Sunday, October 18, 2009

Irish Soda Farls.

"Soda bread dough is flattened into a round circle, and divided into farls meaning 4 parts. It is then cooked on a dry griddle or pan. Traditionally this was the quickest way to make soda bread for unexpected guests who drop by for a bit of craic (good fun). It's best eaten fresh with butter and jam but is also delicious fried as part of an Ulster breakfast."

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup buttermilk

Preheat heavy based flat griddle or skillet on medium to low heat.
Place flour and salt in a bowl and sift in baking soda. Make a well in the center, and pour in the buttermilk.
Work quickly to mix into dough and knead very lightly on a well floured surface. Form into a flattened circle, about 1/2 inch thick and cut into quarters with a floured knife.
Sprinkle a little flour over the base of the hot pan and cook the farls for 6 to 8 minutes on each side or until golden brown

Koesisters Recipe.

250 ml (1 cup) water
625 ml (2½ cups) white sugar
12.5 ml (2½ tsp.) lemon juice
5 ml (1 tsp.) vanilla essence

375 ml (1½ cups) cake flour
22 ml (4½ tsp.) baking powder
1 ml (¼ tsp.) salt
20 g butter
150 ml (½ & a bit cups) milk
750 ml (3 cups) granola oil

Put the water and sugar in a pot and bring to boil on low heat. Stir frequently until the sugar is completely dissolved. Boil for 7 minutes. Remove the pot from the stove and stir in the lemon juice and vanilla essence. Put the pot aside.

Mix the flour, salt, and baking powder thoroughly in a mixing bowl. Break the butter into small pieces and add to the flour mixture. Add the milk. Mix well until a dough is formed.

Roll the dough out to a thickness of 5 mm (±¼ in.). Cut the dough into thin (± 10 mm or ½ in.) strips. Take 3 strips and join their ends on one side. Braid the strips to desired koeksister length and join the other ends.

Heat the oil in a pot until fairly hot. Put about 3 koeksisters at a time in the oil and fry them on both sides until they get a golden-brown color. As you remove the koeksisters from the oil, place them directly into the syrup. Allow the koeksisters to absorb the syrup thoroughly. Remove the koeksisters from the syrup and allow the excess syrup to drip off. Place them in the refrigerator

Lexington Style BBQ sauce.

This sauce is used to make North Carolina Style Pulled Pork and North Carolina Coleslaw . You will need to double this recipe to sauce both the meat and the slaw.

2 cups cider vinegar
1 tablespoon sea salt
1 tablespoon ground white pepper
1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons white sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup Ketchup
Mix all ingredients together and let sit 10 minutes.

Add to chopped barbecue when hot to season the meat and keep it from drying out.

This sauce keeps indefinitely in the refrigerator, but be forewarned that the longer it sits, the hotter it gets as the heat from the peppers leeches out into the sauce.
If you have sauce that has sat for a long time and you don't like it too peppery, cut the sauce with another 2 cups of vinegar, 1/2 cup ketchup, and 1/4 cup dark brown sugar. Taste and adjust the salt if necessary.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Flash Oil Poached Ahi Tuna.


Capay Candy Stripe Figs, Brown Turkey Figs, Toasted Pistachio's, Shallot Confit and Balsamic, Port wine Syrup.
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Swordfish - Gin Lime Butter

Grill, Roast or Pan sear fish.
For the Sauce,
1/4 cup dry gin
1/4 cup St. Germain
3 sprigs of Thyme
6 cracked Juniper Berries
3 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/2 pound cold unsalted butter, cut into bits, chilled

Reduce all ingredients excluding the butter in a nonreactive saucepan. Reduce til syrup like consistency. Remove from heat and slowing add butter while whisking until you reach a hollandaise like sauce.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Chinatown Thursday night mobile uploads.

Good old Left Coast Cafe Mobile Uploads.

Fellow Folks Who Eat,

Just another update from the Left Coast Cafe that keeps getting better and better. As you can tell from the subject of this email, there are truly some unique superstars preparing the food for San Franciscan Googlers.

To begin, Jake has been continually toying with specialty pizza including toppings, such as, but not limited to crab, pesto chicken, jalapenos, potatoes, pine nuts, shrimp, mango, and the list goes on. Jimmy, John, and Mark will grill, sear, broil, or cook any meat to perfection so its distinctively delicious by the time it hits your mouth. We've enjoyed some great local fish lately with vegetable and fruit toppings just to show we're on par with the best experimental restaurants in the area. Patricia and Maya put out all the vegetables that ensure everyone is getting their Ken Fair-share of vitamins, nutrients, etc. Both ladies add a charm to the cafe that help remind you that work is on hold for the moment; so enjoy the awesome free food and admire the Bay Bridge to your right. Special shout-out to Jefferson, the very modest sushi chef that wows me everyday. His uniquely crafted and named rolls have fresh ingredients with creative flair that make me think mercury poisoning is coming my way soon. Not my fault, they're too good! If you have room, which you should try and leave because Amy is always baking (to perfection) her lightly sea-salted chocolate chip cookies for dessert. Those are a staple, and she's also putting down awesome fruit custards, banging milkshakes, mouth-watering cheesecakes, and much more. With so many visitors and events in the city, you think the cafe could get quite dirty, but that is not the case. My man, Herman is always making sure the presentation is on-point while greeting everyone with a genuine smile and a, "How you doing today?"

We're lacking a cafe manager right now, but that's just because she just donated half of her liver to a close kin. Call them what you like: superstars or superheros, they're the best either way!

Thanks much from all of us in and out of San Francisco.


Chico July 4 with Marcalan & Uncle John's Wonderful Artwork. Baby Luccas Fried Green Tomatoes

Summer Barbeque at Harry & Kays.

Moni's Birthday Party and Farewell to our Carlow Clan at Duck's Nest.

Neala's Christening at Bosworth.

Coho Salmon, Pico de Gallo & Guacamole with White Peaches. Hyde St Sunset.

View from rooftop on Hyde St & The Christening of The Sterling Project.

Shrimp & Grits on Hyde st.

cheese grits

4 1/2 c. boiling water

1 c. stone-ground grits

1 tsp. salt

3/4 c. sharp cheddar cheese

1/4 c. Parmesan cheese

Fresh ground pepper


3 Tbs. butter

1. Whisk grits and salt into the boiling water.

2. Reduce to simmer and cook for 35-40 minutes.

3. Turn off the heat and stir in the cheese and butter until melted. Season with pepper and Tabasco.


1 lb. peeled shrimp


3 slices chopped bacon

1 large clove garlic

1/4 c. thinly sliced green onions (white and green parts)

1 1/4 c. sliced mushrooms

2 tsp. lemon juice


2 Tbs. peanut oil

* Total cooking time for shrimp is less than four minutes, depending on the size of the shrimp.

1. Render the chopped bacon in a large skillet until crisp. Reserve and pour off all but one tablespoon of the fat.

2. Gently toss the shrimp with the flour until they are lightly coated; remove excess flour.

3. Over medium high heat sauté shrimp for one or two minutes (until approx. half-cooked).

4. Add the mushrooms and toss. When they begin to cook, add in the reserved bacon.

5. Press the garlic clove and stir it in; very quickly add the Tabasco and lemon juice (do not let the garlic brown).

6. Season with salt and add the green onions at the very end. Arrange the shrimp over the cheese grits and enjoy!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Get Hammered, Wake Up, Snarf a Belfast Bap; Repeat

The artery-crushing Belfast Bap.
​The Belfast Bap may sound like a long-lost sequence of Michael Flatley-meets-Gene Vincent dance steps popularized by a no-hit-wonder Irish rock-and-roll band in the early 1960s, but, in fact, it's breakfast -- a big, artery-crushing one, to be frank: Irish bacon, Irish sausage, scrambled eggs, and cheddar cheese folded into a fluffy roll the size of a boulder. You can get a $6 bap to-go at John Campbell's Irish Bakery (5625 Geary at 21st Ave.), or you can pop next door and have one at the 'Stone.

The Curious Cook. Prolonging the Life of Berries By HAROLD McGEE

ONE of summer’s great pleasures is eating berries of all kinds by the basketful. One of summer’s great frustrations is having baskets of berries go moldy overnight, or even by nightfall.

Over the years I’ve come up with various strategies for limiting my losses, but this summer I came across a surprising one, the most effective I’ve ever tried. Thermotherapy, it’s been called. A very hot fruit bath.

Fruits go moldy because mold spores are everywhere, readily germinate on the humid surfaces of actively respiring, moisture-exhaling fruits, and easily penetrate the smallest breach of their thin skins.

The first thing I do with a haul of berries, after eating my fill straight from the basket, is to unpack the rest and spread them out on kitchen or paper towels, so they’re not pressing against one another and trapping moisture.

If I want to keep them overnight or longer, I refrigerate them, because cold temperatures slow fruit metabolism and mold growth. I repack the berries as sparsely as possible, nest each basket in a second empty one to leave an air space at the bottom, and inflate and tie off a plastic produce bag around the baskets, so there’s room for the berries to breathe and the bag itself doesn’t cling to their surfaces.

Even with these precautions I’ve had baskets mold overnight in the refrigerator. So I followed up right away when I saw a reference in an agricultural journal on extending the shelf life of strawberries not with a chemical treatment or gamma irradiation, but with heat.

I gathered a dozen or so reports that hot-water treatments suppress mold growth on berries, grapes and stone fruits. The test temperatures ranged from 113 to 145 degrees, with exposure times of a few minutes at the lower temperatures, and 12 seconds at the highest.

I found it hard to believe that any part of a plant could tolerate 145-degree water. My finger in the same water would get a third-degree burn in less than 5 seconds, and eventually reach medium rare.

I bought pints of various berries, divided each batch into two samples, and heated one by immersing and swishing its plastic basket in a pot of hot water. I emptied the heated sample onto towels to cool down and dry. Then I repacked it, and encouraged both baskets to spoil by wrapping them airtight and letting them sweat on the kitchen counter. After 24 hours I counted the moldy berries in each basket.

The strawberries fared best when I heated them at 125 degrees for 30 seconds. In two samples from different sources, this treatment gave a total of 1 moldy berry out of 30, where the untreated baskets had 14. I also treated some bruised berries, including one with a moldy tip. After 24 hours none were moldy. The tip mold not only hadn’t spread, it had disappeared.

I tried the same treatment, 125 degrees for 30 seconds, on raspberries and blackberries, and got the same good results. There were many fewer moldy berries in the heated samples.

For thicker-skinned blueberries, a Canadian study recommended a 140-degree treatment for 30 seconds. I tested it twice, with samples of around 150 berries each time. That heat took the bloom off. It melted the natural wax that gives the berries their whitish cast, and left them midnight blue. It also cut the number of moldy berries from around 20 per sample to 2.

Research has also shown that exposure to hot air slows fruit spoilage. But hot air can take several hours, and I found it harder than hot water to apply precisely in the kitchen. I did spread some raspberries out on a sheet pan lined with towels, and put them in a 150-degree non-convection oven for 20 minutes. The berry bottoms got hotter than the tops, which were cooled by evaporation. Still, only 1 out of 48 heated berries became moldy, compared with 7 out of 52 in the unheated basket.

Why is it that delicate berries can survive heat high enough to kill mold and injure fingers? Probably because they have to do so in the field. One study of tomatoes found that intense sunlight raised their interiors to 122 degrees. Such heat hurts the quality of growing fruits, but I couldn’t taste much of an effect on briefly heated ripe fruits.

So if you find yourself plagued by quickly spoiling fruits, start giving them a brief hot bath before you spread them out or chill them. Thermotherapy can be healthy for all concerned.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Sterling Project.

My good friend Mark Sterling the Brewmaster of The Russian Hill Brewhouse sent me home with one of his finest Irish Stouts. I hear there is a few more batches brewing up and word of a underground Speakeasy Brewhouse.

Happy Pancakes on Hyde.

Breaking in the new stove.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Chefables. Healthy Food for your Children one meal at a time.

This is a local business that I want to help Market through the Blog.

First Nob Hill House Warming Tapas Party.

Menu for Ten Guests

Fried Dill Pickles - Chipotle Ranch

Arugula, Fresh Figs, Buttermilk Blue Cheese, Brown Sugar Bacon, Toasted Hazelnuts & Pear Vinegar

Red Quinoa & Roasted Poblano Cornbread with a White Peach & Basil Gastrique

Camerones de Ajo

Roast Asparagus, Haloumi Cheese, Raspberries, Pumpernickel Croutons, Raspberry Vin


Savory Mushroom Bread Pudding

Savory mushroom bread pudding explodes with the deep, rich flavors of the fruits of the forest. It's a great accompaniment to beef or game dishes and it can be made with rye or white bread. It's great napped with a demiglace, Madeira sauce or other rich, brown gravy.

Makes 6 servings of Savory Mushroom Bread Pudding
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
1 pound cubed day-old rye or hearty white bread
2 ounces dried porcini mushrooms
1 cup boiling water
1 tablespoon + 2 tablespoons + 1 tablespoon butter
1 large finely chopped Shallot
2 pounds assorted chopped mushrooms (shiitake, king trumpet, oyster, cremini)
2 cloves minced garlic
1/2 t fresh thyme
1 3/4 cups heavy cream
5 large beaten eggs
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup grated hard cheese like Parmigiano Reggiano
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place mushrooms in a medium bowl and pour over boiling water. Steep for 30 minutes. Meanhwile, toast the bread cubes in the oven until dry and light golden, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Butter a 13-inch-by-9-inch baking pan.

Lift the mushrooms out of the water being careful not to disturb the sediment at the bottom. Chop them and set aside. Strain the mushroom soaking liquid through a fine-mesh sieve and reserve.

In a large skillet, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat and add onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 4 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper and transfer to the bowl with bread cubes.

Add 2 tablespoons butter to the same skillet and add the chopped fresh mushrooms and garlic. Let cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until golden and any liquid has evaporated. Stir in the chopped reconstituted mushrooms and salt and pepper to taste. When hot, transfer the mushrooms to the bowl of bread crumbs and onions.

Deglaze the pan by adding the reserved mushroom soaking liquid and scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spatula. Reduce the liquid to about 1/4 cup and add to bread mixture, stirring well.

In a medium bowl, whisk together cream, eggs, salt and pepper to taste. Pour this custard over the bread mixture and combine thoroughly. Transfer to the prepared baking dish and dot the top with remaining 1 tablespoon of butter. Bake uncovered 25 minutes. Sprinkle the top with grated cheese and continue to bake, until the top is golden, the pudding is swollen and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, about 25 minutes more.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

The Original Suffering Bastard

Found a 1959 New York Times interview with the inventor himself, Joe Scialom, one-time head bartender at Sheperd's Hotel in Cairo. Here's what it said:

When liquor was short during the war, he had to concoct "something to quench the boys' thirst." He combined equal parts gin and brandy with a dash of Angostura bitters, a teaspoon of Rose's lime juice, and English ginger ale. He garnished the drink with a sprig of fresh mint, a slice of orange and a cucumber peel. The bartender advised Americans to substitute ginger beer for the ginger ale because the British version of the soft drink is more heavily seasoned with ginger than ours.

One ounce gin
Two ounces brandy or bourbon
One teaspoon lime juice
One dash bitters
Add cracked ice and fill glass with ginger ale, decorating with a slice of orange.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Grandma Wilson's Cornbread Recipe.

1/4 pound butter
1/3 cup white sugar
1/3 cup Honey
2 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease an 8 inch square pan.
Melt butter in large skillet. Remove from heat and stir in sugar & Honey. Quickly add eggs and beat until well blended. Combine buttermilk with baking soda and stir into mixture in pan. Stir in cornmeal, flour, and salt until well blended and few lumps remain. Pour batter into the prepared pan.
Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Indian-Spiced Sturgeon with Mint Yogurt Sauce

1 teaspoon fennel seeds, toasted
2 cups plain yogurt (16 oz)
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/8 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
1 teaspoon salt
6 (1-inch-thick) pieces skinless sturgeon fillet or halibut fillet with skin (6 oz each)
3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint
1/2 teaspoon finely grated fresh lemon zest

Finely grind fennel seeds in grinder. Whisk together fennel and 1 cup yogurt with garlic, ginger, cumin, coriander, black pepper, turmeric, cayenne, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Coat fish with yogurt mixture and marinate in a shallow baking dish, covered and chilled, 1 hour.

While fish is marinating, whisk together remaining cup yogurt, mint, zest, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt to make sauce.

Prepare grill for cooking. If using a charcoal grill, open vents on bottom of grill, then light charcoal. Charcoal is medium-hot when you can hold your hand 5 inches above rack for 3 to 4 seconds. If using a gas grill, preheat burners on high, covered, 10 minutes, then reduce heat to moderate.

Lift fish out of marinade, letting excess drip off (discard marinade), and grill fish, covered only if using a gas grill, on lightly oiled grill rack, turning over once, until just cooked through, about 12 minutes total. (If using halibut, grill skin sides down first and grill, turning once, 8 to 9 minutes total.) Serve fish with sauce.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

St Valentines Day Dinner for Six.

Cooking up Ramps

Unlike most other members of the onion family, ramps not only have pungent bulbs, but also leaf-shaped shoots that can be eaten as greens—torn into shreds for salads or cooked like spinach. In Helvetia, ramp leaves are parboiled to wilt them and drained; then they're chopped and fried in rendered bacon fat, with some cracklings added, until they cook down and lose most of their color. If you prefer yours cooked a little less, try this variation:

Separate the bulbs from the leaves, and cook the bulbs in a little bacon fat and water until they're tender. You don't need to parboil the leaves (unless you plan to freeze them), just chop them and add them to the pan, wilting them in the bacon fat. Finally, crumble in some bacon, continue cooking until the ramps are tender and the liquid is absorbed, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Soy Sauce–Marinated Ribs

Hawaiian-Style Kalbi)

SERVES 4 – 6

These pork ribs are a sweeter version of a Korean preparation for marinated and grilled short ribs. For more information about rib cuts, see Ribs Revealed.

1 1⁄4 cups light brown sugar
1 cup soy sauce
1 tbsp. Asian sesame oil
1⁄4 tsp. crushed red chile flakes
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 2" piece peeled fresh ginger,
finely chopped
3 lbs. pork baby back ribs
3 scallions, thinly sliced

1. Whisk together brown sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil, chile flakes, garlic, ginger, and 1⁄4 cup water in a large bowl. Add the ribs and toss to coat. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let marinate for at least 1 hour at room temperature, or refrigerate overnight, turning occasionally to coat.

2. Heat oven to 450°. Remove ribs from marinade and arrange, curved side up, on a rack set over a rimmed foil-lined baking sheet. Roast for 20 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, heat the marinade in a 2-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thick and syrupy, about 20 minutes.

4. Using tongs, flip ribs and cook, basting frequently with the reduced marinade, until the ribs are browned, glazed, and tender, 15–20 minutes. Transfer ribs to a platter and garnish with scallions.

Stuffed Oysters

1 celery stalk, trimmed and minced
3 tbsp. butter, softened
2 tbsp. minced fresh tarragon leaves
5 tbsp. fresh bread crumbs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
16 oysters (such as blue points, malpeques,
or kumamotos) on the half shell

1. Set rack in the top third of the oven, then preheat the broiler. Combine celery, butter, tarragon, and 3 tbsp. of the bread crumbs in a medium bowl. Mix into a rough paste. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

2. Loosen oysters from their shells with a paring knife. Smear about 1⁄2 tbsp. bread crumb mixture on each oyster, then sprinkle remaining 2 tbsp. bread crumbs on top.

3. Arrange oysters on a baking sheet. Place in oven and broil until bread crumb topping is browned, about 2 minutes.

Carmelized Onion pull apart rolls

3/4 cup shortening
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup boiling water
2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (110 degrees to 115 degrees)
2 eggs
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
6 cups all-purpose flour
Carmelized Onions & Garlic with Herbs

In a mixing bowl, cream shortening and sugar. Add boiling water; mix well. Cool to 110 degrees F to 115 degrees F. Dissolve yeast in warm water. Add yeast mixture and eggs to creamed mixture; mix well. Add salt, baking powder, baking soda and 5 cups flour; beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes.Knead Onion and herb mix into dough. Divide into 32 pieces; shape each into a ball. Place in two greased 9-in. round baking pans. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1-1/2 hours.
Bake at 400 degrees F for 18-22 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks.

A view from our kitchen at Google SF.

Seared Scallops with Bacon, Tomato, and Avocado Puree

2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1/2 teaspoon agave nectar or corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium Hass avocado, pitted
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons Brown Butter, cooled
2 slices bacon, cut into 1/4-inch-long pieces
6 to 8 sea scallops
1 tablespoon butter
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup red or yellow cherry tomatoes, halved
2 lovage leaves or celery leaves, torn
Fleur de sel

In a small bowl, whisk together lime juice, agave nectar, vanilla, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Slowly drizzle in extra-virgin olive oil, while continuing to whisk, until an emulsion has formed. Set vinaigrette aside.
Remove flesh from avocado and place in the jar of a blender along with 1 teaspoon salt, lemon juice, 2 tablespoons water, olive oil, and brown butter; blend until smooth.
Place bacon in a medium skillet over medium heat. Cook bacon, turning, until fat has been rendered, 5 to 7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove bacon from skillet; transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate.
Pour off bacon fat from skillet and discard. Return skillet to stove and place over high heat. Season scallops with salt and pepper; add to skillet. Sear scallops 1 minute, add butter and turn scallops; sear 1 minute more. Remove pan from heat.
Spread a spoonful of avocado puree on each serving plate. Divide scallops evenly between plates; drizzle with vinaigrette. In a medium bowl, add bacon, tomatoes, lovage, and remaining vinaigrette; toss to combine. Divide evenly between plates, season with fleur de sel, and serve immediately.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Spicy Guinness Mustard

1 12-oz. bottle Guinness Extra Stout
1 1⁄2 cups brown mustard seeds (10 oz.)
1 cup red wine vinegar
1 tbsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1⁄4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1⁄4 tsp. ground cloves
1⁄4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1⁄4 tsp. ground allspice

1. Combine ingredients in a nonreactive mixing bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 1–2 days so that the mustard seeds soften and the flavors meld.

2. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a food processor and process, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula, until the seeds are coarsely ground and the mixture thickens, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a jar and cover.

3. Refrigerate overnight and use immediately or refrigerate for up to 6 months. (The flavor of the mustard will mellow as the condiment ages.)


1⁄4 lb. aji dulce chiles, Jalepenos or Italian frying peppers,
stemmed, seeded, and roughly chopped
1/2 bunch cilantro
1/4 bunch flat-leaf parsley
1 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded,
and chopped
1 clove garlic
1 tbsp. vegetable oil

1. Combine all the ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and purée, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula, until a semicoarse paste forms, about 1 minute. Refrigerate the sofrito for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 3 months.

Monday, February 16, 2009

I advanced to Iron Chef Final !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!




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My Seafood Battle Menu
Scallop,Yuzu Hogwash on English Cucumber Cup
De-constructed Chowda. Pan Sear Blue nose Bass, Lemon,Thyme and Crab Chowder served with Bacon fat Fried Potatoes and Micro Italian Parsley. Unfortnately due to transferring to Google SF Office I was not able to go to the final. They put the opponent i beat in the semi finals through and he ended up winning the final.Good job Jacinto.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Lager Batter

1 c AP Flour
1 t B Powder
1/2 C cornstarch
1/2 c sparkling water
1/2 c lager
2 t salt
1 t sugar
1 t oil
pinch of cayenne

Kevin San's Ancient Korean Short Rib Marinade.

soy sauce - 2 cups
water - 1.5 cups
puree the following 4 items
1/2 kiwi
2 asian apple pear
1 head of garlic
1 onion
2 t ginger powder
1 t black pepper
3 C sugar
2 C corn syrup
2 T Sambal Oelek

Chocolate Frosting

1 can organic condensed milk
6 ounces melted bittersweet chocolate
1/4 teaspoon salt
1.5 tablespoons aged sweet vinegar (Elixer, balsamic, vin cotto, etc)

Combine all four ingredients in a mixing bowl and whip to a spreadable texture. The frosting is a bit sticky and will firm a bit as it sits, so use it immediately.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Congratulations to the winners of Round 2 Iron Chef "Vegetarian"

Jimmy's Menu for Iron Chef Vegetarian.
Cauliflower Soup, Caramelized Cauliflower, Crispy Capers & Matchstick Radishes.
Wild Mushroom, Leek & White Truffle Tart, Mushroom & Sherry Coulis, Goat Cheese Fondue, 10yr old Balsamic Drizzle & Micro Liquorice.

Jacinto Torres - Plymouth
Stephanie Sanchez - Lunch Box
Bobby Siu - 5IVE
Jimmy Wilson - Pintxo

SEMI-FINALS - ALL SEAFOOD - January 26, 2009

Jacinto Torres Plymouth vs.
James Wilson Pintxo

Stephanie Sanchez Lunch Box vs.
Bobby Siu 5ive

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Round 1 Results of Iron Chef " No Theme"

Jimmy's Round 1 Menu
Cream of Parsnip Soup,Carmelized Shallot, Apple, Thyme & Black Pudding (Blood Sausage)
Seared Loch Duart Salmon, Champ (Northern Irish Potato Dish) & Warm Bacon & Rocket Dressing,Micro Beet Tops (Bulls Blood)

Baljit Sekhon Euro
Cecile Macasero AMT
Bobby Siu 5IVE
"The" Patrick Marzo 150
Angel Hernandez Charlies
Joseph Batchelder Basic Deli
Sythouane Vongchantha Moma
Daniel Deaver Fourteen
Albert Rivera Cafe 7
Frederico Ortiz Oasis
Luis Rodriguez PIC
Jose Manuel Hernandez Big Table
Kevin O' Conner No Name
James "Jimmy" Wilson Pintxo
Stephanie Sanchez Lunch Box
Jacinto Torres Plymouth

Today's Iron Chef Results
Congratulations to the Round 1 Winners!

Kevin O' Conner - No Name
Jacinto Torres - Plymouth
Cecile Macasero - American Table
Jose Manuel Hernandez - Big Table
Stephanie Sanchez - Lunch Box
Sythouane Vongchantha - Moma
Jimmy Wilson - Pintxo
Bobby Siu - 5IVE

Iron Chef details at Google Campus

The Rules

* Each cafe chef must select one cook or lead cook from their cafe to compete in the challenge.
* They will be competing against a cook from another cafe.
* Names will be selected at random to decide who is challenging whom and which cafe they will be competing at.
* The competitors must submit their menu to the hosting Cafe Chef 1 week in advance (Jan 5th).
* The cafe chef is responsible for ordering those items in the menu.
* The winners can not repeat the same menu in following rounds.
* Competitors must prepare food for 100 Googlers (2 oz protein portions) consisting of 1 entree and either a soup or salad.
* Food expenses will be costed to the hosting cafe

* All day event

The Challenger

* 6:30am - Competitors arrive at designated cafe and meets with cafe chef
* Receive prepared rolling cart of ingredients
* 7:00am - Begin preparing their menu to be served at the opening of lunch service for that cafe
* 11:30am/12:00pm - Serve food
* Clean up
* 2:30pm - End of Competition - Winner announced!

The Cafe Chefs

* Prepare rolling cart with food for competitors
* Show chefs around the kitchen
* Prepare serving area in cafe for competition
* Put up signage (attachment below) & baskets for Googlers to judge food
* Hand out marbles and encourage Googlers to try the food and to vote
* Announce the winner!

*Note: Cafe chef must engage in the event for it to be successful!

The Judging

* A group of 100 Googlers will be voting on the dishes, using the marble system.
* The determined winner moves on to the next round.

Upcoming Schedule

* Round 1 - Mon, January 12th
* Round 2 - Tues, January 20th
* Semi Finals - TBD
* Finals - TBD

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Eating at home back in the day in Charlotte

Sweet Potato Puree, Cornmeal Crusted Scallops, Braised Chard & Chipotle & Molasses Glaze.
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$1500 Mai Tai from SF Chronicle last week.

I found myself in the Merchant Hotel in Belfast recently. It's a very fine hotel indeed. I'm tempted to say that it's posh and elegant and opulent and splendid and sumptuous and swank because it's all of those things, but there's something special about the Merchant that makes you forget that you're in a highfalutin joint - the atmosphere there is just about as down home and friendly as you'll find in any neighborhood tavern. You tend to forget your surroundings and just get on with having a great time when you're in the bar there.
On my third evening in Belfast I arrived at the Merchant's bar to meet up with my cousin and his son, who had popped over to Belfast from England to hang out with me for a few days; an old friend from New York was there and a few newfound Belfast bartender types were in attendance, too. I was about to order my usual Manhattan when Sean Muldoon, the beverage manager at the Merchant, suggested that I have a mai tai instead.
I had a mai tai the likes of which you won't find anywhere else in the world. It was whipped up for me by Jack McGarry, a splendid specimen of a Belfast bartender. The drink was heavenly. Just heavenly.
What makes the mai tai at the Merchant Hotel so special? Well, for a start, they charge 750 pounds sterling for it. Call it 1,500 bucks. Why? Because the Merchant Hotel is the only bar in the world that has a bottle of the original 17-year-old J. Wray & Nephew rum that Victor J. "Trader Vic" Bergeron used when he created the drink in 1944.
I doubt that many of you will be dashing off to Belfast to buy yourself one of these mai tais, though if you find yourself in that part of the world I highly recommend that you stop in at the Merchant Hotel. But to save you the trouble of going to the bar for a drink, here's a mai tai recipe, based on the original, that you can make at home.
I chose rums that, when mixed, come close to replicating the powerful punch, and the soft vanilla notes, of the original bottling that Trader Vic used, and instead of curacao, I went for Grand Marnier - the rich sweetness in this liqueur negates you having to make the rock-candy syrup that Bergeron called for in his recipe. Orgeat, an almond syrup with rosewater accents, isn't the easiest thing in the world to find, but nor is it impossible - Torani makes a good bottling that can be found via any decent search engine.
One question did come to mind as I left the bar that night. What's a fair tip on a $1,500 cocktail?
Mai tai
Makes 1 drink
1 1/2 ounces 10 Cane rum
1/2 ounce J. Wray & Nephew overproof rum
1/2 ounce Grand Marnier
3/4 ounce orgeat syrup
1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
1 mint sprig, for garnish

Instructions: Fill a cocktail shaker two-thirds full of ice and add both rums, Grand Marnier, orgeat syrup and lime juice. Shake for approximately 15 seconds, strain into a crushed-ice-filled old-fashioned glass, and add the garnish.

J and L Catering. The Dream Team.

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Old Style Pics !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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