Friday, October 17, 2008

.. good food with bad reputation

Here at Americano I really wanted to do a one of american popular classics rib roast " prime rib"...first, it can be never called prime rib if beef is grated by USDA different then as a prime...but anyways...its such a good succulent dish if it's made right, even from USDA choice. I Like Certified Black angus cab. Problem  is, has very bad reputation from wedding reception, new year dinners...etc. 
 To make it right, first, you have to choose a right beef. Second thing is,  I want it to concentrate a flavor a little, so I dry aged it for a couple days , then you have to roast it very slowly to let the fat melt inside of the meat slowly make it juicy and flavorful. Like with a any kind of well marbled beef. Thats why I do not believe in steaks served rare, because has to be just enough heat applied inside of the meat melt that fat. I think Ideally you would want to roast meat slowly at a temperature you would want to reach, but at a restaurant we do at 220 - 210 degrees an then , after it's reaching desired medium-medium rare inside temperature, we lowing down to 130-140 to hold it. I season the meat the day before, then before i roast I apply wet rub. Result is juicy delicious beef roast I wanna eat and serve to people who appreciate it.
Now, just all I have to do is just put a chefs twist for our concept, one of the most delicious forgotten French classics is potatos dauphine, I brought those back and put it with a our rib roast, then British Yorkshire pudding ...or more well known as a popovers in this country, with a compound butter ...little classic horseradish drizzle with some natural jus and some seasonal fresh veg ...and we have and we have " Saved" ..updated...Americano Prime rib roast with a Popovers and almond honey butter, potatoes dauphine, drizzle of horseradish and natural jus..served also with seasonal veg...thats whats cooking to day my friends...wish me luck!!!
God! I Love to cook !

Friday, October 10, 2008

Soul of the Chef

I think it's weird how some times my brine just functioning about cooking. I always have so many ideas and so many different food combinations and flavors i want to try. As a day goes by I get inspired by so many different thinks, specially when I go shopping for food...I know thats a time waste..but there is something when you select thinks your self with your eyes and already have a an idea what you going to do with them before even they are and it on your counter top. One thing for sure I dont get inspired by company's send weekly " whats fresh " fax...only thing I see is paper and black letters..
I like to play with food every day and look forward to cook it, even on my day off at home. It's shocking how some times I wake up in a middle of the night just for minute to fix my pillow or blanket and that one minute I remembering ...for example that sour dough starter or some thing like is it fermenting ???;)
As it gets towards end of the week my body always gets more and more tire from intensity and heat of the kitchen, but today Im verry exited because , I.m going to try some thing what I always wanted to try long time ago....if it will be suxxes I will describe it next week in details..
In a all I have to say...for some reason ...I just love.....
Love to cook!!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

fall season

Getting in to a of the best time for cooks...mushrooms...root very hard when i go shopping not to buy everything I want allthe squash..all apples..just because they are all look so good and tasty.
Seems like everything is picking up at a restaurant...slightly changes an a menu as we go further into a fall season. I'm glad to announce that we are finally made first steps on our webside development, so hophely everybody can have more clear vision who we are and what are we doing, and hopefully our passion for good food, wine and seasonal ingredients.
P.s. My tapas class coming up next monday ocktober 13th at
here is what Im going to be cooking!
If you like it please join me !
Menu: Fruity Non-Alcoholic Sangria, Tortilla Di Patata served with Toss Salad, Marinated Olives,
Chicken & Chorizo Empanada, Gazpacho with Chilled Shrimp Shooters, Eggplant & Cured Ham Rolls, Chocolate Pot de Creme with Cinnamon Churros

Honey apple sangria

2 Honeycrisp, gala or your choice apples
2 granny smith aples
One bottle fruity white wine or unsweteend grape juice
3 cups apple cider
1/4 cup honey
2 oranges sliced
1 lemon sliced
1 lime sliced
2 cinnamon sticks
1 inch fresh ginger knob sliced
3 cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Club soda
Mint for garnish

Peel, core and chop the apples. In a bowl, combine the white wine or grape juice, honey. Add orange, the lemon, lime, cinnamon sticks, the chopped apple, ginger and cloves and refrigerate at least 4 hours.
Put the sangria into a pitcher. Garnish with mint, sprinkle with cinimon and apple wedges.

Spanish Tortilla

2 pounds youkon gold potatoes, peeled
2 cups extra-virgin olive oil
10 large eggs, beaten
3 Large bunches of scallions
fresh herbs of your choice, chopped
Seasonal greens
olive oil and vinegar

Quarter the potatoes lengthwise and thinly slice them crosswise. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Carefully add the potatoes to the skillet and cook over high heat,until the potatoes are softened and just beginning to brown, about 15 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the potatoes to a colander to drain. Pour off the oil in the skillet.
Return the skillet to high heat and add sliced scallions. Saute until tender. Cool it . In a large bowl, combine the potatoes with the beaten eggs, scallions, and season with salt. Add the mixture to the skillet and cook, lifting the edge of the tortilla and tilting the pan to allow the uncooked eggs to seep underneath; cook until the bottom is golden and set, about 5 minutes. If top of the tortilla still not done finish in 375 oven for about 12-15 minutes. Slice tortillain toa wedges and serves with a tossed salad.
Combaine herbes with seasonal greens of your choice drizzle with vinegar and oil, salt and pepper and serve on a side of tortilla.

Marinated Black and green olives

3 cups brine cured black and green olives
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2-cup lemon juice,
1/2 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons minced garlic
2 tablespoons minced rosemary, oregano, basil
1 tbsp fennel seeds , toasted
1 tablespoon grated lemon and orange peel
1 teaspoon dried hot pepper flakes

In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients and stir well to mix. Marinate the olive mixture, covered and chilled, stirring occasionally, for at least 1 day before serving.

Chicken and chorizo empenadas

1/2 cup chopped onions
½ pound loose chorizo sausage
1 pound chicken thigh meat cooked through in a water and pulled
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1 cup chopped black and green olives
½ cup raisins, soaked in warm water for 10 minutes and drained
Empanada dough
In a large saute pan, over medium heat, add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the onions. Season with salt and crushed red pepper. Saute for 2 minutes. Add chorizzo. Saute for 2 to 3 minutes untilis cooked trough and break apart. Remove from the heat and turn into a mixing bowl. Add the pulled chicken meat, garlic, green onions, olives, raisins. Season with salt. Mix well. On a floured surface, roll the dough out to a circle, 1/8-inch thick. Using a 4-inch round cutter, cut the dough into individual circles. Press the remaining dough together and repeat the above process. Place about 1 tablespoon of the filling in the center of each circle. Lightly wet the edges of the dough with water. Fold the dough over, forming a half-moon, using your fingers, seal the edges completely and crimp the sides of the dough. Place the finished empanadas on a baking sheet. Empenadas can be fried in a 350 degree oil or brushed with oil and baked in a 400 degree oven for about 15 minutes.

Empanada Dough
1 cup masa harina
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons natural non hydrogenated pork lard
1 cup water
In a mixing bowl combine the masa harina, flour and baking powder. Season with the salt and pepper and mix thoroughly. Cream in the lard and add the water a little at a time, working the mixture until all is completely incorporated. Using your hands, form the dough into a log and let it rest for 30 minutes

Gazpacho and shrimp shooters

3 pounds tomatoes, cored and coarsely chopped
1 seedless cucumber, peeled and coarsely chopped
2 red bell peppers, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
1 cup tomato juice
1 slice of bread toasted
2 tbsp horseradish
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 lb cooked shrimp your choice at least 16 /20 size
cilantro for garnish
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl.In a blender, puree the vegetables until smooth. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Pour soup in a shot glases ad shrimp and garnish with cilantro.

Eggplant and Prosciuto Rolls

2 large eggplants
1 cup fresh basil leaves, stems removed

1/2 lbmontery jack or good melting cheese
1/4 lb monchego, roughly grated
1/4lb prosciutto or serrano, sliced paper thin

2 cups romesco

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut the eggplants in half lengthwise, end to end. Then continue cutting the eggplants into 1/4 inch thick slices.Brush eggplant slices with olive oil and place a few at a time in a large skillet, over medium-high heat. Sautee, turning until very lightly golden on both sides and softened. Alternatvly eggplants can be grilled. Set aside on paper towels to cool. Lay out one eggplant slice, layer one slice prosciutto, and two or three basil leaves, and the melting cheese followed by a dash of salt and pepper. Starting at the small end, roll it up and run through with a toothpick to hold. Place the roll-ups in a baking dish and top with romesco sauce. Bake for 25 minutes. Let stand five minutes and serve hot. Sprinkle with grated manchogo cheese.
1/2 cup spanish olive oil
1 red bell pepper
8 ripe plum to matoes or good quality canned fire roasted tomatoes
1 head garlic halved
1 spanish onion
2 ancho chili peppers
1 tsp blanched almonds
1 ounce ( about 1 slice) white bread
1 tbs. sherry vinegar
1/3 cup sherry wine
1 tbs. spanish smoked paprika
1 tbs. sweet spanish paprika
1 tsp salt

For the romesco :
Heat the oven to a 350 degrees:
Coat the red bell pepper, tomatoes, garlic and onions with a olive oil and roast ina oven until vegetables are soft for about 25-35 minutes.
Place ancho chilies in a hot tap water and soak for about 20 minutes.Strain and remove the seeds, place chilies in a blender puree until smooth, adding little water as necessary, press through the fine strainer to remove the seeds and set aside.
Heat some olive oil in a large skillet, add the almonds and brown them for about for one minute, remove and set aside. In a same skillet toast the bread until nice and brown,and set aside .
When vegetables are cool to handle remove the skin from tomatoes, bell pepper, squeeze out as much as you can garlic. Now place allingridiants to a blender or food processor, roasted vegetables, chili pure, bread, vinegar, paprika’s, wine, almonds, remaining oil and blend until thick sauce forms.

Churros with chocolate cinnamon sauce

Serves : 4-6

8 cups vegetable or olive oil for frying
1 cup water
1/2 cup butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 eggs
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Heat the oil in a deep frying pan to 360 degrees F.

To make the churro dough, heat the water, butter, and salt to a rolling boil in a saucepan. Add the flour and stir vigorously over low heat until mixture forms a ball, approximately 1 minute and remove from heat. Beat eggs until smooth and add to the saucepan while stirring the mixture.

Spoon the mixture into a piping bag with a star tip. Squeeze 4-inch strips of dough into the hot oil. Fry 3 or 4 strips at a time until golden brown, turning once, about 2 minutes on each side. Drain on paper towels. Mix the sugar and cinnamon in a bowl and roll the churros in the sugar mixture. Set aside until ready to serve.

Chocolate cinnamon Sauce :

Hot Chocolate:
4 ounces dark chocolate
2 cups milk
1 tablespoon cornstarch
4 tablespoons sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon or 1 stick of cinnamon
2 tbs. dark rum
pinch of salt

Heat the milk, sugar, cinnamon in a sauce pan until simmer.Whisk rum and cornstarch tomake slurry, add to a hot milk mixture , bring back to boil until thickens lightly. Take off the heat and whisk in chocolate and salt until smooth.