Cheryl’s Cuisine: January 2019

wp-logo-generalBy Cheryl Radkiewicz

I’ve had Wolfgang Puck’s Pressure Oven for a few years and this holiday it saved my life. Yes, I’m being dramatic, however, it saved my holiday dinner parties. I don’t know about you, but even though there are only two of us in the household, one stove/oven is not enough.  We have two refrigerator/freezers and one large chest freezer. That’s how much I cook.

This year’s dilemma involved cooking a ham, turkey and all the fixings for out-of-town grandchildren.  I had an 11 lb. turkey and I didn’t want to get up at 5:30 a.m. to prep everything for a noon dinner. Puck’s oven to the rescue.  I made the turkey in less than one, yes, one hour in the pressure oven. It was perfect.

Cheryl's Cuisine - Wolfgang Puck ovenI had used the oven often in the past for mostly side dishes, but two Christmas’ ago, we had unexpected family pop in right before I  began starting to fix a quiet dinner for two.

Knowing my roast wasn’t large enough to serve the gang, I opted to delay starting dinner until they departed.  Once they did, the question was: How can I get this prime rib “slow roasted” before my husband starves to death?

Puck’s pressure oven to the rescue. In no time at all it was finished.  This genius invention combines a pressure cooker and an oven, also bakes and broils. It comes complete with its own baking rack, broil rack insert, drip/baking pan, roasting pan, crumb tray and rack removal tool.  More recent models also include a rotisserie rod. The oven, smaller than my microwave, measures 19″ long x 13″ deep x 12″ high and has a permanent spot on my kitchen counter.  

It’s also great in summer when you don’t want to turn your oven on and heat up the entire kitchen.

Here are a few of Wolfgang Puck’s quick dinner recipes he’s included with the oven:  

Honey Garlic Chicken:

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1/4 cup chicken stock
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 Tbsp. honey
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs  (I always choose the thighs)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees and set function to BAKE.  Place all ingredients except chicken in a bowl and stir to combine.  Roll chicken in the mixture, making sure to coat thoroughly on all sides.  Place chicken in the roasting pan and place in oven in bottom position. Pour 1/2 cup water into drip pan with broil rack inserted.

NOTE: This will create the steam. Set the Vent Release Valve to SEAL and lower Sealing Lever to the SEAL position. Set the times to 25 minutes.  When time is up, turn Vent Release Valve to VENT and wait for all air to escape.

After vented slowly, raise Sealing Lever and press Door Release Button to open Door.  Check to see that internal temperature of chicken has reached 165 degrees F. Remove from oven and serve hot. Makes 4 servings.

***

Wolfgang’s Baked Macaroni and Cheese:

8 oz. dried elbow macaroni
6 Tbsp. unsalted butter
3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
3 1/2 cups milk
1/2 white onion
1 bay leaf
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pinch cayenne
10 oz. aged sharp white Cheddar cheese, shredded
3 oz. Gruyere cheese, shredded
1 oz. Parmesan cheese, grated
1 cup fresh brioche or challah bread crumbs
2 Tbsp. chopped parsley

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook macaroni until al dente.  Drain and spread on lightly oiled baking pan. Meanwhile, in separate pot, melt 3 Tbsp. of the butter and whisk in flour.

Continue to cook over low heat, stirring constantly, for 4 minutes. Add milk, onion and bay leaf. Simmer, stirring frequently, until thickened, about 10 minutes.  Remove onion and bay leaf.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 F. and set function to BAKE. Set rack in middle of oven. Remove saucepan from heat and stir in 3/4 of the Cheddar and all of the Gruyere and Parmesan cheeses. Season to taste with salt and pepper and a pinch of cayenne and fold in the macaroni.  Transfer to a lightly buttered 2-quart casserole dish. Top with remaining Cheddar. Melt remaining butter in a saute’ pan over medium-low heat. Add bread crumbs and parsley and toss well.

Spread over macaroni. Put casserole in oven and set Vent Release Valve to SEAL and lower the Sealing Lever to the SEAL position.  Set timer to 25 minutes. Bake until casserole is bubbling and bread crumbs are golden brown. Turn Vent Release Valve to VENT and wait for all air to escape. After vented, slowly raise Sealing Lever and press Door Release Button to open the door.

Remove from oven and let stand about 5 minutes before serving. Makes 4-6 servings.

***

Simple Cream Biscuits:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. granulated sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 cup heavy cream
Additional cream and sugar for topping (optional)

Preheat oven to 375 F.  and set function to BAKE.  Line a sheet pan with parchment or foil.  In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients by hand until a dough forms.  You do not need to be gently with this biscuit dough as it does not toughen.  

Use a small ice cream scoop to drop biscuits onto the sheet pan. Pat down tops with fingers and brush each biscuit with a little cream, if you like.  Pour 1/2 cup water into drip pan with broil rack inserted. (This will create the steam). Then place in bottom position. Sprinkle tops with a little more sugar, if you like, then place sheet pan in oven.  

Set the Vent Release Valve to SEAL and lower Sealing Lever to the SEAL position. Set timer to 15 minutes. When time is up turn the Vent Release Valve to VENT and wait for all air to escape. After vented slowly raise Sealing Lever and press Door Release Button to open the door.  

Cooking is complete when time is up or when golden brown and puffed. Remove biscuits and serve hot. Makes 8 biscuits.

***

Broccoli and Cheese Casserole:

1 bag (16 oz. size) frozen broccoli florets, thawed
1 can  (10.75 oz.) cream of broccoli soup
1 cup whole milk
1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 large onion, chopped
1 sleeve butter-flavored crackers, coarsely crumbled

Preheat oven to 375 F. and set function to BAKE.  Press broccoli into roasting pan in an even layer.  In mixing bowl, stir together the soup, milk, Cheddar, Parmesan, pepper and onion.  Pour this mixture over broccoli and smooth into an even layer. Sprinkle crackers evenly over the top and place pan in the oven on the rack in the bottom position.  

Set the Vent Release Valve to SEAL and lower Sealing Lever to the SEAL position. Set times to 40 minutes. Bake until bubbly and browned, 35-40 minutes. When time is up, turn the Vent Release Valve to VENT and wait for all air to escape.  

After vented slowly, raise Sealing Lever and press Door Release Button to open the door. Remove from oven and leave to rest on a wire rack for 5 minutes before serving. Makes 6 servings.

***

Marian Getz, cookbook author, has collaborated with Puck and published a cookbook especially for his pressure oven. If you ever get the oven, get the book, I did.  It’s packed full of great recipes with beautifully colored photos of each dish. Here’s one of her favorites using the oven:

Buffalo Chicken Dip:

2 cups leftover chicken or turkey, diced
2 8 oz. packages of cream cheese, softened
1 cup bottled ranch or blue cheese Dressing
1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles
2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1 cup bottled buffalo wing sauce
1 bunch green onions, sliced
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
Crackers, for serving

In a mixing bowl combine all ingredients except panko and crackers. Apply non-stick spray to the roasting pan,  add the mixing bowl contents, then scatter the panko evenly over the top. Place the pan on the rack in the lower position then close the door.  

Set the Vent Release Valve to SEAL, lower the Sealing Lever to the SEAL position and set the timer. Set the oven to 350 F. and function to BAKE.  Cook for 25 minutes or until brown and bubbly. When cooking is complete, turn the Vent Release Valve to VENT and wait for all air to escape.

Once vented, slowly raise the Sealing Lever  and press the Door Release Button to open the door. Remove, garnish as desired, and serve with crackers. Makes 6 servings.

Cheryl’s Cuisine: Dec. 2016

pastry-table-pic-for-cheryls-cuisine

A pastry table under the direction of Borgata Executive Pastry Chef Thaddeus Dubois featured an array of delights including Apple Cheesecake Layer Parfait, Milk Chocolate Mousse Roasted Apple Compote, Chocolate Streusel Cake, Mason Jar Butterscotch Pudding, Salted Caramel Macaroon, and Marzipan Almond Apple Petit Four. The table was just one of the highlights during the recent Savor Borgata 2016 at the hotel and casino in Atlantic City.

By Cheryl Radkiewicz

The holidays are a wonderful time to add new dishes to your traditional menu.  Recently I spent a weekend at Savor Borgata where this year’s theme paid homage to celebrating the flavors of New York City.  The massive Events Center was filled with chefs featuring their specialty dishes along with wineries and brewing companies from the New York area, as well as wines imported from Italy, Spain and New Zealand.

To begin, let me tell you a little about the chefs: Thomas Biglan, Executive Chef of Borgata Hotel, Casino and Spa oversees The Metropolitan, Borgata Buffet, Bread and Butter and Noodles of the World, among others; Thaddeus Dubois,  Executive Pastry Chef at Borgata and former White House Executive Pastry Chef; Wolfgang Puck, Chef/Partner of Wolfgang Puck American Grille, in addition to over 30 more restaurants throughout the country;  Michael Symon, co-host of ABC’s, “The Chew”, who will open his first Atlantic City venue, Angeline, next year at Borgata; Geoffrey Zakarian, culinary lifestyle consultant of the Water Club at Borgata, who also appears on Food Network’s “Iron Chef America”, “Chopped”, and “The Kitchen.”;  Michael Schulson, Chef/Partner of Izakaya Modern Japanese Pub; and Greg and Marc Sherry, restaurateurs, who, along with Executive Chef Romeo DiBona, have brought great steaks and sauces to the Old Homestead Steak House at Borgata.

Dishes offered  for the main event were:  

Wolfgang Puck, Wagyu Pastrami Reubens and wines from his new venture, Wolfgang Puck Wines offering Reserve Chardonnay, Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc and Red Blend; Executive Pastry Chef, Thaddeus Dubois, assorted holiday pastries; Bobby Flay Steak, Gato Steamed Halibut, Sicilian Olives, Anchovy, Saffron-Tomato Broth and Couscous;  Izakaya, Tuna, Yellowtail Salmon and Vegetable Handrolls; Sati’, Manchego Cheese Bunelo with Spanish Romesco Sauce; Union Square, Artisanal Cheese, Fresh Juice, Greens and Grains;  Letie’s Culinaria, Shrimp and Scallop Quenelle, Miso Viniagrette, Tomato Tartare;  Meat District Grill, Dry Aged Skirt Steak wiith Chimichurri, Fermented Shoestring Potatoes and B2 Sauce;  NOW Eatery, Shrimp Bacon Roll with Wasabi and Dark Vinegar;  Marketplace Eatery, Tamarind BBQ Glazed Duck Leg, Purple Potatoes, Watercress Green Sauce;  Angeline, Arancini with Mozzarella;  Soco, Extra Crispy Pork Belly, Cheesy Grits/ Braised Collards, Hot Pepper Jam;  Zico, flavored coconut waters;  Cuisine de Marche, Chicken Breast Coq au Vin Style, Cremini Mushrooms, Fingerling Potatoes;  Old Homestead, Dagwood Sandwich of Prime Short Rib, Vermont Goat Cheese, Pickled Radish with Poblano Cream;  Geoffrey Zakarian, Water Club, Steak Tartare over Horseradish Cream;  The Marketplace, Antipasto Skewer, Red Pepper Coulis with Balsamic Drizzle;  and Antonio’s, Braciole with Cavatelli Pasta.

cheryls-cuisine-showgirls-pic

My husband, John Radkiewicz, center, chatting with Borgata showgirls during recent Savor Borgata celebration, as I was feverishly working taking notes and interviewing chefs.

Prior to this event, guests were treated to an afternoon presentation by Geoffrey Zakarian, Michael Symon and Mark Sommers where Chefs Geoffrey and Michael were pummeled with questions on preparing Thanksgiving turkey.  Advice from the chefs:  Don’t stuff the turkey as when the turkey is cooked (meat thermometer into thickest part of the thigh registers 155-160), the stuffing isn’t, therefore, most people overcook their turkeys.  

NOTE:  Having been raised with “stuffed” turkeys, this is the first year I cooked the turkey and “dressing” separately for my family.  This proves one never stops learning new ideas and methods.

Here are some recipes to add to your holiday table:

Wolfgang Puck’s Roast Rack of Port with Dried Fruit: 

2 lb. Pork Rack with 4 bones attached
3 Yellow Onions, sliced
2 oz. Olive Oil
4 cups mixed chopped Dried Fruit (Apricots, Cranberries, Raisins, etc.)
1 inch cut fresh Ginger, smashed
1/2 stick Cinnamon
1 star Anise
2 Tbsp. Sage
2 Tbsp. Thyme
2 Tbsp. Rosemary, chopped
3 Tbsp.  Sweet Butter
1/4 cup Apple Cider
Salt and Black Pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  In saute’ pan, sweat the butter lightly and add ginger and spices.  Let cook slowly on medium heat to bring out the flavor and aroma.  Deglaze with apple cider.  Pour mixture over dried fruit in a separate mixing bowl.  Reserve.  Filet the rack of pork next to the bone and open.  Fill with dried fruit mixture, close the rack back up and tie securely with butcher’s twine.  Season roast well with salt and pepper and place on a roasting pan.  Place roast in oven.  Cook at 20 minuter per pound or until internal temperature is 150 degrees F.  Remove from oven and let rest 10 minutes before slicing.

***

Izakaya’s Hearts of Palm Salad:

4 oz. fresh Hearts of Palm, julienne
4 oz. fresh Cucumber, julienne
1  Red Radish, shaved thinly
3-5 Jalapeno, thinly sliced
1 Meyer Lemon
1 oz. Green Scallion, sliced finely
2 oz. Grapeseed Oil
1/2 oz. Yuzu Juice
1/2 oz. Rice Wine Vinegar
Salt, to taste

Whisk together the grapeseed oil, yuzu juice and rice wine vinegar in a bowl with a pinch of salt and reserve.  Finely julienne hearts of palm and cucumber.  Slice radish, scallion and jalapeno using a sharp knife or Japanese mandoline.   Gently mix all of the vegetables together in a non-reactive mixing bowl.  Season with a pinch of salt, fresh squeeze of Meyer lemon juice, Meyer lemon zest and a little of the reserved vinaigrette.  Mix thoroughly.  Place salad on desired plate and top with finely sliced scallions and additional Meyer lemon zest.

***

Old Homestead’s Crab Cakes:

2 lbs. Crab meat, jumbo lump
2 Eggs
2 cups Mayonnaise
1/2 cup small diced Green Pepper
1/2 cup small diced Red Pepper
2 Tbsp. Old Bay Seasoning
3/4 cup Panko Breadcrumbs
3 oz. Lemon Juice
1/4 cup Dijon Mustard
1/4 cup Olive Oil

Combine all ingredients in large mixing bowl with half the breadcrumbs and mix well (add more breadcrumbs if mixture is too loose).  Mold crab cakes to desired size and coat bottom and top of cakes with remaining bread crumbs.  Heat olive oil in saute’ pan and brown each side of crab cakes.  Place crab cakes on sheet pan and bake in oven at 350 degrees F. until hot (approximately 10 minutes depending on thickness of crab cake).  Remove, serve and enjoy.

***

In closing, I wish all of our readers a Merry Christmas and Happy 2017.

Cheryl’s Cuisine

 

By Cheryl Radkiewicz

 

Generally, when married couples celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary, it’s either with a huge party,  a dream cruise, or trip abroad.  Not so this past November when my husband and I celebrated our 25th…

We spent it at Savor Borgata, the foodie event at Borgata Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City. A  cruise was definitely out as my seasickness experiences had me praying to die on the English Channel and the Greek Islands in younger years.  And, yes, I was medicated.

A trip abroad was nixed due to my husband’s inability to walk any distance since spine surgery. So what better celebration than a huge “Savor Borgata” party!  And, being the eldest child of workaholic parents, I knew I could get a great column for my readers….

Upon entering the event, I made a beeline for Wolfgang Puck’s booth.  Last year I stood in line twice for his fabulous lacquered duck. This year, not even knowing what he was serving, and not caring, I wanted to be one of the first in line.  

His dish was Armenian Grilled Lamb Leg Pita with Baba Ganoush and Green Harissa Aioli with Yalanchi Dolma.  Again, his food brought me to my knees.  The flavors…magnificent.  

Cheryl and Wolfgang pic

Dunmorean Food Editor Cheryl Sempa Radkiewicz exchanges pleasantries with Chef Wolfgang Puck shown with his leg of lamb during the recent Savor Borgata event at Borgata Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City. (Photo Credit: Alex Resnik)

As usual, he and Bobby Flay had the longest wait lines… So it was on to Bobby Flay, who served Charred Beef Romesco with Pickled Brussels Sprouts topped with Calabres Blue Cheese and Octopus Taco with Sour Orange.  The beef was luscious.  I passed on the octopus.

Geoffrey Zakarian, Food Network Iron Chef host for “The Kitchen”  and culinary lifestyle consultant for The Water Club at Borgata, featured Boeuf Bourginon with White Polenta and Grated Horseradish.  This dish was also exceptional.  From among the guests who voted, it won the People’s Choice Award.

The Old Homestead Steak House served “The Duke,” a hearty mound of perfectly roasted prime rib soaked in house pan drippings, topped with pickled peppers, onions and horseradish sauce over an all-American crusty roll.  Each sandwich was cleverly accompanied by a large button of “The Duke, John Wayne.”

dessert table pic

Borgata staff help guests decide on dessert choices. The desserts. under the direction of Executive Pastry Chef Thaddeus DuBois, featured Chocolate Pot du Creme, Rice Pudding, Tarte as Citron, Linzer Torte, Palmiers, Gateau Opera, and Raspberry Fruit Tarte.

Thaddeus DuBois, Borgata’s executive pastry chef and formerly pastry chef at the White House, never disappoints. His fabulous display included Chocolate Pot de Creme, Rice Pudding, Tarte au Citron, Linzer Tarts, Palmiers, Gateau Opera, and Raspberry Torte.

Fornelletto Cucina and Wine Bar Chef Stephen Kalt served Taleggio Fonduta and Piedmontese Meat Ragu’ Over Focaccia.

Izakaya Modern Japanese Pub Chef Michael Schulson offered Tuna, Yellowtail and Garden Handrolls.

Other items served throughout the event included:  Bamboo Fish, Salted Crepe with Chicken, Mushrooms, Onions, Tomatoes, Spinach and Gruyere Cheese, French Fried Quail, Curried Lamb with Fries, Pickle and Hot Sauce, Roasted Banana Leaf Pork with Black Bean Ragout and Pica, Butterballen–Short Rib Meatballs with Whole Grain Mustard, Fritto Misto and Veggie Roti, Brooklyn Beef Taco and cheeses from around the world served with figs.

Besides the fabulous food, culinary demonstrations were highlighted.  Demos included:  Sausage Making by Chef Aram Mardigian; Pulled Sugar by Chef Thaddeus DuBois, Decorating with Fruits and Veggies by Chef Andrea Heinly, Mozzarella Making by Chef Mark Bruschi, Simply Sangria by Wine Manager Laura Turenne, How to Carve a Turkey by Chef Roseanne Gotta, Barista Demo by Illy Cafe’, Quick Tips for Home by Chef Christian Viale, Sushi Rolling by Chef Michael Schulson and Microwave Souffle’ by Borgata Executive Chef Thomas Biglan.  

So from this event, I’m happy to share some of the chef’s favorite dishes:

 

FETTUCCINE CACIO E PEPE 
Fornelletto

20 oz. fresh cut fettuccine noodles
2 cups grated aged Pecorino cheese
1 Tbsp. butcher grind black pepper
2 cups heavy cream

 Bring water (at least 2 quarts) to a rolling boil in a large casserole dish or Dutch oven.  As water is heating, in a large saute’ pan, warm the cream without boiling on a low flame.  When water starts to boil, add enough salt for it to taste like the sea, i.e., salty.  Drop in your pasta and cook for approximately 3 minutes, stirring to make sure the pasta doesn’t stick together.  While the pasta is cooking, add half of the grated cheese and all of the pepper into the pan of warmed cream and stir.  Carefully, with gloves or towels, lift the hot pot of cooked fettuccine and drain in a colander in your sink.  Add the cooked fettuccine to the warm cream, cheese and pepper mixture.  Raise the flame to medium-high, add the rest of the cheese and a touch of salt and using a set of tongs or a large fork, incorporate the pasta and cream mixture completely.  Serve on a large plate or in a large bowl.  Serves 4.

***

CRISPY BRUSSELS SPROUTS
Izakaya

3/4 cup fish sauce
1 cup water
1/2 cup sherry vinegar
1/4 cup blended oil
1/2 cup mirin
1/8 cup fresh ginger, finely chopped
1/8 cup garlic, finely chopped
1/8  cup red chilis, finely chopped
2 cups Brussels sprouts, quartered

Chop ginger, garlic, chilis very fine.  Combine all ingredients except Brussels sprouts together and blend with immersion blender to combine.  Deep fry Brussels sprouts until crispy and browned.  Toss sprouts in a bowl with 1/4 cup sauce or desired amount.  Serves 8.

***

PUMPKIN SOUP
Wolfgang Puck

1 small to medium onion
4 oz. butter
1 whole butternut squash
1 whole kabocha squash
Sage, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg
1/4 tsp. cardamom powder
1/4 tsp. ginger powder
1/4 tsp. nutmeg, fresh ground
Salt, to taste
White pepper, to taste
Sugar, to taste
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 quart chicken stock or water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  With a chef knife cut the squashes in half.  Place in a roasting pan and season with salt, pepper, sage, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Pour 2 cups of water at base of pan.  Cover squash with parchment paper and foil.  Place in oven  and roast for 45 minutes.  Squash should be tender.  Scrape squash meat from skin.  Puree’ meat in food processor, reserve.

Over a medium flame in a 2 quart sauce pot, add butter, melt to just browned.  Add onion, cook onion until translucent in the butter.  Add squash, cook for 10 minutes, stirring until completely hot.  Add 2 cups heavy cream and 1 quart of chicken stock or water.  Add salt, white pepper, sugar, cardamom powder and ginger powder.  Stir constantly and bring to a boil and strain through fine strainer.  To adjust the consistency, add more or less liquid as desired.  Serves 8.        

***

LOBSTER MUSHROOM RISOTTO
Geoffrey Zakarian for The Water Club

12 oz. Arborio rice
8 oz. cooked lobster meat (small dice)
2 quarts lobster broth
6 oz. shitake or crimini mushrooms
1 oz. olive oil
4 oz. yellow onion, minced
1 shallot, medium size, minced
2 Tbsp. chopped flat leaf parsely
4 oz. dry white wine
6 oz. Parmesan Reggiano, grated
4 oz. butter
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup minced chives

In large saucepan, heat olive oil over low heat.  Add onions and sweat for 2-3 minutes until softened.  Add garlic, shallots, mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes, then add Arborio rice, saute’ briefly to toast the rice.  Add wine, stir and allow wine to reduce to almost dry, then add 1/3 of lobster broth, keeping at a simmer and stirring every minute.  Allow most of broth to be absorbed.  Add another 1/3 of broth, continue stirring.  Check rice until it is tender.  

If more cooking time is needed, add 1/2 the amount of broth left.  Continue stirring, until broth is absorbed but still creamy.  Add lobster, cheese, butter and parsley and stir together.  Toss with extra virgin olive oil and minced chives on top of risotto.  Serve and enjoy!