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YO CHEF!

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memories

Coming soon…out making new ones.

IDEAS IN SANDWICHES

imageBuffalo chicken meatballs with Maytag bleu cheese on a wedge

When did sandwiches become the next big thing? Back in the fiftys we had very little imagination when it came to sandwiches we had mostly all the same ingredient but no one thought to take it to another level,mom would  usally make something on sliced white bread some times called pullman loaf. And Italian American  like myself  ate “hero bread” or call it Italian bread we bought on the corner or baked it fresh daily. Today’s high end sandwiches have a large variety of bread to choose from. I myself have a secret. I’ve been addicted to pressed sandwiches for many years now so do not judge. Here are some i pressed
imagestarting with the classic burger patty melt with caramelized onions found in diners all across the country.
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I pressed this roasted turkey, brie cheese, honey dijon and tomato on my little krups press.
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Sliced skirt steak and onions pressed.
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Brie cheese, prosciutto on a bagette
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I’ve tryed them all here is what i do with leftover pizza.
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I just trim off the crust for a italian grilled cheese. Wraps are popular for lower calorie option  

  Pulled North Carolina pork with cheddar and jalape√Īos. The next two are more inovated with the now popular ramon burger.
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This is a korean burger with sesame shredded cabbage and simbal mayonaise on my homade ramon noodle bun. I decided to explore my italian roots with this spaghetti and meatball sandwich using thin spaghetti as the bun.
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Everyone i know loves calzones this is with italian meats and cheeses but the ideas are endless using homemade pizza dough.
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My pizza dough recipe
Ingredients

1 pack active dry yeast
2/3s cups warm water
1 tsp. Salt
1 2/3s cup bread flour
Stir in yeast and salt in warm water, let stand till foamy
Add flour and knead in stand up mixer with dough atachment.

Heres a few more classics eveyone loves
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Fried oyster po-boy with shredded cabbage, chipotle remoulade, and tom
imageNew England lobster roll with terra chips and Asian slaw
image An 18 inch italian hero as we call it in NY.


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image This what i call my italian steak hero. Pounded sirloin steak with brocolli rabe. That’s what I love about sandwiches the bread is your pallet with endless combinations from every country, I hope this will inspire some creative “ideas in sandwiches.”  It’s not rocket science. Look for me on the socials. 

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transparent pie, a Kentucky derby favorite

Besides being a professional chef im also a professional baker and pastry chef for over 40 years and anyone who know me know i love pie i love baking pies of all kinds. When chefs say “its like therapy to me” pies are what does it for me. I know i had already published a pie article but realizing. Today is Kentucky Derby day i couldnt resist. Many have heard of the classic Kentucky derby pie but few know about a classic everday dessert in Kentuky called Transparent Pie its a lot like chess pie but its not, the one difference chess pie has no cream but both are borderline to sweet. Have all your ingredients ready for transparent pie.

 always homemade pie crust

   grating frozen butter

   It should look crumbly. Dont make a ball till you take it out of the possessor.

   For the transparent pie

Pie crust

2  cold sticks butter in tiny pieces

2 2/3 cup flour

Tsp. salt

And about 6 oz ice water.

Pie Ingredients:

1 stick of butter melted

2 cups sugar

1cup cream

4 eggs beaten

2 tblsp. Flour

1tsp. Vanilla

1 unbaked pie shell

Preheat oven to 375

Method:

In a electric mixer  with paddle attachment, beat together the butter and the sugar until fluffy. Add cream, mix till smooth. Beat in eggs until combined, then stir in flor and vanilla pour into pie shell. Bake at 375 for 40~45 minutes. Until golden brown.


The derby pie is Basically a pecan pie with chocolate chips and sometimes bourbon.

  Have all your ingredients ready For the derby pie

Ingredients:

3 eggs

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 cup dark corn syrup

1/2 tsp.Salt

1/2  tsp. salt

1 tsp. vanilla

1/4 cup softened butter

1 cup chop pecan

1 cup chocolate chips

1 unbaked pie shell

Method:

Preheat oven to 375 F. Beat eggs in medium size bowl. Add brown sugar, corn syrup, salt, and vanilla blend well stir in pecans and chocolate chips. Pour into pie shell and bake 40~45 minutes or until center is firm.

Here’s some warm slices.

¬†top with whipped cream or I like mine with my homemade French vanilla ice cream , but that’s for another day.

Have a mint Julip and start dessert. It’s not rocket science. Don’t forget to look for me on Twitter, Instagram, an my Facebook page.

Road hard..

From what I recall it all started in the early 60s I was a busboy in a family restaraunt hustling weekends for cash money on Sunday night, 14 years old and always had money in my pocket so I learned early food service was for me. I would walk into the kitchen 100 degrees in there super sharp knives everywere, slippery rubber mats on the floor, three foot flames flaring up behind the line, two chefs back there rolling in sweat with cigarettes dangling from there lips screaming and cursing at the waitresses and busboys, waitresses screaming “order up” I’m keeping a low profile so I’m not in the line of fire at, the end of the night I asked my uncle the owner where do I sign up for kitchen duty? I ended up working in my home town in till 1975 I got married and moved to Florida to start a new life and marriage. Traveling and learning as I grew I went to school to learn how to teach cooking and that took three years I became a chef instructor in till I went on vacation in the blue ridge mountains and was offered a exec. Chef position at a resort in the mountains. ¬†¬†
By then my three children were being raised down south and went to private boarding school in georgia and ended up back in NY taking the subways for 25 years and working as a corporate executive chef. Thru out my travels every kitchen, every restaraunt which there were too many to mention or even remember the one thing that I saw was a comaradarie amongst the kitchen staff the chef and cooks bond, only few careers do that


Time flys when you’re getting paid for it.


working summers in the hamptons with a great crew

  
I wouldn’t change a thing.

A chef is many things

a professional chef is a talented executive. Excellent cooking skills are required of course and and a broad knowledge of cuisines and there ingredients but there is so much more to it then that. A successful chef ¬†is a teacher, a leader a motivator, Able To convey knowledge and work ethic to the staff and encourage them to do the same. Many people ask me ¬†when is it ¬†that you know you are a chef? Chefs are respnsible for ¬†every day operations of their kitchen, choosing purveyors and overseeing ¬†all ¬†usage of the ingredients bought with maintaining high food handling standards, and all this on a predetermined budget either for corporate or your own business venture although the chefs schools of today are a big help in getting started with your career there is no substitute for experience. There are two kinds of chefs, there is “A chef” who highly trained on all aspects of cuisines and all food preparation and can walk into any kitchen any where and take it over. “The chef” is the chef of that restaurant and their menu and might not know or trained on basic food preparation. ¬†So when asked when do you know you are a chef I tell them when you perceive yourself as one after years of experience and training.

THINGS A CHEF NEEDS

¬†The kitchen is a dangerous place to an outsider there’s fire, sharp tools strange looking machinery, wet floors, crazy overworked cooks that love to party the other 16 hours when their not working and not quite ready to face the the world no less the hot line. Tools of ¬†the trade will become an obsession and ¬†at most a necessity, you will want the best and newest that does the job with precision and speed. This a very small collection of tools and gadgets basically my every day stuff I collected thru the years with two suitcases, three tool boxes,various cardboard boxes and my Wurstofff kniife roll packed away. They say a chefs success is judged by the size of their Uhaul well I’m a prime example of that ¬†quote traveling the country moving from place to place I accumulated ¬†45 years of great memory’s in the form of kitchen wares.

Token recipe

Lots of people have been asking about this dish and frankly I don’t blame them it’s got a twist.

Shrimp and broccoli scampi over steel cut oats risotto millanaise. Or call it rissoato. I just made that up but I like it

6 16/20 shrimp raw, peeled an deviened

Broccoli buds steamed

Chopped garlic

Chopped parsley

Parmigiana cheese

Plain bread crumbs

Lemon juice

Butter

Line up your shrimp and broccoli in a casserole dish and add ingredients sprinkling the cheese an bread crumbs on top. And set aside.

The rissoato

Steel cut oats or Irish oats( not instant)

Parm cheese

Peas

Butter

Salt and pepper

Cook oats  plain according to directions about forty minutes till tender add butter, cheese  and peas and cook till creamy. Rissoato should spread on plate and be creamy notdry like rice. When oats are almost done put casserole under broiler till browned and shrimp are

 cooked. bring the  rissoato to the plate and take a spatula and place the shrimp on top.

ITS NOT ROCKET SCIENCE!