WINTER two thousand and fifteen
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There’s No Taste Like Home for the Holidays by Cheryl Baehr
The ghosts of Christmases past are never far away when something’s cooking on the stove.
y mom’s recipe for “Simmer Simmer” represents just about everything that was wrong with cooking in 1980s America. Conventional hamburger meat (back then the term “pasture-raised” was thought to be a misspelling of “pasteurized”) is pressed into an eight-inch square Corning Ware dish. Oxidized black pepper and dehydrated onions are sprinkled on top, and golfball-sized dollops of Cheez-Whiz are plopped around the dish at inch-wide intervals. The entire concoction is covered in cream of mushroom soup, blanketed with frozen-tater tots and baked at 350 degrees for 50 minutes. When I was a kid, it seemed like an eternity. My mom would make “Simmer Simmer” several times throughout the winter, but it was our family’s special request during the holiday season. To this day, I look forward to this molten hot mess, even though it tastes like a layer dip of White Castle’s value menu. It may represent everything I rail against in my professional life as a food critic — industrialized agriculture, processed food, “frozen potato” as vegetable — yet every year, I continue to dig in without apology.
To those having their first bite today, “Simmer Simmer” would probably taste like a bland cheeseburger casserole. To me, it has notes of a lazy winter afternoon, curled up in a Garfield sleeping bag in front of our fake Christmas tree. It’s the smell of our fauxmetallic garland getting seared on the tree’s light bulbs and the Elmer’s glue on the cotton balls that made up our Santa Claus Christmas countdown calendar. That’s the nostalgic power of food: it can melt your ideals into a pool of radioactive cheese product. Tastemakers are not immune to the siren song of edible nostalgia – and that’s never more true than during the holiday season. And so for this special issue, we asked some of St. Louis’ most prominent food and beverage professionals to share with us a dish that brings them back to a holiday memory. Some of the recipes span generations. Others are more recent traditions, while a few are new concoctions inspired by memories of holidays past. Our roster of guest contributors list ingredients, measurements and methods, but the most important component is something far more ephemeral – the story behind the recipe, which transports them to a time and a place far from their professional kitchens. From Rick Lewis’ green been casserole to Lauren Loomis’ vegan gravy, these are recipes that remind these chefs and bartenders of home. Why not try them in yours?
banana bread daiquiri
BARTENDER MATTHEW KOCH SANCTUARIA
big part of the holidays for my family involved highly complicated travel arrangements to ensure the largest possible collection of members got to eat ourselves into oblivion. Every holiday meal had two separate meal times involved. You were immediately greeted with a buffet of breads, cured meats and cheese. It was all amazing, but the thing that always grabbed my attention was the banana bread. It was the only thing that contained banana flavor (other than bananas themselves) that I could get behind.
• 2 oz. banana chip-infused Plantation original dark rum • 1 oz. fresh lime juice • 3/4 oz. of brown sugar syrup • 3 dashes Fee Brother’s black walnut bitters
* Feel free to make a giant batch of this ahead of time. It will hold its flavor profile if heated as well.
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Combine all ingredients in a shaking tin. Shake vigorously for 10 seconds. Double-strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with a banana chip.
banana chip rum Add a generous amount of banana chips in a neutral material container, such as a deli container or a glass jar. Pour an entire bottle of Plantation Dark Rum over the chips and let them steep for about 20 hours.
brown sugar syrup
Combine equal parts by weight of brown sugar and hot water. Stir until the brown sugar is completely dissolved. Strain through some cheesecloth into a glass bottle or jar. Allow the syrup to cool, then keep cold for up to 3 weeks.
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apple pie ice cream
OWNER TAMARA KEEFE NAUGHTY & NICE CREAMERY
his recipe was inspired by my love of making apple pies with my mom, grandma, and great grandma. When I was young, we’d constantly bicker over which apples were better for pies and how much cinnamon would be used, whether flour or tapioca helped the pie stay more firm, and how much sugar we should use. We always ended up using whatever apples came from my grandma’s tree; the tapioca, too much sugar and the bulk cinnamon we got at the grocery store. Of course, I always argued the best ones were the ones that ended up in my mouth! Same jokes, same conversation, year over. But it was sweet and we all looked forward to our time together. There was never a crumb left!
• 1 apple pie • 2 cups milk • 3 tsp. cornstarch • 1 1⁄4 cups heavy cream • 1⁄2 cup sugar • 1/4 cup brown sugar
• 3 tbsp. light corn syrup • 1 tbsp. Vietnamese cinnamon • 1⁄4 tsp. salt • 3 tbsp. cream cheese, softened
Start by crumbling the pie into 1-inch pieces, crust and all. Set aside in large bowl.
In a bowl, stir together 1⁄4 cup milk and the cornstarch; set slurry aside. In a 4-qt. saucepan, whisk together remaining milk and the cream, sugar, brown sugar, syrup, cinnamon and salt; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook for 4 minutes; stir in slurry. Return to a boil and cook, stirring, until thickened, about 2 minutes.
Place softened cream cheese in a bowl and pour in 1⁄4 cup hot milk mixture; whisk until smooth. Then whisk in remaining milk mixture. Pour mixture into a plastic bag; seal, and submerge in a bowl of ice water until chilled. Transfer to refrigerator and let rest for 24 hours.
Pour mixture into an ice cream maker; process according to manufacturer’s instructions.
Once complete, take your apple pie pieces and seed into your ice cream as you are putting it into your freezer container. Save some pieces for the top to garnish!
apple pie Follow your bliss and source your own apple pie (we make ours), but if you’re going to buy, I strongly recommend La Patisserie Chouquette. Simone Faure’s pies and crusts are to die for!
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CHEF JOEL CRESPO GUERRILLA STREET FOOD
n my experience, Filipino American holiday dinners mostly look like your average traditional spread, complete with turkey or ham, mashed potatoes, gravy and an array of casseroles. But there are always a few traditional Filipino dishes thrown into the mix – flourishes speckled throughout the staggering feast. In my family, everyone looked forward to my aunt’s fried lumpia, which is the Filipino version of a fried spring roll. My aunt won’t give me her recipe, but here is a recipe inspired by hers. It’s pretty straightforward but is a tasty addition to any holiday meal.
A ST. LOUIS CLASSIC SINCE 1902 EVERYTHING MADE IN-HOUSE
• 4 cloves garlic, minced • 1/2 cup yellow onions, chopped • 2 cup carrots, peeled and julienned • 1 cup green beans, French cut •1/2 cup celery, diced • 1 cup jicama, julienned • 2 cups cabbage, Napa or regular, thinly sliced
• 2 tbsp. vegetable oil • 2 lbs. ground pork • 1 tsp. salt • 1/2 tsp. black pepper • 1 tbsp. soy sauce • 1 can chicken broth • 50-75 frozen lumpia wrappers (available at Asian markets) • Vegetable oil for frying
In a skillet, sauté the garlic and onions in hot oil until the onions are translucent. Add ground pork, salt, pepper and soy sauce, and sauté until the beef is browned.
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Drain the excess oil from the pan, add chicken broth and bring to boil.
Add the carrots. Simmer for 5-10 minutes.
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Add the green beans, cabbage and celery and simmer for another five minutes. Be careful not to overcook the vegetables. You want them to still have a little crunch.
Remove pan from heat and add jicama. Then, put this vegetable mix in a metal colander or strainer to drain the excess liquid. Allow it to cool to room temperature.
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To assemble the lumpia, begin by separating the individual sheets of lumpia wrappers, being careful not to tear them. Keep them moist and pliable by putting them under a moist towel. Fill a small bowl with water for sealing.
Place one full tablespoon of your filling diagonally near one corner of the wrapper, leaving a 1 1/2 inch edge of space at both ends. Fold the side along the length of the filling over the filling, tuck in both ends, and roll tight. Moisten the other side of the wrapper with water to seal the edge.
Tejas Burger 1/2 lb. burger mixed w/roasted Jalapenos & bacon, topped w/ Cilantro, avocado, onions, fried Jalapeno & Queso Fresco sauce.
Next, put them in a sealable freezer storage bag, placing a sheet of plastic wrap between the layers. They can be stored in the freezer for up to 2 months.
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When it’s time to serve them, do not thaw out the lumpia before frying. Frying them frozen works best. Deep fry them at 350 degrees until golden brown, about 3-5 minutes on each side.
If you don’t have a deep fryer, then heat a skillet over medium heat, add vegetable oil to about one-inch depth, and heat for 5-10 minutes. Fry the egg rolls for 3-5 minutes on each side, or until all sides are golden brown.
Place in a colander lined with paper towels to drain the excess oil.
You can serve your fried lumpia with a dipping sauce, made of a mixture of 1 cup of cane (or white) sugar, vinegar, 4 minced garlic cloves, 1/2 teaspoon of soy sauce, 1/2 teaspoon of Patis (fish sauce), a teaspoon of ground pepper, and a 1/2 teaspoon of red chili flake.
Kitchen Sink A sample of the above 4 items: SBR, Jambalaya, Etouffee, Gumbo
Sauteed Shrimp & Andouille served over Cheesy grits w/a Tasso & Crab gravy
255 Union Blvd. St. Louis, MO 63108 314.454.1551 626 N. 6th St. At the corner of 6th & Lucas 314.241.5454
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PASTRY CHEF ANNE CROY PASTARIA
n the summer of my eleventh year, the local library held a hula hoop contest. For every minute the winner hooped, he or she was allowed that many tattered or torn library books. I had already secretly made my selections in hopes of winning the contest. We were rarely allowed to buy books, so I was determined to win. Twenty-one minutes later, I was the last hula girl standing. The rest is history. Within those books was Julia Child’s “Mastering the Art of French Cooking.” To a young girl from a conservative farm family in Oklahoma, the foreword alone set my head spinning. Not only was the glossary of terms foreign to me, I had few of the chef’s tools. Then I came upon a short paragraph that has stuck with me over time.
“Train yourself to use your hands and fingers; they are wonderful instruments. Train yourself also to handle hot foods; this will save time. Keep your knives sharp. Above all, have a good time.” And so I set forth on a journey that, in hindsight, was one of the best of my youth. I quickly learned that because we had access to my father’s family farm, we had most of Julia’s ingredients readily available to us, save wine and spirits, truffles and foie gras. At least my naive mind assumed we had no foie gras. My grandfather had a flock of geese that followed him around the family farm. When I got to the poultry chapter, namely the “Goose” section, I began scheming my Thanksgiving masterpiece. Fast forward to the holy event. Papa • 2 tart Winesap apples, cut in small chunks • 2/3 cup minced prunes • 1/4 cup Calvados • 12 tbsp. unsalted butter • 2 cups finely chopped onion • 1/2 cup minced shallot • 2 cups finely chopped
agreed to butcher two geese (reserving the liver) and dad slipped me a bottle of white wine and port for the preparations. I hadn’t a clue what I was doing, but followed Julia’s recipe implicitly. My dad played peacemaker as family anxiety over the absence of a turkey crept skyward. I could hear the doubtful chatter and feared disappointing everyone, so I began repeating to myself, “Above all, have a good time, above all have a good time...” In the end, the results were good, albeit imperfect. My mom declared the goose “greasy” and my older brothers demanded real StoveTop stuffing next year. When I explained that this is how a great French chef does it, my little brother leaned over to me affectionately and said, “Anne, this is Oklahoma.”
celery • 1 lb. pork sausage • 3 cups dry cubed cornbread • 3 cups dry cubed light wheat bread • 3 cups dry cubed French bread • 1 tbsp. fresh thyme
• 1 tbsp. fresh sage • 2 tsp. kosher salt • 1/2 tsp. black pepper • 1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley • 1 1/2 cups turkey stock • 12 eggs
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Place chopped apple and minced prunes in a bowl and toss with Calvados. Set aside for 30 minutes, tossing occasionally. In large skillet, melt butter and sauté onions, shallot and celery until just tender. Scoop into a large mixing bowl and set aside.
In the same skillet, lightly brown sausage and drain off most of the fat. Place sausage, along with the rest of the ingredients, in the bowl with veggies. Toss to combine. If you’re stuffing the turkey, this can be done now. If you’re cooking stuffing outside of bird, moisten mixture with enough stock and egg to coat but not drown. Place in buttered casserole dish and bake in water bath at 325 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until just golden. This is enough stuffing for a 20 lb. turkey or 12-14 portions. Good in all 50 states!
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PRIME STEAKS. LEGENDARY SERVICE. PRIME STEAK • PRIVATE DINING • EXCEPTIONAL MENU
Jax Cafe Famous Balsamic Vinegar Pretzel Brisket Sliders Ingredients:
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Extra-virgin olive oil 1 (5-pound) beef brisket Kosher salt 3 large onions, thinly sliced 3-4 cups chicken stock 1/4 pound slab bacon, cut into lardons 1 pound cremini mushrooms, stemmed and finely sliced 2 cups balsamic vinegar 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped 3 celery ribs, thinly sliced 1 fresh thyme bundle 4 bay leaves
Coat a large roasting pan with olive oil and bring to a high heat. Season the brisket generously with salt. Add the brisket to the pan and brown well on both sides. Remove the brisket from the pan and reserve. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lower the heat to medium, ditch the excess oil, and add the bacon to the pan with a little more oil. Cook the bacon, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is crispy and has let out a lot of fat. Add the onions and celery. Season with salt and cook until they are very soft and aromatic, 7 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Toss in the mushrooms and cook until they are soft and wilted. Add the balsamic vinegar and reduce it by half. Taste it - it will be very vinegary, but that’s ok, don’t worry. Season with salt, if needed. Lay the brisket on top of the veggie mix and add the chicken stock to the pan until it just covers the brisket. Add the bay leaves and thyme. Cover the pan with foil and roast in the oven. Roast for 1 hour, check the brisket and turn it over. Add more stock if the liquid level has reduced. Cover the pan again and return it to the oven for another 1-2 hours. Remove the foil and roast for 30 minutes more. Remove the roasting pan and let rest for 20 minutes.
Benton Park, MO 63118
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smoked salmon ball
CHEF DAVID SANDUSKY BEAST CRAFT BBQ
like comfort food. This recipe is cheesy, but it’s a family tradition. Maybe it’s not as cool as other’s recipes, but it’s money in my house. It is what it is.
• 2 lb. flaked, smoked salmon • 1 lb. cream cheese • 2 tbsp. lemon juice • 2 tbsp. grated onion • 1/2 tsp. sea salt • 1 cup chopped fresh parsley
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Mix all ingredients but parsley in a bowl. Form into a ball on a platter. Sprinkle and pat the chopped parsley liberally over the entire surface.
Refrigerate for eight hours. Serve with your favorite crackers.
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vegan mushroom gravy
CHEF LAUREN LOOMIS LULU’S LOCAL EATERY
rowing up, Thanksgiving was all about the gravy. I always thought it was so funny that the gravy was presented in a boat. Only the gravy, in all its glory, was to be served in a boat. I make a really good vegan/gluten free mushroom gravy, which rivals the richness and consistency of any meat-based version. It’s pretty good for you, too.
• 3 tbsp. olive oil • 5 peeled shallots, finely chopped • 1 lb. cremini mushrooms, sliced • 1 tbsp. fresh rosemary, finely chopped • 1/4 cup dry white wine • 1 1/3 cup water • 2/3 cup tamari (to make it gluten-free) • 4 cloves garlic, minced • 1 tsp. grated fresh ginger • 2 tbsp. cornstarch • 1/3 cup plain, unsweetened almond milk • 2 tbsp. fresh chives, finely chopped
Whisk together the water, tamari, garlic and ginger. Set aside
Whisk together the cornstarch and almond milk. Set aside
In a saucepan, sauté shallots in olive oil until lightly browned. Add mushrooms and rosemary and sauté 4-5 minutes or until liquid is released and the mushrooms turn brown. Add the tamari mixture and the white wine and let simmer for 2-3 minutes or until slightly reduced.
Add the cornstarch mixture and stir until thickened. Stir in the chives (you can save some chives and put them on top for garnish). Remove from heat and serve.
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green bean casserole
CHEF RICK LEWIS SOUTHERN
reen bean casserole is a huge one at our holiday get-togethers. It was a childhood favorite of mine, and I make it all of the time now at my restaurants. This is the way we do it from scratch.
• 2 pints cream • 1 bay leaf • 1 sprig of thyme • 1 garlic clove • 10 oz. assorted mushrooms (oysters, shiitakes, cremini) • 1 pound fresh green beans • 3 cups chicken broth •1/2 tsp. paprika • 1/4 tsp. black pepper • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder • 2 cups all purpose flour • 1 medium onion, sliced thinly with a mandolin • Asiago cheese
Take two pints of cream and reduce by a third with bay leaf, thyme sprig, garlic clove, and mushrooms.
After the liquid is reduced and the mushrooms are cooked, season with salt and pepper. Remove the bay leaf and thyme and purée in a blender till smooth. Set aside.
Trim one pound of fresh green beans down to bite-size pieces and blanch in salted chicken broth till tender, then shock in ice water. Set aside.
Make seasoned flour with paprika, black pepper, garlic powder, and flour. Then heat oil in a Dutch oven to 350. Dredge sliced onions in the flour and fry until crispy and golden brown. Season with salt.
Now you’re ready to assemble the casserole. Toss blanched green beans with your mushroom cream soup and salt and pepper. Place the green bean bean mixture in a casserole dish.
Grate asiago cheese all over the top and sprinkle the fried onions on top of that. Bake at 350 until hot, bubbly, and golden brown.
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RFT Awards: #1 Irish/Scottish/English 2006 • 2007 • 2009 • 2010 • 2011 • 2012 • 2013 • 2014 • 2015
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maple sugar pie
CHEF SCOTT DAVIS THREE FLAGS TAVERN
y favorite part of holidays growing up was always visiting with family. Every house we went to would have a platter of treats waiting when we would arrive, and I knew exactly what to expect at each house. There were a couple of treats you could count on finding every one of these homes and probably most homes in Canada this time of year: butter tarts and/or maple sugar pies. Butter tarts are buttery, obviously, and a studded with raisins or nuts. Maple sugar pies are a little firmer and are a fair bit sweeter than their buttery cousin. This pie recipe combines the two but is more like the maple pie. If there’s one thing I won’t go without this time of year, it’s a tin of shortbread and this pie. I use a butter crust and make a nine-inch pie but you can use any crust you like and even do tart size pies for easy snacking. A drizzle of creme fraiche is the perfect accompaniment.
• 1 1/4 cup flour • 1/4 tsp. salt • 10 tbsp. unsalted butter, cubed • 3 tbsp. water
filling • 1/4 cup raisins or currants (optional) • 2 eggs • 1/4 tsp. vanilla • 1 tbsp. flour • 1/2 cup heavy cream • 1 cup maple syrup, medium or medium dark • 2 tbsp. buttermilk
In a food processor, pulse flour and salt together. Add butter and pulse until you have bean-sized pieces. Gradually add water and pulse to bring dough together. Gently roll dough into a ball, flatten into a disk, wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least one hour.
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Roll dough out to 10-inch diameter and place in a 9-inch pie pan, cut away excess dough, and place in the fridge.
Beat eggs and vanilla in a bowl. Whisk in flour, then add cream and syrup and mix until it’s all combined. Remove the crust from the fridge and scattered the drained fruit evenly in the pie shell. Pour filling over. Brush buttermilk over the crust edge and bake until firm but still with a little jiggle, approximately 20 minutes. Chill completely and serve with creme fraiche. Joyeux Noel!
For the filling, soak raisins or currants in hot water and set aside.
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It’s A Good Time For
A Portion Of Our Menu… Chicken, Shrimp & Fish Dinners
Regular is mixed pieces of chicken. Special is pick your own pieces. REGULAR SPECIAL
3 piece Dinner $5.69 4 piece Box $6.19 3 piece wing $4.59 Chicken Tender Meal $6.99 2 piece breaded Cod $6.19 2 piece Jack Salmon $6.49 Catfish Nuggets $6.49 6 piece Jumbo Shrimp $7.19 8 oz. Mini Shrimp (18-21 count)
All dinners served with mashed potatoes, cole slaw and a roll
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Pint Cole Slaw/ Mashed Potatoes $3.49 Pint Potato Salad $3.99 French Fries $1.99 Corn Fritters (10 pieces) $3.59 Fried Okra $3.49 Buffalo Wings $6.79
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CHEF KEVIN NASHAN
SIDNEY STREET CAFE & PEACEMAKER
his recipe reminds me of this time of year because my mom only made empanaditas and biscochitos during the Christmas season. Mom always made them with our “help” during the holidays. It is a tradition started by my grandfather Willie Ortiz in Spain.
SIMPLY FRESH GREEK AND AMERICAN CUISINE
• Ingredients • 2 cups flour • 1/2 tsp. baking powder • 1/2 tsp. salt • 2 tsp. sugar • 1/4 cup lard • 1/4 cup warm water
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In a bowl add all the dry ingredients together and then cut in the lard. Add the warm water and knead until the dough comes together.
Then work the dough for about 5-6 minutes. Cover and let rest for at least 30 minutes.
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• 1 lb. deer meat leg or shoulder • 1 lb. beef tongue • 1 onion • 1 bunch celery • 1 quart beef stock • 4 bay leaves • 1 cup apple butter • 3/4 cup sugar
• 1/2 cup dark molasses • 2 tsp. ground cloves • 1 tsp. cinnamon • 1 tsp. sea salt • 3 cups pine nuts (toasted) • 1/4 cup sherry (reduced)
In a pressure cooker, sear the seasoned deer meat and tongue. Then add onion, celery, carrots, and bay leaf and sauté. Deglaze with beef stock and pressure cook at 12 psi for 30 minutes. Remove and pull meat into small pieces like you would pulled pork.
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5425 HAMPTON AVENUE, ST. LOUIS, MO 63109 18 | WINTER FLAVOR 2015 | riverfronttimes.com 22 | WINTER FLAVOR 2015 | riverfronttimes.com
While it’s still warm, mix the pulled deer meat and beef tongue in a bowl with all the remaining ingredients until fully incorporated. Taste and adjust if needed. I like to add sherry vinegar just a touch to brighten.
Roll dough out to a quarter-inch think and use a rock glass to cut it. Roll individual pieces out just a little more and then add filling. Crimp using water to seal, making a half moon. Fry in deep fryer on 375 degrees until browned. Serve and eat.
a portion of our menu Appetizers and Dips
flaming cheese (saganaki)
Kasseri cheese flamed in brandy at your table.
A Mediterranean style dip with a touch of garlic and tahini served with pita bread and tomato wedges.
A cool tangy spread of fish roe whipped with fresh lemon juice, onions, olive oil and moistened bread served with 2 toasted pita bread.
A delicious dip made with sour cream, ground cucumbers and garlic.
Red Pepper Dip
A robust dip made from toasted red pepper and feta cheese. Served with 2 toasted pita bread.
Crisp Lettuce tossed with tomatoes, cucumbers, green peppers and onion and topped with Greek olives, feta cheese and our own dressing.
from the grill
Two broiled lamb chops garnished with mushrooms, tomatoes, green peppers, onions and a delicate wine sauce. Served over a bed of rice with pita bread.
shish kebob deluxe platter
Our kebob house specialty! Marinated kebobs served on a bed of rice with sauteed green peppers, onions, mushrooms and zucchini. Garnizhed with feta cheese, tomatoes, olives, cucumber slices, peppercini, lemon wedges and pita bread.
Our Greek salad with slices of Gyro meat.
eggplant parmesan (melizanes)
Slices of fried eggplant with our special tomato sauce, sprinkled with parmesan cheese and baked.
Above gyro served with shredded lettuce and feta cheese.
Charbroiled ground chuck with feta cheese on a toasted bun or pita bread.
spinach pita (spanakopita)
A Kebob House Specialty! A rolled pastry made of feta cheese and spinach, sauteed in butter with onions and herbs, baked in flaky leaves of filo dough.
8 oz. Bacon Wrapped Filet
dolmades (stuffed grape leaves)
20 oz. Porterhouse
Bacon wrapped filet cooked to order. Served with Greek Villager Salad and twice baked potato Cooked to order. Served with Greek Villager Salad and twice baked potato
STuffed peppers & tomatoes (WITH POTATOES)
One pepper and one tomato stuffed with a mixture of seasoned ground beef and rice
Grape leaves stuffed with a mixture of seasoned ground beef and rice.
A smooth, delicately flavored dish that is sure to satisfy a hearty appetite. Layers of macaroni, cheese and ground beef, seasoned with herbs, topped with grated cheese and bechamel sauce.
ribeye steak on pita
Served with Greek Villager Salad
Tender slices of eggplant and potatoes, layered with seasoned ground beef, onions and tomatoes.Topped with grated cheese and bechamel (a light sauce made of butter, cheese, milk and eggs.
OPEN 11am 7 days a week private parties catering
AUTHENTIC homemade greek cuisine
St. Louis, missouri 63117
riverfronttimes.com| WINTER FLAVOR 2015 | 23
roasted leg of lamb
with mint sauce
CHEF JASON TILFORD MISSION TACO JOINT
rowing up I remember Christmas being a very special time of the year. My father was in the Coast Guard and usually overseas for most of the year, leaving most of the cooking and housework to my mother. Mom was, and still is, a great cook. Everyday meals were always well-prepared and nourishing but Christmas dinner was a special event, especially because my father was always home for the holiday. My nana would make those little peanut butter cookies with a Hershey kiss on top. It turns out everybody makes them, but when I was young I only knew of hers, and they were the best. I remember if you timed it right you could get the cookie while the kiss was still warm, bite the top off, and then eat around the edges getting chocolate in every bite. The star of the dinner, though, was Mom’s roasted leg of lamb with mint sauce
and roasted potatoes. My mom and nana are Welsh, so lamb with mint sauce and gravy was a traditional dinner, as was the little British crackers that two people pull apart with a snap, to reveal a prize of a paper crown and silly little toy. The aroma of the lamb would fill the house while we played with our newly opened toys and gifts, knowing what would be on our plates soon. The potatoes were huge wedges of russets that had a delicate, herbaceous crust and a fluffy interior. The lamb was juicy and tender, perfectly cooked, and the mint was a perfect accent. We sat around the beautifully dressed table and ate with the whole family, knowing Dad would soon again be gone. Being together those days was the best gift of all.
roasted lamb • 1 cup grain Dijon mustard • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar • 1 cup olive oil • 2 tbsp. kosher salt • 2 tbsp. cracked black pepper • 1 tbsp. chopped garlic • 1 leg of lamb
Prepare the lamb by removing a majority of the outer fat cap, leaving about 1/8 of an inch on the roast.
Rub the lamb with the marinade and allow the meat to come to room temperature, about one hour before cooking. Set the oven to 500 degrees and place the lamb in the oven.
Sear the roast for five minutes and reduce the oven to 325 to finish cooking. To get the roast to medium rare, cook for 15 minutes per pound of meat, an internal temp of 135.
4 mint sauce
Remove the lamb when it hits 135 and allow to rest for 15-20 minutes covered lightly with foil.
• 1/2 cup water Place the water, vinegar and sugar in a small • 3/4 cup balsamic saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a vinegar vigorous simmer and cook for five minutes. • 1 cup brown sugar • Pinch of kosher salt Remove from heat and add the salt and shallot. • 2 cups mint leaves • 1 tbsp. minced shallot
While the syrup cools, chop the mint very fine. Add the mint to the syrup and allow to sit for at least two hours before serving. Makes one cup.
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riverfronttimes.com| WINTER FLAVOR 2015 | 19
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persian rice stuffing
CHEF HAMISHE BAHRAMI CAFE NATASHA
eing in the restaurant business for all these years, we have a tradition of what you might call “an orphan holiday party.” All of our staff and even some of our guests with no family in the area are invited to our house around the holidays. We make a variety of dishes from Persian home dishes to tradition American trimmings. It gives all a sense of home when we ourselves don’t have much extended family around. This stuffing recipe was one of the American-influenced items we would make with a Persian rice twist – it was always a hit. I first learned to make this many years ago at our first restaurant, The Little Kitchen, by listening to what our patrons requested for the holiday season. • 2 cups cooked rice (preferably Persian steamed) • 2 cups chopped celery • 2 cups scallions • 2 cups fresh chopped mushrooms
• 2-3 8 oz. cans cream of mushroom soup • 2 tbsp. butter
1 2 3
Sauté fresh mushrooms with butter. Combine rice, celery, scallions and mushrooms together and mix well. Add cream of mushroom soup until it arrives at a creamy texture.
Put in a baking dish and cook in the oven at 325 degrees for 30 minutes.
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4426 Randall Place • St. Louis, MO 63107 www.bissellmansion.com
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1 oz Cognac .5 oz Apple Cider syrup .25 oz Allspice Dram .25 oz Orange Juice Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice and shake. Strain over ice and garnish with an orange twist.
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28 | WINTER FLAVOR 2015 | riverfronttimes.com
BAKER NANCY BOEHM PINT SIZE BAKERY
ust a few years ago during Christmas with my husband Jason’s family, I had my first angel biscuit. It was still steaming when I broke it open and spread soft butter and homemade strawberry preserves on both sides. Everyone at the table ate at least two, and as the evening wore on, most of the family went back for leftovers. My mother-in-law, Cindy, and her family have been savoring these light, fluffy hybrids of a biscuit and a yeasted roll for over 40 years. From our very first Christmas together, Jason’s family has loved and accepted me as one of their own and no matter how big the family gets, there are always plenty of angel biscuits to go around.
• 1 1/2 cups whole milk • 1 package active dry yeast • 1/4 cup granulated sugar • 3 cups all purpose flour, divided • 1/2 tsp. baking soda • 1 tsp. baking powder • 1 tsp. salt • 1/4 cup unsalted butter • 1 egg, lightly beaten
Scald milk and cool to 100 degrees.
In a bowl, whisk together yeast, sugar, and one cup of flour. Whisk in milk (mixture will resemble pancake batter).
Cover and rest in a warm place until doubled in size – approximately 90 minutes.
In another bowl, mix together the remaining flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
Cut butter into small cubes, then use your hands or a pastry blender to incorporate the butter into the dry mixture until the texture resembles cornmeal.
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Pour the yeast mixture and the egg in the center and knead with your hands until it forms a sticky dough. Let rest 10 minutes.
Place dough on a floured surface, dust the top with flour and roll to one half-inch thick.
Cut 12 biscuits using a threeinch round cutter dusted with flour.
Place biscuits on a greased or parchment lined baking sheet.
Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rise for 30 minutes, or freeze for up to one month and bake from frozen.
Bake at 400 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown.
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CULINARY INSTITUTE OF ST. LOUIS
ood has always played an important role in my life. My mother was a great cook, always finding creative ways to provide for her family. When it came to holidays, however, her love of family spilled into her love of cooking. Most of my holiday memories revolve around eating, but my personal love for food developed at an early age when I began to help my mom in our kitchen at home during the holidays. I remember making my grandmother’s cranberry relish, carrot cake with Heath bar icing and my great grandfather’s stollen recipe from 1940. We didn’t much care for the candied fruits it called for, so mom traded them out for gum drops. But perhaps what brings me back to holidays most is the memory of a great variety of cookies. My mom made springerle each year with a special rolling pin and delicate touch, both of which she received from her mom. I’m not sure if it was the unique design on each cookie, the anise flavor, or the ceremonial opening of the holiday tins that created my holiday memory. But to this day, each tin I open holds promise of memories locked inside. This holiday season, my mom is giving me the springerle rolling pin so I will be able to carry on this tasty tradition.
• 3 1/4 cup all purpose flour • 2 3/4 cup powdered sugar, sifted • 4 large eggs
• Butter, the size of a walnut • 3/4 tsp. anise seed, crushed • 1/2 tsp. baking soda • 1 tsp. cream of tartar
Stir sugar, butter and eggs for 15 minutes or longer. Add soda, cream of tartar and anise seed. Add flour; roll dough about 1/4-inch thick and roll springerle roller over dough or press with springerle board.
Cut and separate each cookie and let lay out overnight; the next morning, take a small damp cloth dipped in a little water and slightly wipe the bottom of each cookie before putting on greased cookie sheet. Bake at 300 for 15 minutes or until lightly browned.
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Famous Fried Chicken, available daily
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riverfronttimes.com| WINTER FLAVOR 2015 | 31
oyster and cornbread dressing
CHEF MATT BESSLER THE LIBTERTINE
amily meals at the holidays mean more than the food. It’s about getting everyone together around a table and being thankful for what you have. Making the food better is always a bonus, though. Creative from-scratch food isn’t that tough if you put forth the effort. Stuffing is one of my favorites, and one year I made a new one for my family with oyster andouille sausage. Not everyone in the family went for it, but a few did and loved it. Here is a similar recipe to the one I’ve made for the family a few times. Oysters aren’t for everyone, so you can just omit them if you need to. Still, they add a great smoky element to the dressing. Whatever you do, stop making dressing inside the turkey!
• 5 cups crumbled cornbread • 8 ounces sourdough bread slices, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (About 5 cups) • 1 cup butter • 2 cups diced andouille sausage • 2 cups chopped onion • 2 cups finely chopped celery • 1 cup chopped green bell pepper • 1/4 cup chopped fresh sage • 2 tbsp. chopped fresh thyme
• 2 tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary • 1 tbsp. Cajun blackened seasoning • 1 tbsp. poultry seasoning • 1 tsp. black pepper • 3 (3.75-oz.) cans smoked oysters, drained • 4 cups chicken broth • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Stir together cornbread and bread cubes in a large bowl. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add sausage and cook, covered and stirring occasionally, 5 to 7 minutes or until butter turns a light orange. Remove sausage with a slotted spoon; drain on paper towels.
Add onion, celery and pepper to butter; sauté eight minutes or until tender. Add sage, thyme and rosemary, and sauté one minute. Stir in Cajun seasoning, poultry seasoning and pepper; remove from heat.
Stir vegetables and sausage into cornbread mixture. Stir in oysters, broth and eggs. Spread in a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch pan; cover with aluminum foil.
Bake, covered, at 400° for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake 30 more minutes or until browned and thoroughly cooked. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
When you’re making the cornbread, don’t use a sweet cornbread mix, such as Jiffy. This will make the dressing too sweet.
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South City’s best baked goods!
Handcrafted the way grandma used to bake with pure butter, real cane sugar & farm fresh eggs. Let Pint Size do your holiday baking this year. Christmas cookies by the baker’s dozen, yule logs, tea cakes & more. 3825 WATSON RD. @ LINDENWOOD | PINTSIZEBAKERY.COM
* SMALL BATCH* FROM SCRATCH* *FRESH DAILY *
Voted BEST FRIED CHICKEN - Reader’s Choice 2015
114 W Mill St, Waterloo, IL 62298 (618) 939-9933 gallagherswaterloo.com riverfronttimes.com| WINTER FLAVOR 2015 | 33
CHEF LIZ SCHUSTER TENACIOUS EATS
y mom, Marilyn Huebner, first made spinach balls for my birthday in December 1987 for me and my friends. My mom always jokes that my birthday starts on December 9 and goes through Christmas. These tasty little addictive treats remind me of that fun birthday – and every Christmas holiday since.
• 1 lb. spinach, chopped (frozen works if fresh isn’t available) • 4 yellow onions, small diced • 3 cups seasoned stuffing mix • 6 large eggs, beaten
1 2 3 4
• 1 cup parmesan cheese • 3/4 cup unsalted butter (Room temperature) • Salt and pepper to taste
Cook spinach and squeeze out excess moisture.
Sauté onion with remaining spinach until translucent and cool. Add stuffing mix, eggs, parmesan, butter and salt and pepper.
Portion into 2-oz. balls, roll and bake on a greased cookie sheet for 10 minutes or until slightly browned.
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These can be portioned and frozen. If you’re heating from frozen, add an additional two to five minutes.
BARTENDER TONY SAPUTO LAYLA
he one holiday dish I cannot forget is my grandmother’s lime jello salad. For any and every family get-together, my Great-Grandmother Seger would make a green jello comprised of lime gelatin, crushed pineapple and cream cheese. No matter what the occasion, she swore by this recipe. And so at every holiday dinner, this jello is set on the table and is left completely untouched, except of the spoonful eaten by my grandmother. We tease her for making this detested dish, but she swears it keeps the ghost of GreatGrandma Seger from haunting us and takes another bite. It may the most important thing on the table. When we gather, we are not only breaking bread with friends and loved ones, but also with the memories of those who have passed on. This is what I believe my grandmother is doing every time she starts stirring the much-derided gelatin. Now, don’t worry. I don’t intend on giving you a recipe for a terrible jello salad. Instead, I’m offering up a little twist on a classic cocktail that is a tad reminiscent of this dessert.
• 1.5 oz. London dry gin • .5 oz simple syrup • .5 oz fresh lime juice • Peychaud’s bitters
Combine all ingredients and shake. Strain into a Collins glass.
Fill glass with ice and top with 4-5 dashes of the bitters. Lightly stir to blend top bitters. The bitters offer a cherry and anise flavor to this refreshing classic, which allow it to go well with savory winter spices and still be a great botanical treat.
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1201 Strassner Dr, Brentwood, MO 63144 • 314.644.2772 • twinoakwoodfired.com riverfronttimes.com| WINTER FLAVOR 2015 | 19
riverfronttimes.com| WINTER FLAVOR 2015 | 35
Fleur de Lilies
tsao mi fun
Holiday Tasting Menu Five Courses $50 Per Person Add Beer
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Course One - Tuna Tataki
seAred, MArinATed in yuzu juiCe And served wiTh BuTTer gArLiC sAuCe PAired wiTh kirin iChiBAn or signATure soCkTAiL
Course Two - Creole Green Onion Soup riCh CreAMy BroTh, MushrooMs, green onion PAired wiTh goose isLAnd iPA or whiskey
Course Three - Fusion Salad
CHEF BERNIE LEE HIRO ASIAN KITCHEN
ver since I can remember, my mother has been making tsao mi fun for every major holiday. “Tsao mi fun” is the Mandarin name; it’s also known as “tsa bi whun” in Malaysia and Taiwan, which translates to “fried rice noodles.” It is a very simple dish, and also very tasty and healthy. Per our family’s tradition, on the first day of any major holiday, my mother would make the dish vegetarian – using wood ear and shiitake mushrooms along with cabbage. Whenever I make this dish, it takes me back to my childhood, bringing fond memories of great times that I shared with my family.
orgAniC BABy kALe, sPiCed PeCAns, dried APriCoTs, soy BALsAMiC vinAigreTTe
• 1/2 package dried rice sticks (usually labelled “Maifun“) • 5-7 large dried shiitake mushrooms • 5-7 dried wood ear mushrooms • 1/2 medium head of cabbage, shredded • 2-3 carrots, peeled and sliced • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped • 1/2 red onion, chopped • 2 eggs, scrambled • 2 tbsp. soy sauce • 1 tbsp. white pepper • 2 tbsp. canola oil • Salt and pepper to taste
PAired wiTh shoCk ToP BeLgiAn whiTe or signATure CoCkTAiL
Course Four - FDL Surf & Turf FLAMBeAu ChATeAuBriAnd And BArBeCue shriMP PAired wiTh ChiMAy red or whiskey
Course Five - Chocolate Mousse Cake served wiTh rAsPBerry jAM PAired wiTh rAsPBerry FrAMBoise or digesTiF
1031 Lynch Street • Saint Louis, MO 63118 314-932-5051 • FleurdeLilies.com
Add the dried rice sticks to hot water. Allow the noodles to soak and soften for 10 minutes, then drain, rinse with cold water, and set aside.
Soak the dried shiitake and wood ear mushrooms in water for 30 minutes. Remove and slice, and set the soaking water aside to flavor the noodles later.
award-winning food covereage RESTAURANT REVIEWS EVERY WEEK www.riverfronttimes.com
3 4 5
Slice the carrots into matchstick-sized pieces. Chop the onion coarsely and shred the cabbage. Heat the wok with the canola oil. Add the red onion, and stir fry for about 30-60 seconds over high heat.
Add the mushrooms, chopped yellow onions, and carrots and continue to stir fry for 1-2 minutes. Add the cabbage, mix and then cover. Allow the cabbage to steam and reduce for a few minutes.
Add the water set aside from soaking the mushrooms to the wok. Then add the pre-softened rice noodles, and mix together.
Add the water set aside from soaking the mushrooms to the wok. Then add the pre-softened rice noodles, and mix together. Add the soy sauce, and continue to cook, tossing the ingredients as you go, until all the liquid is absorbed. Add the cooked egg and stir.
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St. Louis’ Most Authentic Mexican Cuisine
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Grilled marinated shrimp cooked with mild green, red and yellow peppers, onions and zucchini. Served with rice, lettuce, sour cream, guacamole and tortillas.
887 Kingsland Ave
(Just North of Delmar Blvd)
314-863-1880 www.mi-ranchito-stl.com riverfronttimes.com| WINTER FLAVOR 2015 | 37
JOSH GALLIANO COMPANION BAKERY
ornbread dressing is a staple of my family’s holiday food, and the undisputed champ of cornbread dressing is my maternal grandmother, Nellie Edwards. My grandparents were from Forest, Mississippi, a rural town near Meridian. Their families were farming families until Paw Paw started helping build the interstate system around the country. Even with moving around and finally settling down in Louisiana, much of the food that Maw Maw cooked was simple Southern fare: lima beans with okra, sliced tomatoes, pan fried cutlets, fried sac-au-lait, crowder peas, and
cornbread dressing • 4 tbsp. butter, unsalted • 6 cups cornbread, coarsely crumbled from the day before • 2 cups green onions, thinly sliced and divided in half • 1 cup onions, small diced • 1/2 cup celery, small diced • 3 boiled eggs, chopped • 5-6 cups chicken stock (reserve the liver, heart, gizzard and neck for giblet gravy)
smoked chicken. Most of this food never had a recipe attached to it even though most of the desserts definitely had recipes. So, whenever we wanted to recreate one of Maw Maw’s dishes, we had to think like her to figure out her methods. How long did something cook? It probably depended on if one of her shows was on while she cooked. I’m sure that the recipe I’ve worked on isn’t quite perfect, but it brings me back to all of the times we went to the fishing camp. This is a side dish that was never really just a side dish. On non-holidays, cornbread dressing could be the main dish on the table
at Maw Maw and Paw Paw’s house. Sometimes, if Maw Maw thought the dressing was a little dry, she would serve giblet gravy with it. One note: Use good cornmeal, especially if you can get your hands on a good quality stone ground cornmeal. My suggestion is for McKaskle Family Farms yellow cornmeal from Braggadocio, Missouri. You can find their stuff at Local Harvest and you can order it online.
• 1/2 tsp. dried thyme • 1 slice white bread, toasted (optional) • 3.5 lb. chicken, cut up • 1-2 tsp. kosher salt • 10 turns of a peppermill
In a large pot, place the cut-up chicken and cover with eight cups of water. Heat the pot over high heat until it almost simmers, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Lightly simmer the chicken until the meat is tender, about one hour. Allow the chicken pieces to cool in the stock until they are warm. You’ll use both the meat and the broth.
In a sauté pan, melt butter over medium heat. Add one cup of green onions, onions, and celery to the pan. Cook the vegetables for about five minutes, or until they are tender and translucent. When the vegetables are done, pour them into a large mixing bowl.
Preheat an oven to 375 F. Add the crumbled cornbread, boiled eggs, the other cup of green onions, dried thyme, and cornbread to the mixing bowl. Shred the warm chicken into the bowl making sure not to accidentally add any chicken bones. Stir about five cups of the chicken stock into the bowl with the cornbread; the mixture should look like runny grits. Add more stock if needed. Season with salt and pepper.
Pour the cornbread mixture into a 2 1/2 quart casserole dish and, if using, crumble the toasted bread over the top of the casserole. Bake the dressing for about 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Sometimes, Maw Maw would serve the cornbread dressing with giblet gravy.
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• 3 cups buttermilk • 3 eggs • 2 1/3 cups yellow cornmeal • 1 cup all purpose flour • 1 tsp. kosher salt • 5 tsp. baking powder • 1 tsp, sugar (optional) • 2 tbsp. lard or unsalted butter
Preheat an oven with a large cast iron skillet inside to 400 F.
In a mixing bowl, combine all the dry ingredients. Then, mix the egg and the buttermilk into the dry ingredients.
Remove the cast iron from the oven and place it on the stove over medium heat. Melt the lard in the cast iron and swirl it around the pan. Add the cornbread mixture to the pan – it should bubble and cook around the edges immediately. Return the cast iron to the oven and reduce the heat to 350 F. Cook for about 15 minutes or until it is done. Place the cast iron pan of cornbread on the stove top to cool.
w i t h s h r i m p a n d v e g e ta b l e s
CHEF QUI TRAN MAI LEE
he one thing that reminds me of the holidays is a dish we made before we learned how to cook other cuisines. It is a very traditional Vietnamese tamarind-based lemongrass soup with shrimp and vegetables. It can be done as a firepot or as a hotpot if desired.
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•4 cups water •1 lb. shrimp •3 tbsp. minced lemongrass •1 1/2 tbsp. tamarind powder •3 tbsp. sugar •1/2 tbsp. salt •1 tbsp. fried minced garlic •1 tomato, sliced into six wedges •1/2 cup sliced pineapple •1 celery stalk, sliced •1/2 cup okra •1 cup peeled and sliced elephant ear vegetables •1/4 cup chopped cilantro •1/4cup chopped culantro
In a large pot, boil water. Add shrimp and cook through, then remove and reserve in a separate bowl. Be sure not to overcook the shrimp.
Skim the pot, then add lemongrass, tamarind powder, sugar and salt. Stir, taste and adjust seasoning as desired. It should have a fresh sweet-and-sour flavor.
Add tomato, pineapple, celery, okra and sliced elephant ear and cook until crisp-tender. Pour soup into a bowl, add shrimp and top with fried garlic, chopped cilantro and culantro.
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CHEF ANDY FAIR URBAN CHESTNUT
y Grandma Fair was an excellent cook. You know, the type of chef who never needed recipes, who understood how the food would behave and used that knowledge to manipulate the ingredients into pure deliciousness (and then sat around the table and complained how it could have been better). I always looked forward to visiting her, not just because she spoiled me rotten, but because I knew I would eat well! In particular, she made the best pies. My favorite was cherry, and she always made it when I came to visit. I never liked her pecan pie when I was young, probably because I was a dumb kid and didn’t know any better. Everyone always raved about it, though. She made a special version for Thanksgiving and Christmas, and it was always the first to disappear. Luckily for me, she taught my father how to cook, and she passed down to him the recipe for the filling. No one is really sure how to make her crust; the only sure ingredient is lard. I like this recipe that uses butter and lard. Fortunately, the filling is so good you don’t really need a crust. The recipe is unique in that it doesn’t use Karo syrup. Apparently she made another version for everyday pies, but she would make this version for the holidays.
• 1 1/2 cup unbleached all purpose flour • 1 tsp. kosher salt • 1/2 tsp. granulated sugar • 8 tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into eight pieces and frozen for 10 minutes • 2 tbsp. lard, cut into two pieces and frozen for 10 minutes • 4-6 tbsp. water
Mix dry ingredients in a bowl.
Cut frozen fat in with a pastry cutter or your hands, until the mix resembles coarse meal.
Stir in ice water a couple of tablespoons at a time until the dough comes together. Shape dough in a disk and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate a couple of hours, or overnight if you can.
Roll out chilled dough into a circle 1 1/2 inches larger than a 9-inch pie pan.
Line the pan with the dough, and trim to leave a half-inch overhang of pastry. Fold this under, forming a thick edge.
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• 1 cup maple syrup • 1 cup packed light brown sugar • 1/2 cup heavy cream • 1 tbsp. molasses • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, cubed • 1/2 tsp. salt • 6 large egg yolks, lightly beaten • 1 1/2 cup toasted pecans
Preheat oven to 450
Heat sugar, syrup, cream and molasses until sugar dissolves. Let cool slightly and whisk in butter and salt. Whisk in egg yolks.
Scatter pecans in bottom of pie shell and gently pour filling over the top.
Place pie in hot oven and reduce temperature to 350. Bake 45-60 minutes until center jiggles slightly.
Cool one hour on rack and then refrigerate to set the pie. Bring to room temp before serving.
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BAKER SIMONE FAURE LA PATISSERIE CHOUQUETTE
very Christmas morning our house filled with the smell of hot French roast coffee with chicory and condensed milk and New Orleans beignets. Not a gift is opened, not a carol sung, until these pillows of delight have been thoroughly devoured.
• 1 1/2 cups warm water • 1/2 cup granulated sugar • 1 envelope active dry yeast • 2 eggs, beaten • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 2 3 4 5
• 1 cup evaporated milk • 7 cups bread flour • 1/4 cup softened butter • Vegetable oil • 3 cups powdered sugar
Mix water, sugar, and yeast in a large bowl and let sit 10 minutes.
In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, salt, and evaporated milk together.
Add egg mixture to yeast mixture and mix. Add 3 cups of bread flour. Then add butter and the rest of the flour. Mix dough in mixer on moderate speed, using a dough hook.
Coat a large bowl with oil, place dough in bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rise at least two hours or in the refrigerator overnight.
Heat 3-4 inches of oil in a Dutch oven or deep fryer to 350 degrees.
Roll dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut two-inch pieces and place the squares on a lightly floured surface. Allow them to nearly double in size before frying them.
Fry four at a time, flipping continuously until they are golden brown and float to the surface.
Remove from the oil and drain on a paper towel. Generously coat the hot beignets with powdered sugar and enjoy.
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