Truffle Shot - Charity Dinner Amuse Bouch

I've mentioned this recently but as part of a charity auction for Assistance Dogs Australia, for $2,400, I was bought to cook a degustation meal for twelve of my work colleagues. To put it mildly, the pressure is on! I only have two weeks until the dinner so this weekend was all about practice. First up, a truffle shot amuse bouche.

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To be honest, this was pretty simple to make. Only a couple ingredients but the flavour was amazing and the look was eye-catching. You'll need (makes 4): 

  • 100g Shiitake mushrooms
  • 50g Enoki mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp duck fat
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 100ml thick cream
  • 2 tbsp creme fraiche (preferably Pepe Saya
  • 6 pinches truffle salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp truffle oil

Heat the duck fat in a non-stick pan until melted. Add the mushrooms and garlic and cook until the garlic and Enoki mushrooms are browned and the Shiitake mushrooms are soft. Turn the heat off and add the cream, two pinches of the truffle salt, and pepper.  

Once the ingredients are mixed, add the creme fraiche and pour everything into a food processor or use a hand blender and blend until smooth.  Test the temperature to make sure the mixture is hot. If not, 15 seconds in the microwave will do the trick.

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Add to individual shot glasses and top with a pinch of truffle salt, two drops of truffle oil, and the tops of a couple Enoki mushrooms. Serve!

If you make this let me know what you think. I'm keen to discover new variations as this really is one of the better dishes I've invented. The more the merrier... 

Chef Apreda - Breaded Sea Scallops with Mozzarella, Celery Leaves, and Black Truffle

As I've mentioned a few times, we visited Imago at the Hotel Hassler in Rome back in August. It is 1 Michelin star greatness (and we think it deserves more) and it's star chef, Francesco Apreda was very gracious to share two of his recipes with us and Gourmet Male readers. I'm giving this a go on the long weekend as it's complex but accessible. Let us know what you think! And make it a point to visit Imago if you're ever in Rome - and follow @FrancescoApreda on Twitter.

Thanks, Chef. 

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CHEF FRANCESO APREDA

Breaded scallops filled with buffalo milk mozzarella, celery leaves, and black truffle 

BREADED SCALLOPS:

  • 400gr shelled scallops,
  • 60gr buffalo milk mozzarella,
  • 80gr black truffle,
  • 200gr breadcrumbs,
  • 200gr celery,
  • 3 whole eggs,
  • 100gr flour

GARLIC SAUCE:

  • 500ml cream,
  • 2 garlic cloves,
  • 4gr isinglass,
  • extra virgin olive oil

FRIZZY SALAD WITH TRUFFLE:

  • 100gr fine frizzy salad,
  • 5ml truffle flavoured oil,
  • 30gr poppy seeds,
  • salt,
  • pepper,
  • extra virgin olive oil,
  • peanut oil

BREADED SCALLOPS: carve into the side of the scallops creating a sack. Stuff with a slice of mozzarella, a fine slice of truffle and a leaf of celery. Dredge in flour, in the beaten eggs, salted and then coated with the breadcrumbs made with fresh white sandwich loaf and dry homemade bread.

GARLIC SAUCE: squash the garlic cloves, cover them in oil and roast in the oven at 80 °C for an hour. Reduce the cream and, while still warm, blend with the garlic confit and the softened isinglass.

FRIZZY SALAD WITH TRUFFLE: use only the middle, lighter leaves and rinse in very cold water. Drain and dress with the finely chopped remaining truffle, truffle fl avoured oil, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper.

CELERY STICKS: peel the celery ribs and cut into 5cm sticks, blanche in salted water and cool in water and ice. Before serving, heat in a pan with oil, salt and pepper.

FINISHING TOUCHES: fry the scallops in peanut oil at 180 °C, blot in kitchen paper, salt and serve on top of the garlic sauce covered with poppy seeds, the dressed frizzy salad, celery sticks, a few fine slices of truffle and fried baby celery leaves.

 

Truffle, Bone Marrow and Chevre Burgers with Pancetta

The Gourmet Female is going on a diet and I have been on a mission to create a "Death Row" meal for her to commemorate the final day on our normal food regime. Now, a normal person would take the idea of a burger and fries meal and go buy some mince and herbs, buy some nice burger rolls, and possibly buy some frozen chips. Yes, a normal person. But I think we've established that's not me, by any stretch. So I schemed up a burger made with premium mince, truffle salsa, chopped porcinis, and roasted bone marrow. It is to be topped with crisped pancetta, sitting on a layer of chevre cheese, with pickles, mayo, and dijon, on a homemade brioche roll. You heard me, a homemade brioche rolls (and the other stuff). And for giggles I threw in Heston Blumenthal's Triple Cooked Chips. Nothing like spending six hours on a weekend for a burger and fries! But look at this...

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(An aside: I'm writing this outdoors on a gorgeous winter afternoon - the last weekend of winter! And I was so engrossed in writing this that I missed the fact that both of my dogs are digging holes in the backyard - RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME. Little furry pains in the ass)

I'm pretty proud of this one as it was completely made up in my dreams. So if you do give it a try please let me know what you think.

I'll leave the brioche bun recipe and Heston's chips for another day (those chips are a journey in themselves). So for now just get yourself a couple good burger buns. In addition, what you need is (makes 2 burgers):

  • 220g premium mince
  • 8g rehydrated, chopped porcini mushrooms
  • 1 tsp Tetsuya's Truffle Salsa (or chopped truffles with anchovy)
  • pinch of salt
  • 4 thin slices of dill gherkin
  • mayo
  • dijon mustard
  • 2 round slices of pancetta
  • 3 or 4 marrow bones

Roast the bone marrow as I covered here. Extract the bone marrow into the mince and add the porcinis and truffle salsa. Add a pinch of salt and mix the ingredients well. Separate into two patties and press until firm - I used a canning jar's lid to give the burger a great shape.

Turn on your oven to the grill setting and chuck in the pancetta slices on a pan for four minutes, or until nice and crispy. Remove and set aside.

Now, I was tempted to try my new "ghetto" sous vide eskie but these were just too precious to risk so I pan fried them. That's about 4 - 5 minutes a side (DON'T press them), which is pretty simple. While they are frying spread the chevre on the bottom of your burger bun (you can toast the bun if you wish beforehand) and add a thin layer of mayo and dijon to the top of the bun. Lay the two gherkin slices to the top as well. 

Once your burger is done cooking assemble the masterpiece and serve! I have to say, this was one of the best burgers I've ever tasted. And it all cost less than one of the burgers from all those new "gourmet" shops springing up everywhere. Gents, this is one to wow family and friends.

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