Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The Creme Brulee That I Create are from the Stuff that Dreams are Made.

We made the decision long ago to keep our crème bruleé listed as “Seasonal Flavor” on the menu. This has given me a great deal of culinary freedom to create some really fantastic bruleés. I sort of pride myself as being the ”Willy Wonka” of bruleés, and can and will try everything from double vanilla bean, to red bull, vodka, and cranberry.

(Which was actually kind of delicious: red bull and vanilla Stoli’s soaked cranberries, drained those and used the remaining liquid to make the custard. The cranberries helped to sweeten the mix and soften the flavor of the red bull. The carbonation was a great semi-leavener as well)

Anyway, I had to write about this last one. The actual idea came from one of my line cooks, John. (or Yohn, for any of my Hispanic cooks) He texted me at 12:00 at night, because he got an idea for a bruleé, and had to immediately share it with me. White Chocolate-Covered Pretzel……… Okay, great…… but how? The idea left me for a couple months, until my Sous reminded me on my way out to the store.

“How about White Chocolate Pretzel,”

“Why the hell not? But How?” The question had arisen again.

I thought about how I could utilize the pretzels in a way that combined with the creamy-ness of the custard. I decided to grind up the pretzels in the robot coupe, and mix them with a little brown sugar and butter, and treat it like a crust for the bottom. I mixed it and pressed it into the dishes, and baked it blind (without anything in it, for the layman) for about 8 minutes. I then made a custard from Godiva white chocolate liquor, and callebaut white chocolate. We served it with a white chocolate dipped pretzel rod, and the obligatory strawberry and mint sprig. Delicious. Maybe even in the Top Three.

We sold out in a matter of two days, minus, of course, the one I had to take home to my biggest critic. I had to go back to the old stand-by, and probably the #1 draft pick……….The “Everlasting Gobstopper,” if you will. The “Geauga Co. Maple and Blueberry.” Our Maple Syrup comes from Richard's Maple Farm, in Chardon, Ohio, and be blend that with Blueberry Stoli’s fresh blueberries, and rich vanilla custard. When we pull these out of the oven and cool them in the walk-in, it smells like fresh blueberry pancakes.

Notes and Randoms:
- New Menu going to the printers, more on that later
- The title of this blog is in reference to the song, “Chef.” Press the “Play” button on the music player located on the side bar to the right to listen…….It’s not boasting if it’s true.
- Cleaving, by Julie Powell is a good read. She’s the one that wrote that book, “Julie and Julia.” I have only read excerpts over my wife’s shoulder, but the parts I read were funny as hell. A must read for any woman that is married to a chef or butcher.
- "Stupid is as stupid does, Sir." – You know who you are.

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