Recipe by Scott Pikey, Executive Chef at Mayacama Golf Club, Sonoma County, California, USA. Image by Diana DeLucia.
Slow Roasted Grapes
Chef Note: The skin can be left on or removed.
Remove all bones from the trout filet and portion to 5 ounces.
Keep refrigerated until ready to cook.
Chef Note: The butter and thyme will be used when cooking the fish.
Slow Roasted Grapes
Preheat the oven to 150° F (low fan).
Wash the grapes and place on a paper towel to dry.
Toss the grapes with grape seed oil and then place into a large sauté pan or lined baking sheet and roast for 2 hours.
Clean each head of cauliflower to ½ inch florets.
Place the cauliflower, cream, salt and curry powder into a large saucepan. Cover and bring to a simmer for 30 minutes stirring every 10 minutes.
Drain the Cauliflower and reserve the liquid.
Puree half of the cauliflower mixture into a blender slowly adding half the butter and a tablespoon of the reserved liquid until smooth.
Pass through a fine mesh Tamis.
Pour the mixture into the lined pan to cool and cover with plastic wrap with a tight seal to prevent a crust from forming.
Trim the radish tops leaving ¼ inch stem and wash until all dirt has been removed, then place the cleaned radishes in a large sauté pan. Cover with the vegetable stock and simmer on low heat for 8 minutes, add the butter and thyme and emulsify.
Cool the glazed radishes at room temperature.
Clean the outer leaves and discard.
Cut the Brussels sprouts in half and peel away the tender leaves.
Save the center Brussel sprout core for another use.
In a small sauce pot gently rewarm the cauliflower puree and keep a lid on until ready to plate.
Place two large sauté pans on high; add 3 ounces of the grapeseed oil to both.
When the oil is hot, sear the trout and cook for three minutes, add 2 Tablespoons of butter and thyme and cook two minutes.
Remove the fish from the pan and place on a paper towel.
In the other saute pan add the cauliflower, and lightly caramelize.
Remove any excess oil and add the Brussels sprout leaves, radishes 3 Tablespoons of vegetable stock and heat all the vegetables, add 2 Tablespoons butter until emulsified. Finish with the almonds, grapes and then season.
Spoon the cauliflower puree into the center of a coupe style bowl.
Add the glazed vegetables on top followed by the trout.
A classic pairing with Mt. Lassen Trout would be a lightly oaked chardonnay, or a light, lower alcohol Pinot Noir from the Sonoma Coast or Burgundy. However, the curried cauliflower throws a slight curve into the mix, and this would give me an excellent opportunity to suggest a light, unoaked chardonnay or even better an aromatic white wine like Chenin Blanc, Arneis, or Torrantes. If I wanted to go outside the box, I would also consider Grenache.
~ Jeff McCarthy, Wine Director, Mayacama Golf Club.
Mayacama Golf Club, Sonoma County, California, USA. Image courtesy Mayacama.
Recipe by Clara Lene Kelly, Mixologist, Kohanaiki, Kona, Hawaii, USA. Image by Diana DeLucia.
Fill a Boston Shaker with ice and add the white rum, orange curacao, orgeat syrup, pineapple juice and passion orange juice.
Squeeze the lime into the shaker and then drop it in. Shake, then pour all of the contents into a Mai Tai glass.
Garnish with the pineapple.
Float the dark rum.
Slap the mint sprig and place on top.
Make sure the glass is large enough to hold all of the ingredients. Garnish before adding the dark rum; Nobody likes their drink overflowed. The lime is the key ingredient! Its not a Mai Tai without it.
Kohanaiki, Kona, Hawaii, USA. Image courtesy Kohanaiki.
Recipe by Bonnie Briar Country Club, Larchmont, New York, USA, Image by Diana DeLucia.
Shake all of the ingredients in a bar shaker with ice and strain into a Double Old-fashioned glass with a large ice sphere.
Bonnie Briar Country Club, Larchmont, New York, USA. Image Courtesy Bonnie Briar Country Club.
I first met Esther Sánchez at The Four Seasons Punta Mita, in Riviera Nayarit, Mexico whilst working on a food photography shoot in 2017. Esther’s blend of Mexican, Middle Eastern and Asian cuisines makes her cooking style unique. She enjoys delighting each and every table at Aramara and getting to know her customers personally. —Diana DeLucia
GK: Esther, tell us about your journey to Punta Mita.
I am from Guadalajara, Mexico’s second-largest city known for its mariachi music, wide-brimmed sombreros, the Mexican hat dance and charreadas (rodeos) and a fusion of the old and the new in architecture and in the culinary scene.
My Grandma took care of me until I was six years old and like almost all grandmas in Mexico, she was a fantastic cook. I loved watching her in the kitchen making lunch and dinner. I was always asking her if I could help her and she used to let me do some of the simple things. My dad was the cook at home as my mom worked full time. I used to go to the market with my dad after school, and we would often decide what we were going to make together.
After high school, I went to Edmonton, Alberta in Canada to learn English, and it was during this time that I worked in a restaurant for a small period. It wasn’t the type of food that I enjoyed, but it gave me the experience of working in a kitchen. I realized that I enjoyed the challenging work environment and I knew that this was the type of career I wanted to pursue. When I finished my English studies, I returned to Mexico and enrolled at The Culinary Institute of Mexico in Puebla and completed my four-year degree in 2006. You know, sometimes in our life, we think to ourselves if we are doing the right thing, or making the right decision, I didn’t have this thought at all. I was always practicing cooking during my degree; I would invite my friends over and cook for them to practice my craft.
Towards the end of my degree, some recruiters from the Four Seasons in Houston, Texas came to interview some students, and I was one of them. I was chosen, and I went to Houston and worked as a cook at the Four Seasons for one and a half years. At first, I was cooking meals for the staff, and doing prep work. Then they put me onto the breakfast brunches which was a massive undertaking and arduous task as it was the most popular brunch in the city. I learned a lot from these experiences. One of the most rewarding experiences while I was there was interacting with the guests, I loved to hear their feedback and get to know people from all walks of life.
I began to work at the Italian Restaurant Quattro, also at the Four Seasons in Houston, and there I learned how to make fresh pasta and other Italian cuisines. It was during this time that I came to visit my parents in Guadalajara, and my dad took me on a trip to Puerto Vallarta. He took me to the Four Seasons Punta Mita and encouraged me to apply for a position. I went through the interview process successfully, and I have been working here ever since. At first, I started as a cook in banquets, and then I became chef de partie, and now I am the restaurant chef at Aramara Restaurant.
GK: Tell us about your trip to Syria.
I had the opportunity to go to Damascus, Syria to assist in the presentation of a Mexican food promotion for ten days in 2010 with chef Jose Salas. I couldn’t believe that I was going to be in the Middle East. It was a great opportunity as I always wondered about the different cultures and even though I was the only woman in the kitchen they respected me a lot, and they showed great appreciation for our cuisine.
In September of 2015, I had the opportunity to go to the Middle East again, this time to El Cairo, Egypt, we had the same mission; to show the world how good Mexican food really is. I had achieved one of my biggest dreams, to live in El Cairo and learn all I could about the great Pyramids of Giza.
In 2014 they gave me a promotion to sous chef at Ketsi. When the restaurant chef left, I was in charge. Ketsi is a significant operation because it’s the Mexican restaurant, we have breakfast, lunch and dinner and all the service at the beach areas. In May of 2017, I returned to Aramara as the restaurant chef. It was the right place for me to be. I love the strong Asian flavors and Japanese cuisine. It’s very contemporary Asian cuisine. I enjoy it here and its never dull; it keeps me very busy. I love creating the chefs table every Friday, the menu is never the same, and as soon as I know each table reservation I ask if there are any food restrictions, allergies, likes and dislikes and I write the menu, every table has a different menu experience as they all have different desires and tastes, this keeps things interesting for everyone.
Last summer I had an excellent opportunity to travel to Thailand and Vietnam, and this gave me some inspiration to add to the Aramara menu. I found this trip a great opportunity to be exposed to many more Asian flavors, ingredients, and new culinary techniques. I ate at one of the best restaurants in Asia “Gaggan,” and many of the small food stands in Vietnam.
GK: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In five years career-wise I see myself as an executive chef in a luxurious hotel or resort, on the other hand, I would like to have a family and open my restaurant Puerto Vallarta, with a menu where I can show the people my culinary experience, Italian, Asian and of course Mexican cuisine.
I enjoy working at the Four Seasons, it’s an excellent company. There are so many opportunities to travel globally to learn and experience new cuisines and cultures.
Octopus Tlayuda, recipe by Esther Sanchez. Image by Diana Delucia.
Recipe by Michael Ruggiero, Executive Chef at GlenArbor Golf Club, Bedford, New York, USA.
Image by Diana DeLucia.
Yield - 4 Portions
In a cast iron pan, render the bacon until crispy. Remove crisp bacon from fat and reserve until ready for plate-up
In a sauce pot sweat the celery, garlic, shallot, and green pepper until soft.
When soft add the clam juice and bring to a boil.
Reduce by ¼ and thicken with the slurry or roux.
Add the heavy cream, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco, Old Bay, thyme and salt and pepper and stir well.
Place the clams in the seasoned flour and coat thoroughly.
Place each clam one by one in a deep fat fryer for approximately 1 minute or till golden brown.
Dry in a fryer basket for 90 seconds before removing.
Garnish the soup with the diced red peppers, parsley, chives, crisp bacon bits and diced fingerling potato.
Place the fried clams gently in the center.
Malvasia which is a white Italian wine from the Collio DOC in the Northeast region of Friuli Venezia Giulia.
The freshness and charming acidity of this wine will dance in your palate between the creamy and marine flavors of the New England "Clam Chowder". There is a slight hint of sweetness and white fruits followed by white flower aromas that make this wine very enjoyable and pleasant.
Wine Director / Sommerlier
GlenArbor Golf Club
GlenArbor Golf Club, Larchmont, New York, USA. Image courtesy GlenArbor.
Recipe by Anthony Dole, Executive Chef at Royal Melbourne Golf Club, Black Rock, Victoria, Australia.
Image by Diana DeLucia.
Confit Garlic Aioli
Garlic Truffle Aioli
Confit Garlic Aioli
Cut the heads of the garlic in half, place in a pot and cover with oil confit garlic for over 2 hours at 70°C.
Once cooked strain the garlic from the oil, and peel.
Process the garlic in a liquidizer and then pass through a fine sieve.
Save the excess oil.
Garlic Truffle Aioli
Blend the yolks with garlic puree in a robot coupe, adding a little oil at a time.
Thin out with a little water or crème Fraiche and little fresh lemon juice.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Chef Note: Add the truffle paste to 150 grams of the garlic aioli and mix well)
Toast the sourdough bread.
Grill the field mushrooms until lightly browned.
To sauté mixed mushrooms - heat a frying pan to a high heat, add a little oil and the mixed mushrooms and cook until softened and translucent. (about 4-5 minutes) Add a knob of butter to finish.
To sauté the spinach - heat a frying pan to a medium heat, add a little oil, then add the butter, the spinach and cook until softened and wilted (2-3 minutes)
Place the field mushrooms on top of the toast, followed by the spinach, mushroom mix, poached egg, and garlic truffle aioli.
Garnish with olive oil and micro herbs and flowers.
2017 Stonier Chardonnay, Mornington Peninsula, Victoria, Australia.
This beautiful cool climate Chardonnay will create a like-meets-like pairing, which echoes the umami flavours of this dish, while also picking up on the mushrooms' rich earthiness and the creamy truffle aioli finish ~ Andrea Watson.
Recipe by Esther Sanchez, Restaurant Chef at Aramara Restaurant, Four Seasons Punta Mita, Riviera Nayarit, Mexico. Image by Diana DeLucia.
In a skillet on medium heat, toast the chile guajillo on each side.
In a blender combine the chile guajillo, garlic, cumin seeds, cloves, oregano, water, olive oil, lime juice, achiote paste and vinegar into the blender.
Blend at low speed until smooth. Set aside.
In a heavy, small saucepan combine the oil and crushed red pepper flakes and cook over low heat until a thermometer inserted into the oil registers 180°F, about 5 minutes.
Remove from heat.
Cool to room temperature, for about 2 hours.
Transfer to a 4-ounce bottle.
Put the cactus paddle on a hot grill for 4 minutes on each side, remove and cut into small squares.
Chef note: This should be done in advance if possible.
In a hot pan, add 1 spoon of vegetable oil, add the octopus and adobo, and stir them until incorporated.
In another pan, add 1 spoon of oil and sauté the red onion.
Add the cactus paddle and the guajillo chili and sauté for 3 minutes.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Spread the puréed Bayo beans on top of the tostada then add the octopus with the adobo and the cactus paddle on top.
Garnish with cheese, slices of radish, cilantro leaves, and a tiny dash of chili oil.
Chef note: On the palate this wine shows fabulous ripeness, a huge unctuous texture and enormous body, that match with the spiciness of the adobo and the oily texture of the cactus.
"Tale of the Whale" at Punta Mita, is the worlds only natural island green. Image courtesy Punta Mita.
Recipe by Lucía de León, Executive Pastry Chef at The Garzón Club, Maldonado, Uruguay. Image by Diana DeLucia.
Toasted Almond Ice-Cream
In a mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks and sugar until aerated and white.
Add the butter little by little and continue beating until it is homogeneous.
Mix in the dry ingredients until you have a smooth consistency.
Chill in the refrigerator for a minimum of one hour.
Stretch the dough and place into molds and bake at 180 ºC for 10 minutes.
Remove from oven until ready for assembly.
Place in a saucepan on a low heat and cook until reduced. Set aside.
In a saucepan, boil the heavy cream,
In a mixing bowl pour the boiled heavy cream over the chocolate.
Mix with a whisk until smooth and shiny cream.
Toasted Almond Ice Cream
Place the milk, cream, vanilla, glucose and almond butter into a pot and heat at 40 ºC.
Mix in the sugar with the stabilizer and then add the milk powder and finally the yolks.
Continue heating up to 85 ºC.
Let the mixture stand for at least 12 hours in the refrigerator.
When ready to serve, prepare with your ice cream machine.
Fill the chilled Breton molds almost to the top, with the chocolate ganache and refridgerate for two hours.
Remove from fridge and add the raspberry reduction on top of the chocolate ganache.
Chill in fridge.
Before serving use a blow torch to make the chocolate brilliant and then put cacao nibs on the top for garnish.
Use the left over Breton dough to make crumbles to sprinkled over the ice cream.
The Bodega Garzon at The Garzon Club, Maldonado, Uruguay. Image courtesy The Garzon Club.
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FIRST QUARTER ISSUE FEATURING THE CHEF OF FIRE, FRANCIS MALLMAN, AMBASSADOR AT THE GARZON CLUB, URUGUAY / EXECUTIVE CHEF MATTHEW O'CONNOR, BONNIE BRIAR COUNTRY CLUB'S HIDDEN TALENT / ESTHER SANCHEZ, EXECUTIVE CHEF AT ARAMARA RESTAURANT, FOUR SEASONS PUNTA MITA / CLUBHOUSE COCKTAILS / GOLF KITCHEN CULINARY EXCELLENCE AWARDS WRAP UP / NEW RECIPES AND MORE..
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