ICI Day 42 – Creative Cuisine

Today Chef John demonstrated so many dishes it was hard to keep notes going on everything. Chef Kevo also demonstrated a molecular gastronomy technique to make beet juice “caviar” and then used it later in a tris with beef three ways (shown above). Here it is used on the tenderloin tartare portion of the dish.

We started the morning learning how to extract chlorophyll from spinach. This will be frozen into small cubes and used later as a natural food coloring. Except for the molecular gastronomy, everything in Chef’s kitchen is made – no processed foods anywhere to be seen.

Chef Kevo smoked some yellowfin tuna and also seared a slice for a very beautiful tuna dish served with warm fregola  (a grain similar to faro) salad. Chef Kevo is a very talented young chef with a highly refined talent for making delicious food and beautiful plates.

One of Chef Kevo’s most interesting dishes was the presentation of beef carpaccio from a beautiful tenderloin he cleaned yesterday. His plate included a cigar infused cream (the little pearls on the plate) and the beef slices were washed in a reduced scotch. Before serving, he lit the remainder of the cigar and covered the dish so that it would take on the smoky cigar flavor a bit. This dish was inspired from the atmosphere of a sitting in a cigar bar drinking scotch – definitely a male thing.

Chef John made us a delicious dishes throughout the day: a pasta dish with monk fish, stuffed calamari served with potato puree, seared calamaretti (baby calamari) with tagalini fritta (fired pasta), and very yummy osso bucco. By the end of the day, we were all very full of wonderful food.

We also learned to make Gnocchi Napoli that became our dinner last night, pickled onions, pickled potatoes (very yummy), and prepared neonati (baby sardines) three ways, two to cure and one to use tomorrow. Chef also started several other dishes that he will finish tomorrow.

My friend Amanda volunteered to start the oxtails that will be finished tomorrow as well. Here she is spreading tomato paste on the browned meat. It then goes in the oven for a bit and then into a pot with wine, water and mirepoix to simmer. Can’t wait to eat them tomorrow. Thanks Amanda!



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