Seems like that now I'm over 20+ years in the biz, practicing my craft is even more important to me than ever before. I've tried many other things, music, science, etc. Cooking food is what I 'm best at; even though those two disciplines have a way of running through my mind when creating new dishes.
Not to be out done, it seems the cataloging ideas and dishes have become an equally important part of cooking. Its amazing when people come up to me and say, "remember when you cooked this or that?!?!" As dad would snarky, I would forget my head if it wasn't screwed on...
So with the wine dinner, I really wanted to look at the dishes far in advance of the dinner from the perspective of sight and texture and how that pertains to the overall success of the meal. It wasn't to long ago that 15-20 courses was the rule of thumb in the restaurant. (Ahhhhh 1 day soon I will return to that style of cooking :-)))) ); but how do you get people's attention in 5 or even 1?
With the dinner being in the early part of the fall, I really focused on the colors of the season and texture with this dish. Though it's the 2nd course, it is actually the 1st plated course. Always with the 1st plated course, you are truly representing your ideas about the meal and are setting the tone for the entire evening. If it is a fail, you can assure that the evening will be unsuccessful. Without a doubt, practice, practice, practice.
As in previous blog post, texture is a big part of my cuisine. Fried chicken cant be soggy, biscuits can't be rock hard. You get the drift. When smoking the apples for the dish, cold smoking is the only alternative to ensuring that the apple still has the crunch associated with fresh apples. It is very important that the crunch cuts the creamy qualities of the grits and butternut squash puree.
With the 1st look, I think the dish is about 95% complete. Tweek, here or there...
Certainly I hope to see you soon and at the dinner!
7pm Thursday September 19th, 2013
The Shed @ Glenwood