Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Salad Dressing

I planned to write a post on salad dressings over 2 years ago and am only actually doing it now because I will be conducting a class on it in November at ToTT. Kinda apprehensive about being called 'chef' cos I know I'm no way near there yet. Then again, I will be head of that kitchen when I demonstrate *shrugs*...

Personally, I like a good mellow mediterranean dressing lightly coating a mesclun mix heavy on the frisee and arugula. Topped with semi dried tomatoes, marinated feta and a good sized piece of sliced skirt steak with the pan drippings from the steak thrown in. *yums*

My focus for the class will be a comparison between split and emulsified sauces. Vinaigrettes as the name implies, usually involves vinegar but it's not unheard of for the vinegar to be replaced by other acidic liquids like orange or lemon juice.

A simple vinaigrette is essentially a heterogeneous mixture of 2 immiscible liquids that will eventually split into their constituent parts, given enough time. Many factors affect this rate, which is linked to viscosity, like temperature and the presence of ingredients (like blue cheese or mustard) that act as surfactants. The bottled stuff in the supermarkets have tons of surfactants added, stabilizing the mixture.

Mayonnaise can be thought of as a vinaigrette of lemon juice and vegetable oil fully emulsified by the lecithin found in egg yolks. Freshly made mayo is great on eggs and is very commonly used as a base for other dressings. Think thousand island, caesar and tartare.

The method of preparing mayonnaise can be varied to produce a whole host of other sauces not usually used in salads. Like bearnaise, hollandaise, gribiche and the like, all derivatives of the mayo mother sauce.

I'm thinking of showcasing these 2 sauces and then letting the class make variations from the base sauce. Hmmm.. can I really make this into a 2 hour class that's entertaining and fun? I'll let you know..

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

well.. so much for that...

it's october. where did all tht time go?

time's fun when you're having flies
-kermit the frog

there isn't quite much to say, been really busy in the kitchen but haven't been taking photos as usual. had a fantastic morning at the appetite-de dietrich kitchen showcase with zt.

latest BT article was a nice boost to business.

here's the other one too, just for reference..