Lobster Bisque

I’ve had a lot of request for this so I thought I would post it. This is a scaled down version of what I have used in restaurants. If you have any questions don’t hesitate to comment, or message me.

Lobster Bisque

1/2 oz Clarified Butter

1/4 Yellow Onion, Small Dice

1/2 Red Pepper, Small Dice

1/2 Tbsp minced garlic

8 oz Lobster Meat, chopped in food processor

8 oz Salad Shrimp, chopped in food processor

1/4 Cup Brandy

1/2 Gallons Water

1/4 Container Lobster Base

1/4 Gallon Milk

1 Quarts Heavy Cream

1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper

Salt and White Pepper to taste

Roux* see below

Puree Onions and Peppers in food processor, then Saute the mixture in the clarified butter until soft.  Add Garlic, Shrimp, Lobster and Saute until warmed through.  Add Brandy and let come to a simmer.  Add Base, Water, Milk, and Cayenne Pepper and bring to a boil.  Thicken with Roux, until it is a little thicker than desired.  Add Cream, Salt and White Pepper, and check thickness again.

* Roux is equal parts flour and butter that has been simmered until the aroma is nutty.  For this recipe you will need approximately 2 tablespoons, however it may vary.  You will not know how much the roux is going to thicken the liquid until you bring it to a boil so you may need to adjust a couple of times in order to get the thickness you desire.

Advertisements

Shrimp Fra Diavalo

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup small diced shallot
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 cups canned tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 1/2 pound of shrimp, peeled and deveined with tails removed
  • 1 teaspoon salt, plus more for pasta water
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, optional

Directions

Bring a large 1-gallon pot of salted water to a boil, and place the pasta in the pot. Cook for 5-7 minutes and then drain; pasta will be only partially cooked. As the pasta cooks, set a 14-inch saute pan over medium-high heat and add the olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add the onions to the pan and cook until lightly caramelized and wilted, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic to the pan and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the red pepper flakes and saute briefly before adding the tomato sauce and tomato paste. Cook the sauce until reduced by about half, about 5 minutes. Add the shrimp to the pan and cook for 2 minutes. Add the partially cooked pasta to the pan along with 1 cup of the pasta cooking water and continue to cook the pasta in the sauce until al dente, about 3 to 4 minutes. Season the pasta with the salt and garnish with the parsley. Toss to combine and serve with grated Parmesan, if desired.

This is a great early summer dish that will wake up your taste buds and make you want to have a cold adult beverage near by!

Gazpacho, one of my summer favorites

There are several really good gazpacho recipes out there, however if I have all of the ingredients available this is what I chose to make.  As summer continues on and there are more fresh local vegetables available the result is better and better gazpacho!

1/4 cup chopped red onions

1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper

1/4 cup chopped cucumber (peeled and seeded)

1/4 cup chopped and peeled tomatoes

1/2 teaspoons chopped garlic

1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

Pinch of cayenne

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1 teaspoon white balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

¾ cup tomato juice

Sprig of thyme

Balsamic Glaze (Optional)

Fresh Orange Zest (Recommended)

  1. Mix all the ingredients except the balsamic glaze together in a bowl or other container, cover, and let sit in the refrigerator overnight.

 

  1. The next day, remove the thyme and blend all the ingredients in a blender.  Refrigerate the gazpacho until ready to serve.

 

Use a few drops of the balsamic glaze as garnish if desired, and I strongly suggest a little fresh orange zest on top before enjoying.

Brussel Sprouts, a side dish that will steal the show

 

wpid-wp-1419404595119.jpeg

Brussel Sprouts have long been misunderstood, overlooked, and forgotten about. The last couple of years we have seen more and more people embracing brussel sprouts, and I happen to be really excited about it.
About a year and a half ago I put them on my menu in a restaurant, and it remains one of the most requested dishes there (I will include that recipe here if requested). Recently I had some brussel sprouts at home, and decided to have a little fun with them for a side dish. It was very well received, really fun to make and I can’t wait to make it again. Give this a try as a side dish the next time you’re having roasted chicken, pork chops, or pot roast for dinner.

What you will need:

1lb Brussel Sprouts, quartered

1/2 Medium onion, diced

2 Potatoes, diced

1 Tbsp Ancho chili powder

2 tsp Ground Cumin

3 Tbsp Bacon Grease (Yes I keep it when I cook bacon)

Kosher salt and black pepper to taste

Brussel Sprout “dressing” (optional, recipe included below)

 

Preheat your oven to 350 degree’s, break out your cast iron skillet, and put it on the stove over medium heat.  Once it is heated, add the bacon grease and allow it to melt.  Be careful with how high the heat is, as you do not want the grease to smoke.  Once the grease is melted, add the onions and potatoes to the skillet and let them cook for about two minutes, use a wooden spoon to stir so they cook evenly.  Now add the brussel sprouts, ancho chili powder, cumin, and season with salt and pepper.  Stir to combine everything and to make sure the seasoning is well distributed and allow to cook for another 3-5 minutes.  Give one last stir and place the skillet in the oven for 12-15 minutes to allow everything to roast together.  I do not cook this dish longer than 15 minutes in the oven because I want the brussel sprouts to still have a little bite to them.  I don’t want to cook them until they are cooked to the point of mushiness (is that a word?).  Transfer everything to a serving bowl, and toss with the “dressing” if you’re going to use it, then serve.  There will be more discussion about this dish than any other you serve that night, no matter how well the entree turns out. Enjoy

 

Brussel Sprout “Dressing”.

What you need:

1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

1Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar

1 Tbsp Honey

Kosher salt to taste

2 Tbsp Canola oil (you can also use extra virgin olive oil, or vegetable oil)

 

Combine all of the ingredients except for the oil in a bowl and whisk together.  Continue to whisk and slowly drizzle the oil in to the mixture to create a vinaigrette, or in this case a dressing for the dish.

Looking back on time in the kitchen

unnamed

 

For almost a year now I haven’t worked in a kitchen. Yes I still walk through them every day, I’m still around the people and I haven’t been away from them long enough to forget anything that goes along with working in them. The sore feet, aching back, the heat, the stress and of course the gratification. The amount of times per month that I miss being in a kitchen is shrinking rapidly. I have embraced the change of scenery, the new job duties and responsibilities, and in all honesty I’m as happy as I have ever been.
However, being out of the kitchen has given me the ability to figure out what it was I liked about it the most, why it’s attractive to so many people and how those of us who spend time in a professional kitchen rationalize our life. The chance to step back and see so many more sides of the profession has been enlightening to say the least and I have learned as much about myself in this last year as I have over the last ten.
If you’re hoping for a new recipe, then this post probably isn’t for you. But if you have spent time in a kitchen, or been curious about it then this may interest you a great deal.

If you do an internet search for articles about life in a professional kitchen you will get plenty of results.  You also will have the opportunity to read several different views of how many hours a day or week we work, how hard and thankless the job is, and don’t forget the aspect of having to work all holidays and special occasions when the “normal” people in the world are having a good time.  All of those things are true but I’m going to try and cover a little more ground here, perhaps dig a little deeper and give some more insight in to not only the “what”, but the “why” we enjoy this lifestyle.

So lets cover the most obvious subjects then shed some light on how “kitchen people” view them, because on our best day we are a little twisted and we wouldn’t want to be any other way.

The long hours:  Yes it’s true we work long hours and I don’t think there are any words that I can put together that will articulate that any better than anyone else.  However I do feel I can offer something as to the reason why we do so.  When you make the choice to work in professional kitchens it is normally due to a deep seated desire to please people.  That is the one common bond among us; at the base of all we do is a very simple and basic desire to make others happy.  So at the end of the day, when it’s time to go home if we feel that we have made people happy then we have a sense of accomplishment, and a desire to come back the next day.
Another common phrase you hear that is true is that being a Chef isn’t a job, its a lifestyle. And this is intertwined in the heart of a kitchen employee, because when you’re off work its still in your mind. In fact, it never goes away, you think about the order of scallops you overcooked, or how your going to attack your prep the next day, every night the thoughts of doing something to make yourself better tomorrow goes through your head. If you’re not thinking about things like this each and every night then you may as well go back to washing dishes because the moment you stop trying to become better, or stop caring about becoming better, you have no business serving people. The main point is that even though you may not physically be at work, mentally you still are. And in most cases you’re going to show up early, or stay late on a regular basis in order to make yourself better. This alone will add weekly hours to your work load when customers are not even around.

Missing important family time:  This one is the toughest of all, and I think the one that most people only look at on the surface.  I can’t count how many important family functions I have missed over the years.  Things that I would have attended, or paid attention to if I wouldn’t have been in a kitchen.  Some of them more important than others, but they are all grouped together in the fact that I wasn’t there.  Birthday’s, ballgames, important days at school, the list goes on and on.  It’s bad that you miss these things, and it is something that is bothersome.  However the worst part of this is that when you are missing these important times of your families life, you’re having fun.  You’re in the kitchen, you have tickets hanging and you are thinking about nothing but getting the food out, it’s what we do and it’s what we enjoy.  It is perhaps the most selfish act that a parent, spouse, or significant other can commit, but we do it over and over; and during the time period when we are being missed by our loved ones, we, are happy? Now don’t get me wrong, it’s not that we don’t care, it’s not that it doesn’t bother us, and it’s not like we don’t realize what we’re missing because we do. It’s just that when orders start coming in, and food needs to be prepared we really only know one approach and we enjoy it that way.  In order for us to do the job that provides for our family, that’s where we are supposed to be mentally so although we may be missing something that breaks a family members heart, and our own, we are doing what we love for them in the only way we know how. If you have never lied in bed and lost sleep over this then you either aren’t approaching professional cooking properly, or you don’t know what love is.

Another aspect of the same subject is how we deal with missing important events in our family lives.  There should be a set of rules to this, or a disclaimer that comes with us to make sure we are the type of person who deserves to be able to have children before we do.  It’s so simple and basic, but I have heard the wrong words said to children far too many times in my life.  If you tell a child “I’ll make it up to you”, then you are intentionally doing damage to someone that you are supposed to have unconditional love for.  The one person or persons in our lives that we are supposed to do anything for should never be made to feel the way those words will make them feel.  Because it’s a lie, plain and simple you are lying to a child and rationalizing it to yourself by saying it’s what your career demands, and that’s bullshit.  How is someone that misses their child’s eleventh birthday going to make that up to them? You’re not, because you weren’t there, it’s that simple.  They will never have another eleventh birthday, or opening day game, or program at grade school but you’re trying to make them think that an ice cream cone on a Sunday evening should make all of that go away.  Well it doesn’t, and you shouldn’t try to convince them that it does.  Accountability is one of the most important things that I demand from my staff, and if they can’t give it to their family I honestly don’t want it from them in the kitchen.  Be accountable and explain why you’re not going to be there, and apologize for it; believe it or not a child will understand.  It doesn’t mean it doesn’t hurt them, or bother them but at least you were honest with them about why you’re not going to be there, and you’re not telling them a lie about making it up to them.  If you feel that telling a child “I will make it up to you” makes it acceptable for you to miss something important to them, then you miss one of the most important aspects of parenthood.  And some day the child will realize that and all you will have is what you can find within the walls of a kitchen.  Being true and honest to your family allows you to be better in a kitchen, makes the profession honorable and will lead you to becoming a Chef.  Misleading a loved one, but never missing a “shift drink” makes you a self centered cook on your best day, and I promise you will never know the proper way to season food, or show a family member you love them.

At the core of our chosen profession is self gratification, we work the long hours and miss the important days because of the gratification we get.  It’s selfish of us, and we shouldn’t lose sight of that because of what it does to our loved ones.  We spend our days serving people, and when we go home at night we should take any time that we have with our family to serve them with even more attention to detail, because at the end of the day they are the ones that are paying the price for us to do something we love.

Stepping away from the kitchen has been a positive for me, other than the realization of how selfish I was over the years.  I just hope that those that I love do really understand all of the things that I missed and why I missed them.  I’m thankful that they’re not waiting for the magical day when I will make something up to them, because I never allowed myself to say that.  And I hope that deep down they know that they mean more to me than the people that I served over the years.

 

 

 

Saturday Sauce

tomato-sauce1

 

I really can’t claim this recipe at all, this is all Michael Symon, however I’m including it for a specific reason and giving all credit to him. In his book “Live to cook” he has a recipe called Yia Yia’s Sunday Sauce (page 229), and when I first read it I could almost smell and taste the sauce because it just sounded so incredible.
If you haven’t read this book, then you should buy it and read it cover to cover, it will make you a better cook and also give you some awesome recipes to put some incredible food on your table at home. Don’t google recipes from it, go buy the book it is the ethical and morally right thing to do!

The problem I ran in to when I went to gather ingredients to make the sauce is where I live, and that is the reason I’m including this here. All of the ingredients are obtainable, I’m not trying to make it sound like I live completely disconnected from the world, however some of them are only available from the internet, or you are paying such a premium price it’s just not economically worth it to buy them. So I made a few changes to the recipe and ended up with an amazing sauce that has several uses.

I’ll go through the items that I changed out, and explain why then we will get to the recipe:

Canned San Marzano tomatoes- There are a couple of places locally that you can buy these, however they generally run about $8 for a 28oz can. That’s not very cost effective, and my wife would skin me if I bought two cans for a batch of sauce. So obviously I purchased a basic brand of canned tomatoes but I knew by doing so that the end result of the sauce would be less than what it could be. For that reason I also went to the produce department and purchased some sun dried tomatoes. A package of these can last a really long time, and you only need to use one sun dried tomato for each batch of sauce so they are cost effective to buy, if you use them properly.

Meaty Beef Bones- The three grocery stores within reason from my house do not have beef bones available to buy (sad, I know). There are a couple of locations in the area where you could maybe buy some on certain days however the drive wouldn’t be worth it for just one ingredient. With the price of gas what it is, you could be tripling the price of an ingredient just driving to the next town to try and find it.
However, most stores in this area do have Pork Neck Bones available and even though that brings a slightly different flavor profile, it’s still delicious.
So I substitute these two ingredients in the sauce and the end result is a wonderful, versatile and incredibly flavorful sauce.

I use this as a sauce over pasta, as a braising liquid for roast, over white rice with a piece of fish, or just simmer it in a skillet and add an egg or two and finish with some parmesan cheese.

1/4 cup olive oil
1 Large Yellow onion, finely diced
6 garlic cloves, chopped
Kosher salt (to taste)
2 28 ounce cans of canned tomatoes (whole)
1 cup dry white wine
2 pounds pork neck bones
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves
fresh ground black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 sun dried tomato

Heat the oil in a large dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and cook them for 2 or 3 minutes. Add the garlic and then salt and cook for a few minutes longer.
Open the canned tomatoes and squeeze them one by one into the pot, you really want to smash them with your hands, and don’t forget to add the juice from the can’s as well. Add the wine and neck bones, bay leaf, oregano, pepper and red pepper flakes. Bring everything to a simmer then reduce the heat and just let it cook for 6 to 8 hours.
Adjust the seasonings after tasting then remove the bones, and bay leaf.
I usually will use about half of the sauce right away, the other half I let cool to room temperature then put in a freezer bag and freeze for later use. The book says it will be good frozen for up to 2 months, but I have never had it around for that long because I can’t wait to eat it again!

Christmas leftover brunch buffet

image

Making Christmas dinner is always a fun day, and when the family is setting around eating and enjoying the offerings that you have made for them it’s always a very satisfying feeling. However, my favorite part of holiday cooking is making something new and different with the leftovers. Behold the holiday brunch buffet!
Lets face it, you have a lot of leftover food, and at some point making a sandwich for the fourth time, no matter how good the ham is gets a little old. So spice it up a little and make a leftover frittata. You can really use anything in a frittata dependent upon the leftovers you have in the fridge.

What you’ll need:

8 Eggs
Leftover Ham, diced
6-8 spoonfuls of leftover broccoli casserole
6-8 spoonfuls of leftover mac and cheese
6-8 spoonfuls of leftover dressing
3 Tbsp butter
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
Leftover gravy (warmed and set to the side)

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degree’s and putting a cast iron skillet on to the stove over medium heat, and add the butter so it will begin to melt. Cut enough of the ham up in to small pieces to cover the bottom of the skillet and place them in the skillet and allow them to start heating through.
Add the spoonfuls of the leftover foods, broccoli casserole, mac and cheese, and dressing.
image

Crack the eggs in to a bowl, season them with salt and pepper and then whisk them together.
Stir the food in the skillet as it warms through, then level it off so that everything is about the same depth. Pour the eggs in the skillet making sure all of the cracks and crevices are filled in throughout the skillet. At this point it is really important to not touch anything in the skillet, just let the eggs begin to cook.
image

Keep a close eye on the skillet as you should begin to see the eggs bubble in different areas of the skillet (5-7 minutes). When this happens, transfer the skillet to the oven and let it bake for about an additional 10-15 minutes. You will know that it is done when you grab the handle of the skillet and shake it back and forth and the center of the frittata is set. If it still looks loose, you need to let it cook for a few more minutes.
Once it is cooked through remove it from the oven and place it on the stove top to allow it to rest/set. After about 8-10 minutes you will be able to run a spatula around the side of the frittata and take it out of the skillet in one piece and place it on a serving platter. Cut it in to however many pieces you like, and place the warm bowl of gravy beside of it.
image

If your going to go for the full blown brunch buffet you may want to include some other items for people to chose from. I put out everything “cold” that we have leftover. This morning it was pasta salad, macaroni salad, deviled eggs, cold turkey, which I also put a loaf a bread out, miracle whip, and pickles to make it easy to build a cold turkey sandwich. And of course you have to have some dessert options.
This part of holiday cooking means as much to me if not more than the big dinner does. This is an opportunity for just those of us who live in the house to have another chance to eat a special meal together. It’s very little work, and worth a lot more than the effort you have to put it to it.

Keep in mind that there aren’t really any set rules for making the frittata, I make these all the time using a wide variety of ingredients and following the same steps listed above.
Give something like this a shot before everyone in the house goes back to the day to day work schedule, school or whatever else you have going on that takes away from time together.

Make your own BBQ Sauce

pulled pork

Quiet a few years ago I had the idea to make my own BBQ sauce. I had long had the approach that there were good products available at the store (and there is), and all I had to do to enhance them was to add an ingredient or two. Maybe a little more brown sugar, perhaps some honey or bourbon and I would have something that was a little more exciting than something that had been setting in a box or on a shelf for as many as six months. I had the basic idea on what all goes in to a good BBQ sauce, however it wasn’t something I had ever really stood over a pot and done.

This lead me to go to the store one weekend and buy several ingredients and make some BBQ sauce at home and see if it really could be better than my favorite national brand. After a lot of headaches, and messes in the kitchen I finally had a good understanding of how to put together a sauce that truly is different than what you can buy, and I’ll include the recipe here.
Not long after coming up with a recipe that everyone seemed to really enjoy, I couldn’t help buy wonder about the several different styles of BBQ sauces from around the country. Memphis style, the two different Carolina styles and I was even inspired by a restaurant owner to develop a Alabama mayonnaise based sauce. Over the years I have been asked about bottling the sauce, selling the sauce or just the recipes themselves, and of course I have considered them all. For now, I’m just going to put one of them here where I know I will get the proper credit, and hopefully someone can get as much enjoyment out of them as me and my family has.

The most popular sauce in this area at least is a Kansas City style sauce. It’s sweet, with a tangy side to it and very easy to make. If I get some response from posting this one, I will include the other sauces as updates.

K.C. Sauce

2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups ketchup (not Heinz, see notes)
1/2 cup yellow mustard
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup dark molasses
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon hot sauce (I prefer Franks)
1 cup brown sugar
1 yellow onion, diced
5 cloves of garlic, minced
2 Tbsp canola oil

1) Place a large sauce pot on the stove over medium heat and add the canola oil until it is heated, then add the onions and garlic. Let them heat through until the onions become translucent, stirring occasionally. You don’t want the onions or the garlic to begin to brown you’re just trying to soften them and have them release their flavor.

2) While the onions and garlic are cooking, combine all of the remaining ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mix well with a whisk. You want to make sure all of the dry ingredients are incorporated in to the liquids.

3) Add the other ingredients to the sauce pot and mix well, then bring to a simmer. Stir the pot every five to ten minutes and let the sauce simmer for about a total of thirty to thirty five minutes. Turn the stove off and allow the sauce to come to room temperature. Put the sauce in a nonreactive container and place in the refrigerator until you’re ready to use.

This is great mixed in with pulled pork, and I use a very simple method for doing that even without the use of a smoker, yes I prefer a smoker, however living in West Virginia the weather doesn’t always allow us to use one.  Buy a pork roast and set your oven to 225 degrees.  Place the pork roast in a large dutch oven that has a lid and pour in about a cup of water, a cap full of liquid smoke, and a shot of your favorite bourbon.  Place the lid on the dutch oven and then place it in the oven, close the door and let it cook for about ten hours, or until it is falling apart.  Remove it from the oven, let it set for about thirty minutes then pull it, stir in the sauce you made the night before and enjoy.

Notes: I am a huge fan of Heinz ketchup with french fries or onion rings. I think it is the best product on the market. However for use in this recipe it adds a layer of flavor that I just didn’t care for. I’m not sure why, but this recipe just seems to come out better when using an off brand, cost effective ketchup.
This sauce is always better after it is cooled and sets over night in refrigeration, the extra time for the sauce to really come together does make a difference. Enjoy!

French Onion Soup

On a cool fall day, sometimes one of the most enjoyable things you can make is French Onion Soup. I decided to do that today, and also keep notes on how I make it here at home to share here. I hope you enjoy!

What you need:

1 Bag of onions (3lb)

½ Cup Red wine

4 Quarts of Beef Stock

1 Stick of butter

3 tsp of AP Flour

1 Bunch of Thyme

1 Bay leaf

Croutons (Preferably home made)

Provolone cheese (One slice per bowl)

Kosher Salt and Black pepper to taste

To start get all of the onions ready to slice, then slice them and place them aside in a large bowl. When I make this I use two different pots. The first is just used to cook down the onions, it has a thicker bottom and is a lot easier to control the temperature that the onions are cooking at. However, it isn’t large enough to hold the whole batch of soup, so once I cook down the onions I transfer them to a larger pot to simmer

.

onions

Let the first pot get warm on the stove top then add the butter, and let it melt completely. After that place all of the onions in to the pot, season with salt and pepper add the thyme and let them cook, make sure you stir them occasionally so that all of the onions get cooked through. I generally let them cook down for about 90 minutes. You don’t want the heat to be too high, but you do want them to simmer.

Once the onions have cooked down to where they are nice and soft I sprinkle the flour over the onions, stir everything well then add the bay leaf and red wine, then bring the pot back to a simmer, let this simmer for about 15 minutes. It is at this time that I put the beef stock in to the second pot and bring it to a boil. Pour the onions in to the larger pot and bring this pot to a boil, then reduce the heat and allow it to simmer. Let this simmer for at least two hours.

withwineandleaf

When you’re ready to serve the soup make sure your broiler is on in your oven. Put a ladle of soup in to the bowl, and drop some croutons on top of of it, cover with the cheese and place it in the oven under the broiler. Once the cheese has melted and starts to bubble, remove from the oven and enjoy!

finished

Lobster Galliano

image

This is a take off on a dish I was taught several years ago by my mentor Chef, Jeff Pennington.  In his application, there were only three ingredients, Galliano, Cream, and Lobster and it was incredible.  Simple yes, but an experience I will never forget.  What follows is the evolution of the recipe that I have brought it to based on my approach to the dish.  The flavor profile is the same, however I feel that it is now a complete dish, not just something to throw together and eat during dinner service.

You really have more than one option on this dish. If making the ravioli doesn’t appeal to you it can also be made with a lobster tail, just cut in half and simmered in the sauce until it is cooked through. Or as pictured above, do both.

For the filling:

1 Lobster Tail diced

1 Teaspoon finely chopped chives

1 Teaspoon finely diced shallot

1 Teaspoon chopped tarragon

1 Tablespoon zucchini small dice

1 Tablespoon tomato concasee

2 Tablespoon marscapone cheese

Salt and Pepper to taste

Bring a quart of water to a boil, and cut the lobster tail in half and place in a non reactive pan.  Pour the boiling water over the lobster tail, cover and let set for three minutes. Carefully remove the tail from the water, then remove the meat from the shell.  Dice the meat neatly.

Combine all of the above ingredients in a small bowl and season using the Salt and Pepper.  Once everything is combined nicely, carefully fold in the lobster meat.

Cover and set aside.

Fresh Pasta

1 Cup All Purpose Flour

¾ Cup Semolina Flour

6 Large Egg Yolks

1 Large Egg

1 ½ Teaspoons Olive Oil

1 Tablespoon Whole Milk

Mix the two types of flour together and make sure they are mixed evenly.

Make a mound of the two flours on your work surface, then form a “bowl” in the top of it.  Place all of the remaining ingredients in to this “bowl”.  Using your first and middle finger begin to mix the wet ingredients stirring them inside the mound of flour.  Little by little you want to bring some of the flour into the wet mixture until a dough begins to form.  Once you’re able to actually wrap your hand around the ball of dough, begin to knead the dough, and incorporate as much of the flour in to it as you can.  Make sure you knead the dough until it is smooth, and almost tacky to the touch.  There is no need to be concerned with overworking this dough.

Once you have the dough a smooth consistency double wrap it in saran wrap and set it in the refrigerator to rest for at least 30 minutes.  You can make this ahead of time, and place the dough in the refrigerator overnight, however make sure you allow the dough to come to room temperature before you start to work with it the next day.

Set the rollers on your pasta machine to the largest setting, and cut about a third of the dough away from the ball that you formed.  Knead the dough out until it is able to fit into the pasta rollers and run the pasta through the first setting then fold in half and run through the first setting again (you may need to do this a few times). Then begin closing the rollers one setting after each pass of the dough.  Until you have reached the desired thickness.  I use the #3 setting as the final setting.

Lightly dust your working surface with some flour and lay your pasta sheets out. Have your filling setting close by, with a spoon in order to portion up the filling on to the pasta.

There are several ways you can do this next step.  First you can do another sheet of pasta, place the filling on the first sheet, then cover with the second sheet, and cut your ravioli’s from here.  Or you can place your filling on one half of the sheet, the fold it over and cut your ravioli’s from there.  No matter how you chose to do this step, just make sure you paint one side of the pasta with an egg wash in order to create a good seal. These details are really up to the individual, however make sure you get all of the air out of each ravioli before cutting and sealing them.

Set the ravioli’s aside until you’re ready to make the dish.

Lobster Galliano- lets put it together

2 Teaspoons Canola Oil

1 Teaspoon Shallot diced

1 Tablespoon Mushroom diced (I use shitake)

3 ounces Galliano liqueur

4-6 ounces of Heavy Cream

Bring a pot of well salted water to boil.

Place a skillet on to the stove on medium high heat.  Once the skillet is heated pour in the Canola oil and make sure it is heated through, then add the Shallot and Mushrooms.  At this time drop three or four ravioli’s into the boiling water.

Saute the shallots and mushroom until they are softened then pour in the Galliano.  If you’re working on an open flame, you will want to turn the flame off before doing this.  Be careful, because this liquid will begin to burn off rather quickly.

Once the flame has died down, pour in about half of the cream, and lower the flame to bring the liquid to a simmer.  Taste the liquid (be careful, it’s hot) and see if you need to add more heavy cream.  Once you have the liquid where you want it as far as taste, pull the ravioli’s from the water, drain them, and add them to the skillet with the liquid.  (the total cooking time on the ravioli in the water should be about 4 minutes).

Toss the ravioli in the sauce you just created in the skillet and then pour everything into a bowl for service.

I garnish this dish with a mixture of fresh tarragon, and micro basil lemon greens and a couple of sections of orange.  However it’s just as good to grab a roll or a piece of bread and start eating away.

Enjoy