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From the President...................................................... 3 Membership Milestones.............................................. 4 Trending Now.............................................................. 5 Cover Story: USPCA Benefits..................................... 6 Philadelphia Chapter Helps Gift of Life House............ 9 USPCA Goes High Tech.............................................. 10 What Good is Insurance?............................................ 11 Jamiesons Serving Up Faith....................................... 12 Geekette Chef Serves Fantasy Food.......................... 13 Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Carrots, and Corn............ 14 Chef Jill Shares Business Tips.................................... 15 Choosing Seafood....................................................... 16 Self-Published Cookbook a Gift to Clients.................. 17 Summer Recipes......................................................... 18 You do WHAT?............................................................ 27 New England Chapter................................................. 28 Chef Teaches Middle Schoolers.................................. 29 Grilling: Great Food on the Grates.............................. 30 Chef Manages Iron Chef Competition......................... 32 Bay Area Chapter Visits Terra Bella Family Farm....... 34
Volume 20, Number 3 Summer 2014 Personal Chef is the official publication of the Personal Chef Industry. This publication is made possible by the United States Personal Chef Association. The purpose of this publication is to bring Personal Chefs the most useful and timely information and ideas from experts, working professionals, and industry leaders. Personal Chef welcomes any articles, manuscripts, tips, hints, photographs, recipes and ideas from our readers. We appreciate all submissions. Please include name, address and phone number. Send your contributions to: United States Personal Chef Association PC Editor 7680 Universal Blvd, Ste 550 Orlando, FL 32819
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Editor: USPCA Magazine Department Layout & Design: Designs by CJT Advertising: USPCA Magazine Department
Personal Chef is published by: United States Personal Chef Association 7680 Universal Blvd, Ste 550 Orlando, FL 32819 Copyright ÂŠ 2014 United States Personal Chef Association. Reproduction prohibited without permission. All rights reserved.
From the President’s Desk Well, we apologize for the late appearance of the summer magazine but you learn that sometimes things happen for a reason. First, we had a GREAT cover story set for the summer issue. Chef Pat Day is stationed in Iraq but not only has maintained her membership in USPCA but has just renewed for 3 consecutive years. I had hoped to meet with Pat when I was in Abu Dhabi this Spring but was not able to get out of the UAE in time. So that means the next time I am over, it’s a quick trip to Baghdad to say hello to one of our awesome members. We had a host of reasons Pat would be the perfect cover for our summer issue. We have more members coming from Canada, just added a member from Zimbabwe, are in discussions with expanding our presence with an organization based in Australia and recognizing that our world isn’t just the 48 contiguous states. However, the changing politics of the Middle East made all of that impossible with the security concerns in Iraq coming into June/July. So that, compounded with the mid-July conference, begged a delay in the magazine. And I’m glad we did! At the conference, I discovered something interesting. We’ve been rebuilding and rebranding USPCA over the past year. We recognize that an association has to be more than just a place for you to gather and network (though that remains extremely important). We also have to develop and provide the tools and resources you need to be successful and GROW your personal chef businesses. At the conference (and the Fall issue will be dedicated to conference stories and photos) we learned that many of you don’t really understand what the association offers to help you improve your business. So with Pat obviously focused on issues far more important than anything we can bring to the table, it was time to look at another cover. Thus was born the membership issue (but Pat WILL be back on the cover of a future issue and I hope it includes a photo of us both in Baghdad). We’ve taken the core benefits that we launched or expanded this past year and tried to either explain and/or expand on what your now have available to you. Of course, what we are sharing here is just what we have launched in the last year. It doesn’t include a host of new programs and products that we talked about at conference that are around the corner or haven’t yet found but can launch this year. You’ll just need to keep close to your email (and your USPCA app) to learn more! But here is what is most important: The benefits we share here are the tangible benefits of membership. I’ve belonged to a host of organizations over the years and can consistently point to the network of friends and associates I have built as the single best reason to belong and the key to my business success. If you’re not fully engaged in USPCA, do so today. We are offering a host of platforms to help you do that. American Express always says that membership has its privileges, and that is so true. But in this case it doesn’t take a Blue card to take advantage of them all.
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Membership Milestones 15 Years
Angie Bachman CPC, Pembroke Lakes, FL Grace DeBruyne, Joppa, MD David Gabriel, Chesapeake, VA Robyn Goorevitch CPC, Toronto, ON Sheryl Gorsuch, Alexandria, VA Kathleen Hanna, Picton, ON Barbara Lance, Loveland, CO Amanda Miller, Dallas, TX Sheri Renalde CPC, Menifee, CA
Jerree Atkins, Frederick, MD Gini Bortz CPC, Campbell, CA Daniel Engel, Troy, MI Claude Garbarino CPC, San Francisco, CA Hema Hibbert, Hillsborough, NJ Janice Laird CPC, Albuquerque, NM Thierry Magne, Port St Lucie, FL Lauren Moore CPC,Pensacola, FL Tom O’Connor, St. Simons Island, GA Marsha Peters, Matthews, IN Val Pirie, Woonsocket, RI Heather Woodfin, Arnold, MD
Rochelle Barcellona CPC, Folsom, CA Tony Carollo, Atlanta, GA Francesco Crocenzi, Lake Forest Park, WA Patrice Johnson, Ridgecrest, CA Dawn Jones, Calgary, AB Renee King, Pinole, CA Betsy Liles, Concord, NC Marirae Mathis, Gallatin, TN Dawnelle Northcutt, CPC, Niceville, FL Raymond Savokinas, Hackettstown, NJ Therese Simone, Marietta, GA Stine Svendsen, Stilwell, KS Kimberly Talley, Phoenix, AZ Frances Wright, Miramar, FL
3 years Keith Banks, Beaverton, OR Renee Freeman-Wilfon, Albuquerque, NM Melissa Hura, Gahanna, OH Amanda Magadan, Valrico, FL Robert Nakao, Albany, CA Paola Santagati, Windermere, FL Jasna Solaja Zogovic, Marina Del Rey, CA Christina Vincent, Panama City, FL
New CPCs Rochelle Barcellona CPC, Folsom, CA Judy Buonocore CPC, East Hampton, CT Catherine Richey CPC, San Antonio TX Meghan Svatora CPC, Newark, OH Laura Taylor CPC, Seattle, WA
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New Members Cari Avit The Divine Dish McKinney, TX 972-838-3582 firstname.lastname@example.org Michele Bagley Plate Expectations Plymouth Meeting, PA 813-416-9034 email@example.com www.plateexpectationsphilly.com Laura Buckley Laura Buckley Personal Chef Markham, ON 647-292-6309 firstname.lastname@example.org www.laurabuckley.ca Nicole Bunting It’s Just Food, LLC Denver, CO 619-278-8366 email@example.com www.itsjustfoodllc.com Joshua Clever Oakland, CA 415-297-6480 firstname.lastname@example.org www.joshuaclever.com Barb Craft Sunshine Grub Fort Worth, TX 817-247-85103 barb@SunshineGrub.com www.SunshineGrub.com Nicole Croes Nikki’s Healing Kitchen New York, NY 917-838-5092 email@example.com www.nikkishealingkitchen.com A’Donna Fuller Bella Donna Cooks! LTD Columbus, OH 614-749-4730 firstname.lastname@example.org www.belladonnacooks.com Bryana Gibson Bryana’s Comforts Sacramento, CA 510-932-2961 email@example.com
Diana Gomez Personal Home Dining Fairfield, CT 203-727-1871 firstname.lastname@example.org Lindsay Goodson Fancy Foods & Everyday Staples, LLC Earlsboro, OK 405-246-8046 email@example.com www.fancyandstaples.com Cassandra Lee Free Thyme by Cassandra Lee Troy, NY 518-961-1483 firstname.lastname@example.org www.freethymebycl.com Melody Lyle Just For You Catering Woodstock, GA 404-791-0322 email@example.com www.jfycatering.com Berkley McDowald Orlando, FL 917-428-3895 firstname.lastname@example.org Wesley Morrison Flavor you can Savor, LLC Louisville, KY 502-438-9164 email@example.com www.flavoryoucansavor.com Kimberly Smith Kimmers in the Kitchen LLC Pittsburgh, PA 412-879-0546 firstname.lastname@example.org www.kimmersinthekitchen.com Kevin Winston II Elite Culinary Concepts, Inc. Mint Hill, NC 424-253-4053 email@example.com www.eliteculinaryconcepts.com Susan Ytterberg Golden Plum Personal Chef Services, LLC Alameda, CA 510-775-3433 firstname.lastname@example.org www.Golden-Plum.com
Julianne Zepeda Simply Delicious, Dinner at Home Santa Fe, NM 505-467-9249 email@example.com www.simply-delicious.net Piper Harris Piper Harris’ Culinary Services, LLC Canton, GA 214-551-2009 firstname.lastname@example.org www.the4amchef.com
New Student Members Melinda Kuong Harvard, MA 978-456-0117 email@example.com La Shuwn Wilder Jacksonville, FL 904-537-4242 firstname.lastname@example.org
Facebook Will Lose 80 Percent of Its Users by 2017: A few caveats: Researchers validated their epidemiological model using a social network that had a similar ascension: MySpace. Obviously, Facebook as the luxury of Myspace’s past missteps to guide its future growth. Source: Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Princeton University.
Best Time to Send Email: Mailchimp’s Chief Data Scientist John Foreman has discovered the best times to send emails to various groups. The best time for every age group, college through senior citizens, is between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. People in their forties and people over retirement age were most likely to check their emails at 10 a.m. while college students were more likely to check it at 1 p.m. The worst time to hit send? Between 3 a.m. and 5 a.m. Source: Business Trends.
Email is More Effective Than Social Media: Email is a more effective way to gain customers than social media like Facebook and Twitter – 40 times more effective. People who click on emails are three times more likely to buy something than people who click through from social media and when people decide to make a purchase the email group tends to spend more. Source: McKinsey & Co.
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What can the USPCA do for YOU?
A great magazine, tried and true recipes... that’s just scratching the surface of all that we have for you. Keep reading to learn about the benefits program we’ve put together for our members!
YOUR LEAD SOURCE – HIREACHEF.COM Being a member of USPCA means you learn the most effective and efficient ways to market your personal chef business. Each business has something unique to bring to a market that is theirs. But the association also recognizes that members can’t always go it alone. How is that resolved? The website HireAChef.com HireAChef is a one-stop website for consumers to find a personal chef in their area who fits their needs. Since its inception, members have been given access to HireAChef when they join the association and can even upgrade their listing for better access and visibility. It has worked well and has driven leads to members, but it really hasn’t been enough so…
other chefs, you have the opportunity to engage with your clients on a higher level. That same knowledge you share with your clients – knife skills, food preparation, storage – think of the host of topics you share with your clients – can be shared far beyond your local market with others who want to know the same things. And its easy, all it takes is your computer and a code to become a contributor to Google Helpouts. What is Google Helpouts? With Helpouts anyone can get help anytime from people like you with expertise across a range of topics – personal chefs, teachers, counselors, doctors, home repair specialists, personal trainers, hobby enthusiasts, and more. Consumers can choose who to get help from based on qualifications, availability, ratings and reviews. Also, they can choose to get help right away or schedule a Helpout for later.
USPCA has introduced the NEW HireAChef.com website. This new site (same address but much better appearance) not only looks better but it functions better. Built on a stable and expandable platform, HireAChef continues to drive leads to members but with substantial improvement:
The best news – consumers will pay for your expertise and Google will help you set that up with a Google Wallet payment gateway. For consumers, paying for help is easy using Google Wallet and for you it is a quick and simple way to earn some additional income share your skills beyond the kitchen.
1. No more need to call USPCA headquarters to make changes: Does your business change and expand? Just maintain your member profile through the USPCA website and it automatically feeds to the HireAChef website. 2. The new platform provides greatly improved search engine optimization allowing for more frequent hits by consumers and expanding leads to your business. 3. The design of the site will render effectively on mobile platforms making for easy one-stop access to HAC no matter where a consumer needs to find it. 4. The personal chef value proposition will be better represented on the site. 5. And when you find yourself working from your mobile devices, HireAChef uses a “responsive” design meaning it will look and function as effectively on your mobile device as it does on your desktop or laptop. 6. The flexibility of the platform will allow for additional enhancements in the coming months.
But there is a catch. You must be a member of USPCA to participate. Within this profession, Google connected with USPCA last year to arrange for USPCA members to have sole access to this market. Google admits professionals using a special code that Google assigns. Google has provided codes for USPCA to give to members who will utilize the program.
And members play a critical role in the value proposition. When you get a HireAChef lead, please follow up promptly. If you can’t help with the inquiry but have other suggestions become a trusted advisor to your inquiry and you might just develop a customer for life.
EARN EXTRA INCOME FROM YOUR COMPUTER Your clients appreciate you for your culinary skills and recognize your expertise. A personal chef is part of an experience and, unlike
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Curious? Checkout www.google.com/helpouts. Then contact Vince Likar at the national office – email@example.com or 1-800-995-2138.
YOUR ASSOCIATION WEBSITE It seems pretty basic but last summer the association re-launched USPCA.com to make it simpler to use and easier to access. Through a single login you can begin the search for your exclusive member benefits on the site. Clicking on the Membership tab takes you to information about your insurance; file downloads for proven forms and systems you can use in your business; communication links with each other (the Forum); or about the industry (Personal Chef Magazine) and so much more. From education to shopping (with products and memberships that can be purchased right from the site) to the National Education Conference, the new USPCA.com is your one-stop to reach it all. And when you find yourself working from your mobile devices, USPCA.com uses a “responsive” design meaning it will look and function as effectively on your mobile device as it does on your desktop or laptop.
CONNECT WITH MEMBERS ANYTIME ANYWHERE Last year at the conference, those who attended knew it as the Feathr app. We used it to connect members with members during the conference. A few months later that app was dramatically enhanced and added to both the Apple App Store and Google Play Store as a custom app for USPCA members. First and foremost, EVERY USPCA member has their basic information on the app under Member Directory. What a great way to connect with members whether by email, LinkedIn, Twitter and more. USPCA members are not static. No one works 9 – 5 in an office, and if you understand the value of building your personal network of fellow personal chefs, then you know the opportunity to connect with them anytime, anywhere is important. Trying to remember that piece of advice someone gave you as you stand in a client’s kitchen? Don’t write it down and remember to send the question a few days later. Pick up your mobile device and connect in the moment. For the National Education Conference, the app has become a powerful tool. It allows you to learn about every program, see the schedule, develop your own mobile schedule of classes and even download the presenters’ presentations and recipes. Once you download you can print, save them to another folder (for me it is usually Dropbox so I can get them anywhere or Evernote where I can make notes on the PDFs themselves). And, by the way, if you missed a class but heard great things about the recipes shared there, you can get them on the app whether you went to the class or not. If you didn’t make the conference but want to see how it looked on a mobile device, check it out. You can because you’re a USPCA member. Information about chapter meetings, members, benefits and more are pushed through to your mobile device on the Newsfeed on a judicious but practical schedule so no more waiting for emails and the magazine. You’ll know the association news when it happens. This is just year one with the app and the developers are looking to USPCA to provide them with the ideas and guidance as they bring on new clients. So expect to see much more from your membership app in the coming year.
PERSONAL CHEF MAGAZINE One major goal of the association is to make Personal Chef Magazine more content rich and more contemporary. The content part is underway, the look is coming soon. But readability is also important when you don’t have the print version at hand. We know that a plain old PDF of print material is handy but cumbersome. Personal Chef Magazine is now in a new digital format online available to members through your USPCA.com portal under Membership. The new portal allows you to flip through pages of the magazine as though you had a print version in your hand. But, better yet, since it is online in this new format you can connect directly to embedded web links and to advertisers without copying and pasting as you would in an ordinary PDF.
once in a while, ISSUU is available on the Google Play Store and is still pending for Apple and other devices. So keep your magazine with you anytime, anywhere.
NEWS WHEN YOU NEED IT Last year the association experimented with a new weekly magazine, The Weekly Skillet, to provide you with a quick summary of business and industry news you can use without having to do all the research yourself. While the idea was good, the stories were aggregated just once a week meaning a few days after it was published it was “old” news and you didn’t see anything again for another week. USPCA is parting with that publication and will be pushing members to “subscribe” to “Your Personal Chef Business”, an online magazine with articles aggregated by staff and members that is updated daily. The only trick, you need to access the Flipboard app on your mobile device (do you see a common thread here?). Your Personal Chef Business already has over 7,800 readers at this point so readers are telling us that the stories are relevant. More important, though, is that it respects the value of your time. We know your days are spent shopping, cooking, planning and somewhere in there marketing and selling. But we also know you need quick access to news and education. Your Personal Chef Business provides you with that one stop shop with new articles uploaded for you every day! Visit http://flip.it/qR5xg for details on your mobile device.
START SAVING MONEY NOW! Let’s start this with one clarifying statement: this is NOT about an affinity credit card of any type!! Last year USPCA added a new member benefit: Achievelinks. Its an online shopping portal that enables you to shop for virtually anything you need, any time, at the convenience of your computer. Through Achievelinks you access the store and any active coupons right from your desktop after logging in. Every purchase you make is eligible to earn “links” (points) that you can exchange later for other products or even your USPCA membership renewal and conference registrations. Best of all, if you have an affinity credit card that earns its own points you can use it and STILL earn both the credit card points AND the links. But there’s more…. Achievelinks has now added a new program: OnePoint for USPCA members. Why spend more on paper, office furniture or car rentals than you have to? When you register for your free OnePoint Business Purchasing Program account, you gain discounts on hundreds of items you need for your personal chef business. Use this link to register: http://bit.ly/USPCAOnePoint
And for those with Android devices who like to gloat over Apple users
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Save up to 60% on every purchase: • • • • • • • •
Office Supplies Software Printing Accounting and Payroll Services Furniture Uniforms Travel And More
The savings are significant. Plus, you’ll earn reward points on every dollar you spent. Redeem them for merchandise, travel or gift cards and even association membership and conference registrations. Think of Achievelinks as your personal shopping portal and OnePoint as your business shopping system and you gain significant savings, just by being a member of USPCA. Oh, and the programs connect so whether shopping at Office Depot with OnePoint or Chefs Catalog on Achievelinks, the points automatically combine to add to your savings. Need to make sure you’re on the system? Contact your member services director, Vince Likar at 1-800-995-2138 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
BUSINESS EDUCATION WHEN YOU NEED IT Once again, recognizing that USPCA members spend more time away from home than in their home, we want to help you make your home time more valuable. At this writing 10 USPCA members are wrapping up a beta test with a new learning platform called Grovo. Grovo offers over 4,500 bit-size videos and assessments with the most up-to-date training on a variety of business topics like social media essentials, project management, online marketing tools and techniques and professional skills and best practices among a plethora a topics to help make your business a success. Based on the feedback from the beta group, USPCA will be making affordable, discounted licenses to Grovo available to USPCA members and it will include not only the vast library of Grovo content, but programs developed specifically for USPCA members. What makes Grovo unique is its ability to condense learning and assessments into a time that fits your busy schedules. In the comfort of your home (or even between courses with a client!!) you can catch up on the latest learning topics helping your business with a class assessment to be sure you fully understand the elements of the class to apply to your business. Watch for the formal launch of Grovo, probably by the time this magazine has reached your desk!
MEMBERSHIP FORUM It’s an innocuous little button on the upper right of your USPCA.com home screen, but logging into it takes you to a tool that is among the most valuable tools you can have as a personal chef – access to your fellow members and professionals with the information you need.
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The Member Forum, formerly known as the Member Board, has been off line a while as it was re-tooled. One of the big functions of the forum was access to recipes and that is being restored. But in doing that, USPCA recognized that the forum needed to be more for members. It’s a one-stop location to get answers to pressing questions. So, with the development of the new board, members and other experts have agreed to serve as forum moderators to help you. Stuck with a specific question? Make sure to check the USPCA Member Forum on the home page of the USPCA.com website.
COACHING AND SUPPORT Whether you are just becoming a personal chef or even a chef with a wealth of experience, everyone experiences a moment when their business needs a boost. Often we can determine where the gap is and fix it ourselves (using other tools provided by USPCA). But sometimes going it alone makes no sense at all. That’s where a USPCA coach comes in. For newer members who are still struggling with a 5x4 or 4x6 service or the elements of a personal chef kit, contract questions and more, USPCA has teamed with Tailored Taste Personal Chef Coaching to support you with one on one growth sessions. Sessions are offered by Chef Monica Thomas in hour-long or eight-hour segments. At the same time, we know that even “seasoned” members have those moments where business growth opportunities seem clear but the path to get there isn’t. Similarly, USPCA has teamed with Savor Culinary Services to offer similar coaching services to the experienced chef. Recognizing that there a host of different growth initiatives that take a different way of thinking, Chef Deb Cantrell is offering her services through USPCA to coach members to take their business to a new level they never experienced before with the balance they need to make it count. Not sure about how your image or brand works in the market? Don’t worry. Working with Barcellona, Inc., you’ll have an opportunity to explore your business through the lens of an independent branding and advertising specialist As a personal chef your competition isn’t just the other personal chefs in your area. Its every provider of food service and you need to create a brand and image that helps you stand out among the cacophony of advertising noise. Chef Rochelle Barcellona has the experience and expertise to help your personal chef service stand out not just in your market but in the industry as a whole. Look at the USPCA.com home page or contact member services director Vice Likar for more details at 800-995-2138 or vlikar@uspca. com.
INSURANCE SECURES YOU AND YOUR BUSINESS THROUGH USPCA
Philadelphia Chapter Helps Gift of Life House
The Gift of Life House offers their guests (transplant patients and their families) a hot dinner every evening and brunch on weekends. Missy Gurmankin, the Philly Chapter president, got involved by helping to plan the GOL house kitchen and a manual for their volunteers. She started cooking there when it first opened. They named the program “Home Cook Heroes”.
Your clients recognize you for your credibility as a chef but they also want to know that you have the legal support to offset the accidents that sometimes happen in the home. When you’re cooking in someone else’s home USPCA has you covered with an umbrella liability insurance policy. Over the past two years the association has expanded your liability coverage and it now includes: • • • • •
The authorization to USPCA to extend coverage to members in good standing. $1,000,000 (One million dollar) General Liability coverage per occurrence. This includes property damage and bodily injury. The policy includes a $10,000 sublimit for objects in the care, custody and control of the chef. This policy has a $3,000,000 aggregate annual limit. A $500 deductible applies to each claim. $1,000,000 (One million dollar) Professional Liability coverage per occurrence. This policy has a $3,000,000 aggregate annual limit. A $1000 deductible applies to each claim. This coverage applies to situations where the Personal Chef is conducting his/her service at the client’s home. Accidental damage or injury to the client’s property or person as a direct result of the Personal Chef’s actions are covered.
Obviously this is a short version of a very long policy. In short, it covers what happens in your client’s home. It wouldn’t cover, for example, a traffic accident while driving to a client’s home. It also doesn’t cover commercial kitchens, a program the association is working on but would take an entire magazine issue to explain. Feel free to note to your clients that you are insured through your membership in the United States Personal Chef Association. If you need a copy of the insurance certificate for a client or have additional questions about coverage, feel free to call the USPCA member services director, Vince Likar, at 1-800-995-2138 or reach him via email at email@example.com. HEALTH INSURANCE Confused by everything about the Affordable Care Act? You’re not alone. But USPCA has an answer. Working with the American Health Insurance Exchange, USPCA is able to offer members a variety of choices for their health insurance both on the exchanges and off the exchanges. The experts at AHIX can help you wind your way through the Affordable Care Act to determine what is best for you and offer more plans and more choices. Visit the Health Insurance link on the Membership Tab of the USPCA. com website to learn more today about how you can insure your health and your peace of mind.
The house has a beautiful and well equipped kitchen and Missy thought that it would be a great place for the Philadelphia Chapter to volunteer as well. She cooks there with family and friends on a fairly regular basis and the Philly chapter has cooked dinners and brunches many times in the past four years. These are photos of the chapter’s last visit on Sunday, May 4th. Lisa Cifelli from the NJ Chapter was there to lend a hand as well. The menu they prepared included a Green Chili Frittata Spinach and Parmesan Soufflé, Oven Roasted Herb Potatoes, French Toast Casserole, Zucchini Muffins and more. The Gift Of Life Family House is located at 401 Callowhill St., Philadelphia. PA 19123 http://www.giftoflifefamilyhouse.org/ Since the GOL Family House was literally located one block from Missy’s home, she hosted a cooking class the same day. It was one of the chapters more casual affairs. It was a collaborative effort in that each chef prepared one item each. The theme was International Tapas. Chris Welsh prepared the Spanakopita cups, Adela Flynn prepared Chorizo with Pan Fried Crouton Kabobs, and Missy Gurmankin prepared Shrimp Summer Rolls with a Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce. They washed everything down with fresh Minty, Lime Mojitos!
Minty Lime Mojitos 10 fresh mint leaves 1/2 lime, cut into 4 wedges 2 tablespoons white sugar, or to taste 1 cup ice cubes 1 1/2 fluid ounces white rum 1/2 cup club soda Place mint leaves and 1 lime wedge into a sturdy glass. Use a muddler to crush the mint and lime to release the mint oils and lime juice. Add 2 more lime wedges and the sugar, and muddle again to release the lime juice. Do not strain the mixture. Fill the glass almost to the top with ice. Pour the rum over the ice, and fill the glass with carbonated water. Stir, taste, and add more sugar if desired. Garnish with the remaining lime wedge. Makes one Mojito
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USPCA GOES HIGH
Over the past year the association has touted its new member app with the largest functionality supporting this summer’s conference. So, of those in attendance, how did adoption go? Quite well!
109 new users logged into the app during the conference, 67 on Apple devices and 42 on Androids (yes, attendance went up this year – more on that in our Fall issue.)
The app was used to manage 258 sessions for 131 hours of total use time.
The average time used per member is 30.47 minutes.
There were 22,170 screen views and of those 3,455 were people connecting, 3,255 uses of the appbased schedule and 4,350 used the newsfeeds.
Total sessions (times visiting the app) were 4669!
150 people connected with each other in the app and of those, 25 connected on Linkedin, 17 connected on Twitter, 63 people saved connections to their phone and 45 connected via email.
Change is hard but we heard a great quote just yesterday: If you don’t like change, you’re going to hate extinction! Keep your association connections handy. Sign on to your USPCA member app today. Visit the Apple Store or Google Play store and download yours today! 10 | Personal Chef
s i d o o CE g t AN a WhSUR ay? IN anyw
Insurance is generally seen by most business owners as a necessary evil. We generally only get insurance when someone requires it of us or simply because it is the status quo. Insurance is seen as basically just one more overhead expense that we have so we can do business with some entity that requires it. So what good is insurance anyway? We have seen many incidents happen to very capable chefs over the years. One such incident happened in which a chef filled up a large pot with water on their client’s water faucet over the back of the stove. The chef turned the water faucet off, but the nozzle continued to drip. Naturally, the chef turned the handle more to try to turn the water off. After a couple more turns, the nozzle popped off and water shot out like a fire hose, flooding the kitchen and surrounding rooms. The emergency work of a plumber and a water cleanup company cost the insurance company a few thousand dollars. This claim could have been much worse! In another incident, a chef was using a portable grill at their client’s home when the heat of the grill caused the counter top to crack. The counter top had to be replaced and the insurance company paid out thousands. Having to pay for these claims “out of pocket” could be devastating to the chef’s business. We may believe that nothing like this could happen to us ... and we may be lucky enough to never have to deal with it. But are we willing to bet our business on that belief? That is basically what happens when we don’t insure our assets and cover ourselves correctly. The above incidents are examples of General Liability claims. General Liability insurance is the policy that covers your business in the event that damage is done or injury is caused due to the chef’s negligence. For this reason, this is the most commonly “required” policy by clients, event hosts and others.
Many members are expanding their business horizons to include in-home catering, the use of commercial facilities and other culinary related opportunities. Chefs also grow their businesses by adding employees, adding property/equipment, taking on larger events and by simply growing. Generally when this happens, the chef will need to procure other types of insurance to protect themselves from loss. When a chef’s activities extend beyond the coverage of the association’s policy, it is sometimes important to get a General Liability policy specifically catered to chef’s business. General Liability for smaller businesses is generally purchased as a Business Owners policy or BOP as it is commonly referred. The BOP is a policy that packages a number of useful coverages together for small businesses. The General Liability policy does not cover damage to the chef’s property (e.g., cooking utensils) nor injury to the chef or the chef’s employees. There are other coverages available to provide replacement of property that is destroyed or stolen as well as coverage for injury to the chef and/ or the chef’s employees. Property coverage and Inland Marine coverages are available to cover the chef’s property and equipment and can generally be included in the BOP. Workers Compensation coverage would be a separate policy and covers injury to the chef and/or the chef’s employees. Because there are so many coverages to consider, it would be wise to discuss your main concerns with an insurance agent so they can advise you on which coverages to carry to best protect your assets and your business! For more information, please contact Jason Sisk with Commercial West Insurance Agency. Jason has worked with the Association for many years and is very knowledgeable when it comes to insuring chefs of all types. Call 505-255-9577 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
‘Feed My Sheep’: Kevin And Judy Jamieson Serving Up Their Faith At Brewster Baptist Church By Greg O’Brien Piece of cake, right? Well, not exactly. There’s much, much more to it than Kevin and Judy Jamieson would concede. How about some Lump Crab Cakes with Pepper Coulis, Seared Sea Scallops, served on fresh greens, dusted with Organic Sea-Green Rub, drizzled with Ginger Balsamic Glaze, or an assortment of shellfish as fresh as the tides, perhaps a Fresh Blue Cheese Fig wrapped with Prosciutto? For an entrée you can’t beat the Country Paella with New England scallops, little necks, mussels, Chatham cod, shrimp and Italian Sausage, or the Pork Tenderloin Stuffed with cranberries, apricots, pine nuts and goat cheese, or the Hoison Glazed Swordfish Kebobs with Bell Peppers and Onions—all served with home-grown vegetables, salads and starch recipes too difficult to spell. And for dessert, yes there’s cake, but also Chocolate Mousse with Crème Chantilly, Lemon Ricotta with Fresh Medley Berry Compote, and Chocolate Soufflé with Crème Anglais. Now is there anything else we can get for you, maybe a pig roast or directions to Willy’s Gym or Fitness Revolutions? With the Jamiesons of Brewster—owners and operators of Cape Cod Chef On Call and hosts of Brewster Baptist Church’s Summer Breakfast between services and the Fall Harvest Dinner—the world here is truly your oyster. Cape Cod Chef On Call, founded in 1999, offers private intimate dining, weddings, rehearsal dinners, clambakes and backyard grills at homes, country clubs or function venues, all serving off an eclectic menu to order. Their chefs, including Kevin Jamieson, have cooked for five-star restaurants, celebrities and captains of industry. Cape Cod Chef On Call has served a vacationing Nobel Prize winner (the scientist who discovered a hole in the Ozone layer over Mexico City), as well as the owners and CEOs of social media dating giant Match.com, & Multiply.com, the Asian, India, Australia equivalent to Facebook, and other firms of renown. What’s best about all this is that you get to saddle up gratis on Sundays for their cooking. The Jamiesons donate their time and resources to BBC’s Second Annual Summer Breakfast served between the 8:30 am and 11 am services with a menu of pancakes, eggs, sausage and freshly baked oatmeal, cranberry orange and banana nut breads. There is no charge, although donations are most welcome. Chefs-in-training from Johnson & Wales culinary schools in Providence assist with the cooking. And for fine church dining, pencil in the Harvest Dinner on September 28—this year a planned pig roast, so be sure at least to enter the August Brew Run. The Jamiesons’, married 15 years, have been attending Brewster Baptist Church for six years, becoming church members about a month ago, answering a call of the heart. “I was in a quest to change my life,” says Judy, who has a professional hospitality background and has worked in the kitchens of Chatham Bars Inn, Ocean Edge and was director of tourism for the City of New Bedford. “I was looking for a personal relationship with Jesus, and wanted to become a good solid Christian. Kevin told me to go out and find a church, and that he’d follow.” With the help of a good friend, the couple discovered BBC, and now the Jamiesons’ worship as a family with their treasured young adult daughter Aimee, who has Down Syndrome. They say they were attracted to Brewster Baptist for its Christ-centered spirit and its generous community outreach. Both washashores, Kevin raised in Southern Maryland and Judy born and raised in Washington, DC, met on the Cape. Kevin started coming here before high school, working summers at his grandparents’ Chatham restaurants: the Captains’ Table, Wayside Inn and Haven’s Market. After honing his skills, Kevin was hired years later to cook at L’Auberge Chez Francois, a renowned Washington, D.C. restaurant in the Alsatian tradition—German entrees in winter, French in summer. He then cooked at a fine dining restaurant, The Nicholas, about a block from the White House. From there, he ran a 28-acre farm kitchen, Evans Farm in McLean, Va. “where we smoked seafood, game and hams, raised all vegetables for the restaurant, quails for eggs, pigs for slaughter and chickens to roost.” “I came back to the Cape to see the beach, and I’ve hardly seen it,” he adds, pleased, however, to be operating with his wife a highly successful catering business (www.capecodchefoncall.com). All of us, beyond measure, are pleased that Kevin followed Judy here. Praise the Lord, and pass the condiments!
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‘Geekette’ Chef Serves Up Fantasy Food Jen Sternfeld, CPC, Dinner Vacations, Schenectady, NY Before I even knew what a personal chef was, I was a geekette (female geek or nerd) who was interested in food. I was always the one to make or organize the food for my gaming group, or at least order the takeout. In 1995, this became my “official” charitable/ volunteer life. That was the year the science fiction and fantasy literature/literacy group in our area decided to resurrect the sci-fi con that had existed back in the 1970’s locally. Being active in the group I was quickly recruited to help. First off I was working in the gaming area, but it was discovered that I had a way with food and organization so I became a worker in the Green Room. This is the area that feeds all the workers, and sometimes the special guests of the convention. At smaller cons it is often under-funded, and always chaotic with folks rushing in to eat before hurrying to other duties. Special guests are often famous, and can have odd requests like specific scotch for a late evening party or a special diet that they expect will be handled (even without mentioning it before they arrive). Sounds like something a personal chef could handle doesn’t it? Fast forward several years. In January 2001, I became a personal chef. I also did the promotion for our local convention at the World Con in Philadelphia that September. I made over 2000 chocolate aliens, and untold batches of my brownies all labeled with our info and given out at our promo party. They were more of a hit than the free booze we also provided!
Our local convention gained momentum, and several folks in the group decided to aim bigger. We bid on and won the right to host the World Fantasy Convention in 2007. This is a more modest convention than the 2 to 4 thousand folks that attend a World Con, coming in at about 900 that year. I was in charge of all the food as Hospitality Director. The attendees raved about the food, and the next year’s con committee asked me if I could do it again in Calgary, AB the following year. Not having the same sort of contacts that far away, I gave them the name of a personal chef in the area. Yeah USPCA, Conference and Hire-A-Chef for letting me get to know folks all over so I could!!! Just in case you are starting to think I am crazy, I will mention that I don’t cook most of the food, just the brownies these days. Most of my work is now organization, planning a banquet or two, making lots of deli platters, wrangling caterers and ordering the snacks and beverages that all these people will consume in a long weekend. I’ve been doing our local convention for almost twenty years now. I was also honored to be part of the official list of “requirements” for the 2015 World Fantasy bid. So yes, I will be handling another large con next year. Food safety and special diets have become much more critical since I started working on these conventions long ago. I’m always happy to have a hand with one of these, and I know a USPCA personal chef can handle anything! I am hosting the 2015 promo party at the 2014 World Fantasy in Arlington, VA this fall if any DC area chefs are intrigued by my tale too.
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Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Carrots, & Corn Have you ever thought while sitting in that first interview with a client, “How long is this going to last”? I never really did. This past December while cooking for my client K, I thought about how long I have cooked for him. 20 meals per service, 180 services, 3600 meals, 15 years, and $54,000 is what this one client has meant to me. Without knowing it, you become an integral, if invisible, part of each other’s lives. K was a referral from another client, so I didn’t even do an in-home interview. I met him once, 15 years ago, to get a key and haven’t personally met with him since. I am not sure we would recognize each other if we met in the grocery store. His first apartment was a second-story walk-up. Then he moved to a third floor apartment with an elevator. And about 8 years ago he moved into a single-family home. He has eaten the same vegetables -- broccoli, Brussels sprouts, carrots, cauliflower, and corn -- for each of his services. And unlike most of my clients, his menu (4 x 5) has pretty much been the same as when I started cooking for him as well. He changes an entrée about once a year, but is happy with the consistency from month to month. Next time, before you sit down with that new client for the first interview, think (consider?) is there anything I might do differently if I planned on this being a long-time commitment. Linda Page, A Chef Of Your Own, Active member since 1995
Personal Chef | Chef 14 14 | Personal
Chef Jill Shares Business Tips Jill Evens, Jill’s Healthy Cooking, Lake Worth, FL
I have had my Personal Chef business Jill’s Healthy Cooking for eight years now, and I have to say that each year gets better and better. I never dreamed that cooking for my clients would have such a dramatic effect on their daily lives and truly has become a service they find is well worth the price. I remember being at the Culinary Business Academy and our instructor asked us what we would be happy charging for our service each day and I asked myself over and over, would anyone really pay me that much just to cook for them? I was doing what I love and being paid for that was just a dream come true. It took time to realize that what I had to offer them was not just the meal, it was the convenience of them opening their refrigerator and having well thought out complete healthy meals ready to just heat and eat. It eliminated conversations deciding what to eat that night or what restaurant to order out from. It gave peace of mind to a working mother that their children could come home from school and eat wholesome delicious foods instead of snacking on cookies and frozen pizza. After owning a restaurant for eight years and working from 7am till midnight six days a week, becoming a Personal Chef was the best decision I ever made. It gave me the ability to still cook and have the time and energy to balance my own life. Being a twenty-nine year Colon Cancer survivor, I know how important it is to be able to have the time to prepare fresh foods that feed your body with nutrients each and every day. I can now share with my clients the joy of eating fresh whole foods prepared with spices that also have tremendous healing powers. Finding recipes that have an interesting twist or putting zucchini through my new Borner shredder that turns zucchini into long strands of spaghetti, excites my clients and keeps my service new and fresh.
r, spending less money and the stress associated with shopping, planning and ely preparing meals is complet gone.“ “We are eating healthie
- A satisfied client
With each year that passes, I have learned how to make my work day more efficient. I found that bringing my large non-stick electric fry pan has cut my cook time down tremendously. I can prepare large quantities of chicken, fish, meat or vegetables in minutes. It is also is a cinch to clean up and gives you extra burners to use at the same time you are using your fry pan. I also sing praises to my electric pressure cooker for briskets and stews and my handy rice cooker. These three appliances are my very favorites and are worth their weight in gold. I believe that part of the success of my business, is always working on improving business, changing menu options, presentations, photographing my most impressive dishes and trying new and healthy recipes. Give your client the unexpected. Instead of just wrapping up some leftover celery, I filled some celery sticks with some almond butter that I found in the pantry and that has now become a favorite after school snack. For a surprise last week, I tried out some gluten free brownies which were a bit hit and the children were delighted… After attending the Culinary Business Academy in Atlanta years ago, I tried cooking and freezing meals and having many clients to fill the month, but that really did not work well for me. The clients I had did not want to defrost frozen meals even though they were delicious and carefully wrapped and labeled. I eventually changed my business only offering fresh meals that could be reheated during the week.
I usually make a big beautiful fresh salad, cut up fruit and veggies for snacking, make a fresh soup and five dinners or grab and go meals like burritos or quesadillas for the kids on the go or the parents who are running around. This has helped them from driving through the fast food restaurants and everyone feels well nourished. I only take on five clients at a time and that fluctuates from time to time. My clients have become extended family members and I give gratitude each and every day that I have a business that I absolutely love. I really believe if you love what you do, you will put love into the food you create, and your clients can feel it. Personal Chef | 15
Seafood: Buying Quality and Sustainable Seafood By Chef Catherine Richey You go to the grocery store with the goal to have healthy seafood for dinner. The fish behind the counter came from Asia. What’s your first reaction? Honestly, for a really long time I immediately had a flashback of some horrid news clip I saw, probably over 10 years ago but seems like it was yesterday, of sick, dying fish in small, contaminated ponds that were being shipped off to the U.S. for our consumption. How DO you get over that awful image? Educate yourself on what’s happening NOW and do your best to get rid of past, outdated knowledge lingering in your brain. While I was at the USPCA conference last week I attended a session led by Steve Wilson, Assistant Director of NOAA Quality and Technology. Two years ago at the Personal Chef Conference I had attended a session by NOAA, but we live in a rapidly changing world and I was eager to learn the latest information. I prepare seafood for clients on a daily, sometimes twice daily, basis. I need to know that I’m feeding my clients the best quality seafood I can find. So, what was one of the first things Mr. Wilson addressed? He discussed that very fear we have of the health and quality of the fish being imported from outside the United States. The bottom line: Aquaculture (breeding, rearing, and harvesting of seafood) in Asia is being well managed and is very clean. The seafood is inspected and the fish we receive in the U.S. is safe to eat. Seafood is one of the most traded commodities in the world. These were some interesting numbers I jotted down: • •
91% of all the fish we consume in the U.S. is imported. 60% of all the fish we consume is farm-raised. Wild caught fish just can’t keep up with the demands of seafood consumption. Demand FAR outweighs supply. Aquaculture is the fastest growing form of food production. 98% of the shrimp we consume is imported.
Last night I spent time learning about sourcing of seafood and I’m still ready to learn more. Learn more about where our fish comes from at FishWatch (http://www.fishwatch.gov/index.htm). This is a very thorough website. Let’s get back to the fish counter…. The staff at my grocery store know me. I’m in there 2-3 times a day shopping for clients and my family. I always walk into the store knowing what I want, but chances are, I’ll be making a substitution once I ask: • • •
When did you defrost this fish? When did this fish come in? Can I smell it?
Actually, I don’t even have to ask to smell it anymore. They see me coming, with a big, friendly smile on my face. (being grumpy and troublesome isn’t going to get you places, folks. I’ll blog about THAT one day!) They often go directly to the walk-in to get me the freshest possible offering that will work in the dish I’m making. In exchange, I know all about them as people outside
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their job, treat them with the respect they deserve, and honor the knowledge they hold that I don’t. And they shake their head at me silently when I’m asking for something THEY wouldn’t want to cook and eat. My favorite way to purchase seafood is WHOLE. This way I get the WHOLE picture. I choose to purchase my fish as often as possible from Groomer’s Seafood (http://www.groomerseafood.com/). They are located across from the airport, have a constant supply of the very freshest seafood flown in daily and I know I’m getting the very best quality seafood that has been minimally handled. If buying whole seafood frightens you, don’t let it! You can inspect the whole fish and then say, “Please gut and scale it for me and break it down into “x” amount of fillets.” What to look for in Quality Seafood: • Flesh is firm and resilient • Skin is shiny • Gills are blood red • Eyes are bright and clear • Scales adhere closely to the skin and are intact • Odors are pleasant and minimal Fish that is frozen at sea is a GREAT choice if you don’t live on the coast. These fish are caught, processed, and rapidly frozen at sea, making them “fresher,” in the long haul, than the raw fish as they are waiting to be processed and sold. NOAA will be adding a “sensory” chart in the next few months to help consumers choose the best quality seafood. I’m anxious to take a look at that. Most of us know that any ammonia smell means the fish is decaying and you should STAY AWAY from that fish. I learned from Mr. Wilson that Tuna and Mahi Mahi give off a watermelon/fruity smell as they decay. In addition to looking for the best quality of seafood, you should also be aware of the sustainability of your selection. I’m always telling my kids, Be Kind to Mother Earth! I encourage you to download a handy pocket guide to make ocean-friendly seafood choices through the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch (http://seafoodwatch.org/cr/ cr_seafoodwatch/download.aspx) Program. They also have apps for phones that will keep you paper-free. Happy eating! Chef Catherine Richey is a regular blogger at myblog.lavishtolitebites.com and a USPCA member personal chef.
Self-Published Cookbook a Gift for Clients By Chef Jen Switzer I self-published my first cookbook! I relocated in 2014 to Vero Beach FL from Virginia Beach, VA. As I was sadly saying good-bye to my wonderful clients in Virginia Beach, I was overwhelmed by the requests for their favorite recipes so they could continue to have some of their favorite dishes in the future. I decided that it would be a fun and rewarding opportunity to put together a collection of these recipes and publish them as a memento and resource for my clients and friends that supported my business during my time in Virginia Beach. In the search for a good method to do this professional manner, I found createspace.com and found it very easy to use! The first edition of Exclusively for You...Virginia Beach was published in both paperback and for Kindle in April 2014! I received the first delivery of the paperback copies in Florida just this week. I am blessed to have had the opportunity to work with wonderful clients during my first 2 years as a personal chef and it felt great to be able to give something back to them in the form of this recipe collection. They also have given me the inspiration and courage to start over in Vero Beach and built a base of clients that are as awesome as those that I had in Virginia Beach. My recipe collection can be found at www.Amazon.com One of my personal favorite recipes and one of my most requested recipes is for my “House” salad. This salad has become a family favorite. I often pair it with a pistachio Basil Salmon which can be served on top hot or cold.
Jen’s House Salad 1 (5-oz) box mixed salad greens or mixed greens 1 package of black berries 1/3 cup thinly sliced shallots 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese ½ cup candied pecans Dressing 2 ½ tablespoons crème fraîche 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 1 teaspoon honey 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar 1 small shallot, minced 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste 1/2 teaspoon white pepper, or to taste 1 teaspoon Dijon style mustard To make the dressing, combine all of the ingredients in a large measuring cup or other container. Blend with an immersion blender Place the greens on 4 plates and top with berries. Sprinkle shallot, cheese and nuts on top. Drizzle salad dressing over salad. Serve immediately. Kitchen tip: I often put together salad kits for my clients as part of their service. To make salads last longer, package the dressing and the feta cheese in individual 2 oz. portion cups covered with lids. Pack the salad in the bottom of a large container and top with the nuts and berries. Snuggle the dressing and feta containers in with the salad, cover and you are ready to go!
Dressing adapted from The Sprouted Kitchen: A Tastier Take on Whole Foods by Sara Forte
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In this Summer 2014 edition of Personal Chef Magazine, fellow Personal Chefs share some of their favorites. Add some variety to your clients’ meals with these great seasonal recipes.
Thai High BBQ Shrimp
Here are some of my favorite BBQ recipes. Growing up my Mother always made her own BBQ sauce. She made it with sautéed onions, ketchup, brown sugar and vinegar. I grew up with always associating “sweet” with BBQ and to be honest, never really liked it. My tastes are completely opposite. I like spicy. So it was with great pleasure that I eventually came across Hugh Carpenters cookbooks. My first cookbook with him was from 1990 and called “Chopstix”. After trying out and loving the recipes in this book, I then purchased many others from him. These recipes are all from his Hot Barbecue cookbook. The internal cooking temperatures have been changed to meet the Canadian standard cooking temperatures set by the National Food Safety Training Program.
Chef Robyn Goorevitch, Dining In Chez Vous, Toronto, ON
Chef Robyn Goorevitch, Dining In Chez Vous, Toronto, ON 2 pounds large raw shrimp, about 40 (I use size 16 – 20’s) Lime slices for garnish (optional) Thai High Marinade 6 cloves fresh garlic, minced 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced 4 whole Serrano pepper, minced, including seeds 2 whole green onion, minced 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, minced 1 tablespoon lime zest 1/4 cup fresh lime juice 1/4 cup hoisin sauce 1/4 cup red wine vinegar 1/4 cup fish sauce 1/4 cup honey 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce 2 tablespoons cooking oil Advance Preparation: Using scissors, cut the shrimp shells along the back. Cut deeply into the shrimp then rinse away the veins. Cover and refrigerate the shrimp. In a small bowl, combine all the marinade ingredients and stir well. If not using right away, cover and refrigerate. All advance prep may be completed up to 8 hours before you begin final steps. When you are ready to grill or oven roast, marinate shrimp for at least 30 minutes prior to cooking. Soak skewers and skewer shrimp. Place in marinade. To Grill: Preheat grill to 350 F or medium. Brush cooking rack with oil then lay the shrimp on the grill or on a grill screen. Grill the shrimp on both sides until they are evenly pink on the outside and white throughout, about 4 minutes total cooking time. As the shrimp cooks, brush on the marinade. The shrimp are done when they reach 158 F / 70 C. To Serve: Transfer the shrimp to a heated serving platter or heated dinner plates, garnish with lime slices and serve at once.
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Ingredients 2 frying chickens, cut into pieces Flavourless cooking oil to brush on the cooking rack 1 whole nutmeg Moroccan Lemon Marinade 2 tablespoons lemon zest 1 cup fresh lemon juice 1/2 cup olive oil 1/2 cup honey 2 teaspoons ground coriander seeds 2 teaspoons ground cumin 2 teaspoons sweet paprika 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper 1 teaspoon salt 1/4 cup fresh ginger, minced 8 cloves garlic, minced 1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped Combine the marinade ingredients and mix well. Add the marinade to the chicken and coat the pieces evenly. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 8 hours. Set grill to 350 F. Lay chicken skin side up in centre of grill and close lid. Grill for about 12 minutes on each side. The chicken is done when it reaches an internal temperature of 165 F/74 C. As the chicken cooks, brush on the remaining marinade. To Serve: Transfer the chicken to a heated serving platter or 4 heated dinner plates. Using a nutmeg grater ( or cheese grater), grate a light dusting of fresh nutmeg over the chicken. Serve at once.
Pork Chops with Ancho Jam Rub Chef Robyn Goorevitch, Dining In Chez Vous, Toronto, ON Ingredients: 4 pork chops, double thick 2 ears white corn kernels, kernels removed 1/2 cup cilantro 1/2 cup chicken stock 1 teaspoon cornstarch 1/2 teaspoon salt Flavourless cooking oil to brush on the grill 1/2 cup crème fraîche or sour cream Ancho Jam Rub
1/4 pound Ancho chilis 5 cloves garlic 1 small shallot 3 tablespoons red currant jelly 2 tablespoons honey 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon clove 1/4 teaspoon allspice Trim excess fat from sides of pork chops. Place meat in non-reactive container. In separate bowls, set aside the corn and cilantro roughly chopped. In a small bowl, combine chicken stock, cornstarch and salt. Prepare Ancho jam rub: Pour boiling water over chilis and soak for 30 minutes. Then drain. Place chilis in food processor with metal blade. Add remaining ingredients and blend. Rub all but 1/4 cup over chops and refrigerate for 8 hours. Stir remaining quarter cup into chicken stock. Preheat grill to 350 F. Grill chops with lid closed for about 20 minutes or until they reach an internal temperature of 158 F/70 C - slightly brown on outside but still slightly pink on inside. To serve: Heat corn in pot with oil. Sauté for 30 seconds. Add cilantro and chicken stock mixture and bring to low boil. Pour over chops.
BBQ Baby Back Pork Ribs – Love at First Bite Chef Garbo Years ago I seduced my then fiancé over a rack of ribs. Yup, I wore my food and it was love at first bite for him, regarding me. You can’t be too polite when it comes to eating bone suck’n ribs. You have to dive right in with gusto, and if it means getting the sauce on your face and in your hair, then so be it. I love ribs and I don’t mind wearing them either! You see, BBQ ribs are a thing of passion for many folks, especially when it comes to the method in which they are prepared. I believe that pork ribs are best cooked low and slow so that the connective tissues break down and the fat is rendered. This technique delivers a tender, fall off the bone rib that melts in your mouth. A spice rub is the Pièce de résistance when it comes to succulent deliciousness. I have won my clients over with the below BBQ Baby Back Pork Rib recipe that is marinated in a spice rub and cooked in the oven low and slow for 3 hours and is finished on the grill. It’s the perfect “set it and forget it” meal that freezes well too! Servings: 6 FOR THE SAUCE 1 tablespoon(s) vegetable oil 2 medium green onions, chopped 2 cup(s) white onions, chopped 8 large garlic, cloves, chopped 2 cup(s) brown sugar, packed, golden brown sugar 1 cup(s) ketchup 1 cup(s) tomato paste, 9 oz can 1 cup(s) mustard, yellow ball park 1 cup(s) water
1/2 cup(s) Worcestershire sauce 1/2 cup(s) apple cider vinegar 1/2 cup(s) apple juice 1 large ancho chile, dried, stemmed, seeded, cut into small pieces 1 tablespoon(s) cumin, ground 1/2 cup(s) bourbon whiskey FOR THE SPICE RUB AND RIBS 2 tablespoon(s) cumin, ground 1 tablespoon(s) chili powder 1 tablespoon(s) mustard, dry 1 tablespoon(s) salt, coarse 1 1/2 teaspoon(s) cayenne 1 1/2 teaspoon(s) cardamom, ground 1 1/2 teaspoon(s) cinnamon, ground 6 pound(s) pork ribs, baby back DIRECTIONS FOR SAUCE: Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-low heat. Add green onions, white onions and garlic and sauté until tender, about 15 minutes. Mix in all remaining ingredients, adding bourbon last. Simmer sauce until thick and reduced to 7 cups, stirring occasionally, about 1 hour. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Sauce can be prepared 2 weeks ahead. Cover and refrigerate.) DIRECTIONS FOR SPICE RUB AND RIBS: Mix first 7 ingredients in medium bowl. Rub spice mixture over both sides of rib racks. Arrange ribs on large baking sheet. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Slow cook ribs in 325 degree oven for 3 1/2 hours until meat falls off the bones. Prepare barbecue or broiler (medium heat). Cut rib racks into 4- to 6-rib sections. Brush a little BBQ sauce on ribs to cover both sides. Arrange ribs on barbecue or under broiler. Grill until meat is just heated through without burning the BBQ sauce, occasionally turning ribs with tongs, about 5 minute per side. Using tongs, transfer ribs to work surface. Cut rib sections between bones into individual ribs. Arrange on clean baking sheet. Transfer 3 cups sauce to small bowl; place remaining sauce in small saucepan and reserve. Brush ribs with sauce from bowl. Return ribs to barbecue. Place pan of reserved sauce at edge of barbecue to rewarm. Grill ribs until brown and crisp on edges, brushing with more sauce from bowl and turning occasionally, about 10 minutes. Serve ribs with warm sauce. Cooks Note: To save time, you can purchase your favorite BBQ Sauce. I recommend “Bone Suckin’ Sauce” that you can purchase at Whole Foods that really compliments these ribs well.
Southwestern Summer Salad Lisa Minelli-Endlich, Finally Food and Fitness, Pottstown, PA 1lb bag frozen corn kernels 1 red and 1 green bell pepper, diced 1 large or 2 medium tomatoes, chopped 4 green onions, chopped 1 red onion diced 1 avocado, chopped (optional) 2 Tb chopped fresh parsley 2 Tb chopped fresh cilantro
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1 Tb jalapeno or other chile pepper 1 clove garlic minced Juice from 2 limes 1 tbsp. cold pressed neutral tasting oil, such as olive or flax (optional) Salt and pepper to taste Preparation: Combine all of the ingredients, and gently toss with lime juice, oil and a dash of sea salt, combining well. Best served after the ingredients have chilled together for at least one hour, to allow the flavors to mingle. Gently toss again, just before serving.
Waldorf Salad with Lemon Yogurt Dressing
potatoes into 1-inch pieces. Add potatoes to pan; cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-high; cook 5 minutes or until tender. Drain. 2. Whisk together olive oil, lemon rind, lemon juice, Dijon, and pepper in a bowl. Stir in arugula, Kalamata olives, parsley, basil, and chives. Add drained potatoes; toss gently to coat. from Laura Zapalowski, Cooking Light
Black Pepper Pasta Salad with Prosciutto, Asparagus, and Romano This pasta salad veers from the traditional with salty Italian ham, nutty asparagus, and a generous grinding of pepper.
A light and refreshingly crunchy salad coated in lemon yogurt dressing.
Lisa Minelli-Endlich, Finally Food and Fitness, Pottstown, PA
Lisa Minelli-Endlich, Finally Food and Fitness, Pottstown, PA
Makes 8 - 1 cup servings
Ingredients 8 ounces uncooked Cavatappi pasta or elbow macaroni 3 cups (1 1/2-inch) slices asparagus (about 1 pound) 1 teaspoon olive oil 2 ounces prosciutto, chopped 1/2 cup thinly sliced shallots 6 tablespoons yogurt 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper Dash of salt 1 cup diced tomato 1 1/2 ounces pecorino Romano cheese, grated (about 1/3 cup packed)
Ingredients For Lemon Yogurt Dressing: 1 container (6 ounces) non-fat yogurt ¼ cup fresh lemon juice For Waldorf Salad: 2 cups diced, unpeeled red apples 2 cups diced, unpeeled green apples ½ cup dried cranberries 2 cup chopped celery (2 cups shredded celery Root) ¼ cup finely chopped red onion 1 ounce crumbled Gorgonzola cheese ½ cup toasted, chopped pecans Preparation: Combine yogurt and vinegar in a large bowl; whisk until smooth. Stir diced apples in the dressing to coat (this will keep the apples from turning dark). Stir in cranberries, celery, onion and Gorgonzola cheese; cover and chill. To serve, sprinkle toasted pecans over salad.
Lemon-Herb Potato Salad isn’t your mother’s potato salad. Made with peppery arugula, Kalamata olives, fresh herbs, and lemon.
Preparation 1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Add asparagus during the last 2 minutes of cooking. Drain and rinse under cold water; drain. 2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil to pan, and swirl to coat. Add prosciutto, and cook for 6 minutes or until crisp, stirring occasionally. Remove prosciutto from pan using a slotted spoon, leaving drippings in pan. Drain prosciutto on paper towels. Add the shallots to drippings in pan; cook over medium heat for 1 minute or until shallots are tender, stirring frequently. 3. Combine mayonnaise, lemon rind, tarragon, juice, pepper, and salt in a large bowl; stir well. Add pasta, asparagus, three-fourths prosciutto, shallots, tomato, and cheese; toss well to coat. Top servings evenly with remaining prosciutto.
Lisa Minelli-Endlich, Finally Food and Fitness, Pottstown, PA
Courtesy of David Bonom, Cooking Light
Credit: Midwest Dairy Association
Lemon-Herb Potato Salad
3/4 pound fingerling potatoes 1 red onion diced 1 tablespoon olive oil 1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind ¼ cup lemon juice 2 teaspoon Dijon 1/4 teaspoon pepper 1/3 cup chopped arugula 2 tablespoons sliced Kalamata olives 3 tablespoon chopped parsley 3 tablespoon chopped fresh basil 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives Salt and pepper to taste Preparation 1. Place a saucepan filled two-thirds with water over high heat. Cut
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Broccoli Raisin Salad The cashew dressing is creamy, nutty and delicious and makes this broccoli salad one of the best I’ve ever had! This recipe isn’t 100% raw because it does have Dijon mustard. If you’re following a raw diet, you can tweak the recipe to your needs. Lisa Minelli-Endlich, Finally Food and Fitness, Pottstown, PA Serves: 6 6 cups broccoli (two small to medium sized crowns), chopped into bitesize pieces 1 cup raw sunflower seeds
½ cup red onion, finely chopped ½ cup raisins Cashew Dressing 1 cup raw cashews, soaked at least 1- 2 hours ⅓ cup water 1½ Tablespoons apple cider vinegar 1 Tablespoon lemon juice 1 Tablespoon maple syrup (or honey) 1 Tablespoon shallot, chopped (optional) 1 clove garlic, chopped ½ teaspoon sea salt ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard Instructions: Make dressing by combining all ingredients in a high powered blender or processor until completely smooth. Mix together broccoli, raisins, red onion, raisins, and sunflower seeds. Top with dressing and combine until all ingredients are covered. Author: Brittany Mullins
Brazilian Flank Steak with Chimichurri Sauce The first time I used my new custom grill-trailer a couple of weeks ago for a wedding, I cooked these Marinated Brazilian Flank Steaks; 17 Flank Steaks, 112 pieces of chicken and 35 pounds of veggie medley. They were amazing on a charcoal grill! Dawnelle Northcutt, Chef Dawnelle, Niceville, FL Marinade for 3-4 three pound steaks: 1 c. of Red wine vinegar 1 c. extra virgin olive oil 1/2 c. Low sodium Soy Sauce 1 T. Coriander 2 whole garlic 1 T. Sea Salt Emulsify everything together and marinade steaks for up to 48 hours in a ziplock bag turning occasionally. Grill flank steak to the desired temperature and slice thin. Serve with the Chimichurri Sauce Chimichurri Sauce EMULSIFY TOGETHER: 1/2 c. Red wine vinegar 1/2 c. Extra Virgin Olive Oil 1 whole peeled garlic 1 t Sea Salt Zest and juice of one lime STIR IN: 1 large bunch Flat Leaf Parsley; finely chopped. 1 small bunch cilantro, finely chopped ADD: Another 1/2 cup Olive Oil and stir well. Add salt as needed.
Baby Back Ribs with a Hot and Sweet Dry Rub The best recipe for Baby Back Ribs for the grill! This hot and sweet dry
rub can be used for a lot of good recipes. Carol Burns, Tastefully Done Personal Chef Service, Little River, SC 1 rack of baby back ribs Dry Rub 1 1/4 cups brown sugar 1/4 cup paprika 1/4 cup garlic powder 1/4 cup kosher salt 1/4 cup black pepper 3 tablespoons onion powder 3 tablespoons thyme 3 tablespoons oregano 3 tablespoons chili powder 1 tablespoon cayenne 1 teaspoon cinnamon Put the dry rub on the rib rack. Let seasoned rack sit in the refrigerator for 4 hours. Cook the ribs for 25 minutes on a rack in a pressure cooker with 1 cup water. Finish off on a grill for that great grill flavor. Top with your favorite BBQ sauce
Chef Michele’s Marinated Flank Steak Michele Wieser - Chef Michele, Professional Athlete Chef, Dublin, CA I have a marinated flank steak recipe that my professional boxers Amir Kahn and Andre Ward request almost every week! It gives them the iron and lean protein they need to last 12 rounds! 1-3lb flank steak 1-green onion, diced 2-cloves garlic minced 2-Tbsp grated fresh ginger 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce 3-Tbsp red wine vinegar 3-Tbsp honey 1/2 cup olive oil Combine all ingredients with the oil added last. Pour into a Ziploc bag with meat and marinade overnight. Drain and pat meat dry with paper towels. Grill on medium-high heat for approximately 6 min on each side, or until meat temperature reaches 140 degrees. Let rest for 10 min covered loosely. Slice against grain. Serve and enjoy!
Exotic Flank Steak Lean Flank Steak get the star treatment with ingredients from everywhere that are fused together in a marinade of Toasted Coconut Beer. Darnell Harness, Simply Dine, Henderson, NV Servings: 8
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Ingredients 2 pounds flank steaks 1 12 oz. Toasted Coconut Beer, (can be found at Total Wine) 1 tablespoon Chili Garlic Sauce 2 tablespoons brown sugar 1 tablespoon ginger root, peeled and minced 1 tablespoon garlic clove, minced 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar 2 teaspoons cumin, ground 2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped Directions: 1, Trim any excess fat from flank steak and set aside. 2. In a small bowl add all of the other ingredients and whisk until well combined. 3. Taste and adjust the seasoning for more heat or sweet. Once you’ve tasted the marinade you should have a lingering taste on your palate and that a good thing. 4. Place flank steak in a zip-lock or a casserole dish and pour marinate over and refrigerate for 48 hours. You’ll appreciate the tons of flavor in this steak from the extra day of marinating. 5. At this point you can grill your meat or I like to Sous Vide mine at 130 F for 36 hours and when company come over just take it out of the pouch and then finish it on a very hot grill (600 F ) for 2 minutes on each side. When you cut into it you have a perfectly cooked mediumrare Flank steak that you don’t need a knife to cut. It just pulls apart. You get the best of both worlds with nice smoky flavor and perfectly cook Flank Steak. Serving Suggestions: Quinoa, Brown Rice, Sautéed Spinach or marinated Green Beans
Italian Turkey/Bison Burgers Deb Cantrell, Savor Culinary Services Serves 6 Ingredients 3/4 cup Onions -- finely chopped 2 Garlic Cloves -- minced 1/2 cup Tomatoes, Sun-Dried, Packed In Oil -- diced 1/2 cup Catsup 8 oz Bread Crumbs, Dry – seasoned 3/4 cup Basil -- finely chopped 1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese 2 lg Eggs 1 1/2 lbs Turkey – Ground/Bison Instructions Saute onions and garlic in olive oil until tender. Set aside and let cool slightly. Combine remaining ingredients in a large bowl plus onions and garlic and mix well with hands. Shape into equal sized patties. Grill for 5 minutes per side or sauté each patty in a nonstick skillet until done about 10 minutes per side. Serve on hamburger bun. Variations:
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1. Make into meatballs and bake in the oven at 375 degrees for 30 minutes uncovered. 2. Instead of mixing cheese into mixture. Make half a patty and place cheese on the inside and top with other half of patty and seal edges. Originally created by Toni Scott, Dinners Made Simple
Hazelnut Dip Adapted from Alan Roettinger’s “Speed Vegan” cookbook, a delicious dip for the vegans in your life...can be served with triangles of pita or other breads or gluten-free alternatives such as crackers or veggies... maybe even as a side for grilled veggies. Diane Cancilla, Gusto Personal Chef Services, Norwood, Ontario, Canada 1 1/4 cup hazelnuts 1 large tomato, coarsely chopped 1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves 2 tablespoons of sherry vinegar 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil 2 tablespoons of flax oil 4 cloves of fresh, peeled garlic minced 1 teaspoon of Hungarian hot paprika 1 teaspoon sea salt 1 teaspoon Agave Nectar 1/2 teaspoon cayenne Soak the hazelnuts overnight. Drain, rinse and dry on a towel. Put them into a food processor until finely ground. Add remaining ingredients and process until smooth. Put in a bowl and refrigerate for 2 hours or longer. Stored in a covered container, dip will keep for 2-3 days.
Bone-Dust Barbecue Spice Mix Diane Cancilla, Gusto Personal Chef Services, Norwood, Ontario, Canada This is one of my favorite secrets. I have had the recipe so long, I am not even sure of the source anymore. This delicious mix will stay fresh for several months if stored in an air-tight jar in a dark, cool place. Rub on salmon that is grilled on a plank for a delectable dinner or on chicken, pork, lamb or fish. In a medium bowl, combine the following: 1/2 cup paprika 1/4 cup chili powder 3 tablespoons salt 2 tablespoons ground coriander 2 tablespoons garlic powder 2 tablespoons of sugar 2 tablespoons of curry powder 2 tablespoons of dry mustard powder 1 tablespoon of dried basil 1 tablespoon of ground thyme 1 tablespoon black pepper 1 tablespoon ground cumin 1 tablespoon of cayenne
Roasted Cornish Game Hen with Cherry Basil Sauce I was inspired a number of summers ago by the beauty and quality of the fresh cherries and herbs being sold at the farmer’s market. I brought the cherries home, pitted them and made a sumptuous cherry basil sauce. I added basil leaves and a squeeze of lemon to the cherries while they were cooking to give a nice counterpoint to the sweetness. The hens can be roasted in the oven or better yet put on a grill to create a crispy, caramelized glaze to the skin. This is a delicious recipe that works well served as easily cold at a picnic as it does at a formal dining room table. Susan Ytterberg, Golden Plum Personal Chef Services, Alameda, CA Serves 2 2 Cornish game hens (you can find these in the freezer section in the grocery store) 1 lemon, squeeze juice 2 tbsp. herbs de Provence 1 tbsp. sea salt or kosher salt 2 tsp. pepper 2 tsp. garlic powder 1/2 to 3/4 cup cherry basil sauce or apricot glaze, or topping of your choice, have fun and be creative! To make clean up easier, line roasting pan with foil and spray with vegetable spray. The glaze that falls to bottom of pan may burn due to the sugar and you’ll be glad you used the foil! Preheat Oven to 400 ° Clean game hens inside and out, pat dry with paper towel. Squeeze the lemon juice inside each game hen and outside each game hen. In a small bowl combine the herbs de province, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Sprinkle inside and outside of game hens with the herb mixture until completely used. Place game hens in roasting pan on a roasting rack breast side down and place in oven. Cook for 30 minutes until golden brown. Alternatively, place on grill. After 30 minutes, flip game hens so they are breast side up and cook an additional 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, coat game hens with sauce or glaze and cook an additional 15 minutes or longer until glaze or sauce is caramelized. In total you will have roasted the hens for an hour. Check temperature of hen for doneness with thermometer, with correct cooked temperature at 165°. Remove from oven or grill and let hens rest for 15 minutes under a foil tent. Place hens on each plate, serve with mashed potatoes or whatever suits you. A nice side dish is a tomato/basil salad with drizzle of high quality balsamic. Cherry Basil Sauce Recipe 20-25 basil leaves, cleaned. Leave whole
2 lbs. fresh cherries, pitted. Leave whole 1 cup sugar 1 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice 1 quart water Combine water and sugar in pot. Bring water to rolling boil and stir sugar until dissolved. Add cherries, basil leaves and lemon juice. Reduce to medium heat so sauce is simmering but not a rolling boil. Cook at this setting for 20 minutes. When done, remove from heat, cool appropriately and refrigerate sauce in jar or container.
Jamaican Style Rub Here’s a quick rub for chicken, pork or fish on the grill, Jamaican style! Jen Sternfeld, CPC, Dinner Vacations, Schenectady, NY In a food processor or blender combine the following: 1c diced onion 1/2c diced scallions 1/4c diced jalapenos (or hotter peppers if you prefer) 1t dried thyme 1t peppercorns, cracked 1/2t ground nutmeg 1/2t ground cinnamon Rub on the protein of your choice and allow to set for 1 to 48 hours. Grill (or bake in 400 degree oven if the weather isn’t cooperating).
NY State Fair BBQ Chicken I went to College upstate New York and loved the BBQ Chicken at Brook’s House of BBQ. I thought their process and marinate was a secret, but years later I researched and found the source of that sacred sauce, a recipe developed by a Professor at Cornell College. Unlike most BBQ chicken, this recipe works best on very small half chickens cooked over Medium heat on the grill. Enjoy. Matthew West, Home Chef of Fairfield County, Stamford, CT Servings: 4 1 small chicken, broiler-fryer, 2 -3 pound, cut up 1 large egg 1 cup vegetable oil 2 cups cider vinegar 3 tablespoons salt 1 tablespoon poultry seasoning 1 teaspoon black pepper, fresh ground Directions: Crack the egg into a medium bowl and whisk until beaten. Slowly whisk in the oil until fully blended. Then whisk in the vinegar, salt, poultry seasoning, and ground black pepper. Set some of the sauce aside to use for basting while grilling. Place chicken in shallow baking dish, and coat with sauce. Cover, and marinate in the refrigerator for 24 hours. BBQ over medium, not high/ hot, grill until thoroughly cooked and skin is crisped flipping every 5 minutes and mopping the chicken with the extra sauce/marinade. NOTE: If using boneless, skinless breast or thigh only marinate 2 - 3 hours.
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Reheating Instructions: If Frozen move to refrigerator at least 24 hours prior to heating. Remove chicken from package and place on baking sheet lined with foil and bake at 375 degrees for 15 + minutes until warmed through. Alternative Method: Microwave at 70% until warmed through, 3 to 4 minutes.
Apple Cider Barbeque Sauce I’ve been making and using this sauce for years on everything from Brisket to Ribs. It beats anything on the shelf at the grocery store. Matthew West, Home Chef of Fairfield County, Stamford, CT Servings: 8 1/2 cup ketchup 2/3 cup apple cider 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce 1 tablespoon molasses, dark 1 tablespoon cider vinegar 1 tablespoon soy sauce 1 tablespoon brown sugar, dark 1 tablespoon sugar 1 teaspoon cayenne 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, fresh ground 1/2 teaspoon celery seed 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 1 pinch cloves, ground Directions: Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer about 30 minutes until thickened. Cool and store in refrigerator up to a month.
Barbeque Rub Use liberally for Brisket, Ribs, Turkey, Mutton, etc. Matthew West, Home Chef of Fairfield County, Stamford, CT Servings: 8 1/2 cup brown sugar 4 tablespoons kosher salt 1/4 cup paprika 1 teaspoon celery seed 2 tablespoons black pepper, fresh ground 1/2 teaspoons cayenne 2 teaspoons garlic powder 2 teaspoons onion powder Directions: Combine all ingredients and store in an air tight container.
Masman Curry Paste If you’re like me you have a recipe for Masman Beef Curry but have not been able to find the paste in any store. Instead of using standard Thai Red Curry Paste the following is a simple recipe - and the best part is it lasts up to 3 months in the fridge and can be used for several client’s meals. Matthew West, Home Chef of Fairfield County, Stamford, CT
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Servings: 12 6 medium New Mexican Red Chiles, Toasted in 350 degree oven 6 minutes 4 medium shallots, unpeeled 7 large garlic cloves, unpeeled 1/2 cup ginger root, chopped 1/4 cup water 4 1/2 teaspoons lime juice, fresh 4 1/2 teaspoons vegetable oil 1 tablespoon fish sauce 1 teaspoon Chinese 5-spice powder 1/2 teaspoon cumin 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, fresh ground Directions: Heat Broiler after toasting the chiles, place shallots and garlic on foil lined sheet pan broil until skins are charred – 8 minutes or so. Tear chiles and blend in food processor or blender until fine - about 1 minute. Add all remaining ingredients and process until smooth paste is achieved - 2+ min Place in container and store in refrigerator for up to 3 months.
Red Potato Salad with Feta and Olives Elizabeth Weaver 3 lb of red potatoes, unpeeled and cubed into bite size pieces 4 oz Feta Cheese ¼ cup chopped Kalamata olives ¼ cup sliced green onions Dressing ½ cup mayo ¼ cup course ground mustard ¼ cup buttermilk ¼ tsp salt and pepper 1 tbls Kalamata olive juice In a large pot, place potatoes and cover with water. Bring to a boil and cook until the potatoes are tender. Don’t overcook. No one wants a mushy potato! Drain and cool. In a Mason jar or bowl combine mayo, mustard, buttermilk, salt and pepper and olive juice. Shake until combine. In a bowl add cooled potatoes, olives and green onions. Add dressing. Garnish with feta cheese. I prefer to make this a day ahead. But I have served it warm.
Marinated Flank Steak This is a trial and error recipe. However, it’s never turned into a big error. An easy week night recipe that looks like a special occasion. Elizabeth Weaver 1 Large plastic bag ½ cup water ¼ cup soy sauce ¼ cup brown sugar ½ tsp minced ginger 1 flank steak 1 tbls balsamic vinegar ¼ cup water 2 tsp corn starch
2 tbls water 2 cups sliced baby bella mushrooms Preheat oven on Broil. Place ingredients 2 - 5 in the plastic bag and shake until mixed. Add flank steak. Marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to 24 hours, turning occasionally. Place flank steak on a foil line pan. Pour the marinade into a sauce pan and put on medium low heat. Broil the flank steak on each side for 6 minutes. While the steak is cooking, add the vinegar, additional water and mushrooms to the marinade. Bring to a boil. Mix corn starch and water together. Add to sauce pan and reduce heat to low. Stir until thickened. When meat has broiled on both sides, remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before slicing. Cut in thin slices against the grain of the meat. Serve with sauce
Mediterranean Salmon Christina Vincent, As You Like It PCS, Panama City, FL
Light a grill. On a work surface, using a sharp knife, cut the tuna into thin strips. Stack the strips and cut them into cubes. Add the minced bacon and chop until the tuna is fine and the bacon is evenly mixed in. Transfer the tuna mixture to a bowl. Stir in 1/4 cup of the lemongrass rub and season lightly with salt and pepper. Using slightly moistened hands, form the tuna mixture into four 4-inch patties. Brush the tuna patties with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the burgers over moderately high heat, turning once, until browned on the outside, about 6 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the mayonnaise with the remaining 1 tablespoon of the lemongrass rub and season with salt and pepper. Set the tuna burgers on the rolls and serve with the aioli and onion slices. MAKE AHEAD: The uncooked tuna patties can be refrigerated for up to 6 hours. Lemongrass Wet Rub 2 stalks of fresh lemongrass, the bottom 5 inches of the inner bulb only, thinly sliced 1/4 cup chopped fresh ginger 1 garlic clove 1 medium jalape単o, halved 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 2 tablespoons cilantro leaves Salt
Makes 4 servings 4 (6oz.) skinless salmon fillets 3/4 tsp. lemon pepper 3/4 tsp. dried dill weed 1/4 tsp. salt 1/2 cup coarsely chopped sun-dried tomatoes (drained if packed in oil) 2 1/2 oz. sliced Kalamata olives 2 oz. crumbled feta cheese with basil and tomatoes 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted Place each salmon fillet on a 16 x 12 inch piece of heavy duty aluminum foil. Sprinkle fillets evenly with lemon pepper dill, and salt. Top fillets evenly with tomatoes and next 3 ingredients. Fold long sides of foil over fillets; roll up short sides to seal. Place foil packets, seam side up on a baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees F for 18-20 minutes or until fish flakes with a fork.
Smoky Tuna and Bacon Burgers with Lemongrass Aioli
In a food processor, combine the sliced lemongrass with the fresh ginger, garlic and halved jalape単o and pulse until finely chopped. Add the vegetable oil and process to a coarse paste. Add the cilantro leaves and process until fairly smooth. Season the wet rub generously with salt. NOTE: This rub can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. Suggested uses: Try the lemongrass rub on tuna and other kinds of lean fish, or blend it with a little more vegetable oil and use as the base for chicken or vegetable stir-fry. You can also rub it onto chicken, seafood, pork and beef, or stir it into ground pork or turkey for meatballs, meat loaf or burgers. Original recipe courtesy of Grace Parisi
Grilled Oysters with Mango Pico de Gallo and Red Chili Horseradish This is an excellent recipe ... and not 47 ingredients and easy to prepare. A real crowd pleaser!
A very unique burger - This always gets rave reviews. It uses a lemongrass wet rub to add an Asian twist on the tuna burger, spiked with smoky bacon.
Christina Vincent, As You Like It PCS, Panama City, FL
Mango Pico de Gallo: 1 ripe mango, peeled, pitted, and cut into very small dice 1/2 red onion, peeled and cut into very small dice 1 small jalapeno, cut into very small dice 1 lime, juiced 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 2 teaspoons honey 2 tablespoons chopped fresh recao or cilantro leaves Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 pound tuna steak, well chilled 1 strip of bacon, minced 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon Lemongrass Wet Rub (recipe below) Salt freshly ground pepper Vegetable oil, for brushing 1/4 cup mayonnaise 4 brioche rolls or hamburger buns Sliced red onion, for serving
Red Chili Horseradish:
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1/2 cup prepared horseradish, drained 1 1/2 tablespoons ancho chili powder Salt 20 oysters, scrubbed well Directions Make the Mango Pico de Gallo: Mix together the mango, onion, jalapeno, lime juice, oil, honey, and recao or cilantro in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and stir to combine. Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before using. Mix together the horseradish and ancho chili powder in a small bowl. Season with salt, to taste. Heat grill to high. Dip oysters in water, as this will help them steam open on the grill. Place oysters on the grill, close the cover, and grill until all have opened, about 3 to 4 minutes. Discard any that do not open. Place a tablespoon of the Mango Pico de Gallo on top of each oyster and top that with a scant teaspoon of the Red Chili Horseradish. Original Recipe by Bobbie Flay
Grilled Artichokes with Wasabi-Mustard Vinaigrette Mary Hathaway Wasabi-Mustard Vinaigrette Vinaigrette: 1½ tablespoons Dijon mustard 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar ½ teaspoon toasted sesame oil 1 teaspoon soy sauce 1 teaspoon honey 1 teaspoon wasabi paste Juice of half a small lime ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon peanut oil Grilled Artichokes Recipe/ Instructions: After removing a few outer leaves, cutting off the tops and removing the chokes they are boiled in some salted acidulated water until they just become tender, about 15 minutes depending on the size. Plunge them into an ice bath to stop the cooking, then drain, pat dry and sprinkle with salt, pepper and olive oil. Lastly, on to the grill for a couple of minutes per side and serve. For the vinaigrette, place everything except the peanut oil in a small mixing bowl and whisk together well. Slowly drizzle in the peanut oil while whisking until all of the oil is incorporated. Toss vinaigrette with Grilled Artichokes and serve Viniagrette recipe from Cancer Today magazine
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Turkey Burgers Nicole Bunting, It’s JUST Food, LLC, Denver, CO Yield: 8 burgers For Turkey Patties: 1 lb. Ground Turkey Salt/pepper – to taste 1 tsp. Thyme 1 tsp. Cumin 1 tsp. Worcestershire ¼ Cup Green chili hot salsa 1 tbsp. Horseradish 1 tbsp. Dijon 1 finely chopped Shallot 2 finely chopped cloves, Garlic ½ tsp Celery salt Freshly grated Nutmeg – to taste 1 tsp. dried parsley For Burgers/assembly: 8 Pretzel buns 8 slices Swiss cheese ¼ Cup Mayo ¼ Cup mustard 1 medium Shallot 8 slices Tomato, shredded lettuce Mix all turkey patty ingredients together in a large mixing bowl (for best results, use your CLEAN hands). Use a ¼ Cup measure cup to scoop out even sized patties, they will be kind of small, but remember its turkey which is very lean so they won’t really ‘shrink’. Shape out into patties (you can use a cookie mold, or ring mold for even shaped patties), and let rest on parchment paper or even paper towel, as they’ll be pretty wet. Grill on med-hi heat. Before you put them on the grill, make sure you put a little olive oil on the grill, as turkey is very lean and will stick otherwise. In a blender or food processor puree a shallot, some mayo and some mustard for a yummy sauce (do it to taste, some like mayo better than mustard and vice versa).
Roasted Corn and Black Bean Salad Here are a couple of my favorite, easy, but substantial salads for summertime The Roasted Corn and Black Bean Salad is great with burgers, sausages and chicken and I love to serve the Mediterranean Farro Salad with a Whole Roasted Snapper or grilled shrimp. Melissa Gurmankin, More Thyme For You, Philadelphia, PA 2 cups of cooked black beans or 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained 2 cups roasted corn kernels (see below) 2 red bell peppers, diced (about 2 cups) 2 medium cloves garlic, minced (about 2 teaspoons) 2 scallions, thinly sliced 2 teaspoons salt 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper ½ teaspoon ground cumin 2 tablespoons sugar or honey 1/2 cup plus extra virgin olive oil 1 teaspoon zest and 6
tablespoons juice from 5 to 6 limes 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves, plus more for garnish 2 avocado, diced, optional For corn, rub 4 -5 ears of corn with oil and place on medium, hot grill. Watch carefully and rotate ears as they begin to brown, until all sides are evenly roasted and brown. Allow to cool and cut kernels from cob. Alternately, remove kernels from cob and sauté in a pan with a little oil until brown. For dressing, combine oil, honey, or sugar, cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, zest and lime juice in a small bowl. Combine all the rest of the ingredients in a large bowl. Add dressing and mix well. Cover and chill at least 30 minutes and up to overnight. Add avocado, just before serving, if using. Garnish with more chopped cilantro if desired. Serve at room temperature. Serves 6-8
Farro Salad with Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Peppers, Onions, Feta Cheese and Fresh Mint Melissa Gurmankin, More Thyme For You, Philadelphia, PA Serves 8-10 1 cup tomatoes, diced (when available, use assorted colors) 1 cup cucumber, diced 1 cup bell pepper, diced 1 cup red or white onion, diced 2 cups farro, cooked and cooled 1 large or 2 small lemons, zested and juiced ½ cup parsley, minced ½ cup mint, minced extra virgin olive oil, to taste salt and pepper, to taste 8 ounces feta cheese, crumbled, or cubed 8 ounces Kalamata olives, pitted and halved Combine tomatoes, cucumber, pepper, onion and faro in a large bowl. Add lemon zest and juice, parsley, mint, olives, olive oil salt and pepper. Mix well. Add feta cheese and carefully fold through.
You Do What??? Do you have a clue what an elevator speech is? Do you know why you should use one? Do you stumble over your words when someone asks you what you do? How about in a networking group everyone has these clever little things they say or it rolls off of their tongues so easily but yours does not? As personal chefs we have all struggled with how to educate people about what it is that we do. I know in the past when I have tried to explain it to people in hopes of gaining a new client, they were left with the “deer in the headlight look.” I finally realized a few years ago that people don’t really care what I do at all, but what they care about is what my service provides them. In other words, what is their pain point? What keeps them up at night? For example, you don’t seek a doctor because of the procedure or the medicine he or she will prescribe. You don’t really care. You seek out a doctor to stop hurting, sleep better or breathe again so you can return to work or play and in less time. I learned of a simple yet effective way to answer that daily question of….”What do you do?”. Better yet, people actually get it. I shared the “4 W Statement” exercise with the chefs in my chef mentor program and they found it to be very helpful. Your “4 W Statement” is an easy way to say what you do and is great to put on your voicemail or first page of your website. It is your elevator speech. Please use words that an 8th grader can understand and not a very smart one. Components of the “4 W Statement”: • • • •
Who are you? (Name) What is your business (name of your company and you run it) Who is your target audience (Who you want to work with): What is your promise, the dream or the outcome? Not the process, but what will your company do for them? What is their pain point? Make sure an 8th grader can understand this. (Always in 3’s):
My name is _____________________. I run a company called ______________________. I work with ____________________________that want to___________________, __________________ and__________________________ on a daily basis. An example of mine would be:
Watermelon Aqua Fresco This is a refreshing drink, good on a hot BBQ day. Patricia Rhoads, North Highlands, CA A Mexican street drink 4 cups of watermelon 2 cups water Blend and strain through a fine mesh strainer. Very refreshing! Try using other melons.
“My name is Deb Cantrell, I am the executive chef and owner of Savor Culinary Services. We work with busy people who want to feel better, spend more time doing the things they love and are tired of going out to eat on a daily basis.” Sometimes I will say my name and the name of my company last so it is the last things they hear. Basically, the first sentence is placed behind, “We work with…” If this explanation still does not work and I see a blank stare then I say, “I make dinner so you don’t have to.” They usually get that. If you have any questions about this article or if there is anything I can help you with, please contact me at 817-277-3031. My website is www.thesavorchef.com.
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New England Chapter Does Good for Community May 14, 2014, Attleboro, MA The New England Chapter of the USPCA was represented by My Chef Lara, Home Plate Advantage and The Kitchen Pitchin’ for an international food tasting and rafﬂe to raise money for The Literacy Center in Attleboro, MA. The Literacy Center is a non-proﬁt organization founded in 1988 by a small group of dedicated volunteers and has grown to serve 500 students per year in classes and through our volunteer tutor program. The mission of The Literacy Center is to provide literacy services and educational support of the highest quality to individuals and families seeking to acquire the skills needed to attain personal and employment goals. There were 14 vendors ranging from Willow Tree Chicken Salad to local international restaurants. Our chefs reached to their roots, offering German meatballs and country bread for Lara Moritz and Norbert Klotz’s German heritage, blini with smoked salmon mousse for Marc Freedman’s Russian heritage and sticky toffee pudding representing Laura MacDougall’s English/Irish heritage. All the food was a hit, and we had a lot of fun talking to the guests about personal chefs and what we can do. My Chef Lara even booked a birthday party after talking to one couple. We were interviewed for a local cable station, and have an invite to be on the radio to talk about the USPCA and personal chefs -- a lot of exposure for just a few hours. We did get to taste some of the offerings as well, and made friends with a local caterer looking to perhaps move to personal chefﬁng after his busy season. 130 guests were in attendance and all proceeds went to programs offered by the center (We are guessing about $1500+ rafﬂes will do a lot of good). There were a lot of great rafﬂes, including a wine basket and PawSox tickets. We are looking forward to next year’s expanded event with perhaps a few more chefs joining us in the fun and feasting.
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Chef Teaches Middle Schoolers at Atlantic Center for the Arts Have you ever said something... and then realized what the consequences would be? Seven years ago I was in a meeting and a friend was lamenting about what she would do with the middle school next year. I said how about a cooking class; everyone loved the idea and I thought, “What have I gotten into?” This was an art class that we volunteered at once a month as an outreach program of Atlantic Center for the Arts; so we decided to go ahead with the project. I would teach a cuisine that would complement the artist or art project from the previous month. My first year followed the Japanese fish printing class so we made sushi. Going in front of middle schoolers was a little intimidating, especially when the first class came in protesting that this was supposed to be an art class. These were the same kids who were bursting with pride when they made their first sushi roll. This was repeated six times that day. And that’s how it all started. We’ve had three different teachers over the years with the current teacher being a real treat. When I walked in to prep the room this year they were watching the Food Network (Chopped) to prepare
for an upcoming art competition. We’ve made crepes, fruit flowers, tapas, a play with your food day where they made villages, vehicles, and people with fruits and vegetables, and this year, African food. After taking the class with Yeti at the conference last year I felt I could teach this class. She was kind enough to send me her power point presentation and thanks to the home office of USPCA, who loaned us the induction burners, we were a huge success. I made an initial presentation about the varied cuisines in Africa; we had them taste the birds eye chili powder and then I demonstrated the Sukuma Wiki Stew which they sampled. We broke up into 5 groups: one to make the chapatti dough, one to fry the bread, one to make hummus (with potato mashers), one to make a crunchy cabbage salad, and finally, one group to make dessert, African peanut butter balls. Then we had them sit on the floor in a circle and eat communally as Yeti said they did in the villages of her country. They had to use the bread to eat their food, no utensils. It was great to see how well they adapted. I received about 70 thank you notes telling me this was their favorite class ever. At the end of the day we were all exhausted (I had 6 volunteers this year) but exhilarated at the success of our efforts. They are already asking what I can do next year to top this. The results of my volunteering for Atlantic Center for the Arts over the past 12 years has resulted in a steady income for me as a personal chef to the artists who visit the center. There are many of these centers throughout the country so I would suggest you don’t overlook them as potential customers. Chef Sue Flynn, New Smyrna Beach, Florida
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Grilling: Great Food on the Grates! Kathy Patrick, Meals on Heels, Rome, GA
“Grilling means good times, good friends, and hopefully, great food.” -- Bobby Flay, celebrity chef, restaurateur The start of summer in NW Georgia may be defined many different ways depending on your viewpoint: it can mean school is out, the pool is open, the crepe myrtles are in bloom, and/or the heat and humidity are rising. But one definition that almost all people agree on -- and love -- about summer is using the backyard grill for (hopefully!) scrumptious food that is fun to cook and easy to clean up. Many of us have “go to” grilling menus that offer ease of planning, lots of pleasure to most palates, and familiar tastes – menus like hamburgers with baked beans, steak and baked potatoes, or hot dogs with chili. Some of us branch out with grilled seafood, bone-in or boneless chicken pieces, grilled corn, or even grilled summer zucchini from the garden. But does grilling have to be limited to these more traditional menus? In 2011 I attended a national personal chef conference and enjoyed a “Gourmet Grilling” session that really opened my eyes to some different grilling recipes. I also learned the difference between grilling and barbequing in that session: grilling produces succulent, tender meats that are seared quickly over high dry heat, while barbequing uses lower, indirect heat over a long period of time and may include, sauces, and/or added flavors. Grilling is best for tender, uniformly shaped and sized cuts of meat/poultry, sausages, patties, seafood, and vegetables. Barbequing, on the other hand, is best suited for tougher or uneven or large cuts of meat, ribs, as well as whole chickens or turkeys. Grilling and barbequing both use heat sources below the food; when the heat source is above the food it’s called broiling. Outdoor grills may be fueled by charcoal, bottle gas, natural gas, or electricity, with some grills having special attachments for smoking foods. Another “really hot” outdoor grill type is the radiant grill and it is, literally, really hot. These grills can quickly reach temperatures of 900 degrees, which is great for searing, and then you can either turn the heat down or move the food to another burner for the remaining cooking time. Radiant heat grills use standard gas burners that heat by convection (or hot air) like a regular grill. However, radiant heat grills also have one or more infrared burners to produce radiant heat. These grills are reported to have very consistent heat across the cooking surface, a definite advantage in producing great grilled foods. Given the high temperatures reached in a short time, radiant grills are sort of the microwave of outdoor grilling! OK, enough about the technical stuff – let’s talk about the food! As I mentioned earlier, many of our traditional grilling menus involve meat, poultry, or seafood on the grill -- while the appetizer, salad, side dishes, and dessert are done in the kitchen. This has some drawbacks: more non-meat dishes being prepared off the grill means your friends and family are probably outside enjoying fun outdoor activities while you run back and forth between the grill and the kitchen. Another drawback is that it’s easy to mess up on grill timing when you have other dishes to tend to in the kitchen -- you may end up with an overcooked or even charred main course. Clean up also offers challenges in the meat-only-on-thegrill scenario: preparing more food in the kitchen means more dishes to clean up whereas cooking a larger portion of food on the grill makes clean up a snap. And finally, there are lots of ways to cook meat in the oven so that it will tend to itself, allowing you to infuse that great grilled taste onto other dishes while being outside where the fun is! The bottom line: consider switching your grilling strategy around so that you do the meat inside, either roasted or baked so it pretty much takes care of itself, and do the rest of the meal items outside on the grill. Enjoy the outdoors, and enjoy trying new grilled foods! Here are some great recipes for the grates, with tips on how you can make parts of the dishes ahead of time -- thereby maximizing your time outside AND producing a wonderful meal. And it’s OK to use some or all of these recipes with a grilled main course – because you’re the boss on the grill!
Grilled Asparagus Wrapped in Prosciutto
Grilled Hearts of Romaine with Blue Cheese Dressing
20 asparagus spears, medium to large, tough ends broken off and washed 4 garlic cloves, minced 1 lemon, juice and zest 1 tablespoon olive oil 1/4 cup parsley, chopped Fresh cracked pepper to taste 20 slices prosciutto
For the Dressing (yields 1 cup of dressing): 1/2 c mayonnaise ¼ c sour cream 1/8 c whole milk; more as needed 3 oz crumbled blue cheese; more to taste ¾ Tablespoon finely grated shallot 1 clove garlic, finely grated ½ Tablespoon fresh lemon juice ¼ teaspoon kosher salt 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper; more to taste
1. Place asparagus and all of ingredients except for prosciutto, in a microwavable dish and cook for 2 minutes. Let cool enough to handle. 2. Preheat grill to high. 3. When asparagus has cooled enough to handle wrap each spear, including some of the seasoning, with one slice of prosciutto. Repeat with all spears. 4. Grill wrapped spears, turning frequently to brown and crisp each side of the prosciutto.
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For the salad: 2 hearts of Romaine lettuce, bases trimmed but left intact, halved lengthwise Olive oil for brushing Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper 4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (use thick cut bacon, applewood or pepper crusted – but use good quality bacon)
Make the Dressing In a medium bowl, stir all the dressing ingredients together. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, or up to 24 hours, to let the flavors blend. Before using, taste and adjust seasonings as necessary. The dressing will thicken as it sits and so may need to be thinned with more milk. Prepare the Salad 1. Once the dressing is chilled, heat a gas grill to medium low. Be sure the grate is hot. 2. Lightly brush olive oil all over the Romaine hearts, taking care not to break the leaves. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. 3. Put the lettuce cut side down on the grate, directly over the heat. Grill until the outer leaves are charred and wilted and the lettuce is warm and just barely tender all the way through to the core, 2 to 5 minutes, depending on the heat of your grill. 4. Transfer the lettuce to a clean platter and let rest for 5 minutes. To serve Place half a heart of romaine, cut side up, on each plate, top with about 2 tablespoons of the blue cheese dressing, or more to taste, and sprinkle with the crumbled bacon. May be garnished with grape tomato halves, chives, or parsley. Serve immediately.
Grilled Bananas Foster Serves 4 4 bananas, peeled and sliced into ½” thick rounds ¼ c brown sugar ½ teaspoon cinnamon ¼ c butter, cut into thin pieces 1 tablespoon vanilla 2 ounces rum ½ c chopped macadamia nuts 1 quart vanilla ice cream 1. Preheat a gas grill to 400 degrees. 2. In a large piece of heavy duty aluminum foil, spread the bananas and top with the brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter pieces. 3. Drizzle the vanilla and rum over the banana mixture and seal with a second piece of heavy duty aluminum foil to make a closed rectangular package. 4. Grill the package 5 – 10 minutes per side, being careful not to burn the bananas. 5. Remove from grill, carefully open the package, serve over ice cream and top with the chopped macadamia nuts.
Spicy Seared Eggplant Serves 4 1 medium eggplant, about 1 pound, cut crosswise into 8 “round” slices, each about 3/4 inch thick Coarse salt 2 small shallots, sliced crosswise, 1/4-inch thick 1 garlic clove, minced 1 tablespoon sugar 3 tablespoons sherry-wine vinegar 1/4 teaspoon red-pepper flakes 2 tablespoons golden raisins 1 tablespoon capers, rinsed 4 Gaeta olives, pitted and coarsely chopped 1/4 cup plus 4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil Vegetable oil for grill 1. Sprinkle the eggplant slices with salt, place in a colander set over a bowl, and let stand for 30 minutes. Rinse eggplant and pat dry. 2. In a small saucepan over medium heat combine shallots, garlic, sugar, vinegar, red-pepper flakes, and 3 tablespoons water. Bring to a boil, cook 1 minute, and remove from heat. Stir in raisins, capers, olives, and 1/4 cup of olive oil; cool to room temperature. 3. Heat grill to high and brush grates with vegetable oil. Brush eggplant with remaining 4 teaspoons olive oil. Cook eggplant until charred and tender, turning over halfway through, about 10 minutes. 4. Arrange eggplant on platter and spoon shallot mixture over top. Cool to room temperature and serve. Note: Step 2 may be made up to 24 hours ahead of time, refrigerated, and brought to room temperature before serving with the eggplant.
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Personal Chef Manages Iron Chef Competition for Charity
by Rob Wezwick Photos by Carl Calabria Have you ever wondered about what it takes to put together an Iron Chef type of cooking competition? Well I never really gave it much thought either until I was approached by the committee to put together a 25th year celebration of Open Table Concord & Maynard Community Supper and Food Pantry. Open Table is a non-profit organization that provides healthy, hot meals and food pantry services to over 200 families each week and I have been volunteering there as Head Cook for the past several years. The committee thought it would be a good idea to ask the resident Personal Chef not only for advice on competition, but whether or not I would join the committee and take lead on the Iron Chef Portion of the celebration. They knew I wouldn’t say no.
The First Meeting:
limitations presented to us. An example of this was to include Foie Gras as a pantry staple!
The first meeting took place in August of 2013, and at that time there were many ideas and concepts bantered around and after the first meeting, I realized that we had a large task ahead of us. The competition was only a small part of the celebration; we also had to choose dates, venue, attendees, fund raising goals etc.
Next we had to decide on how to cook. We would be using the company cafeteria so it was decided that hot plates would be the only heating option available. We went with one propane burner and one induction burner per team.
As time went on and monthly meeting turned to bi-weekly and then weekly meetings we developed a game plan. Tasks then began to get assigned to the committee members. We checked and rechecked calendars to make sure we did not have any major conflicts with school or other holidays and April 12 was the set is stone date. We also found an excellent venue at Welch’s Corporate Headquarters in Concord, MA using their corporate cafeteria. Once we had a target date and venue, it was time to work on the competition. It was decided that “Iron Chef” would be the main form of entertainment. The actual competition would also have a cake decoration portion, fortunately that was headed up by another volunteer with fantastic results.
Planning for Competition: Many people may think the cooking part of the evening would be the most difficult; however the preliminary planning took the lion’s share of time and resources. As this was new territory to all of us, we had to plan everything from scratch. Questions and ideas were raised, some accepted and some also shot down. As several of the committee members had limited cooking experience, some ideas were a little too grandiose given the
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We also had to work on teams and team size. How man teams? How many ingredients? It was decided that we would be able to accommodate 3 teams at a time so we split the competition into two sections. Three teams would cook appetizers and then three different teams would cook an entrée. Each team would have three members, so we had 18 competitors. As this was a fundraiser, we sought local teams and charged an entry fee as well. Teams were randomly selected to cook in either round one (appetizer) or round two (entrée). Judges were also selected at this time and we had two local chefs and a published cook book author on board to help select the winners.
The Pantry: Once the basic game plan was set, we next moved into the competition. It was decided that the appetizer round would have 25 minutes to prepare one hot and one cold appetizer. It should be noted that we also had a test run prior to the actual using Open Table volunteers. This proved to be invaluable since this helped us find the bottlenecks and pitfalls of this type of competition. For instance, we even caught a contestant trying to toast her walnuts between rounds to gain a competitive edge. Let’s just say that karma came back and bit her as her toasted walnuts turned into blackened walnuts and she ended up not being able to use them.
Pantry items were selected and budgets were approved. One of the difficult aspects of the evening was trying to balance the nice to have against the need to have. This was a charity fundraiser and the chef in me wanted to really focus on the cooking as opposed to the budget. In the end we ended up making substitutions such as Haddock vs Monkfish and Flat Steak vs NY Strip to keep costs down.
The Secret Ingredients: The next step was selecting the secret ingredients; this was fun, yet stressful. We had a great sponsor from a local natural food store in Concord Ma, (Thanks Debra!) and she allowed my free rein on items that we could select.
Appetizer Round Winners: The Appetizer Round went to the Three Chesty Chicks from Concord-Carlisle Community Chest with their appetizer of Crepe with Sausage and Poached Egg served with an Asian Salad with Kimchee. The judges loved the combination and the execution of a poached egg pulled off flawlessly.
I was the kid in the proverbial candy store. It was decided that it would be best if we allowed teams not to have to use all ingredients. The final list (known only by me and two others prior to competition was: Secret Ingredients Appetizer- must use 2 of 3 • Fig Jam • Kimchi • Dark Chocolate Entrée - must use 3 of 5 • Tomatillos • Fennel • Toasted pistachios • Preserved lemon • Harissa
Entrée Round Winners: The Entrée Round was a bit closer but the Judges went with the Flambéed First Parishioners of Concord with a wonderful Cod with Tomatillo Sauce with Pan Fried Potatoes.
The evening before is here: April 11th arrived quicker than any of us had expected but we felt confident as a team and were prepared. We also knew that the dry run gave us confidence to actually pull this off! As we were all volunteers, we knew that we had to all take responsibility for our part. On the event day, all committee members took their part and ran with it. I actually think that we fed off of each other’s energy and used it to move forward. I focused on the competition and shopping for ingredients were on my plate, and yes, pun intended! I always thought that shopping and schlepping for a personal chef cook date took time, shopping for a competition takes longer.
Let the Games Begin!
When all the smoke cleared and competitors and guests went home, the committee ruled the event a huge success. Over 200 guests attended the event and were served appetizers and light snacks from Open Table Volunteers. Over $18,000 was raised during the event which will be put back into the local community to continue feeding the hungry. After all was said and done, we were asked would we do this again. There was a resounding “yes” but we all also said, not anytime soon. Thanks again to my fellow committee members for making this happen!
The day of the competition was somewhat of a blur, there was set up and prep to be done and equipment to be tested. Of course the pantry also needed to be stocked: Once the actual timer started, it was Game On! To quote a famous emcee, Allez Cuisine was shouted and the cooking began. The teams cooked feverishly while at the same time watching the clock. A certain USPCA Personal Chef was responsible for the countdown and when the clock stopped it was spatulas down. While all competitors gave it their all, there could only be on winner per round and the judges took their responsibility seriously and used their evaluation sheets to decide a clear winner.
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Bay Area USPCA Local Chapter Field Trip: Terra Bella Family Farm in Sunol AgPark, California By Chef Garbo Background on Sunol AgPark (Excerpted From the SAGE Website www.sagecenter.org/sunol-agpark) The Bay Area Local USPCA Chapter ventured on a field trip to the Terra Bella Family Farm located in Sunol AgPark. The AgPark is an organic farm located at the confluence of two creeks on public watershed lands, and places a strong emphasis on natural resource stewardship. Sustainable Agricultural Education (SAGE) pioneered the concept of urban-edge Agricultural Parks (AGParks) in the US, which is based on the European models. Founded in 2001, SAGE is an entrepreneurial nonprofit that implements its ambitious mission and innovative projects through collaborations with public and private partners. AgParks are an innovative, scalable model that facilitates land access for beginning and immigrant farmers, local food provisions for diverse communities, resource conservation, public education and job training opportunities. At the park we visited the Terra Bella Family Farm owned by Shawn and Beth Seufert. These farmers utilize organic practices such as cover cropping, crop rotation, and organic amendments to enhance soil fertility and minimize soil and plant diseases. Their farm produces a mix of all organic crops including specialty melons, heirloom tomatoes and varieties of eggplants and peppers sold at local farmerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; markets. Their seasonal produce can be found at well known restaurants in San Francisco and Berkeley, California.
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Chef Dawn Buchholz’s Discovery of Terra Bella Family Farms I found Terra Bella Family Farms years ago when I first registered as a supporter of Local Harvest. At the website I made a small donation, and discovered that I was able to create a small ad for my Personal Chef Business, Dining in by Dawn (great inexpensive way to get your name out there). I have since enjoyed many of the organic produce this grower brings to the local Farmer’s Markets in the Tri-Valley, East San Francisco Bay Area. I have been fortunate to have access to Terra Bella Family Farms’ excellent produce at Farmer’s Markets in all 4 cities in which I have resided over the past 20 years! Having met Farmer Shawn and being curious about his farm, I suggested that our Chapter plan a field trip and we chose to visit last May for our meeting. We had breakfast at a cute little place in the tiny town of Sunol called the Railroad Café where we caught up with each other, enjoyed brunch alfresco right near the tracks and were track side (very!) as one train went through town! We then took a short walk to the Water Towers and began our tour of the farms. We were greeted by the current president of SAGE who explained what they do to support these coop farmers and how the coop functions. We then enjoyed complimentary slices of juicy, delicious watermelon provided by Whole Foods. It was very cool to see all the plowed, prepared, and newly planted fields across the large area, to visit the growing sheds and to speak with the independent growers as they shared info about their specialties such as edible flowers, eggs, tomatoes, peppers, seeds, seedlings, and herbs. Did you know that small farms (mostly family owned) make up 80% of the almost two million farms in America? These small farmers are selling to their products directly to the public more and more through programs like CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), Farmer’s Markets, and Food Coops. Lucky us! I love to buy local, organic produce from a local farmer! This way I am working together to maintain a sustainable, strong economy that supports a healthy environment and vibrant community that my children can enjoy for years to come! As a Personal Chef and Nutrition Coach, I am concerned about the large scale commercial agriculture use of harmful poisons that impact our water and soil so I encourage you to venture out and find a local farmer to patronize for the best, freshest, healthy, organic ingredients for both your family and your clients!
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7680 Universal Blvd. Ste 550 Orlando, FL 32819
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