Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Garde Manger Work...

August 2016, represented the "official" start to my preparation of the CMC Exam...  Its a goal I have been working toward for the last 20 years...

August; first, second and third was a training session designed to develop the skills needed to successfully execute the exam, we started with GM, also known as Buffet Platter.

For the session candidates were asked to

Monday Day  1
Start Time: 2:30 PM End Time: 5:00 PM Duration: 2.5 H
Competency: Buffet Candidate will travel with prepared food.  At the site, candidate will. Slice, Glaze.  Items will be critiqued by the Jury
Candidates will bring the following:
1 Prepared shellfish item (+) 1 Accompaniment Appropriate Consommé to glaze each
1 Prepared pork/foie gras Item (+) 1 Accompaniment 1 light style sauce (lean)
1 Prepared poultry item (+) 1 Accompaniment 1 Rich style (heavy)
1 Prepared fin fish piece (+) 1 Accompaniment
*Each Piece should be in a different style; Force meat, mousseline, solid piece or head cheese
*Candidates will have 2.5 hours to slice and glaze 12 portions of each of their pieces,  with sauce and accompanyment for taste and critique.  Each Piece needs to be in a different style from the others.  

Poached Halibut Loin,
chive and leek mousseline

Saffron & Mussel Mousse
potato salad, pickled red onion

Lemon Yogurt

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Long time no post.... 

Back to it, regular posting and information sharing. its been a busy year, adjusting to a new state, Palm Beach County Florida is now where I call home... A new Job, an Especially exclusive club in Southern Florida... and since my last post an entirely evolved outlook on life.  My goal... weekly posts.  I want this blog to serve as a sharing of ideas and a look at my life through evolution.  I have a  few story lines in mind and hope they can provide you something useful.  My current projects include...

CMC Preparation
Building Legit Concepts, LLC
Being Happy in all areas of my life

Stay tuned and tell a friend, ask a question, leave a comment... Lets have an amazing existence.


Mise en Place, Determines our trajectory toward success!!!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

The Biltmore Display

The Biltmore Display

For me the "Biltmore" display is one of the coolest projects I get the opportunity to produce.  As an Executive Sous Chef, my duties often keep me far from the stove top and more in the management of my teams, outlets and personalities.  The Biltmore, when the need arises, gives me an opportunity to cook, however, and whatever I am in the mood for (including some requests as necessary) and I usually get a little over a day to do them.  Often the display is comprised of 8-15 tapas style hors d'oeuvres, ranging from, pate, or sausage to vegetarian and sphereification.  Truly, the sky is the limit.

Adding touches shortly before the start of the reception, often, we garnish at this point or finish with olive oil.... 

The whole thing starts like this.....

Fresh Garden Tomato (really) with Homemade Burrata Cheese

House Smoked Pork Belly, Braised and Glazed with a Sesame-Apricot and Tomato Jam

Fresh Beef Sausage with Mustard and Lentil Salad

Celery Soda

Roasted Peach & Caramelized Pistachios

House Smoked Salmon, Pumpernickel Soil and Egg

"Blackened" Watermelon, Manchego and Olive Oil 

Foie Gras Mousse, Duck Gelee & Croutons

I am looking forward to what the next season will bring.    Until then happy spring.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Carvings, carvings, carvings....

I suspect its a normal fact of life as a chef in a private club, that things need to change.  No two events can be the same, no two buffets can come even close to being the same, so when faced with trying to come up with a different item to have carved on the buffet, life gets challenging.  Everybody loves tenderloin, tenderloin is pricey and even though everybody loves it, they certainly do not want it at every buffet...  Well some people do, but things need to stay fresh, we have carved the pork loin, stuffed pork loin....  Ribs, beef rib, turkey, strip loin, salmon en route, beef wellington and of course ham, to name a few.  Recently we had an epiphany... Calzone!, sausage, broccoli rabe loads of cheese and goodness.  Oh Yes it was a hit.

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Zatar Crusted Lamb Loin

Lamb loin, tenderloin and trim, deconstructed, cleaned.  Recombined with activa, salt, pepper, zatar, vegetable ash then finally poached in rendered lamb fat.

Clean and julienne the pieces

Coat lightly with pan spray
Put the pieces back together and roll tightly

Tie for stability

Place on a rack for easy removal from the hot fat
and to prevent the "roast from sitting on the bottom.
Poach at 135 F until an internal temperature of 135 is reached in the loin.
Rest for a moment and carve.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Grgich Wine Maker Dinner

Sole Veronique, a modern view.
sous vide whole dover sole @47C 30 min, Escargot boucher with almond porcini butter,
carbonated grapes

Duck breast, thigh pave, trumpet royal,
grains, black garlic and duck jus

Prime Beef Strip
Caraway roasted heirloom carrots, 30 second brioche, pea tendrils, chive custard stuffed patty pan squash

Monday, April 07, 2014

A trip down MMemory Lane

2001 was an interesting year for me, It was the year I graduated the Associates program at the Culinary Institute of America,  my first time to France and the first Michelin starred restaurant I ever set foot in.  The Moulin de Mougins (MM) is a restaurant set in the town of Mougins, a small town about 6 Km from Cannes where the world renowned film festival takes place each year.  The MM was once a 3 star restaurant owned and operated by famed chef Roger Verge.  Verge owes his fame to "Ma Cuisine de Soliel" or the cuisine of the sun.  Since my time there ownership has changed hands and it seems as though it is back on track to the 3 macrons so coveted by the food world under its new chef Sebsastien Chambru.
 My time as a stagiere was less than 8 weeks, however it changed my life forever.  I have the fondest memories of my insecurity and nerves making me want to vomit as I walked to the restaurant for the first time, only to be eased by the familiar camaraderie of cooks.  Of course I was tormented, but I had a significant advantage I was by far the tallest of anyone there and weighed at least 100 pound more than the largest, I was referred to as Le Geant (please excuse the lack of accents, I cannot seem to find them on the publish page).  I arrived to ducks still warm from being plucked and cases upon cases of fresh produce, quality like I had never scene.  My life changed from that moment on.  I woke up today thinking about my time there and figured I would share pictures of the food and from the restaurant.

Foie Gras Terrine with quatre epice

Mushroom duxelle stuffed Zucchini Blossoms

Foie Gras and Black Truffle Terrine

Pan seared Foie Gras with Summer Peaches

Eggplant caviar with eggplant chips and roasted tomato sauce
Artichoke en Barigoule