Comes the 4′th of July, with grills and thrills. Hot dogs, burgers, chicken, ribs, steaks and all the trimmings, but I want some thing different. Beef perhaps, a kabob, but not the usual chunks of meat whose last vision of life was a jockies whip, married with insipidly cut chunks of bell pepper, pineapple and topped with a cherry tomato..
Tender cuts of steak, long marinated with an Asian or better yet Thai flavor mix, skewered and quick grilled / or pan seared then served on a flatbread with a salad and a dipping sauce.
Satay, or sate, is a dish of marinated, skewered and grilled meat, served with a sauce. Satay may consist of diced or sliced chicken, goat, mutton, beef, pork, fish, other meats, or tofu; the more authentic version uses skewers from the midrib of the coconut palm frond, although bamboo skewers are often used. These are grilled or barbecued over a wood or charcoal fire, then served with various spicy seasonings.
Satay originated in Java, Indonesia. Satay is available almost anywhere in Indonesia, where it has become a national dish. It is also popular in many other Southeast Asian countries, such as: Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Thailand as well as in the Netherlands, as Indonesia is a former Dutch colony.
Satay is a very popular delicacy in Indonesia; Indonesia’s diverse ethnic groups’ culinary arts have produced a wide variety of satays. In Indonesia, satay can be obtained from a travelling satay vendor, from a street-side tent-restaurant, in an upper-class restaurant, or during traditional celebration feasts. In Malaysia, satay is a popular dish—especially during celebrations—and can be found throughout the country.
We all know I have a weakness for Bourbon, I suppose I inherited it from my mother who had a particular taste for what is basically a martini made with bourbon.
It is quite ironic, she drank Manhattans and I live and work there…
She tended to use a bourbon usually found in the South around Military bases, for sake of tradition I will use the same, But I will give the Manhattan a truly BadWolf and RogueChef twist, we will macerate fresh cherries in bourbon and brown sugar for 72 hours, serve the Cherries as a table hors d’oeuvre, and use the bourbon to make a most twisted Manhattan.
As spoken before, one of the Bad Wolf partners has played sous-chef for this event, and to the surprise of all who know us.. No one was stabbed, burned or boiled alive. And this specific dish / drink was his inspiration.
A Manhattan is a cocktail made with whiskey, sweet vermouth, and bitters. Commonly used whiskeys include rye (the traditional choice), Canadian whisky(simply called Rye in Canada), bourbon, blended whiskey and Tennessee whiskey. The cocktail is often stirred with ice and strained into a cocktail glass, where it is garnished with a Maraschino cherry with a stem. A Manhattan is also frequently served on the rocks in an Old Fashioned glass (lowball glass).
A popular history suggests that the drink originated at the Manhattan Club in New York City in the early 1870s, where it was invented by Dr. Iain Marshall for a banquet hosted by Jennie Jerome (Lady Randolph Churchill, Winston’s mother) in honor of presidential candidate Samuel J. Tilden. The success of the banquet made the drink fashionable, later prompting several people to request the drink by referring to the name of the club where it originated—”the Manhattan cocktail.” However, Lady Randolph was in France at the time and pregnant, so the story is likely a fiction. The original “Manhattan cocktail” was a mix of “American Whiskey, Italian Vermouth and Angostura bitters”.
However, there are prior references to various similar cocktail recipes called “Manhattan” and served in the Manhattan area. By one account it was invented in the 1860s by a bartender named Black at a bar on Broadway near Houston Street.
An early record of the cocktail can be found in William Schmidt’s “The Flowing Bowl”, published in 1891. In it, he details a drink containing 2 dashes of gum, 2 dashes of bitters, 1 dash of absinthe, 2/3 portion of whiskey and 1/3 portion of vermouth.
Berries in Booze
As I have a public event this week, it is time to start preparations. The menu theme will be an Mid-Eastern Mezza, and in a break from past events, I have found a local restaurant that makes the most marvelous dishes, so I will let them worry about the bulk of the table.
BUT… There is always the roguechef / badwolf twist.
In this case a cold and special dish, full of Spring and Summer tastes, but carrying the full impact of a world class wine. Inspired by the memories of a languid late breakfast in the UK, these berries will deliver a full berry taste and a sweet and powerful undertone of wine. If you like brunch at the The Wolseley, you will love these berries.
Do note, one of the Bad Wolf partners has been playing sous-chef for this event, and to the surprise of all who know us.. No one was stabbed, burned or boiled alive.
In the theme of alcohol laden table dishes, comes various spring and summer berries, soaked in a Riesling wine. For this a selection a “white” or sweet Riesling was chosen.
The preparation is quite simple, wash and sort out berries, remove any hulls or stems, place in a non reactive container and add room temp wine, seal and rest for 24-72 hours.
I will serve these in a 96oz wine goblet, adding a garnish of fresh mint, with a side of perhaps a bourbon whipped cream.
Deconstructing the Bloody Mary
A Bloody Mary is a popular cocktail containing vodka, tomato juice, and usually other spices or flavorings such as Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, piri piri sauce, beef consomme or bouillon, horseradish, celery, olive, salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper, lemon juice, and celery salt. It has been called “the world’s most complex cocktail.”
The Bloody Mary’s origin is unclear. Fernand Petiot claimed to have invented the drink in 1921 while working at the New York Bar in Paris, which later became Harry’s New York Bar, a frequent Paris hangout for Ernest Hemingway and other American expatriates. Another story maintains that actor George Jessel created the drink around 1939. In 1939, Lucius Beebe printed in his gossip column This New York one of the earliest U.S. references to this drink, along with the original recipe: “George Jessel’s newest pick-me-up which is receiving attention from the town’s paragraphers is called a Bloody Mary: half tomato juice, half vodka.”
Fernand Petiot seemed to corroborate Jessel’s claim when the bartender spoke to The New Yorker magazine in July 1964, saying:
“I initiated the Bloody Mary of today,” he told us. “Jessel said he created it, but it was really nothing but vodka and tomato juice when I took it over. I cover the bottom of the shaker with four large dashes of salt, two dashes of black pepper, two dashes of cayenne pepper, and a layer of Worcestershire sauce; I then add a dash of lemon juice and some cracked ice, put in two ounces of vodka and two ounces of thick tomato juice, shake, strain, and pour. We serve a hundred to a hundred and fifty Bloody Marys a day here in the King Cole Room and in the other restaurants and the banquet rooms.”
I not will be as complex in my deconstruction. My goal is a simple appetizer / hors d’oeuvres to grace the table for an upcoming event.
Deconstruction is a term thrown around in food preparation. It’s “chef speak” for re-creating a dish. When chef’s talk about “deconstructing” that means to take the original recipe to a new level. Literally, taking it apart and putting it back together again. In this case a cocktail is broken down to it’s constituent parts and prepared for serving in a new fashion
Cold Drinks – Melon-tini
The 4th of July holiday fast approaching, and it is hotter than a firecracker.
Time for things that cool, refresh and relax… and how refreshing is a cold, crisp sweet bite of watermelon? Take that taste and strain the juice to condense the flavor, add a bit of vodka for a bit of “relax me”, a touch of sugar and lime to balance the flavor and you have a summertime cooler that is “Absolutely Mahvelous.”
The first thing to be done is to prepare the juice, by taking the red flesh of a watermelon and crushing it and straining through a cheesecloth overnight to separate the pulp from the lovely juice. One can use red fleshed watermelon or yellow fleshed watermelon.
Two Wine Slobs – Muscato
Recently, Madam Bad Wolf and I have begun to take a bottle of wine with our dinner. Knowing nothing about wine, this has lead to some interesting and intriguing pairings. Perhaps it is time to record these.
In our search for a sweet white wine, not syrup, but not vinegar, a Muscato wine was suggested. Of course the paring was a bit off, as I had grilled salmon and shrimp.