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Friday, July 6, 2012

“Old-Fashioned Home Cooking, Pt. XX: Sesame Chicken with Cumberland Sauce—an Old-Time Favorite revisited by Chef Mazarotti” by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti



SPIRIT’S twelfth album is one we missed a few days ago in the chronology of things but it is a solo album by Randy California and a pickup band entitled, “Kapt. Kopter and the (Fabulous) Twirly Birds,” came out in 1972 while SPIRIT released “Feedback,” the only album by the band that did not feature Randy California. This album is a live album and a difficult one to find! Still, if you can find it and are a collector, BUY IT! Thank you, the Elemental News of the Day.



COUNTDOWN TO THE END OF THE MAYAN CALENDAR


Here's the countdown to December 21, 2012: from today, we have 170 days to go until the End of Days, the End of Time, Armageddon, and the End of the Mayan Calendar!  Everybody, beware!



STINKBUG 2012



FOURTH OF JULY WEEK!



Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti

END Commentary 07-07-2012

Copyright © 2012 by MHB Productions

Word Count: 2,239.



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Elemental News of the Day Commentary-Opinion-Sports-Foodservice for Saturday, July 07, 2012 by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti

OLD-FASHIONED HOME COOKING, PT. XX

 Old-Fashioned Home Cooking, Pt. XX: Sesame Chicken with Cumberland Sauce—an Old-Time Favorite revisited by Chef Mazarotti” by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti



Bakersfield, CA, 07-07-2012 S: I am happy that today is Saturday and that tomorrow is Sunday and then, fellow END fans, I will say “farewell.”  I love the weekends here at the Elemental News of the Day, no one is around to read what we write, pay attention to what we say, and if I want to say negative things about the politicians, I am able to do so without worrying about it.  Unfortunately, I have little to say today, all I do is hope that we have a “Reagan-era Landslide” in November and that the country goes back to work!  I began working in a time when jobs were available to all who wanted one and restaurants were always in search of new help.  Times were booming in the 1970s and 1980s and then at some point during the 1990s, things began to slow down. From 2001 onward, the economy has been in decline.  I am troubled deeply over the future of this nation, over the future of my kids and grandkids.  I believe it is important to initiate massive change to return the country to what it experienced during the Ronald Reagan-George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush; we will go the way of Europe and become a socialist and possibly a Marxist nation.  History proves that once the government robs people of their freedom, never does it return.

Well, let us commence our recipe for today, a marvelous sesame-breaded chicken breast topped with Cumberland Sauce; never heard of it? Well, it was a once-popular "old-time" sauce but is now seldom seen so we are going to make it.  Are you with me? If so, let us begin:

(#1140) SESAME CHICKEN IN CUMBERLAND SAUCE


This is a spectacular dish not seen too often in modern times and when run occasionally as a special usually does very well.  The breading is delicious, the sesame seeds give it an air of intrigue, inscrutability, and mystery so therefore should be served on occasion. 

Yield:  4 servings / Mis-en-place: 30-45 minutes:



Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
4
5-6-ounce
Boneless breasts of chicken, lightly pounded

Seasoned Flour II (Recipe #1592)

1.5-2
Cups
Drawn butter

2
Cups
Bread crumbs

3
Tablespoons
Toasted sesame seeds

3
Tablespoons
Black sesame seeds

.25
Cup
Freshly grated parmesan cheese

.125
Cup
Dry parsley flakes

.25
Teaspoon
White pepper

2-3
Cups
Cumberland Sauce (Recipe #340)

3-4
Cups
Rice du jour

2-3
Cups
Vegetable du jour

4
Each
Lemon Butterflies (Recipe #1647)
See below
4
Each
Parsley sprigs
Rinsed
.125
Cup
Freshly minced parsley flakes
Rinsed
Hungarian paprika



Method:

1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work! Tenderize the chicken breasts by placing them between two sheets of plastic wrap and then gently pounding them with a masticator (food hammer) on both sides.  Should there be any residual breastbone left on the meat, remove it with a sharp knife.  Do not over-pound the meat, as it will tear it up, something we do NOT want.  Set the meat aside for the moment.  Make the Seasoned Flour:

(#1592) SEASONED FLOUR II


            It is always important to have a variety of different methods for imparting additional flavor to our foods and this is one way to do that.  It is especially important during the breading and/or dusting process (es) to be able to instill a tasty sub-flavoring base that will make our ultimate product even more palatable than it might normally be.  The best way to generate repeat business is to have the most delicious foods out there because people do notice these things and sure do tell their friends, family, and co-workers about the quality of your dishes.  Never overlook even the most basic and inexpensive ways to accomplish this very important foodservice task.

1. About 2.5 cups:



Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
2.5
Cups
All-purpose flour

1
Teaspoon
Cayenne pepper

1
Teaspoon
White pepper

1.5
Teaspoons
Hungarian paprika

1.5
Teaspoons
Granulated garlic

1
Tablespoon
Kosher salt

2
Teaspoons
Parsley flakes



Method:

2.      Combine all ingredients together and store in an airtight jar, baggie, or whatever else and either keep at room temperature or in your freezer until needed.

It is important to have a seasoned flour recipe for breading different foods and this is a good one.  You will use this recipe many times. Prepare the Cumberland Sauce at the same time as you do the chicken—here is the sauce recipe:

(#340) CUMBERLAND SAUCE



One of the old-time sauces, probably an American creation, Cumberland Sauce has traditionally accompanied game dishes such as venison, rabbit, and wildfowl.  Once you have tried it, you will see its worth and will find many uses for it.  Keep the recipe handy, you are going to like it!

Yield:  about 3-cups / Mis-en-place: 15-20 minutes:




Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
1.5
Cups
Orange juice

.5
Cup
Lemon juice

1
Cup
Welch’s grape jelly

.25
Cup
Gallo ruby port wine

1-1/3
Tablespoons
Dijon mustard

.5
Teaspoon
Ground ginger

1
Teaspoon
Kosher salt

.25
Teaspoon
Cayenne pepper

2-2/3
Tablespoons
Clear gel/cornstarch




Method:

3.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work! The best way to make sauces using either clear gel or cornstarch is to place the starch thickener into the bowl of an electric mixer equipped with a whip attachment and then adding the rest of the ingredients in a methodical manner.  Here, put the clear gel/cornstarch into the mixing bowl and add the ginger, salt, and cayenne pepper and blend well, mixing on low speed. 

4.      Add the mustard, wine and jelly, and mix well.  Combine the two juices and then slowly add them into the mixing bowl, rotating the whip on low speed, down the sides of the bowl.  Continue adding the liquid until all gone and then mix well for a minute. 

5.      Pour the contents of the mixing bowl through a fine-meshed sieve into a saucepot (sprayed with PAM or with some other food-release spray) and force through any remaining lumps.  Place the pot over a medium-high flame and bring to a boil, stirring frequently, until a medium-thick sauce has resulted.

6.      Allow it to boil for 30 seconds and then lower the flame to medium-low and allow the sauce to both clarify and to simmer over low heat for 2-3 minutes; then, it is ready for use.  Be sure to check and readjust the flavorings as necessary.

Cumberland Sauce is an old-time citrus-based fruit sauce used with poultry, pork, and game.  Add to it whatever fruit you might like to use like berries, cherries, apricots, or whatever. Here is the chicken preparation:

7.      Preheat your standard oven to 425°F or your convection oven—fan “on”—to 375°F.  Dust the chicken breasts in the seasoned flour, shake off the excess, and set aside.  Prepare the breading by combining the breadcrumbs, sesame seeds, cheese, parsley flakes, and white pepper together in a baking dish.  Warm the butter so that it is liquid and then dunk each floured chicken breast into it and then into the breading.  Press firmly on BOTH sides so that it adheres; then transfer to a sheet pan with a sheet of wax paper lining it.  Spray the paper with PAM or with some such, other food release spray and place the breaded chicken breasts atop it.

8.      Insert the pan into the preheated oven’s rack.  Bake them for approximately 20 minutes or until a quick-temp thermometer inserted into each one reads 165°F or higher.  At that point, pull them out and prepare to serve them.  Have the rice and vegetables at the ready.

9.      Place the chicken breasts, one to a serving plate, at the six o’clock position.  Place a mound of rice at the 10 o’clock position and the vegetables at the two o’clock.  Ladle sauce over the chicken and then dust each breast with parsley flakes and paprika. Place a Lemon Butterfly atop each chicken breast: 

Here is the Lemon Butterfly garnish:

(#1647) HOW TO MAKE LEMON BUTTERFLIES (GARNISH)



Chefs tend to overlook the art of the garnishee thinking that it is both unnecessary and time-consuming.  Contrary to their line of thinking, appropriate garnishes make the finished dish that much more special and memorable to the diners, which is what we want as it leads to repeat customers.  Never overlook the importance of beautiful garnishes, as they will enliven your foods.

Yield:  4 garnishes / Mis-en-place: 2-3 minutes:




Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
1
Large
Lemon, washed and scrubbed

.25
Each
Red bell pepper, seeded and stemmed

.25
Teaspoon
Minced fresh parsley flakes
Rinsed


Method:

10. Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work! Hint: try to find lemons without many seeds! After cleaning the lemon, cut it into thin slices.  Remove the ends from the lemon and then slice it in HALF lengthwise so that two “half-moons” result.

11. Slice each “half-moon” into several slices.  Take the bell pepper and cut thin strips.  To make the garnish, place two half-moons together so that they resemble a butterfly’s two wings and then place one strip of red bell pepper on either side to resemble “feelers.”  Finally, sprinkle the finished garnishes with parsley flakes.

Make this simple garnish ahead of time and then assemble when needed.  Use it for seafood and citrus-based dishes or for special effect.  You do not see it all that often so use it for special items and watch the pleasure on the diners’ faces when they see it.

12. When you have garnished the plates with the Lemon Butterflies, place a sprig of parsley in the center of the plate and serve. Cool leftovers to below 45°F as quickly as possible—this goes for both sauce and meat.  Always cool the sauce and meat separately.  Label, date, and refrigerate and be sure to use the meat within 1-2 days and the sauce within a week.  Both must be reheated to 165°F or hotter prior to serving.  Unless frozen, it is always to your benefit to use leftover foods as quickly as possible.

This is a very delicious dish that we made back in the 1980s and prior to favorable reviews.  The sesame seeds provide a beautiful flavor and when combined with the sauce, the results are indescribably good.

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

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 is a symbiotic relationship: we give you the space to share your recipes and in return, you send us more and more people who will become dedicated followers of the END.  Currently of multi-diversity across the Internet, it is important that we hear the voices of more and more people from all walks of the foodservice profession —join us. We urge our readership to write to us, 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 do not pay anything but give YOU full byline and that, my friends, is 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 will be fun! Expect that when all of us have run through our cycle, we will be introducing some brand-new talent or so Stinky says.

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

Tomorrow is our final day together for this go-round and then I will bid you farewell, goodbye, and see you next time.  Please visit me out in Taft, California: we are about thirty-five miles west of Bakersfield, on the way to Santa Barbara County, and our community continues to grow at a phenomenal rate.  Taft is an oil town, built on oil and continues to produce oil at several oilfields.  We have high employment and are not in the trouble that places like McFarland, Delano, and Arvin are in and that, my friends, is priceless.  We also are a college town and the Taft Wildcats are a great junior college team.  We always put the hurt to Bakersfield College and other junior colleges in the southland and that means we are very proud and welcome you to visit us anytime you are in the hankering for good food, drink, and wild times—just do not get yourself arrested, you will not like our jail!                                                     

Anyhow, let us close with this impassioned plea—please leave some comments and/or become a follower and why not spend some money and purchase an album by SPIRIT/ Jo Jo Gunne/ Jay Ferguson and/or buy a cookbook from Amazon.com—we want to make some money here so help us out by buying something!  Allied with them, we 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 a photo of 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.

Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti writes from Taft, CA.

---30---

The END Commentary for Saturday, July 07, 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:

The one-and-only Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti writes this original essay.



Recipe created by Chef V. Vicky Mazarotti on August 26, 1985 in Fresno, CA.

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