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Friday, October 21, 2011

“Famous Restaurant Recipes, Pt. XXXIX: Northwest-style Poached Halibut with Vegetables, Marbled Polenta, and Sweet Basil-Butter Sauce”

The Grateful Dead’s fifty-fourth album, “Dick’s Picks Vol. XIV—Boston Music Hall, Boston, MA, November 30 to December 02, 1973,” was released in June 1999 and was another great offering in the Dick’s Picks’ series.  Like its predecessors in the Dick’s Picks series, this is an excellent addition and definitely one that everyone should own.  We therefore recommend that you buy it and think you will be delighted with it so please take the handy link to Amazon.com, the world’s largest online retailer and get it now! You won’t be disappointed!  Thank you, the Elemental News of the Day.




                                                                                  

Here's the countdown to December 21, 2012: from today, we have 427 days to go until the End of Days, the End of Time, Armageddon, and the End of the Mayan Calendar!  Everybody, beware!





                                                                                          


                                                   STINKBUG 2011


                                                                                       



Chef Gervais Krinkelmeier

END Commentary 10-22-2011

Copyright © 2011 by MHB Productions

Word Count: 2,503.



CULINARY POLITICS



ELEMENTALNEWSOFTHEDAY.BLOGSPOT.COM-STINKBUG—THE HEADLINES

Elemental News of the Day Commentary-Opinion-Sports-Foodservice for Saturday, October 22, 2011 by Chef Gervais Krinkelmeier

FAMOUS RESTAURANT RECIPES, PT. XXXIX

 Famous Restaurant Recipes, Pt. XXXIX: Northwest-style Poached Halibut with Vegetables, Marbled Polenta, and Sweet Basil-Butter Sauce



Bakersfield, CA, 10-22-2011 S: Greetings, friends! Today is Saturday and that means but one thing: one more day to go! Then, I will be heading back to the California coast for my ongoing bout with retirement.  I come to Bakersfield every now and then and then return to the coastline because once a beach guy, always a beach guy, even if that means living someplace where there’s a big river and a beach or on the Puget Sound in Washington State.  But California will always be my first and only true love and were it not for a stupid idiot governor like Jerry “Moonbeam” Brown, we might actually have a lovely state once again.  But lo and behold, this will always be a Democratic strongpoint in the great fifty states of this here nation and that’s sad because it’s based upon the votes of illegal aliens whom the Dems seem to love.  The sad thing is the people take the jobs that belong to legitimate citizens and that’s sad because if we’re ever going to return to the forefront of the states, it’s important that we become producers again and not takers.  I know, I know, we’re not supposed to discuss political issues here to any length but I do love this state and would really like to see the people fully employed, the welfare rolls lowered, and those that legitimately need help given it and not those who don’t belong here.  I’m sick and tired of being an outpost of Mexico and being inundated with illegal aliens.  It truly sucks, my friends, it truly does. I would hate to have to move to Idaho!  



We are going to make a wonderful seafood dish today: a delicious poached halibut that doesn’t take very long to make.  The accompaniment that it comes with—marbled polenta—does take time but the idea is to prep it the night before and then create the dish the next day.  That is how successful kitchens function—coordinated prep work accompanied with cleanup—and what makes them money-makers.  It’s the ones that are never properly arranged and managed that tend to fall apart and the place goes down the drain.  We don’t ever want to see that in any of the businesses we’ve managed, either as food and beverage directors or as head chefs.  We want to see them make money so that we and our staffs get the benefits and the perks that go with being successful.  When you get to take 3-4 weeks of paid vacation every year plus those extra paid days plus sick leave, you work a hell of a lot harder to make the business a success.  Sure, there are always the maggots that prefer to take advantage of the situation but unless it’s a union job and they’ve been on board since the beginning, most of the time with the proper “pushes,” these people will leave of their own accord. Anyhow, let’s make our dish:

 (#1243) NORTHWEST-STYLE POACHED HALIBUT WITH BUTTER SAUCE


Yield:  4 servings / Mis-en-place: 20-30 minutes:


Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
4
7-ounce
Halibut fletches

12
Ounces
Court bouillon

Kosher Salt and Pepper Seasoning

1
Cup
Cubed zucchini

1
Cup
Cubed yellow squash

1
Cup
Cubed carrots
Blanched
4
Slices
Marbled polenta

.5
Cup
Olive oil

.25
Cup
Shredded parmesan cheese

16
Slices
Roma tomato slices

.125
Cup
Fresh sweet basil chiffonade

.5
Cup
Butter sauce

1-1/3
Tablespoons
minced fresh parsley
Rinsed
Hungarian paprika

4
Each
Lemon wedges on cocktail forks

4
Sprigs
Fresh parsley


Method:

1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work.  Have butter sauce and polenta made prior to beginning the halibut.

2.      Place the polenta slices in a pan that’s been sprayed with PAM or some such other food release spray and place inside a 450°F oven.  Drizzle some of the butter sauce over them and top with a sheet of wax paper sprayed with PAM.

3.      Have a steamer going medium-strong with backup water on the stove should you need it.  Place the halibut fletches in a pan that will fit in the steamer and add the court bouillon, Kosher Salt and Pepper-to taste (do so heavily as a lot of it will be lost in the steamer), and the vegetables.

4.      Place in the steamer and steam for 4-6 minutes or until the halibut is cooked through but NOT overcooked.  Keep an eye on it: it will go from opaque to a solid white—as soon as it’s done, pull it out. 

5.      Place one halibut fletch on each of FOUR plates at the “six o’clock position.” Drizzle with Butter Sauce.  Remove the polenta from the oven and cut each diagonally so that you end up with EIGHT triangles. Place one triangle at the “ten o’clock and two o’clock positions” on the plate—points out.  Place three roma tomato slices at the base (the “twelve o’clock position”) and sprinkle the sweet basil chiffonade over all. Top each halibut fletch with the vegetables, more butter sauce, parsley flakes, and a sprinkle or two of Hungarian paprika.

6.      Serve a secondary vegetable like buttered peas in the slot between the roma tomatoes and the halibut and then lay the cocktail forks with the lemon wedges over each halibut portion.  Garnish with a sprig of fresh parsley and serve.

This is an excellent dish, somewhat light but unique in that the marbled polenta gives it an unusual look.  People find this dish to be extremely delicious and all it takes is the time to make the polenta.  The rest of it is easy and the fish cooks extremely quickly—keep an eye on it in the steamer! Remember: there is nothing worse than overcooked, dried-out halibut.  Even butter sauce cannot disguise it.  Be sure to accompany your fish with plenty of halibut sauce—a must.

(#217) FISH STOCK (COURT BOUILLON)


Yield:  One quart / Mis-en-place: 30-40 minutes :


Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
1
#
Fish trim, skeletons, heads, tails, etc

1
Quart
Water

1
Quart
White wine

6
Ounces
Carrot trimmings

.5
#
Chopped white onions

1.5
Teaspoon
Dried thyme

3
Each
Bay leaves

.5
Bunch
Parsley

.25
Ounce
White peppercorns




Method:

1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready: Combine all ingredients withstanding the pepper corns and bring to a high simmer. Keep there for 45 minutes and then, lower flame and blend in pepper corns. Simmer for another 10 minutes.

2.      Then, strain the stock through a double chinois filtered with a towel and then, re-strain through the chinois filtered with cheese cloth.

3.      Now, if you desire to make fish fume (a pure, white fish broth, return it to the stove, place it over lowest heat possible and top with the “floating island”. Allow it to barely simmer with the island on top for about 30 minutes.

This is an important item to have on hand if you want to do your seafood dishes correctly; however, if you’re doing it at home and would prefer to do it quickly, go to a store like Smart and Final and buy a jar of Clam Base.  Keep it in the freezer so you will be able to keep it on hand once you’ve opened it as you probably won’t be using it every day.  Remember to boil fish trim and shellfish peels and vegetable scraps in order to make your own seafood stocks.  Merely cool down, pour into a sanitized jar, and keep in your freezer. Be creative and use initiative.

Here’s the Kosher Salt and Pepper seasoning we use a great deal:

KOSHER SALT AND PEPPER SEASONING

1. Yield: One cup of seasoning:


Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
1
Cup
Kosher salt

1.5
Tablespoon
Coarse black pepper

.5
Teaspoon
Hungarian paprika

.5
Teaspoon
Dry parsley flakes




Method:

1.      Combine together and store in an airtight container.

This is a good basic, salt-and-pepper seasoning that you will find many uses for.

Here’s the Butter Sauce, a very important item to have in your kitchen:

BUTTER SAUCE

1. About 1.5 cups:


Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
1
#
Whole unsalted butter


Method:

1.      Melt whole butter over low heat.  Skim the foam as it melts.

2.      When fully melted, remove butter with a ladle and place in a bowl away from the heat.

3.      Take remaining whey and whip with a wire whisk over low heat.  Whip constantly until hot, about 3-4 minutes but do NOT bring to a boil.

4.      Remove the pot from the fire and gradually whisk in the drawn butter until an emulsified liquid has formed; keep warm at room temperature.  This mixture will remain in this state for several hours.  Use it to enhance cooked fish filets awaiting serving on dinner plates.  Besides providing flavor, it will also keep the fish nice and moist.

This is an important sauce to have on hand for use on seafood and shellfish. Finally, here’s the Marbled Polenta:

MARBLED POLENTA

Yield:  4-6 servings / Mis-en-place: 4-12 hours :


Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
1.5
Cups
Coarsely ground polenta

5
Cups
Water

.125
Cup
Pureed, canned roasted red peppers

.125
Cup
Basil pesto

Kosher salt and pepper




Method:

1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work.

2.      In a heavy-duty saucepot sprayed with PAM or some such other food release spray, bring the water to a boil.  Begin pouring the water into the boiling water in a steady stream while all the while whisking furiously. 

3.      When the polenta has been added, continue whisking until it becomes smooth and creamy, adding water, if necessary, to reach the desired consistency.  Season to taste with Kosher Salt and Pepper Seasoning.

4.      Remove from the heat and divide evenly between three stainless steel bowls.  Into one, fold the red pepper puree and into the second, fold the basil pesto.  Leave the third as is so that in the end, you will have three different-colored polentas: red, green, and yellow. 

5.      Now, the tricky part: fold a piece of wax paper into a stiff edge as this will serve as a divider.  Do this with a second piece of wax paper so that you will have TWO dividers.  Spray a baking dish with PAM or some such other food release spray.  Place the first wax paper divider a third of the way in.

6.      Pour in the red polenta, holding the divider firm.  Use a spatula to hold it up, and then place the second divider a third of the way in past that.  Pour the yellow polenta into center slot between the red polenta and then on the other side of the yellow polenta, pour in the green.  In the end, you will have a tri-colored polenta.

7.      Remove the dividers and discard them.  Spray a piece of wax paper with PAM and press firmly onto the top of the polenta.  Place in the refrigerator on a shelf with a towel underneath the pan so that air can flow all around the pan.  Let is set up for at least FOUR hours, preferably, OVERNIGHT.

8.      When set, gently rap the pan on the counter-top to loosen the polenta.  Remove it onto your counter and cut into 4-6 portions, so that it’s tri-colored. 

9.      To heat the polenta for an entrée requiring it, place the polenta on a greased pan and cover with wax paper.  Insert inside a 400°F standard oven or a 350°F convection oven—fan “on”—and bake for 10-15 minutes.  When you remove it, dribble melted butter onto it to soften and to give it an attractive glistening shine. Then, it’s ready to do with as you please.

This is an excellent use for an old-time food from the Native Americans by way of the Sicilians.  The Native Americans first used cornmeal products and when corn went to the Old Country by way of the Columbian Exchange, it and its products—cornmeal and polenta—became a part of southern Italian cookery and has come back to us.  Chefs are always on the look-out for new and exciting foods and polenta has enjoyed resurgence of late as chefs have brought it back to “life,” so to speak.  Beginning in the 1990’s, it has experienced an incredible rebirth of sorts.  Find uses for it; you’ll love it, it’s a cheap side dish that is amenable to whatever uses you can find for it.

As I mentioned to you all yesterday, I have had a great time today and as always enjoy my opportunities to write for the Elemental News of the Day. We urge our readership to write to us and leave comments and if there are any of you, who would care to write an article for us, please get in touch via Magnolia Hilltop Brewers, P.O. Box 20669, Bakersfield, CA 93390-0669.  We obviously don’t pay anything but you will be given a full byline and that’s worth its weight in gold.  We want as many people who want to write to be able to do so and we believe that by presenting a forum for our fellow chefs, we are doing something for our beloved industry.  We love diversity and hope to add new and different authors to our pantheon of chefs, food and beverage directors, and culinary professionals.  Come on and join us, it’ll be fun! Expect that when all of us have run through our cycle, we will be introducing some brand-new talent or so I’m told.

Please remember to avoid doing business with AARC Technology in Bakersfield, CA.  These people don’t care about the small customer anymore but instead put all of their attentions onto their corporate customers. It’s sad to not remember why one has the success they do or from where it came.

Well, my friends, I am beginning to get a big smile on my face as I crack open a bottle of Seagram’s V.O. Canadian Whisky and pour myself my first shot.  That’s the sign of a job well-done: being able to take that first sip of fine liquor and begin to relax.  Vacation time is coming up for me and I won’t be coming back until sometime early in 2012 or so I’ve been told by Stinkbug.  I want to give my congratulations to Brian Carrick and his lovely bride-to-be, Linda E. Payne on their upcoming wedding on 10-31-2011 at Noriega’s on Baker Street in East Bakersfield—that is going to be a wild time for all of us and you can bet it will be covered in The Bakersfield Californian newspaper. We wish him nothing but the best and after the fiasco that took place between him and Iowa eleven months ago, he deserves nothing but our warmest love and wishes for success.  At some point after the wedding, we will publish the photos of the wedding.  Anyhow, please leave some comments and/or become a follower and why not spend some money and purchase an album by the Grateful Dead and/or buy a cookbook from Amazon.com.  We are allied with them and are pleased to market their merchandise! See you next time around! Bye!    

Thanks, my friends!

Gervais

Gervais Krinkelmeier
ACF, CEC, American Bakers’ Association, the Bread Bakers’ Guild of America, Professional Chef and Baker for 45 years.


This is me back in 1981 at a Chefs de Cuisine dinner in Los Angeles, California, at the Century Plaza Hotel. I was among the chefs who worked the dinner and it was there that I met Stinkbug, my good friend. We later worked together in Washington State in the Puget Sound area, primarily Mukilteo. I began my career in 1972 in Culver City, California.

---30---

END Commentary for Saturday, October 22, 2011 by Chef Gervais Krinkelmeier



Please note that everyone who writes for the Elemental News of the Day is their own person entitled to their own opinions, attitudes, and insanity so does not necessarily speak for all of us.  Thanks, Stinkbug.

REFERENCES:

This original essay was authored by the one-and-only Chef Gervais Krinkelmeier

Recipes created by Chef Gervais Krinkelmeier on May 17, 1999 in Ventura Beach, CA.

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          DURBIN ACRES, CA, STINKY



                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
This is #1211 a 16” x 20" original oil painting by Beverly Carrick entitled, “Through the Monument Valley." It's among her more beautiful works and is available for sale. You can see much more of her work at her Website, located at http://www.beverlycarrick.com or at Brian Carrick's Facebook page. At her Website, you will see not only more original oil paintings but also lithographs, giclees, prints, miniatures, photographs, and even her award-winning instructional video entitled, "Painting the Southwest with Beverly Carrick." Beverly has been painting for more than 60 years and is known around the world. Her work hangs in private and public galleries and is followed by a great many fans that circle the globe. We urge you to go to her Website NOW and view her work. It's possible that you will find something you like and will want to buy it for yourself, a friend, a loved one, or a neighbor! You will not be disappointed so please: do yourself a favor and go there IMMEDIATELY! Thank you, the Elemental News of the Day!

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