Bruschetta

Cut a few slices of your favorite loaf of bread, brush liberally with extra virgin olive oil, either grill or toast in the oven or broiler, and rub with a clove of garlic to create a sensational platform for these savory snacks.

Broccoli Rabe with Lemon Ricotta

 

Components

  • Ricotta Cheese

  • Lemon Ricotta

  • Broccoli Rabe

Ricotta Cheese

Yield: 1 quart

Ingredients

  • 1 gallon whole milk

  • 2 Tbs kosher salt

  • 1 cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed

 

Method

Bring the milk and salt up to a simmer over medium heat, occasionally stirring to prevent scorching. Once the milk reaches 185 degrees Fahrenheit, turn off the heat and add the lemon juice. Gently mix to combine and let the curds separate from the whey for 30 minutes. Line a colander or chinois with cheese cloth. Use a slotted spoon or spider to extract the curds from the pot and place in the strainer. Allow the cheese to drain for at least 20 minutes, or longer if a drier result is desired.

Lemon Ricotta

Yield: 1 cup

Ingredients

  • 1 cup ricotta cheese (recipe above)

  • 1 whole lemon

Method

Place ricotta in a small bowl. Use a Microplane to zest the lemon into the cheese. Slice and juice the lemon through a strainer into the bowl. Whisk the ricotta to combine thoroughly and taste for salt.

 

Broccoli Rabe

Method

Fill a large pot with 1 gallon of water and 1 cup of salt. Bring the water to a rapid boil over high heat and drop the broccoli rabe in the pot. Once tender and bright green remove the broccoli rabe and submerge in an ice water bath to stop the cooking process. When completely cool drain the broccoli rabe on a paper towel.

Plating

Spread lemon ricotta on the grilled bread and top with one broccoli rabe stalk. Zest a touch more lemon to finish the dish.

Romescu Sauce and Ricotta

Components

  • Romescu Sauce

  • Ricotta Cheese

 

Romescu Sauce

Yield: 1 pint

Ingredients

  • 4 Red bell peppers

  • 1 pint extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 cup Marcona almonds

  • 1 lemon, juiced

  • Kosher salt

  • Black pepper

 

Method

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Lightly coat the peppers with ½ cup of the olive oil and season with salt. Char all sides of the pepper evenly and thoroughly over an open flame, grill, or under a broiler. Place the charred peppers in a bowl and wrap tightly with plastic wrap to seal and allow the steam to loosen the skins. Toast the almonds in the oven until deep golden brown. Reserve a couple nice almonds for garnish. Peel the peppers and blend all but one slice in the food processor with the toasted almonds, 2 tablespoons of salt, and a touch of fresh cracked black pepper until homogenous. Add the lemon juice and stream in the remaining olive oil while blending. Taste the sauce for seasoning. Use a ring punch to cut a couple small circles out of the reserved red pepper.

 

Plating

Spread the Romescu sauce on grilled bread and top with a quenelle of fresh ricotta cheese. Finish the bruschetta with the pepper rounds, each adorned with a Marcona almond.

 

Mozzarella di Buffalo on Sautéed Polenta

Components

  • Buffalo Mozzarella

  • Polenta

 

Polenta

Yield: 1 pint

Ingredients

  • ½ cup polenta

  • 2 cups chicken stock

  • 1 cup whole milk

  • Kosher salt

  • ¼ cup Extra virgin olive oil

 

Method

Bring the chicken stock to a boil in a pot with ¼ cup of kosher salt. Whisk in the polenta and continue stirring over medium/medium- high heat for about 20 minutes until the texture of the polenta is creamy and smooth. Add the milk and whisk to combine off the heat. Pour the polenta onto a shallow pan or baking dish and allow to cool and set in the refrigerator. Once cool and firm, use a ring cutter to cut rounds out of the polenta. Heat extra virgin olive oil in a non-stick pan and sauté both sides until golden brown. Remove from the pan and let drain on paper towels.

Plating

Arrange polenta rounds on grilled bread and top with sliced buffalo mozzarella. The residual heat from the bread and polenta should ever so slightly warm the mozzarella, to create an utterly unctuous textural experience. Squeeze a drop or two of lemon juice for a bright finish.

Smoked Salmon on Roasted Garlic Crème Fraiche

Components

  • Smoked Salmon

  • Roasted garlic crème fraiche

 

Smoked Salmon

Yield: 4 ounces

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbs star anise

  • 1 Tbs clove

  • 1 Tbs cinnamon

  • 1 cup Kosher salt

  • ½ cup Sugar

  • Zest from 1 orange, lemon, and lime

  • 4 oz portion of Salmon, skin on

  • 2 # applewood chips

 

Method

Toast the spices in a sauté pan or in the oven until the aromas fill the air. Grind the spices in a spice grinder or blender, then combine thoroughly in a bowl with the salt, sugar, and citrus zest. Cover the salmon portion entirely in the cure mixture and allow to cure for 24 hours. Rinse the salmon, pat dry with paper towels, and allow the portion to fully dry in refrigeration for about 6 hours to develop a pellicle that will help the smoke adhere and aromatize the salmon.

Soak the applewood chips in water for 20 minutes. Place in a hotel pan and put over high heat until smoking begins. Top with a perforated pan, brushed with oil, and add in salmon portion. Lower the heat to maintain smoking but prevent overcooking. Top the pan with a lid and turn off the heat. Allow the salmon to smoke for 15-20 minutes until it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit. Place salmon in refrigeration until ready to slice.

Roasted Garlic Crème Fraiche

Yield: 1 cup

Ingredients

  • 2 heads garlic, cloves separated, but not peeled

  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 sprig thyme

  • Kosher salt

  • ¾ cup crème fraiche

 

Method

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Toss the cloves of garlic with the olive oil and season liberally with salt. Add to a baking pan or hotel pan with bay leaves and thyme and cover with foil. Roast in the oven until the garlic cloves are tender and aromatic, about 25 minutes. Use a paring knife to remove the garlic cloves and puree in a blender. Transfer the garlic puree to a mixing bowl and fold in the crème fraiche.

 

Plating

Spread the garlic crème fraiche over the surface of the grilled bread. Use a sharp knife to thinly slice portions from the smoked salmon. Fan the salmon slices atop the puree and enjoy.

 

Duck Confit and Mascarpone Corn Puree

Components

  • Duck legs confit

  • Mascarpone Corn Puree

 

Duck Confit

Yield: 2 cups

Ingredients

  • 2 duck legs

  • 2 Tbs juniper

  • 2 Tbs clove

  • 2 Tbs black peppercorns

  • 2 cups kosher salt

  • 1 cup sugar

  • ½ gallon duck fat

 

Method

Toast spices and blend in a spice grinder. Mix in a mixing bowl with the salt and sugar. Completely surround the duck legs in the cure mix and allow to cure for 8 hours or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Once cured, rinse the duck legs and place in a roasting pan with sides deep enough to hold enough duck fat to submerge the legs. Cover the legs with the duck fat, place a sheet of parchment over the legs to maintain moisture during cooking, and cover with foil. Cook the duck in the oven until tender, approximately 4-8 hours. Remove from the fat and pick the meat from the bones while warm.

Mascarpone Corn Puree

Yield: 2 cups

Ingredients

  • 2 ears of corn, husk removed

  • 2 sprigs thyme

  • 1 head garlic, split horizontally

  • 2 Tbs butter, cold and cubed

  • Kosher salt

  • 1 cup mascarpone cheese

 

Method

Submerge the corn, thyme, and garlic in just enough water to cover. Add 1/8 cup of salt and bring to a simmer. Cover the corn with a parchment paper cartouche for even cooking and simmer for about 25 minutes until fully cooked. Remove the kernels from the cobs and blend with just enough of the cooking liquid to create a puree. Add the butter while blending to create an emulsion. Taste for seasoning. Fold the puree into the mascarpone in a mixing bowl.

 

Plating

Heat the duck confit with some corn stock and duck fat until warm throughout. Spread corn mascarpone over the grilled bread and top with the duck confit.

 

Beef Tartare with Truffle Dressing

Components

  • Beef

  • Truffle Dressing

 

Truffle Dressing

Yield: 1 cup

Ingredients

  • ½ cup veal stock, reduced by half

  • ½ cup Sherry vinegar, reduced by half

  • 1 Tbs Dijon mustard

  • ½ cup white truffle oil

  • ¼ cup canola oil

  • 4 grams fresh or canned black truffle, minced

  • Kosher salt

  • Black Pepper

 

Method

Combine veal, sherry, Dijon, 1 Tbs salt, and a couple twists of fresh cracked black pepper in a blender and blend until smooth. While blending, stream in truffle and canola oil to emulsify. Whisk the chopped truffle in a mixing bowl to combine.

Plating

Dice a 2- ounce portion of sirloin into small dice. Season with salt and pepper in a small mixing bowl. Mix in just enough truffle dressing to bind the meat and create the desired flavor and texture. Form a quenelle with the meat and place atop a slice of grilled bread.

 

Sautéed Foie Gras and Porcini

Components

  • Foie gras

  • Porcini Mushrooms (Sautéed crowns and pureed stems)

 

Porcini Puree and sautéed crowns

Yield: 2 portions

Ingredients

  • 4 each Porcini mushrooms

  • 1 shallot, brunoised

  • 2 cloves garlic, unpeeled and crushed

  • ½ cup Extra virgin olive oil

  • 2oz butter

  • 1 sprig thyme

  • Salt

  • Black Pepper

 

Method

Separate caps from stems of porcinis. Sweat shallot in half of the olive oil in a sauté pan with the garlic cloves and a pinch of salt and pepper. Add the porcini stems and sear all sides golden brown. Lower the heat, add 1 oz of the butter, and baste the stems until tender. Blend the stems with just enough butter to puree.

Heat the remaining olive oil in a sauté pan, add the thyme, and sear both sides of the porcini caps golden brown. Finish by basting with the remaining 1oz of butter. Drain on paper towels.

 

Sautéed foie gras

Yield: 2 2oz portions

Ingredients

  • 2 2oz portions of foie gras

  • Kosher salt

  • 1 tsp juniper(ground)

 

Method

Score the presentation side of the foie gras. Season with salt and juniper. In a very hot pan, begin to sear the scored side of the foie gras. Tilt the pan to collect the fat on one side. Once golden brown, baste the other side of the foie gras until the scored side appears deep brown in color. Flip the foie gras over and baste until just cooked through. Use your index finger to test for doneness. The foie gras should bounce back when pressed. Drain on a paper towel.

 

Plating

Spread the puree over grilled bread and top with the seared foie gras. Finish with the sautéed porcini cap.