Sunday, December 09, 2007

Honey Vinegar Basted Rack of Pork with Whipped Sweet Potatoes

Bradley Ogden's recipes that I got while dining at the Cafeteria in Levi's Plaza, SF, CA

2 lbs Pork loin, center cut, small-eye, well marbled, 4-5 bone rack
1/2 tsp cumin seed, toasted and ground
1/3 cup honey
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 cups yellow spanish onion, peeled and sliced
2 cups chicken stock
2 cups apple cider vinegar
1 cup fresh apple juice, pressed
(in a sachet bag: 1 sprig of thyme, 1 tsp peppercorns, 1/4 bay leaf, 4 parsley stems)
1.5 cup cranberry jam (recipe below)


  • Preheat oven to 350-375 degrees
  • Toast cumin seeds in a dry skillet over medium heat. Remove from heat and grind in a spice grinder.
  • In a small bowl mix the ground cumin, honey, mustard, olive oil, 2 tbsp of kosher salt and 1.5 tsp of fresh ground black pepper
  • Arrange a baking sheet with a baking rack. Loosely cover the bones of each pork rack with foil
  • Brush a thin layer of the above mixture on all sides of the pork. Lay facing up on the rack.
  • Roast until internal temp is 160 degrees. Let rest in warmer until ready to serve.

Honey Vinegar Sauce
yields 2 quarts

10 each white onions
12 each garlic cloves
1/4 lb butter
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 gal chicken stock
1 quart apple juice
1 bottle white wine
1/2 gal apple cider vinegar
10 sprigs fresh thyme
2 each bay leaves
1/2 tsp chili flakes
to taste salt and fresh ground black pepper

  • Caramelize the onions and garlic together over low heat
  • Add the rest of the ingredients except the salt ad black pepper and reduce by 2/3 of until the sauce coats the back of a spoon.
  • Strain the sauce through a chinois, season to taste with salt and fresh black pepper

Cranberry Jam yields 1.5 cups

1 cup cranberries, clean and pick stems (discard any bruised ones)
1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice


  • Place all the ingredients into a small, heavy bottom stainless steel sauce pan and cook over medium heat just until the cranberries start to pop.
  • Pass through a fine grind food mill and let cool.
Whipped sweet Potatoes
serves 4

Ingredients 1.5 lb sweet potatoes
3/4 cup organic apple juice of apple cider
1 tbsp fresh ginger, peeled and grated
1 tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 tsp kosher salt
3/t tsp fresh ground black pepper


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Scrub the potatoes under running cold water. Place on a baking sheet and bake until soft, approximately 45 minutes.
  • While the potatoes are baking, add the apple juice and ginger to a non-corrosive saucepan. Place over a moderate slow burner to steep for 10 minutes. Strain and set aside until needed.
  • Remove the potatoes from the oven; cool slightly before handling. Remove and discard peels and rinse the potatoes.
  • Place the potatoes in a bowl of an electric mixer. Using the whip attachment, whip together the butter and the cream. Continue whipping while adding the apple-ginger juice.
  • Season with salt and black pepper; keep warm until ready to serve.
  • Combine the remainder of the ingredients together in a bowl, reserving the chilies.
  • Add the chilies as needed for taste. Add this mixture onions mixture and season to taste. Cover and refrigerate approximately 1/2 to 1 hour before serving so all the flavors have a chance to develop.

Note: Make sure the potatoes remain rather stiff. You may not need to add all the liquid to the sweet potatoes.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

BBQ Shredded Chicken on Tamale Pancake

This recipe is by Bradley Ogden that I picked up while dining at the Cafeteria at Levi's Plaza


4 ears of corn, shaved and scraped
1 cup milk
1 cup fresh masa
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1/2 each, red, green and yellow peppers, finely diced
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
4 each, scallions minced
4 ears corn, roasted and shucked
1 tbl butter, softened
1/4 tsp baking soda

1 each white onion, julienne and lightly sauteed
1 cup bbq sauce (recipe below)
1.5 cups roasted chicken, shredded
2-3 tbl avocado salad (recipe follows)
1 tbl. cilantro cream (recipe follows)
4-5 each cilantro sprigs


  • Mix the scraped corn and milk masa, salt and pepper in a sauce pot and cook on medium low heat for 10-15 minutes. Remove from the stove and allow to cool slightly.
  • Fold in the fine diced peppers and scallions
  • Mix the butter and baking soda together and fold into the pancake mixture. Adjust the seasoning if necessary.
  • Form into 1.5 to 2 oz patties. Cook on medium heat griddle with butter until golden brown on both sides. Remove and set aside.
  • Saute the onions, chicken and BBQ sauce together

To serve:

  • Place the pancake down on the plate first. Top with 2-3 tbls of avocado salad and then 2 oz of the chicken mixture. Lace with the cilantro cream and cilantro sprigs. Add a dollop of Cilantro Cream Fraiche.
Serves 4-6

1/4 cup white onion, minced
1 tablspoon fresh lime juice
1 medium tomato, cored and diced 1/4"
2 medium ripe avocados, chunked
1 each serrano chili, finely minced
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
1 tablespoon kosher salt


  • Mix the onions and lime juice together and set aside while preparing the remainder of the ingredients
  • Combine the remainder of the ingredients together in a bowl, reserving the chilies.
  • Add the chilies as needed for taste. Add this mixture to the onions mixture and season to taste. Cover and refrigerate approximately 1/2 to 1 hour before serving so all the flavors have a chance to develop
Makes 2 cups


3/4 cup chili sauce
1/3 cup molasses
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup water
1 tsp Tabasco sauce
1 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp red chili pepper flakes
1/2 each Anaheim chili, seeded and cut into 1" pieces
1/4 each green pepper, seeded and cut into 1" pieces
1/2 can chipotle in adobo sauce
1/4 cup fresh chives, minced
1/2 fresh horseradish, peeled and grated


  • Combine all the ingredients, except the chives and horseradish, in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat an dput the sauce through a fine strainer, using a wooden spoon to push as much of the sauce through as possible.
  • Stir in horseradish right before service.
  • Garnish with chopped chives

Serves 4-6

1/2 bunch cilantro, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup cream fraiche
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp fresh cracked black pepper


  • Puree the cilantro and lemon juice in a blender until smooth.
  • Place the puree in a bowl and fold in the sour cream and cream fraiche and blend together well.
  • Season with the salt and the pepper
  • Refrigerate for a tleast 1/2 hour to allow time for all the flavors to blend.

Wad's Steamed Clams

We perfected this cooking technique over the bbq at another visit to the Hog Island Oyster Farm in Point Reyes.

1/4 stick butter
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, squeezed through a garlic press
1 cup dry white wine
1/4 bunch of parsley
salt and fresh black pepper to taste
2-4 lbs manila clams
fresh lemon juice

Melt butter on medium heat in a 3 quart saute pan. Add olive oil, garlic, stirring quickly for a minute. Slowly pour in the wine, then toss in the clams and parsley, mixing well then cover. Let cook for a couple of minutes. The clams are done when all of the shells are opened, should only take a few minutes.

Squeeze fresh lemon juice over all. Delicious served with a baguette to dunk into the broth.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Hog Island BBQ'd Oysters

Sweetwater oysters roasted in their own shell! Make extra, these will get eaten!

1 head of garlic, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 pound (1 stick) unsalted butter
juice of 1 large lemon
dash of Tabasco Sauce
cracked black pepper to taste
1/2 bunch of Italian parsley, chopped

Sweat the garlic in a little bit of the oil. Before it browns, add the butter and the rest of the ingredients except the parsley. As soon as the butter melts, turn off the heat. Spoon sauce onto raw, shucked oysters. Place oysters on grill, cover and cook for 5 minutes or until edges of oysters curl slightly. Add a pinch of chopped parsley to each oyster, cover grill again for 1 more minute. Serve hot with warm sourdough bread!

I made this but reduced it to 3 garlic cloves, 1/3 stick of butter and probably more like 2 tblsp of olive oil but with the rest of the recipe. I cooked the garlic in the butter beforehand and spooned some of the rather hardened garlic butter mixture onto the oysters. We found them to be perfectly cooked after the butter had melted and the oyster began to bubble in the heavenly elixir in its shell. We were working at a bbq pit at a picnic site and this worked very well without a grill cover...

Luc's Beer'd Clams

These pictures are from a lovely feast we recently enjoyed at the Hog Island Oyster Farm in Tomales Bay.

Hog Island clams served in a bowl of fragrant broth. Great with sourdough bread, more beer and big napkins. Luc Chamberland, manager of the Hog Island Oyster Bar, recommends making his recipe with Mendocino Brewing Company Red Tail Ale or Blue Heron Pale Ale.

I have modified the recipe to cut down on the amount of butter... You can get the full fatted recipe from their website

1 beer (one 12 oz. bottle)
1/2 stick (4 tblsp) unsalted butter
1 bulb of fresh fennel root, coarsely chopped
1 splash of extra virgin olive oil
1 pinch of sea salt, or to taste
2 pounds of Hog Island Manila Clams

Pour beer into a Dutch oven or large covered pot. Bring beer to a simmer over medium heat. Add butter, olive oil, salt and pepper. Add chopped fennel root. Let ingredients simmer for a few minutes. Rinse the clams in fresh water and add to the pot. Heat until clams open, ladle into large bowls and serve!

I have halved the recipe in approximately half and reduced the butter by a lot. I also added a couple cloves of garlic squeezed through the garlic press and found it to be greatly improved by the addition of fresh squeezed lemon juice and freshly ground black pepper. The fennel also needed to be cooked longer as it was still kind of crunchy, so I would also let the ingredients simmer for a few more minutes before adding the clams...

It was especially delicious with the bbq'd oyster recipe from the same site that we enjoyed on a recent visit.