Treat Yo’ Self & a Friend: BOGO Out Loud this Holiday!

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Treat yo’ self & a friend!  Buy one Baking Out Loud cookbook, get one free on the e-shop (michaelsgenuine.com/SHOP) until December 20, our express shipping deadline.  Executive pastry chef Hedy Goldsmith’s debut cookbook is $27.50 and can come signed or personalized. Click here to add one to your shopping cart, and we’ll match the first purchase per customer. BOGO or go home! Offer good for online purchases only.

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Genuine elves to the rescue! We can help with all your holiday gifting needs, especially The Genuine Hospitality Group Gift Card. Click the slow roasted short rib pizza above to purchase, and follow #TGHGGiftCard on our Instagram accounts @MGFD_MIA, @harryspizzeria, @thecypressroom, and @mghomebrew for a treasure hunt of more genuine treats it can buy!

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Welcoming more luxury, more neighborhood. Whether you’re out for a stroll to enjoy Palm Court’s Buckminster Fuller Dome or on a mission more than mere window shopping, Michael’s elegant American dining room is open for lunch and dinner in Miami’s Design District. Click here for our lunch prix fixe menu and book by calling 305.520.5197 or emailing reservations@thcypressroom.com.

MGFD Brunch at 5 Years | Homage to Hedy’s Sweets

Five years ago, a typical Sunday morning at Michael’s Genuine® Food & Drink (“MGFD”) was a time for our chefs to prepare for the evening service and plan for the upcoming week, quietly without distraction. But then October 25, 2009 rolled around and Sundays were never the same again. Today, once 11:00am hits the clock, MGFD is a vibrant and colorful scene of savory and sweet. Tables are adorned with a variety of small plates mingling with cocktails, wines, and beers at once. It is a playful and nostalgic affair, a frenzy of energy and creativity, and Hedy and Michael would not have it any other way.

Hedy explains that when Michael developed Brunch at MGFD, he wanted a different concept, where guests could enjoy a number of different plates, without any set rules. “It is whatever you feel like…”  It was a hit out of the gate, attracting the attention of then New York Times food critic Frank Bruni and has evolved into more than we ever could have imagined — a fun and interactive meal stretching the imagination of both our customers and our team in the restaurant that puts it together each week. We’ll cover the savory side of the menu next, but today we begin in keeping with Hedy’s mantra: “Eat dessert first!”

At the top of the Sweets section appear Hedy’s Childhood Treats. These items are meant to bring back childhood memories and can often be found in Hedy’s cookbook, Baking Out Loud: Fun Desserts with Big Flavors. Items like overstuffed o’s, s’mores and chocolate caramel peanut bars show the playfulness and accessibility of the menu. As much as they attract children, they are meant for big kids, us. Because Hedy’s goal was to bring out the “oohs and aahs” out of us, and boy does she!

The remainder of the menu will leave you equally flabbergasted. The classics such as the pop t’s — which are Hedy’s take on the still relevant as ever original, on-the-go handheld breakfast pie — and the sticky bun, have new flavors weekly. They are in short, a grow-up version of your old time favorites. By grown- up, we mean improved of course. Exponential improvement. Some dishes are too bold to fathom, like the tequila watermelon-popsicle, or the macaron ice cream sandwich, or the peanut butter pie in a jar overflowing with caramel. Literally overflowing. Ugh! Hedy dares to play with both savory and sweet in general, particularly in her sticky buns, such as the bacon, cream cheese and peanut butter sticky bun. It leaves you to lick you fingers shamelessly at the table and turn an average Sunday morning meal, into your most anticipated moment of the week. Seriously. Some guests join us religiously for brunch and Hedy’s sweets are one of the reasons why they are committed to our brunchbell. Yes that’s what we call it!

Why the obsession? Our pastry team bakes with heart. Hedy and her associates change the Sweets menu in its entirety, weekly, with updates reflected on the michaelsgenuine.com website by crack of dawn Sunday. Although some preparation may be made in advance, or mise en place, all sweets are baked on Sunday morning. Hedy shares, “ I like to keep challenging myself, have fun and inspire my team. I don’t take myself too seriously and want to keep it playful”. That passion is evident from the choice of items on the menu, but most importantly the flavors. Hedy values multi dimensional dishes, especially with the desserts. She would hate for a guest to merely have two bites, which is why she plays with savory for balance. In her iconic and ever evolving cookie, junk in-da-trunk ®, for example, Hedy mixes cookie dough with pretzels, potato chips, peanut butter, and candy bars, but tops it with sea salt, “… to give your taste buds a break”, she reveals. This is a sweet marathon, not a race!

Hedy likes to inspire, but is also inspired by her energetic team, including Devin Braddock, who takes great pride in spearheading putting out the #brunchbell under the direction of pastry Sous-Chef, Patty Lopez. Devin also enjoys playing with the line between sweet and savory, such as hot pepper jam, and she loves our brunch’s core idea, nostalgia. Preparation for brunch sweets begins as early as Monday, when the team assembles a rough draft of the menu, which evolves during the week. It is the perfect opportunity for originality to emerge. And as the week develops, each dish “…molds into something more beautiful and more creative”, making brunch equally exciting for Devin and for you. The A team also includes Dallas Wynne, a Harry’s Pizzeria alum.

Brunch at MGFD comes together due to the participation of the entire team. Pastry helps the savory side by making a crumpet batter, while the servers, managers and support staff review the logistics for an effective brunch. It is a tough service to tackle, but quite a fun one. It can also be a friendly competition between sweet and savory, as Sous-Chef, Jason Arroyo, crosses the boundaries with a savory French toast for example; whereas Head Line Cook, Manuel Arredondo, brings out his own creativity to mirror Devin’s bold dishes, with maple bacon pancakes. If you haven’t experienced this underrated game yet, hustle because the bell rings at 11:00am every Sunday, and as of October 12, lasts until 3:00pm.

The Apple of Our Eye: Falling in Love with New Desserts at The Cypress Room

IMG_0978_2Take a fairy tale, inject it with electric current and edit like a designer and you have our dessert program at The Cypress Room. You’ll be hearing a lot about our new home for elegant American dining in the Design District over the next few weeks, as we cozy up to autumn, and what better way to start than with dessert. Just as executive pastry chef Hedy Goldsmith would like it. Here we find her playground for sweets with a technical edge, where imaginations run just the right amount of wild. Beginning today, we find out what that means for fall, as two of three new desserts hit the menu and all the right notes for the season.

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“This is what I am, this is my background… [Michael’s] Genuine was a departure for me even though it’s what I’m known for. Trying to be on the same page as [chef de cuisine] Roel’s aesthetic has kept me on my toes. His food is sort of delicate and dramatic and beautiful all at the same time,” Hedy shares. “A Cypress Room dessert balances textures and flavors, and seasonality always plays an important role. I think the plates need to be visually bold and really spot on with the flavor profiles. I’m not afraid of in-your-face flavors like the tarragon in the LEMON dessert. It adds a savory element.”

LEMON highlights decadent olive oil cake “croutons” with preserved lemon, tarragon honey, and cranberries. Olive oil, lemon zest, tarragon and creme Fraiche are the main flavors of this moist cake. The lemon creme is lighter than air, made in the style of lemon curd, but that’s where the connection ends. Whole butter is added in a blender at high speed to yield a fluffy, vibrantly-flavored creme. Preserved lemons are cooked for hours in a syrup to produce a candy-like texture. Candied tarragon and edible flowers make this as beautiful as it is delicious. Honey tarragon gelees add a burst of flavor and texture throughout. What tastes more like fall than cranberry, and Hedy finishes the plate with a sorbet made from the fresh ingredient which gives this dessert not only a pop of color, but great tart flavor. “I’m smitten with the chamomile grappa,” says Hedy for, as Wine Director Eric Larkee would say, the last ingredient of the dish from The Beverage Book. The booster rockets just fired on our Italian state of mind!

IMG_1073_2APPLE features Maple Brown Butter Semifreddo, Apple Confit, Hot Bourbon Cider poured tableside from the restaurant’s bone china teapots, Medjool Leather, and Hazelnut Praline. Think ice cream meets frozen soufflé. Hedy and pastry assistant Kelly Russell start with high quality Vermont maple syrup, dark amber in color. It’s reduced by half, intensifying the maple flavor and its affinity with the nuttiness of brown butter. The different textures and temperatures make this dessert unique. Honey Crisp apples are cooked with Apple Cider, Cinnamon sticks, Star Anise, Vanilla beans, Mace and local Allspice berries, which is then puréed and added to hot cider caramel. Think apple confit – it is jammed packed with apple flavor. Dehydrated apple chips add a great crunch. The Medjool dates are flattened out into paper thin “leather” sheets, like a carpaccio only with dates. Restaurant manager Marty McCartt and Hedy agree that the Hétszolo 2001, Aszú 5 Puttunyos, Tokaj pairs perfectly.

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“The apple dessert I love because it has that hot apple cider mixed with spiced [Bulliet] bourbon meeting the cold format of the semi[freddo,] ” Hedy says. “You have the frozen yet creamy custard that just starts to slowly melt, developing a third kind of flavor. I love how pristine it looks.”

Did we mention CHOCOLATE goes on next week? We must leave a little fairy dust to surprise, no? Happy Autumn from all of us at The Genuine Hospitality Group and the apple of Michael’s eye, The Cypress Room (menus are updated daily online.)

Baby, You’re a Firework!

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It’s Hedy Goldsmith’s birthday, y’all!  And while we’ve got barbecue and fireworks on the brain, she’s mixing up all kinds of ice cream recipes, because it is the eve of Independence Day, but also National Ice Cream Month.

To celebrate, Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink HQ in the Design District is putting a new ice cream dessert on the menu each week.  This week it’s affogato! The delicious Italian dessert screams summertime, combining my two favorite things, ice cream and espresso. Hedy makes it sing with a shot of Panther Coffee, brown butter breadcrumbs and fresh fruit like cherries and raspberries.  Next week, look for ice cream sandwiches, just the thought of which had me doing my happy dance in the pastry station.

And since we know Hedy loves to dance the line between sweet and savory, she offers you here a recipe for tomorrow, the happy summer holiday of hot dogs, American flags, sun burns and cold beer.  Cheers to keeping your eyes safe from the smoky barbecue and your kids as happy as your friends!  Thanks to Hedy for always keeping our childhood favorites at heart.  Happy Birthday baby, you’re a firework!

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[UPDATE] Your Good Fortune, Our Baking Out Loud Cookbook Giveaway!

Update: Ding ding ding. We have a winner!  Or rather, two.  The lucky owners of an advance copy of Baking Out Loud are husband and wife team Rona and David Sprintis for their creative submission including addition of colorful holiday sparkle and seeds.  The couple may be social media challenged but that’s perfectly cool with us.  As usual they have excelled in timeliness, enthusiasm and execution.  We have seen this movie before, right Michael?? 
Come one, come all!  It’s time for some audience participation in the Hedy Goldsmith show!  That’s right. Baking Out Loud: Fun Desserts with Big Flavors will be released in one short week tomorrow (!!!), and we are giving away one advance copy to one lucky baker here on The Genuine Kitchen!  The rules of our of our little bake-the-book contest this week are simple. By 12 noon on Friday, September 28, upload a photo of your winning recreation of Hedy’s Giant Sesame Fortune Cookies to Twitter and don’t forget to tag @MGFD_MIA and #BakingOutLoud.  Extra credit will be given to clever fortunes and those who use Instagram  to share it.  We will announce the winner immediately that afternoon!  You don’t have to be in Miami to participate, but if you are, you will get your book sooner :)  GOOD LUCK and get going.  Your recipe is here.