on opening his Calafia Cafe & Market A Go Go in Palo Alto’s Town and Country Village, he’s joined the political fray.
Well, sort of. Ayers, former private chef to the Grateful Dead, has been asked to do the culinary honors for a July 10 political campaign fund-raiser in Minnesota for former Dead Head/comedian/actor-turned U.S. Senate-candidate, Al Franken. The buzz is that Ayers is already hard at work, contemplating dishes using Minnesota’s famed wild rice, walleye pike, and blueberries.

Almost (In)Edible Photo: Krispy Kreme Bacon Cheeseburgers

from a Google cafeteria in New York. Apparently they serve Krispy Kreme bacon cheeseburgers, a.k.a Luther Burgers.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

1935 Cognac for Desert at Les Nomades.

Back in the good old days when i could afford to eat fine dining I had the privilege of sharing some 1935 Cognac with my good chef friends Jason & Kevin Kelly from J & L Catering, Chicago. On thinking of this experience of having the oldest wine I have consumed to date I thought you should check out this wine list at Les Nomades.

Cook your Life Movie

This is a pretty cool movie. It does a good job with marrying Food and Spirituality.

Beer batter bread

Servings: Makes 1 loaf.

3 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 bottle (12 ounces) beer, at room temperature
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 375°F. In a mixing bowl, combine all the dry ingredients. Add the beer all at once, mixing as little as possible; the batter should be lumpy.
Pour the batter into a 9-x-5-x-3-inch loaf pan and brush with the melted butter. Bake in the oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Turn out onto a rack to cool.

Brulee French Toast

Make this the night before and pop it in the oven the next morning and treat yourself to a wonderful Brunch item.

Servings: Makes 6 servings.

1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons corn syrup
8- to 9-inch Brioche or Challah (you can use French Bread if you can't find a sweet bread)
5 large eggs
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon Grand Marnier (Opt.)
1/4 teaspoon salt

In a small heavy saucepan melt butter with brown sugar and corn syrup over moderate heat, stirring, until smooth and pour into a 13- by 9- by 2-inch baking dish. Cut six 1-inch thick slices from center portion of bread, reserving ends for another use, and trim crusts. Arrange bread slices in one layer in baking dish, squeezing them slightly to fit.
In a bowl whisk together eggs, half-and-half, vanilla, Grand Marnier, and salt until combined well and pour evenly over bread. Chill bread mixture, covered, at least 8 hours and up to 1 day.
Preheat oven to 350° F. and bring bread to room temperature.
Bake bread mixture, uncovered, in middle of oven until puffed and edges are pale golden, 35 to 40 minutes. Let it rest and then flip it over on a serving platter and serve.
*Try using Crossiants for a richer result.

Mrs. Dich's Snake wine. (Vietnamese Viagra)

Okay this is the most adventurous thing I have drank to date. I had it at my friends Vietnamese restaurant in the Argyle District of Chicago in October 2003. It is poisonous snakes fermenting in rice wine. YUMMY!!!


2 cups fresh lima beans (about 1 pound)
4 cups fresh corn cut from cob (about 6 ears)
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup Heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/8 teaspoon pepper
Preparation:Cook lima beans in boiling salted water about 15 minutes or till almost tender; drain. Add corn, butter, Heavy cream, salt, and pepper; mix well. Cook over low heat, stirring frequently, 7 to 10 minutes, or until corn is done. Makes 6 servings.

Saba Balsamic Vinegar

Try this condiment with Meats, Fish, Salads,Vegetables or just on its own.
Modena's Saba consists only of the cooked must of grapes characteristic to Modena, 100% Lambrusco grapes. Cooked directly over a fire in an uncovered stainless steel cauldron and bottled immediately to block fermentation and the ensuing process of becoming vinegar. Saba is distinctive because it is organoleptically sweet and harmonic. We suggest you use it as a replacement for sugar in cooking sweets, jams, and fruits salads, and to make foods more aromatic. It is also used traditionally in Italy as an aperitif, by mixing it with soda water. Saba has been known since the time of the Romans who called it "Sapa".

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Eddie O' makes a Celeb Appearance at Google.

Eddie O' Filled his belly with free Pintxo 47 grub and jumped on the bicycle for a tour of Google.

O' Sheas Irish Pub.Opening Week !!!

Braised Five Spice Short Ribs

6 Beef short ribs
2 yellow onions sliced
6 whole garlic cloves
1 thumb size piece of ginger
2 cups Chicken stock
1 cup tamari
1/2 cup mirin
1/4 cup sweet soy sauce
4 T Brown Sugar
4 T sesame oil
1 stick cinnamon
2 star anise pods
i T Szechuan peppercorns
5 whole cloves

marinate beef with a drizzle of tamari, mirin S & P and refrigerate ( 1 or 2 days ). Brown meat in skillet, pull out and hold. De glaze with onions, garlic and ginger & cook until golden brown. add the remaining ingredients. If necessary transfer to braising dish. Cover with lid or foil and cook for 8 hours at 200 F or until tender. Remove beef and let it rest. Strain and reduce braising liquid until it becomes syrup like consistency and pour back over beef.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Lomi Lomi Salmon at Pintxo.

1 pound side of salmon, sliced 1-inch thick
Hawaiian or kosher salt
5 tomatoes, chopped
1 Maui onion, chopped
1 bunch green onions, chopped
2 red Hawaiian chiles, chopped
1 pineapple 1 lime, juiced
2 tablespoons macadamia nut oil
Fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
1 head butter lettuce, leaves separated

Cure the salmon in salt by putting a layer of Hawaiian salt in the bottom of a glass dish. Lay a salmon in it and gently press down. Sprinkle more salt on top and rub it all over the salmon. Top with even more salt, cover, and place in the refrigerator for 24 hours to pull out the water. Table salt is not recommended for this process. Rinse the salmon thoroughly in cold water to wash away a lot of the salt then blot dry. Cut the salmon in cubes and place in a bowl and add tomatoes, Maui onion, green onion and chiles. Cut the pineapple in half lengthwise. Make crisscross cuts in the flesh and scoop out the inside pineapple chunks; add to the bowl. Squeeze in the lime juice, add oil and black pepper, then toss the mixture to combine all the ingredients. Cover and chill for 1 hour. Scoop the mixture into the split pineapple shell and display as a decorative bowl. To eat, spoon the salmon salad into a lettuce cup.

Really Good Cornbread

Ingredients (Serves 8)
¼ cup bacon fat
1 ½ cups stone-ground organic yellow cornmeal
½ cup flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 cup whole milk
3 scallions, minced
¼ cup unsalted butter, melted
Preheat oven to 450°F
Heat the bacon fat in a 10-inch cast iron skillet in the middle of the oven for 5 minutes. While the fat heats, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Whisk together the egg and milk in a small bowl. Add this mixture to the dry ingredients. Stir to combine.Carefully remove the hot skillet from the oven and stir the scallions into the hot fat. Add the melted butter. Stir all of this into the batter until just combined, then pour the batter into the hot skillet. Place the skillet back into the middle of the oven and bake until golden, about 10 minutes. Remove and allow to cool.

Cubby's BBQ Sauce

Could be the best BBQ Sauce I've had to date.
Yield 1 Gallon
2oz olive oil
2 cups onion minced
4 T crushed garlic
1/2 can chipotles in adobo
4 T Ancho or Pasilla Chile powder
2 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
4 cups ketchup
2 cups molasses
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup honey mustard
2 cups water
1 T cracked black pepper.

Heat the oil in a stainless steel saucepan and sweat off onion and garlic till soft and sweet. Add chile powder and chipotles and let bloom. Add cider vinegar and bring to a boil. Add the remaining ingredients and simmer for 30-45 mins. Pass through a food mill or china cap, cool and refriderate.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Best Burger so far in SF.

Magnolia Gastropub & Brewery, Haight St. San Francisco.
Kristin & I had a great experience here and downed a couple of cold 20 oz pints. Sampled Pork Crackling for Apps and split a Blue Cheese Burger. I think they used Point Reyes Blue. They had Headcheese on the menu but Kristin wasn't Interested. Good Service and neat Bar.
On Saturday we caught an hour of the Farmers Market at the Ferry Building. This place blows me away everytime. Peaches...Peaches...Peaches they are everywhere and so many different varieties. I picked up some Sea Pods recently they were tasty, salty little treats. Planning on buying some Goat next time I'm there.