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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

“Old-Fashioned Home Cooking, Pt. XI: ‘Classic Roast Beef with Brown Gravy and Yorkshire Pudding—the Way Meat’s supposed to be Cooked—and Served’ by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti”



Our new band for the next month or so is one of the best bands to come out of Los Angeles in the 1960’s: the Byrds.  They went from Electric Folk to Psychedelic to Country Music and shined each and every step of the way.  Their eleventh album—“Untitled”—was released on September 16, 1970 and is still as wonderful today as it was then, more than 40 years ago.  We love it and think you will, too, so go out and buy it by using the handy link to Amazon.com, the world’s largest online retailer and get it now! You won’t be disappointed! [Unfortunately, the link may no longer be possible due to the fact that the Amazon.com Associates’ Program’s status is up in the air due to the fact that our home base is in California—you can still go there and BUY it!] Thank you, the Elemental News of the Day.



                                                                               

Here's the countdown to December 21, 2012: from today, we have 331 days to go until the End of Days, the End of Time, Armageddon, and the End of the Mayan Calendar!  Everybody, beware!

                                                                                   


STINKBUG 2012

                                                                                          

Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti

END Commentary 01-26-2012

Copyright © 2012 by MHB Productions

Word Count: 2,224.



CULINARY POLITICS



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Elemental News of the Day Commentary-Opinion-Sports-Foodservice for Thursday, January 26, 2012 by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti

OLD-FASHIONED HOME COOKING, PT. XI

Old-Fashioned Home Cooking, Pt. XI: ‘Classic Roast Beef with Brown Gravy and Yorkshire Pudding—the Way Meat’s supposed to be Cooked—and Served’ by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti



Bakersfield, CA, 01-26-2012 Th: One of life’s true pleasures is rare-or-medium-rare-cooked roast beef, preferably a standing rib roast or a loin cut.  The way my folks used to cook beef is from a long-gone time and it’s been the purpose of my life to preserve and to save these recipes because nowadays, no one cooks the way the old-timers did.  Sure, maybe it wasn’t the same as what the great French Chef Auguste Escoffier was doing back in his heyday but let me tell you, what the old-time American chefs and cooks did in the kitchen is as memorable and as important to the culinary heritage and the fabric of the culinary traditions of the United States.  It is the gift of time for our ancestors to pass their cookbooks, traditions, and knowledge down to the following generations so that we can imitate, mimic, and copy the styles, skills, and abilities they possessed.  After you’ve cooked today’s beef cut and its accompanying Yorkshire pudding and brown gravy, you will be as hooked to the past as I am. 

  So, if I were you, I’d be talking to all of my still-living relatives and recording their stories of the kitchen, going back to their earliest memories of childhood so that you can have a comprehensive collection of long-lost knowledge.  My own mom no longer cooks in her kitchen so I’ve made a major effort to sit down with her and get as much knowledge out of her mind before those recipes and ideas are lost to me.  Alzheimer’s is a dreadful disease and it’s robbing the younger generations of their parents’ and grandparents’ knowledge.  I am so fortunate to be the fourth generation of chefs in my family that one day when I publish my family cookbook, I’ll blow all the rest of them off the shelves.  Don’t miss it when it comes out!

Okay, let’s make this great standing rib roast and please pay attention to the directions: DON’T pre-season the meat before placing it into the oven as this will rob it of its juiciness, tenderness, and the bulk of its flavor.  Add the spices and herbs only when told to do so for the best results, okay?

CLASSIC ROAST BEEF


Yield:  6-8 servings / Mis-en-place: 3-4 hours:


Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
The Beef:
1
6#
Standing rib roast

2
Cups
Drawn butter

Yellow onion scraps

Carrot scraps

Celery scraps

Leek scraps

Parsley scraps

1-1/3
Tablespoons
Lawrey’s seasoned salt

2
Teaspoons
Lawrey’s seasoned pepper

1-1/3
Tablespoons
Granulated garlic

2
Teaspoons
Whole oregano

2
Cups
All-purpose flour

The Sauce:
2
Quarts
Cold water

.25
Cup
Reserved beef drippings

3/8
Cup
All-purpose flour

2
Teaspoons
Kosher salt

1
Teaspoon
Black pepper

1
Each
Bay leaf

Yorkshire Pudding:
3
Cups
Whole milk

6
Each
Large AAA eggs, separated

1.5
Teaspoons
Kosher salt

1
Tablespoon
Baking powder

3
Cups
All-purpose flour

.5-1
Cup
Beef drippings

The Finish:
Freshly minced parsley flakes
Rinsed
Fresh parsley sprigs




Method:

1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work! Prepare the drawn butter by melting two pounds and drawing off all milk foam at the top and all sediment at the bottom—discarding both, keeping only the clear liquid. Keep it warm!

2.      Preheat your standard oven to 425°F or your convection oven—fan “on”—to 375°F. Now, here’s the trick: wash the beef and pat it dry and then set it aside momentarily.  Spray a large roasting pan with PAM or some such other food release spray and make a pile of all the vegetable scraps and place them on the bottom of the pan, spreading it all out.  Place the beef atop it, baste it with some Drawn Butter, and place the pan inside the oven BUT DON’T SEASON IT YET! Seasoning the meat prior to hitting the oven will cause the meat to harden by drawing out its juices.  The oven should always be HOT when the meat goes in as the sudden blast of heat will seal its pores and keep in the juices—which is what we want!

3.      Roast the meat for 20-25 minutes at the high heat which will cause the vegetable scraps to blacken thereby depositing both caramel and flavor upon the bottom of the pan—this is essential for making the sauce.  As the meat roasts, begin basting it with the Drawn Butter—this will add additional flavor and charcoal deposits on the floor of the roasting pan.

4.      When time’s up, remove the meat from the oven.  Combine the flour and the seasonings together in a bowl and then spread them out on a sheet pan.  Lift the beef roast out of the pan and ROLL the meat in the seasoned flour—this gives it a frothy look which is what the old-time cooks like my grandparents used to do.  Lower the heat by 75° (350°F/300°F respectively) and return the meat to the oven.

5.      Continue basting the meat with the butter until all used up and begin monitoring the temperature with a quick temp thermometer: 135°-140° F is rare, 140°-145°F is medium-rare, 145°-150°F is medium, 150°F-155°F is medium-well, and 160°-165°F and over is well-done.  It should be rare at this point so continue cooking until it’s about medium-rare and then remove it and keep warm unless, of course, you want it to be more well-done.

6.      If the meat still needs to cook, transfer it to a sheet pan and continue roasting while bringing the original roasting pan out of the oven.  Pour off all of the drippings—which should be quite a bit by now—and reserve.  Place the vegetable scraps in the pan atop a medium-hot burner and add TWO QUARTS of water and bring to a boil.  Allow it to reduce by about half.

7.      To finish the Gravy: Combine the oil with the flour in a small saucepot and cook over a very low flame until its dark brown, stirring frequently.  Meanwhile, place two quarts of the beef or veal stock in a large saucepot and reduce by half over a medium flame.  Add the bay leaf and the seasonings to it while you do this. 

8.      When you have ONE quart of liquid, whisk the liquid into the roux pot; raise the temperature so that it’s boiling and whisk furiously as you combine the mixture.  Allow it to boil for 1-2 minutes and then reduce the heat and allow it to simmer over a very low flame for 4-5 minutes.  Check and readjust the seasonings as necessary.  Keep the Brown Gravy warm until called for.

9.      The Yorkshire pudding: beat the separated eggs—one group at a time in a clean, DRY mixing bowl—set aside.  Then to the mixing bowl, add the milk, salt, and the whipped egg whites and beaten yolks and blend together on low speed.  Sift the flour and baking powder together and then blend into the mixture in the mixing bowl, blending well.  Pour the reserved beef drippings into a baking dish and pour in the batter which should be quite creamy and place it in the oven. Bake for at least 45-60 minutes or until it has set up.  If the meat is close to the temperature you want it to be, remove it from the oven and keep it warm and raise the oven temperature to 450°F (standard oven) or 400°F (convection oven—fan “on”).

10.  To serve, bring the roast to the table and make a couple of slices to expose the insides.  Place the fresh parsley sprigs around the edges and dust with parsley flakes over the top.  Accompany with the Gravy in a sauceboat and the Yorkshire pudding in its baking dish.  An appropriate vegetable would be green beans or green peas. Your Classic Roast of Beef is now ready to enjoy!

Always make sure that you have enough raw vegetable scraps so that they’ll charcoal up in the basting butter and beef drippings to supply you with plenty of dark matter which will darken the sauce and increase the magnificence of its finished flavor.  Always treat your meat well and it will do well by you.  The rolling of the partially-cooked beef in flour adds to its finished look by crisping it up.  Use nothing but Choice or Prime quality beef and you’ll never be sad with the finished product!

I’m going to give you an extra treat for being so nice, my version of Horseradish Sauce, made on St. Patrick’s Day in 1975:

(#336) HORSERADISH SAUCE


Yield:  about 3.5 cups / Mis-en-place: 20-25 minutes:


Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
1.5
Cups
Milk

1.5
Cups
Hot beef stock

3
Tablespoons
Melted butter

3/8
Teaspoon
Kosher salt

.25
Teaspoon
White pepper

3.5
Tablespoons
All-purpose flour

2.25
Teaspoons
Horseradish

3/8
Cup
Chopped pimientos, dried beforehand

3/8
Teaspoon
Freshly minced parsley rinsed and dried

1
Each
Bay leaf




Method:

1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work! Combine the milk and beef stock in a saucepot and place over medium-high heat. In another saucepot sprayed with PAM or some such other food release spray, combine the melted butter, salt, pepper, and all-purpose flour.  Blend well to form a blond roux and cook over medium-heat, stirring almost constantly, until thickened, somewhat light, and hot.

2.      Bring the liquid to a boil and then whisk it into the roux—FURIOUSLY!—until the liquid has reared up and is boiling hard and fast. Continue whisking for 2-3 minutes and then lower the heat to low and allow it to perk over a very low flame.

3.      After about 5-6 minutes, add the remaining ingredients and blend well.  Allow it to cook for another 4-5 minutes and then remove from the flame and transfer to a sauceboat for service at the table.

This is one way to make horseradish sauce or “gravy,” especially for corned beef and cabbage.  The stock from the corned beef makes a wonderful sauce so always be sure to use it whenever you have any leftover from cooking a corned beef brisket.  Note: this sauce was created on St. Patrick’s Day in 1975.

---------------------------------------------

As always, we have a great time around here and that is why we want all of you to become a part of the organization by submitting articles to us for inspection and full-credit.  It is a great thing if you would do this as it’s a symbiotic relationship: we give you the space to share your recipes and in return, you send us more and more people who will hopefully become dedicated followers of the END.  In this day and age of multi-diversity across the Internet, it is important that the voices of more and more people from all walks of the foodservice profession are heard—join us. 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.

There’s Hump Day, over and done! To me, that’s the best day of the week as now, it’s all downhill from here and before you know it, I’ll be gone and the next blogger will be coming aboard.  I am very busy at Taft, California right now, people are keeping us hopping and that’s the amazing thing about the Obama Economy: people don’t have money but they’re spending what they have as if they’re out of their minds.  I mean—who am I? I’m not their conscience so all I can do is to smile and to thank them for coming into the restaurant and eating our food.  My husband is out there running the front of the house while I’m in the back and believe me, that’s the way it should be, that’s how we keep marital harmony!  Besides, he likes looking at the cash register and I like for him to be doing that and not interfering with me. Yes, I’m laughing!  Anyhow—all we ask of you, dear readers, is that you please leave some comments and/or become a follower and why not spend some money and purchase an album by the Byrds 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!    

Thank you!

V. Vicky Mazarotti

V. “Vicky” Mazarotti
ACF, CWC, CPC, International Association of Culinary Professionals IACP.


This is me as a young chef back in the 1970's when I was working at a hotel in San Francisco. I had the opportunity to work in many different parts of the country and worked my way up the culinary ladder to become a top chef. I am both a Certified Working Chef and a Certified Pastry Chef and am a member of the American Culinary Federation, the world's top authority on everything connected to cooking.

---30---

END Commentary for Thursday, January 26, 2012 by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti.



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 written by the one-and-only Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti.



Recipe created by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti on March 18, 1973 in San Francisco, CA.

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This is #1355 a 9” x 12" original oil painting by Beverly Carrick entitled, “Sparrow amid Roses." 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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