Monday, February 28, 2011

In Over The Head Dinner Menu. (Part 1 of 3 in a trilogy of awesomeness and glory on the edge of disaster with amazing saves.)

In Over The Head Dinner Menu

Friday, February 25th, 2011


Pea, Parmesan, Egg Yolk Explosion

Braised Pork Belly

To make the "Explosion", we made a Bechamel, added Parmesan to it, a couple sheets of gelatin, then tempted it into an equal number (by volume) into egg yolks. We let it set using Spadina Street Styles; we made the risso and stuffed it as much as we could (adding a whole pea as we went). Double breading it, we fried the balls at 350F for 2.5 mins. The freaking thing worked amazing.

For the Pork Belly, it was brined, braised in a Spiced Apple Broth at 275F for 4 hours, pressed in the cooking liquid, portioned, then seared a la minute.

To present, we strained the cooking liquid, added Blis Bourbon Barrel Maple Syrup, seasoned, and served.

Difficult To Do Right Polenta Terrine

Wild Scallop, Basil, Blood Orange Confit, Truffle Balsamic

For the Terrine, I made a force meat with the scallop, egg white, 35% cream, truffle, and seasoning, then ran the mixture through a tamis. I wrapped it in cling film tightly into a cylinder and sous-vide at 141F for 12 minutes in a court bouillon. Chilled it completely. I then made a bed of basil and gently wrapped it around the scallop cylinder and again, chilled.

For the polenta mix, I used by weight a 4:1 mixture of Cornmeal to Corn Flour for texture. I used a base of 1:1 Chicken Stock and 2% Milk. I finished with Parm, and Truffles.

I put a layer down into the terrine mold, followed by the scallop cylinder centered on top, after I poured the polenta to fill in the rest. I then wrapped tightly, and chilled completely.


Sweet Lamb Sausage Ragout, Ricotta, Chili Sprouts

Wine Pairing: Villa Cerna Chianti Classico Reserva DOCG 2007 Italy

I followed my usual gnocchi recipe. The ragout was cool to make. I was inspired by the Del Posto Bolognese Recipe, so I made a brunoise of mirepoix, sweated it in a pan for 2 hours to an almost colourless paste. In a separate pan I slow-cooked the ground lamb to rid it of its fat and added it into the same pot as the mirepoix. Next I deglazed with a dry white wine, and stock. I added my own tomato paste and some 35% Cream. I simmered it for another 2 hours, then seasoned and smiled a lot.

The Ricotta was simple. Whole Milk, bring to a boil, add a pinch of Kosher Salt, Lemon Juice, let it split, strain, and let the curds drain in cheese cloth.

For the sprouts, I opened a few chillies a couple weeks earlier, placed the seeds in a container over some paper towels, and watered them daily and kept them in a warm dark spot. By the time the big night arrived, they sprouted lovely.


Frosted Plum Soup, Ginger-Ale Caviar, Crème Fraîche Snow

The soup itself Plum Confit, Coconut Milk, Vanilla, Organic Honey.

Creme Fraiche: 35% Cream, Lemon Juice, Kosher Salt - let it all rest at 16C for 24 Hours. Strain, Freeze what you need, and mircoplain to order.

Giner-Ale Caviar. lol. fun. Don't screw up! Bring 100ml Ginger Ale to a boil with some extra grated ginger and lemon zest. Strain into a blender and add 1 gr. Sodium Alginate. Mix very well. It will instantly thicken to a gel. You may need to eye ball this as scales suck at measuring 1 gram. Set aside and cool to room temperature. Next, mix 400gr. water with 28 gr. Calcium Chloride in a blender - mix well. Set aside.

To finish the caviar, use a syringe you got through ....a friend... and suck in some ginger-ale gel. Next, over the calcium chloride solution, squeeze the syringe to make drops of gel into it. Be consistent. Wait 1.5 minutes for the balls to set, and, using a small strainer, scoop out the balls. Right away rinse in water, then store them in ginger ale steeped with fresh ginger, lemon, honey.

Note- Taste the caviar - if its bitter, there is too much Calcium Chloride and you should add more water.

Brined Lobster Under Pressure

Spinach, Pine Nuts, Sultana Raisins, Pressed Cauliflower

Oyster Emulsion, Atomized Rosemary

Wine Pairing: Domaine Barmes-Buecher "Herrenweg de Turckheim" Riesling 2008 - Alsace, France

For the Lobster - Initial Brine: 1 lt water, 100gr. Sugar, 100gr. Kosher Salt, aromatics, rosemary, thyme, bay leaf, coriander. Brined the whole tail, vein removed from the bottom, and scored on the belly side for 5 minutes, rinsed out and patted dry.

Using transglutiminase (Meat Glue!) I "YingYanged"two tails together with their belly's touching, smeared them in clarified brown butter, and wrapped them in cling film to form a compressed cylinder. I sous-vide them @ 160f for 14 minutes to order.

Cauliflower Press was a simple pave.

The oyster emulsion was cool. I used the extra cream from the cauliflower press to cut it with soy milk as a base here. I dissolved lecithin into hot water and added it into the mix, finally at the last minute I shucked oysters and added them right before blending and straining the mix.

Atomized Rosemary. Take your average atomizer (from the dollar store), blow torch rosemary, add it to the atomizer, pump in air. As someone presents the lobster dish, you spray the room with the atomizer to give a great smell as people dance in jubilation.

Interesting Cheese Selection

Mimolette, Ash-Rind Goat, Something Borrowed-Something Bleu

Wine Pairing: Featherstone Estate Winery Select Late Harvest Cabernet Franc VQA 2008 - Ontario

The something borrowed was organic honey comb!

To present, Barry (CWC) Mooney, made a port and black berry "Thin Film" using Sodium Alginate solution to thicken the gel, and a Calcium Lactate mix to set it. The interesting thing here is that Barry had to use the atomizer to spray the Calcium solution onto the gel to make it work. So sooo cool.

EVOO Almond-Citrus Cake

Apricot Preserves, Moscato d’Asti Espuma

Cinnamon Fizz

Almond Cake - Basically a great cake made with Olive Oil.

Apricot Preserves - Make a Jam, Add Thyme

Moscato d'Asti Espuma - Bring 375ml Moscato to a boil, add 4 sheets bloomed gelatin. Strain into a 500ml ISI bottle, put in 2 CO2 charges, shake well for both, and chill completely before using. To use, shake well again, invert the ISI and discharge.

Cinnamon Fizz - 1/2 Cup Sugar, 1/2 Cup Water, Cinnamon Stick, 1 Chili, 1/4 tsp. Baking Soda, 1/2 Cup Light Corn Syrup, 20 gram Citric Acid. Bring everything but the citric acid to a boil and cook to 265f using a candy therm. Add the citric acid and cook to 300f. Pour onto parchment and let set solid. To finish, break off a chunk, put in a coffee grinder with a pinch of sugar, baking soda, and cinnamon and grind to a powder. Serve right away.

Jerek Bowman

Barry Mooney

Sara Tinteri

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