Sunday, December 21, 2008

Zambian Meal

We have a rock star dish washer straight 0ut of Zambia. Today she decided to cook us a
traditional Zambian meal for lunch. She is usually picky with the food she eats, but when she cooks she eats everything!
White Polenta cake with peanut creamed spinach, spicy chili braised beef top sirloin and a okra and green onion sauce. What a pleasant surprise!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Tiss the season to be noggy!

The time for nog has arrived. I started mine a month and a half ago. As it "rests" it mellows out a bit and developes nice flavor. The recipe.....
Total: 10 mins, plus 3 weeks for aging
Active: 10 mins
Makes: About 1 gallon
By Jonathan Hunt
At an expat holiday party in Shanghai in the 1920s, my grandfather tasted the finest eggnog he had ever had. It took him seven years to wheedle the recipe out of the host. Once he got it, he gave an annual party on the Sunday evening following Thanksgiving to make the nog.
Note: Unlike most eggnog recipes, this one calls for aging the eggnog for at least 3 weeks prior to consumption (or up to a year, says contributor Jonathan Hunt), which allows the flavors to meld. At Tulips and Maple, I aged the eggnog in the refrigerator in a clean 1-gallon jug, and it worked just fine.
What to buy: The eggnog makes a great gift if you decide to bottle it. You can even get some customized labels to impress your friends.
Game plan: It’s good to give the eggnog a full 3 weeks of aging, but you can drink it right away; however, the flavor will be less rounded.
For the eggnog:
12 large eggs
2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup heavy cream
1 quart (4 cups) whole milk
1 liter (about 4 cups) bourbon, such as makers mark
1/2 cup Myers’s dark rum
1/2 to 1 cup good Cognac or other brandy
Pinch kosher salt
1 whole nutmeg
To serve (optional):
10 egg whites
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
For the eggnog:
Separate egg yolks and whites. Combine yolks and sugar in a large mixing bowl and whisk until well blended and creamy.
Add cream, milk, bourbon, rum, Cognac (use the good stuff), and salt, then stir.
Bottle it right away and refrigerate it until it’s ready. (An old liquor bottle works great, as do 22-ounce bail-top bottles, available in brewing supply stores. My grandfather keeps the eggnog in the garage for 3 weeks, stirring occasionally, then bottles it—but aging in the garage is not recommended because the temperature can fluctuate.)
It’s traditional to wrap the bottle in aluminum foil, shiny side out, together with a fresh nut of nutmeg tucked into the foil for grating later. Keep refrigerated for at least 3 weeks, or up to a year if you can.
To serve (optional):
I serve aged eggnog on the rocks with some freshly grated nutmeg on top. If you want to serve the eggnog in the traditional way, pour it into a punch bowl. In separate bowls, whip 10 egg whites and 1 1/2 cups heavy cream to soft peaks and fold them into the eggnog. Serve in punch cups, garnished with freshly grated nutmeg.
(Recipe from

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A little bit of Jicama

Its nice sometimes to take a break from the winters coming weather and reflect on summers flavors. Latin American harmonized with north American products. MMM

Smoked Ontario trout on jicama key lime slaw with turtle beans, Bruce avocados, coriander and taro root.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Goose Confit

Okay, lets start this blog off with a nice ole classic mouth watering leg of goose.

To start with source out your free range goose and get them home to your fridge! You will also need a good pail of duck or goose fat rendered.(ask your butcher or farmer) Clean any feather remains etc.. Next you need to cure your goose. You have quite a bit of flexibility here. The only thing you really need is

SALT. I like to add ground juniper berries, nutmeg and fresh thyme. Cover the legs with the cure and let sit over night. The next day, rinse the cure off and pat dry with a clean towel. Gently warm you fat in a nice Dutch oven or heavy bottomed pot. Add your goose legs and slowly heat up the fat till the occasional bubble comes up here and there. No lid is needed. Maintain this temp (around 170-190f) till fully cooked. Around 6-8 hours. Using clean tongs or slotted spoon, remove your goose to a clean glass bowl. Let fat sit for 10 minutes and then start removing the fat with a clean ladle and pour over the legs till covered. Be careful not to remove the jelly at the bottom of the pot. Separate the remaining fat and jelly. Save the jelly for a sauce, and reserve fat for next batch. Place you legs in the fridge. When the fat cools and congeals completely (2-3 hours) Wrap tightly and use when ever you want. I like mine after it sits for about 2 weeks. To remove your legs, microwave or bain marie the bowl till fat renders and take your leg, leave the remaining for another time and cool again. Make sure to use clean utensils every time you dig into the confit. Fire it in a hot oven to get the skin crispy and eat!!! Reduce jelly in pan, when its almost completly reduced add a big knob of butter and a pinch of black pepper.