The Gourmet Farmer Deli Book by Matthew Evans [epub | 16,80 Mb] ISBN: B0094BQIXE

  • Full Title: The Gourmet Farmer Deli Book: Dairy
  • Autor: Matthew Evans
  • Print Length: 204 pages
  • Publisher: Murdoch Books
  • Publication Date: September 1, 2012
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: B0094BQIXE
  • ISBN-13: 
  • Download File Format | Size: epub | 16,80 Mb
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Gourmet Farmer Matthew Evans and producers Nick Haddow and Ross O’Meara share their favourite deli recipes. Enjoy food as it used to taste.

Why would you go to the effort of make your own cheese, clotted cream or yoghurt? It’s quite simple, really – because it tastes better.

This collection of recipes celebrates the artisan process in making items you’d typically find in your local deli and provides simple, delicious recipes where those ingredients are the stars of simple, flavoursome dishes.

From a classic butter cake to baked feta with preserved tomato, olives and oregano and samosas, The Gourmet Farmer Deli Book: Dairy celebrates the way we used to cook and the way food used to taste.

Recipes include: Vegetable bisteeya, clotted cream fudge, ricotta cheese and paneer, smoked ricotta, shanklish and more.

All titles in this series: The Gourmet Farmer Deli Book: Dairy
The Gourmet Farmer Deli Book: Smallgoods
The Gourmet Farmer Deli Book: Vegetables and Condiments
The Gourmet Farmer Deli Book: The Collection

 

Editorial Reviews

 

Keywords

anning And Preserving

Dr John Stone

Copyright©2014 Dr John Stone

This book or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any way whatsoever without the written consent of the Author except for the purpose of brief quotations for book reviews.

Disclaimer

This book is intended to be a general guide, to raise awareness, and to help people make informed decisions in the context of their own personal circumstance.

The author accepts no responsibility for any loss or injury be it personal or financial, as a result for the use or misuse of the information in this book. If you have any doubts or concerns after reading this book, please speak to a qualified person before taking any actions.

Table of Contents

Introduction

Chapter 1: Planning Your Food And Water Supply For the Short, Medium & Long Term Emergencies

Chapter 2: How to Store Water Safely

Chapter 3: How to Store Food Safely

Chapter 4: How To Preserve Your Food By Canning And Various Other Methods Of Food Preservation

Chapter 5: Ways You Can Properly Manage Your Water And Food Should An Emergency Occurs

Chapter 6: Ways To Scavenge and Restock Your Supplies

Conclusion

From The Author

Other Books By In This Series By Dr John Stone

Introduction

You never know when disaster is going to strike. Disaster can come in many different forms. You could be stuck in the middle of a severe snow storm that cripples the city and knocks out power for days or you could live in an area that has just suffered some kind of major upheaval like civil unrest or a terrorist attack. These are things that can and have happened. Some people were prepared and were able to ride out the aftermath of a storm in relative comfort, while others were left without food, water and basic necessities.

We have seen time and again that our governments can only provide so much aid. That aid isn’t going to be instant. It will take several days for the government to mobilize and start bringing in supplies. If the situation is severe, it could take much longer than that. Governments have learned by past incidents that it will take them at least 3 days before they can start to bring in food, medical supplies and clean drinking water. For that reason, it is almost a requirement that every household have at least a 3-day supply of food and water on hand.

However, 3 days isn’t very long and what if you are on the outskirts of town or the disaster you have been a victim of is so severe roads in and out of the city are completely blocked. You would have to survive much longer without the help of your government, the Red Cross or even the local grocery store. You are on your own! This book will help you prepare for anything so you will have peace of mind that your family will be taken care of no matter what comes your way.

You need to know just how much food and water you should really be storing for your particular situation. You also need to know what kinds of foods. No one food pantry is going to suit everybody. Your family has different needs and taste preferences than the guy next door. Learn how to tailor an emergency food storage so you can keep your family healthy and happy. When you are cooped up together, being happy is pretty important.

Storing food and water doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend hundreds of dollars at the local grocery store. You can certainly preserve your own food using several different methods, which are all covered in this book. It is much more cost effective and you will know exactly what it is you are feeding your family.

You also need to know how to ration your available food and water. The local foodmart is not going to be operational. You have to make do with what you have on hand when disaster strikes. If the worst happens and you run out of food and water, do you know how to scavenge to find more?

There are a lot of bases to cover when it comes to being prepared for anything. This book will help you cover all of those bases while teaching you some new skills. Don’t put off your emergency preparations. You never know when the next storm is headed your way. You need to start preparing today!

Chapter 1:

Planning Your Food And Water Supply For the Short, Medium & Long Term Emergencies

Planning for Emergencies

Sometimes, it goes without saying “Prevention is better than cure.” It is indeed, true. When you have planned what to do, it makes things easier for you to organize your resources. Please bear in mind that it’s always better to have it, even if you don’t need it, than to need it, but you totally don’t have it. Emergencies always happen every time we don’t expect them.

There are things that we need to consider in starting our emergency food pantry. Consider the shelf life of the food; you don’t want to end up eating a rotten or spoiled
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be prepared to feel happier, sexier, more vibrant, energetic, and at peace with yourself and the rest of the world, even if that isn’t your intention. And, of course, be ready to exercise your right to glow.

What Is Raw Food?

The raw food “movement,” a plant-based, vegan lifestyle, has been around for a long time. It has a bunch of other nicknames—live food, living cuisine, sunfood cuisine—and there are slight distinctions, though the polemics spring from the same essential source. But no matter the label, the connotation is the same: It is a diet comprising naturally grown wild or organically and sustainably raised fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and occasionally sprouted grains. Like vegans, raw foodists do not consume animal products of any kind (with the exception, in many cases, of honey and bee pollen). However, the raw food lifestyle goes further by excluding any foods with chemically processed or pasteurized ingredients. Finally, and most significantly, during the preparation of raw food dishes, nothing is cooked, at least in the traditional sense.

This may sound limiting to some. But for us, the possibilities that exist within the raw food lifestyle are both boundless and thoroughly satisfying. When you are able to enjoy a simple bowl of sweet cherries, or a creamy avocado with a splash of lime juice and coarse sea salt, it is easy to imagine how a little creativity can make this food exciting. In fact, raw food has its own cuisine identity, and it is very much a playful and inventive one. But the real benefit of raw food, aside from great flavor, is the unbelievable way it makes you feel, inside and out.

OUR STORY

MK: “I was raised on the coast of Maine, surrounded by fresh, seasonal foods, which became the foundation for the standards I have now developed. When I first moved to New York, I very quickly became fascinated and literally fell in love with restaurants. I started out waiting tables at a Sicilian restaurant, and then worked my way into the kitchen. The food at that restaurant exploded with flavor. I began to love the light yet intense Mediterranean way of cooking—the flavors of citrus, olive oil, seasonal fruits and vegetables, tons of fresh herbs and spices. I soon became aware, however, that I would need more than just restaurant experience, and I enrolled in culinary school.

When I finally had the opportunity to open my first restaurant, it was Mediterranean. In fact, the next four restaurants I opened after that were also Mediterranean. I traveled all over the world and brought influences from those travels into my kitchens. Although the restaurants I had opened were very well reviewed and did quite well, they did not have the critical mass that would be required to sustain them. Following a trend that was picking up in those days, my new partners and I began to shift the direction of my company toward American regional food, with an emphasis on heavier comfort foods. My heart was not in this in the least. My most successful restaurant was known for its Truffled Macaroni and Cheese, yet no one can ever claim to have seen me eat the dish, ever, because I never did. I didn’t particularly enjoy that kind of food and did not like the way eating it made me feel. Nevertheless, the comfort food craze was lucrative and the restaurant business became just that to me, a business—no longer a passion.”

SM: “I grew up in a suburb of Boston, Massachusetts, in a family where food was always very important. My mother was a professional chef who taught me a great deal and instilled in me a passion for food and cooking. After college, however, I moved to New York City to work in investment banking. It was only after six rather grueling years in finance that I finally gave in and left to attend culinary school.”

MK: “I had just secured a second cookbook deal, focusing on the ‘urban’ roods that my new restaurants served. The working name was Big City Cooking (and it stuck). I was very busy, operating several businesses and a large catering company, and I needed to hire a recipe tester to work with me on developing and testing the dishes. My agent called and told me about someone who had recently graduated from the French Culinary Institute and who was a big fan of my first book, Matthew Kenney’s Mediterranean Cooking.

“Sarma arrived at my office one morning for our interview, very casual, friendly, eager, knowledgeable, and organized. I hired her on the spot. Working on this book together wound up being far more interesting than I had originally anticipated. In addition to the heavier macaroni-and-cheese type dishes, the recipes also included many dishes that we envisioned together and some that Sarma created herself. These dishes were colorful, fresh, and vibrant, and were more reflective of the lighter way we both preferred to eat. In the end, the book was beautiful, and we also realized that we had a stronger connection with
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eeter than their southern counterparts. Si Racha on the Gulf of Thailand is famous for its chilli sauce and it appears as a condiment on virtually every table.

The 14 provinces that make up the area between the Isthmus of Kra and the Malaysian border have always been culturally different from the rest of the country. Once under the influence of the Indonesian Sriwijaya empire along with areas of Malaysia, Malay-Indonesian culture and religion is still apparent.

Seafood and fish are the predominate feature of southern cuisine. With two long coastlines, fresh fish and seafood is eaten in abundance, and even more of it is preserved by drying. Locally made shrimp paste and fish sauce are used in quantity.

Southern Thailand is the land of the palm tree. Coconut and oil palms are farmed as well as growing wild, fringing the beaches. Further up the Isthmus, sugar palms are grown for their sweet sap. Phuket is home to pineapple plantations and rice is cultivated wherever it can be persuaded to grow.

Thai (Buddhist) curries and soups are tempered and enriched by the addition of coconut milk or cream. Spices include turmeric and pepper, and chillies are used with abandon. ‘Yellow’ curries are popular. Muslim dishes use ghee and oil rather than coconut and use a larger range of fragrant spices including cardamom, cumin and cloves. Kaeng matsaman, an Indian-style curry, is at its best in the South. Indo-Malay dishes such as satay are popular as are Indian-style roti. Chinese-style dishes include rice noodles, barbecued meats, deep-fried snacks, steamed buns and dumplings.

Coffee shops sell kopi (filtered coffee), and this, served with khao yam (cooked dry rice, toasted coconut, makrut (kaffir) lime leaves, bean sprouts and lemon grass), makes a typical breakfast in the southern areas of Thailand.

THUNG TONG

Gold Bags

This delicate Chinese-style starter or snack looks exactly as it is described – a tiny gold bag. Blanched chives will also work as ties for the tops of the bags. If you like you can use half prawns and half chicken or pork for the filling.

Makes 40

280 g (10 oz) raw prawns (shrimp), peeled, deveined and roughly chopped, or boneless, skinless chicken or pork fillet, roughly chopped

225 g (8 oz) tin water chestnuts, drained and roughly chopped

3–4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

3 spring onions (scallions), thinly sliced

1 tablespoon oyster sauce

1 teaspoon ground white pepper

1 teaspoon salt

2–3 bunches of spring onions (scallions), or 40 chives, for ties

2 tablespoons plain (all-purpose) flour

40 spring roll sheets, 13 cm (5 in) square

peanut oil, for deep-frying

a chilli sauce, to serve

Using a food processor or blender, chop the prawns, chicken or pork to a fine paste. Transfer to a bowl and combine with the water chestnuts, garlic, spring onions, oyster sauce, white pepper and salt.

To make spring onion ties, cut each into four to six strips, using only the longest green parts, then soak them in boiling water for 5 minutes, or until soft. Drain, then dry on paper towels.

Mix the flour and 160 ml (6 fl oz) cold water in a small saucepan until smooth. Stir and cook over medium heat for 1–2 minutes, or until thick.

Place three spring roll sheets in front of you and keep the remaining sheets in the plastic bag to prevent them drying out. Spoon 2 teaspoons of filling into the middle of each sheet. Brush around the filling with flour paste, then pull up into a bag and pinch together to enclose the filling. Place on a tray that is lightly dusted with plain (all-purpose) flour. Repeat until you have used all the filling and sheets. Tie a piece of spring onion twice around each bag and tie in a knot. Use chives if you prefer.

Heat 7.5 cm (3 in) oil in a wok or deep frying pan over medium heat. When the oil seems hot, drop a small piece of spring roll sheet into it. If it sizzles immediately, the oil is ready. It is important not to have the oil too hot or the gold bags will cook too quickly and brown. Lower four bags into the oil and deep-fry for 2–3 minutes until they start to go hard. Lower another three or four bags into the oil and deep-fry them all together. To help cook the tops, splash the oil over the tops and deep-fry for 7–10 minutes, or until golden and crisp. As each batch is cooked, lift the bags out with a slotted spoon and add another batch. Drain on paper towels. Keep the gold bags warm while deep-frying the rest. Serve with a chilli sauce.

KUNG HOM PAR

Prawns in a Blanket

These prawns, which are prepared in Chinese style, make a delicious canapé. Choose large plump prawns and leave the tails on for attractive presentation and ease of eating. Marinate the prawns overnight in the refrigerator if you want to prepare ahead.

Serves 4

12 raw large prawns (shrimp)

1 tablespoon plain (all-purpose) flour

2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
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y stocked pantry, fridge, and freezer makes me smile! Big time.

FRIDGE

Apples and oranges: for snacking, salads, and sauces

Assorted berries: blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, blackberries—for muffins, cobblers, salads, and snacking

Bacon: make BLTs, top burgers, cut into bits and fry with onion as the basis for some pasta sauces and soups

Basic vegetables: bell peppers, cucumbers, carrots, celery, zucchini, yellow squash

Butter: salted and unsalted

Cheese: blocks of long-lasting varieties such as Cheddar, Parmesan, blue, and feta

Corn and flour tortillas: stored properly, they seem to last forever in the fridge

Cream cheese: use in desserts, as a dip with pesto or chutney poured over, or in baked artichoke and spinach dips

Greek yogurt: for dips and dressings, and to serve with berries drizzled with honey

Greens: iceberg lettuce, romaine, green-leaf lettuce, mixed greens, kale, cabbage

Heavy cream: for desserts, sauces . . . and coffee!

Lemons and limes: for dressings, marinades, and sweet drinks

Sour cream: for baking and to dollop on top of baked potatoes and Mexican dishes

PANTRY

Assorted olives: pimiento-stuffed, black, Kalamata

Baking ingredients: bulk flour (all-purpose, whole wheat, self-rising), yeast, granulated sugar, brown sugar (store in an airtight container), powdered sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, flavored extracts, and so on

Canned artichoke hearts: throw into a pantry pasta sauce, make baked artichoke dip, etc.

Canned tomatoes: crushed, whole, diced, tomato paste, tomatoes with chiles (such as Ro-Tel), sauce

Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce: Add to soups. Add to roasts. Puree with mayonnaise for a great salad dressing or veggie dip.

Chocolate chips and other forms of baking chocolate: semisweet, bittersweet, and unsweetened

Cornmeal: use in baking, of course, but also dissolve a little in water and stir into soups and chilis for a little thickening and flavor

Dried beans: Put ’em in soups. Put ’em in stews. Cook ’em in a pot with a ham hock. Make refried beans.

Dried pastas: in every shape and size imaginable

Evaporated milk and sweetened condensed milk: for baking and dessert sauces

Honey: for sweetening yogurt smoothies, adding a hint of sweet to recipes . . . and drizzling on hot biscuits

Jalapeños, pepperoncini, and other peppers: for sandwiches, salads, and snacking

Jarred marinara: in bulk!

Jarred pesto, specialty relishes, chutneys, and so on: Jarred pesto is an easy way to inject big flavor into soups, pasta, quiches, chicken salads, dips, and dressings when you don’t have access to fresh basil.

Jarred salsas: traditional, peach, chipotle

Ketchup, mustards, and barbecue sauce

Masa harina: corn flour, sold in the Hispanic foods aisle. Use in similar ways as cornmeal.

Mayonnaise: real mayo, please!

Oatmeal: for breakfast, for cookies, for adding to meatloaf and meatball mixtures

Oils: olive, vegetable, peanut

Panko breadcrumbs: Top casseroles. Coat mozzarella for frying. Mix them into meatballs and meatloaf. Bread chicken breasts.

Peanut butter: crunchy and creamy, for sandwiches, sauces, and sweets

Potatoes, onions, and garlic: Store ’em in separate baskets so air can circulate.

Quinoa and other grains

Real maple syrup: for topping pancakes and waffles, and sweetening sauces and dressings

Rice: long grain, medium grain, wild, brown, and Arborio for risotto

Roasted red peppers: Place them on paninis, cut them into strips and put them in frittatas, puree them and make a soup or pasta sauce, chop them and make bruschetta.

Seasonings, herbs, and spices: kosher salt, seasoned salt, black pepper, dried thyme, oregano, parsley, turmeric, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, and so on

Shortening: for frying and baking

Stocks and broths: chicken, beef, vegetable . . . for soups, brisket, pot roasts, and so on

Various jellies: strawberry, apricot, jalapeño, peach, plum

Vinegars: distilled white, white wine, apple cider, red wine, rice

FREEZER

Beef: wrapped in butcher paper or vacuum sealed

Bread: crusty artisan loaves, plus a couple of back-up loaves of sandwich breads

Chicken breasts, wings, legs, and thighs: either flash frozen and stored in zipper bags or vacuum sealed

“Fresh” vegetables: The freezer is where I stock the veggies that aren’t great in canned form: green beans, peas, spinach, Brussels sprouts, lima beans, carrots, corn. These nonacidic vegetables stay so much more delicious, nutritious, and fresh in the freezer. (Freeze your own veggies out of the garden by blanching, then cooling them in ice water, drying, flash freezing, and adding them to larger zipper bags.)

Frozen dinner rolls: I love the (store-bought!) unrisen, unbaked little round balls of dough. They rise and bake up so beautifully, and you can slather them wit
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chilled orange juice and a stack of Sunday newspapers. Easy like Sunday morning . . .

SERVES 3

PREP TIME: 5 MIN

COOK TIME: 15 MIN

1 tbsp olive oil

½ onion, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, crushed

400g tin of mixed beans

1 tbsp butter

5 eggs, beaten

3 tortilla wraps

3 tsp spicy tomato salsa

75g Cheddar, grated

PROTEIN 33G

FAT (SATURATED) 33G (12.6G)

CARB 53G

FIBRE 1.9G

CAL 643

Preheat the grill to medium.

Heat the olive oil in a medium pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 5 minutes, until softened. Stir in the beans, reduce the heat and leave to simmer while you scramble the eggs.

Melt the butter in a frying pan and pour in the eggs. Cook on a low heat for 3–4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the eggs are scrambled but still nice and moist. Remove from the heat.

Spoon a third of the bean mixture into the middle of each tortilla wrap. Follow with equal amounts of the scrambled eggs, salsa and Cheddar. Fold the sides of the wraps over the filling, then roll the wraps up from bottom to top to enclose the filling completely. Place the wraps folded-side down on a baking tray. Place under the grill and cook for 2–3 minutes, until lightly toasted, and serve.

CHILLI BACON BEANS

These beans can be whipped up in no time at all and they taste fantastic. This is a favourite breakfast of mine after a Saturday morning gym session. Serve the beans with wholemeal toast and a smoothie on the side, and it becomes a feast! The recipe serves two but the beans reheat really well. So if you make this for yourself, you get to enjoy leftovers the next day. And it’s not just a breakfast dish, either: I’ve had many a happy lunchtime with this recipe.

SERVES 2

PREP TIME: 5 MIN

COOK TIME: 10 MIN

1 tbsp olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

½ red chilli, finely chopped

100g bacon, chopped

400g tin of mixed beans, drained and rinsed

250ml passata

salt and pepper

PROTEIN 29G

FAT (SATURATED) 19.6G (5.2G)

CARB 44G

FIBRE 0.9G

CAL 472

Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and chilli and cook for 2 minutes. Add the bacon and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in the beans and passata and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until everything is heated through. Divide the beans between warmed serving plates. Season to taste.

THE FITTER PITTA

The Fitter Pitta is a toasted pitta packed full of avocado, Cheddar and spinach – all topped off with a fried egg. The avocado gives omega-3 goodness, vitamin K and vitamin C; the egg is full of vitamin B and protein; and the Cheddar gives a nice boost of calcium. It would be hard to find a better start to your day.

SERVES 1

PREP TIME: 5 MIN

COOK TIME: 5 MIN

1 tbsp olive oil

1 egg, at room temperature

1 wholemeal pitta

½ avocado, peeled and finely sliced

25g white Cheddar, grated

a small handful of baby spinach

PROTEIN 22G

FAT (SATURATED) 43G (12.5G)

CARB 37G

FIBRE 8.8G

CAL 645

Heat the oil in a small frying pan over a low-medium heat. Break the egg into the pan. Gently cook for about 5 minutes, until the white is set but the yolk is still runny.

Meanwhile, toast the pitta on both sides. Split open and stuff with the avocado, Cheddar and spinach. Top with the fried egg and serve.

THE FITTER PITTA

LUNCH

FIT FOODIE NOODLE POTS

NO-DOUGH PIZZAS

CHICKEN & CHUTNEY POCKETS

HOT CHICKEN SANDWICH

SPINACH & FETA FRITTATA

TWO-FISH MISHMASH

QUICK BAKED POTATO & TUNA

GET-YOUR-GREENS SOUP

LEEK & POTATO SOUP

TOMATO & RED LENTIL SOUP

PEA & MINT SOUP

SUMMER COUSCOUS SALAD

TUNA & QUINOA SALAD

ROCKET, FENNEL & ORANGE SALAD

CRUNCHY BROCCOLI & FETA SALAD

QUINOA SALAD WITH TOASTED

NUTS & BLUE CHEESE

THREE-GRAIN SALAD

THREE-BEAN SALAD

TUNA PESTO PASTA

FIT FOODIE NOODLE POTS

Fit Foodie Noodle Pots are a lot of fun! They make for healthy, portable hot lunches. All you have to do is gather your ingredients in a preserving jar (such as Kilner or Le Parfait) and then store it in the fridge. When lunchtime comes around, you just boil the kettle and pour the hot water into the jar. Before you know it, your Fit Foodie Noodle Pot is ready to go.

SERVES 1

PREP TIME: 10 MIN

COOK TIME: 3 MIN

THE MILD ONE

150g straight-to-wok rice noodles

2 small florets of broccoli

1 scallion, finely sliced

¼ carrot, peeled and grated

A few peas (preferably fresh but frozen will work)

a thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, grated

a few spinach leaves

1 tsp vegetable stock powder

THE SPICY ONE

150g straight-to-wok rice noodles

a handful of shredded cooked chicken

5 sugar snap peas, halved

1 scallion, finely sliced

ciples: What is the best way of capturing flavors?

That is how choosing a technique fits into my cooking.

I’m excited to eat in restaurants that are pushing the boundaries of presentation and technique. Yet my personal take on food that is too technically driven is that technique comes first and taste comes second. I feel the meals that hit home are ones where the flavor is there and you are eating a meal in a distinct time and place. I love it when people look back on a meal, and the time of year is what made it special. The ingredients they tasted seemed naturally a part of that moment because that is what is available then.

Sometimes straightforward flavors are the ones people can latch on to, even though the ingredients can be very sophisticated behind the scenes. If, ultimately, the flavor combination is one that is simple and straightforward, with an impressive balance of acidity and bitterness, and you remember it, then you win as a diner. Sometimes the meals that hit home are not the ones that were the most complicated.

FLAVOR FROM THE INSIDE OUT

America’s foremost chefs reached the pinnacle of their profession through their painstaking attention to every aspect of their cuisine and the restaurant experience. Chefs bring their own unique approaches to their cuisines, which are arguably rooted in either the physical, emotional, mental, or spiritual — although they can span two, three, or even all of them.

Chefs whose focus celebrates the physical realm include Alice Waters of Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California, with her pathbreaking focus on the quality of ingredients sourced and served, and Dan Barber of Blue Hill at Stone Barns in Pocantico Hills, New York, whose on-premises greenhouse, gardens, and pastures grow and raise much of what the restaurant serves.

Celebrating the emotional realm are those chefs whose cuisines are closely tied to a specific culture, its people, and their traditions. It includes chefs such as Rick Bayless, whose Frontera Grill and Topolobampo in Chicago elevate Mexican cuisine, and Vikram Vij and Meeru Dhalwala, whose Vij’s and Rangoli restaurants in Vancouver honor and celebrate the cooking of India and tap Indian women exclusively to staff their kitchens.

Easily identifiable as part of the mental realm are chefs whose efforts are reconceptualizing how food can be manipulated and presented, such as Chicago’s Grant Achatz of Alinea (with signature dishes such as bacon on a clothesline) and Homaro Cantu of Moto (whose dishes include incorporating edible paper printed with soy-based inks, and a doughnut soup that looks like eggnog and tastes just like a doughnut).

Through the elevation not only of their cuisines but of the creation and orchestration of ambiance and service as well, chefs such as Daniel Boulud of New York’s Restaurant Daniel and Patrick O’Connell of The Inn at Little Washington in Virginia transcend the prior three categories to bring the dining experience to another level in the spiritual realm.

In the pages that follow, we’ll share chefs’ reflections on working in the first three realms. (As for their thoughts on the fourth, we invite you to visit or revisit our book Culinary Artistry.)

The Physical Realm

My motto has always been: Find the best ingredients possible, and listen to what they tell you about how they want to be prepared. Mess with them as little as you can. Keep their integrity, but at the same time, focus their flavor, which is where creativity comes in.

— VITALY PALEY, PALEY’S PLACE (PORTLAND, OREGON)

The best chefs work with the best ingredients available to them. The very best chefs don’t settle for this, and seek out even better ingredients through working with foragers, developing relationships with farmers and other purveyors, and even growing their own produce and raising their own animals.

Monica Pope of T’afia in Houston

My cooking changed radically when we started hosting a farmers’ market [located at T’afia]. I remember when I was cooking in California, and chefs would be waiting for an ingredient to come into season. When it arrived, their philosophy would be “Let’s just slice it and not screw it up.” I thought, “That is just not the way restaurants work.” It’s hard to believe that now I am saying the same thing that they used to say.

Since the advent of the farmers’ market, when I get a product, it is phenomenal — because it was picked at the right time and has never even been refrigerated before it comes to my door. Sometimes I feel guilty because people will love something, and ask what I did to it. Often the answer is “Very little.”

Our zucchini salad is a perfect example of celebrating what comes to our door. We get baby zucchini and we shave them raw. Then we add a flavored pecan oil, raw local pecan halves, shaved pecorino cheese, Mexican marigold, and a pinch of salt.

We also think a lot about the best way to present these ingredients. The salad has to

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