Thursday, May 29, 2014


Carnaroli Rice Crisp, Young Fava Beans, Parmesan Rind, Garden Herbs

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Live Sea Scallops

We recently received an incredible batch of large live scallops!  I prepared a rather unconventional dish using fresh blood from the hazelnut finished Berkshire pigs.  While it may sound like an obscure pairing, black pudding has long been a traditional pairing for sea scallops in Scotland and parts of Europe.  The intrigue of this combination for me is that both ingredients, the scallops and pig blood, have a similar flavor profile - slightly sweet, very umami, some saltiness and a slight metallic note.   These flavor characteristics really build off of each other to amplify the dish.  Instead of doing a black pudding, we pureed some pork fat with the scallop scraps, cooked onions and spices, then blended in the fresh pigs blood and baked the sausage inside of the shell.  The resulting sausage is rich and firm, a texture that both mimics and enhances the texture of the scallop.

To finish the dish I roasted the scallop roe, made a fennel and watermelon radish condiment and a sauce using fresh meyer lemon blossoms and the frills from the scallop.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Twin Farms Dinner

I just got back from an incredible weekend at Twin Farms in Vermont.  Chef Nathan and I collaborated on three dinners that celebrated unique products from Vermont and Big Sur.   Everything at Twin Farms is incredible- from the world class art collection to perfectly executed cuisine and intuitive guest service each and every detail has been meticulously attended to.  I look forward to welcoming Chef Nathan Rich to Post Ranch Inn this Fall.

It’s been over ten years since I went to school at New England Culinary, and it was great to be back in the Green Mountain State.  Click here to view the menus we prepared.

The team at Twin Farms

Chef Nathan Rich's family style quail

Birch bark inspired these canapĂ©s -  smoked duck with toasted dandelion syrup and nduja with quail egg

Tree mushrooms by a trail

The main house at Twin Farms

Twin Farms from above

Dried corn from the Twin Farms garden for making polenta

First of the season purple asparagus

Chef Nathan's Foie Gras

Local maple syrup with natural crystals
The bridge at Twin Farms

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Taste of Big Sur Egg Dish

Our chickens have acclimated to their new home and have begun to lay eggs.  Because all three are Bantam varieties, their eggs are about half the size of a typical chicken egg.  With only a dozen chickens, our egg production is very small, and we reserve these for our Taste of Big Sur Menu.  Elizabeth made a cream using smoked hay to serve as the base of the dish.  We then add egg whites gently cooked with oak consommĂ©, the oil poached yolk and a variety of young sorrel leaves and roots from the garden.  Right before the dish leaves the kitchen with fill the cloche with hay smoke so that when the server lifts the lid the diner gets to experience the smell of smoldering fresh hay.  This dish is really a beautiful reflection of our chicken program.  We use freshly raked hay for the hens to lay their eggs on, so incorporating more hay into the dish was a logical step.  The acidity of the sorrel help cut through the richness of the yolk, while enabling the subtle flavor of the egg to shine.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Taste of Big Sur Cheese Course

We are very excited about the new cheese course for our Taste of Big Sur menu.  An apple cider that Fiona pressed from our harvest two years ago is ready to drink.  Elizabeth made a gelee using the two year old cider and added fresh apple blossoms from the same trees inside.  The apple perfectly complements Charlie Cascio’s Big Sur Valencay and a spoonful of local honey.  The dish really captures the terroir of our garden.

Thursday, May 15, 2014


Smoked Monterey Sardine, Tomato Vinegar Aioli, Charred Avocado, Wild Arugula

Monday, May 12, 2014

Artichoke for Taste of Big Sur Menu

New for the Taste of Big Sur Menu - Local Artichoke with Sweet Pea Puree and Lots of Alliums from the garden!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Twin Farms Dinner

I am looking forward to joining Chef Nathan Rich and his team next weekend at Twin Farms in Vermont.  Today I marinated two Lone Mountain Ranch Wagyu ribeyes for the Saturday night dinner.   I started by removing the thick fat cap and smoking it over apple wood trimmings for 2 hours- these were then rendered in a low oven and strained to obtain the smoky fat.  While the fat was still hot I added local mountain herbs (bay tips, redwood tips, wild onion and black sage) and local sea salt- I then poured the warm fat over the cleaned ribeye.  I'm going to let the steaks marinate in this mix for one week to infuse the smoky-herbaceous flavor.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Elk with Rhubarb

Black Sesame Crusted Elk Tenderloin, Pickled Green Strawberries, Rhubarb, Lardo Wrapped Potato, Young Bay Laurel.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Radish Patch

The Radish Patch - Fresh Radishes with Goat Butter, Black Garlic and Burnt Kelp Salt

Friday, May 2, 2014

The Big Bottle

You know a wine has to be exciting with Dominique agrees to have his picture taken with it!  I also couldn’t resist sneaking in a quick photo with this bottle.