Beef and Mangalitsa togarashi dogs

It's gonna be a bbq/pool party at my house for memorial day. Lots of people and lots of food. I threw together some togarashi spiked hot dogs using some well marbled chuck, a mangalitsa picinc ham, and a bunch of mangalitsa fat. At least I'll be able to say I know exactly what's in my dogs. If you haven't made them before here is a quick how to. Grind the fat first,

grind the meat

emulsify in 3 steps, start with meat, ice and seasonings, process until 40F, add the fat and process until 45f, add the nonfat milk powder and process until 58F. emulsified!

supposed to use sheep casings for dogs but all we had was hog casings so looks like we are have extra large dogs for tomorrow. They are on paper towels forming a pelicle so they will smoke nicely tomorrow and be finished on the grill. I might take a little kohlrabi kimchi we have working to really take it up a notch.

have a safe memorial day.


Hammock Hollows Squash

We've been getting some great squash from Charlie at Hammock Hollows. His farm is about an hour from the restaurant and every week we get a shipment of whatever he has. Lately it's been a lot of dragon tongue beans, yellow romanos, squash, mini white cucumbers, about 5 varieties of potato, and lots of sweet basil. No doubt he has some of the best stuff around. His lettuces are epic but the season has ended here. Tomatoes are right around the corner here and we're looking forward to receiving his 10 or so varieties as well.
Tonight we are highlighting his squash. Tiger eyes, giant patty pans, and rounds.

We hit them on the mandolin, salted them, rinsed, patted dry, and gave them a bath in heavy creamy and egg white. Then shingled them, baked in a water bath while being pressed with cast iron pans. After they came out we put it in the blast chiller with a bucket of water on top of them to press it as the squash was cooling. Pressing is key, there is so much water in the squash if you don't get it out then the terrine will never hold.

After removing from the pan we portion it then roast. Tonight we served it on our tasting menu with wild king salmon, some local swiss chard, then Cody made a puree of sweet basil that we added to some brown butter a la minute and finish with lemon. With great ingredients there is not much else you need to put on the plate.


On the tasting Menu Tonight

Fourth Course on our tasting tonight, wagyu strip, silky potatoes, baby beets, beet greens, purplette onion, pea tendril tops, micro red oak, and a "roaring 40's" blanket.

The "roaring 40's" blanket was done with 1.25% methocel A4-C. Nice plating by Baxter.


Chef Gala

Last night was the Epcot Chef Gala to benefit The United Way. We always push the envelope on this event and this year was no different. We started with some A1+ ahi from Koko at Honolulu Fish Co., this stuff is amazing.

Here is our set up.

Another shot of the set up, used the oval faux slate plates from JB Prince.

Mise en place is key for an event like this, and beer is on our mise en place list. We had a nice sampling of Bruery Saison de Lente, Orchard White, and the straight up Saison Farmahouse Ale. We serve these to our friends that show up and we of course sample as well. It also didn't hurt to be next to the Raglan Road booth that was stocked with kegs of guiness. We made a deal with them at the beginning of the night, they needed a wine key, we needed regular deliveries of delicious guiness, deal of the century.

We broke out the Cook Tek induction burner for the event. There is not a better induction system out there.

Our delis were full of some great herbs that Michele from Chef's Garden hooked us up with. Red ribbon sorrel, micro chickweed, and micro parsley all went on the dish.

Here is our nicoise fluid gel, came out nice. Basically made an olive stock, pureed the olives into it, strain it a million times to get the pulp out, then standard fluid gel ratios.

Shaved red onion and fennel were blanched in a salt, sugar, H2O solution and then dehydrated.

I wanted an element of sauteed garlic and spinach, instead of going traditional we made them into noodles. Shock, blanch, shock spinach, squeeze, puree with a little H2O, strain. Cook garlic in milk 3 times, rinse, puree. Agar 400g water, bring to a boil and add 1000g spinach liquid and 125g of garlic puree. Pump into tubing. It's one way to turn $20 worth of spinach into enough for 1000pp, I can't imagine how much we would have needed if we went with the traditional method. We ran into an issue with getting them out since we did 25ft section of tubing, I had run them all over to the bakeshop and use Laurant's air compressor to get them out. LB saved the day.

Here is the finished dish with all 13 components
espelette polenta, tuna, nicoise fluid gel, idiazabal, garlic spinach noodle, dehydrated onion, dehydrated fennel, fennel pollen, fleur de sel, j. leblanc olive oil, micro parsley, micro chickweed, and red ribbon sorrel. I was doing it in my head before the event and thought it was only 11 but turned out to be 13 when we started plating. A lot for 3 people to do and serve to 1000pp but we rocked it out, our somm Doug even got in the mix with some tweezer work for garnishing. Good job Brian and Brittany, we rocked it out, never fell behind or ran out of anything. Good job.