Mark’s been begging me to showcase his work more often here, so this is his fish special today: pan-roasted striped bass with gingered carrot puree, wasabi glazed peas and scallion tempura. Just don’t try to hire him away from me. I know a guy.
Today we hosted the Super Hunger Brunch at the restaurant benefiting the Greater Boston Food Bank, and if you were among the 6,587,492 Massachusetts residents who didn’t join us in the fight against hunger, then shame on you - unless, of course, you elected to partake at one of the other participating restaurants. Among other offerings, we featured a smoked salmon tartare with potato, dill aioli and pumpernickel crumbs; a breakfasty chopped salad replete with sausage, bacon, crispy potatoes and a maple vinaigrette; an oscar-style quiche with crab meat, asparagus tempura and Old Bay hollandaise; and a steak and eggs quesadilla. Hope to see you next year!
I am nothing if not fair, so I feel bad about crediting Ted for Mark’s fish special yesterday. Today I plan to make amends and credit Mark for Ted’s work. Last night we had the honor of hosting renowned Danish tattoo artist, Chad Chesko, and to make him feel right at home, our own abundantly tattooed Mark (really Ted, similarly tattooed) made for him these lovely Legos.
I’ll share the recipe: soak 5 pounds of button mushrooms in cold water while scrubbing to remove any dirt. Remove from the water and toss with salt, pepper, minced garlic and George olive oil (see previous post). Roast in the oven at 450 degrees for 12 minutes and 19 seconds. Using a Thermapen, measure and record the internal temperature of 7 random mushrooms in Celsius. Discard the high and low temperatures, and calculate the average of the remaining 5. Convert this figure to Fahrenheit and Kelvin (this can be assigned to a child or neighbor). With your centrifuge, strain the juices that have accumulated in the roasting pan and transfer to a graduated cylinder to a volume of 236.588 milliliters. Transfer this liquid to a saucepan and whisk in 2.1 grams of agar agar. Simmer 2 minutes. Prepare Lego molds with pan release spray. Distribute simmered liquid between Lego molds. Chill before serving.
- Focal Length
- iPhone 4S
Mark came up with this fish special today, but I’ve decided to credit Ted instead. After all, Mark’s never been to Turkey, despite having spent most of his childhood on the outskirts of Greece, and Ted just returned from there. So, nicely done, Ted. This is pan roasted cod with olive fritters, roasted eggplant puree and a tomato-cucumber relish. Before serving we drizzle it with an olive oil named George we get from our friends at Zoe’s Meats.
On another note, if the Boston Phoenix would like to send Ted to Hong Kong, he promises to eat all kinds of crazy stuff and post photos on Instagram. Ted’s been there, too.
Once again it’s Friday, and you know what that means: new menu! Today we worked on the seafood entrees. Clockwise from the top left: tuna with roasted gilfeather turnips, maple miso butter and fiery peanuts; salmon over pork-stuffed cabbage, with mushrooms ‘sixty five’ and a Chinese fried garlic broth; mahi mahi with a smoked shellfish (scallops, mussels, shrimp) chowder and chive puree; and scallops with choux-potato gnocchi, baby Brussels sprouts, gingered pumpkin and mustard aioli.
What the title says. A few years ago I decided to post the bulk of our recipes online. That way my cooks could make food while using their phones to look up the recipes and we could save a lot of paper. I have a new site here, that I might use from now on. Anyway, if you’d like, give them a shot.
This is Józef. He’s our beet colorist. The way I see it, you can buy colorful beets, and some even have stripes, but plain white sugar beets taste the best. Plus they’re cheaper. So we sent a team of scouts to Poland to search for the world’s most talented beet colorist, and in a nutshell, we found him. He doesn’t speak a word of English, and my Polish is pretty rusty, too, so there’s not a lot of conversation going on - which is fine, really, because coloring beets requires more than just decades of training; it demands the colorist’s full attention.
After having changed well over 2,000 menu items since I’ve been here, I sometimes get a bit of menu writer’s block. I hate to repeat dishes unless it’s simply to meet demand, because repeating dishes is cheating and boring. And once something has been on the menu a week or two, I can barely look at it without contempt. Three weeks and I know the relationship is over for good. Maybe in ten years or so I can be friends with that tuna or salmon or goat cheese dish on facebook, but we’ll never get that old spark back.
So imagine how delighted I was when I discovered a menu writing app for my phone. I just enter a theme ingredient and it sets me up with a photo and a recipe. I can even claim I invented it as long as I’m willing to put up with the ads and occasionally make in-app purchases. Here’s what it gave me yesterday (clockwise from upper left):
- burrata with crispy eggplant, toasted garlic stewed tomatoes and basil oil
- grilled mahi mahi with ginger glazed georgia candy roaster pumpkin and molasses-cider jus
- tuna tartare with creamsicle dressing, olive salad and chile oil
- seared tuna over a sopressata hash with housemade mostarda and squid ink-lobster reduction
- pan roasted scallops with creamed leeks and corn, chanterelles and rosemary oil
I can’t wait to see what it comes up with next week!
It all began with a menu change. Lindsey bit off more than she could chew yesterday when she thought she could be at both the restaurant and my house at the same time. Well, turns out she couldn’t, so she packed my kids into my car and brought them to Grill 23. So is Lindsey at fault?
Then Mark heated aluminum in a convection oven and used it to give Sam, my son, a third degree burn. (Fortunately for Mark, we are already down a sous chef, so he has some temporary job security, and if he wants to damage my children, there’s not much I can do about it.) Is Mark at fault?
It’s questions of ethics like this that enrich our lives on this planet. Please write your answers legibly on lined, three ring binder paper and mail them to the restaurant.
My own answer to this philosophical dilemma was, who cares? Pizza!
There’s one thing that Acera - the Massachusetts School of Science, Creativity and Leadership has that no other school in the known universe has, and that is I, in this case overseeing a Monday afternoon cooking club. Yesterday marked our inaugural voyage into the culinary waters, potentially teaming with icebergs and nasty sharks, but the kids performed swimmingly, in keeping with the metaphor, and in a very quick hour and a half we invented gluten-free eggplant parmigiana with a toasted garlic tomato sauce and basil oil, and we made enough of it for all the stragglers after school willing to eat eggplant. So that’s it above, along with the recipe.