[RECIPE] Spring or Summer, Salad is always in Season

Courtesy GQ.

It’s peach season, the star of this new salad at a Harry’s Pizzeria® near you.

“Restraint. Use a couple of ingredients and keep it simple—that’s sort of my philosophy, not just about food but in life,” Chef recently shared with Lang Whitaker from GQ when he asked what the secret was to great salad. “Salad in particular is a delicate thing. I think it’s about the simplicity and the restraint, and then of course proportion is really important, and not overdressing the ingredients.”  Lang also has a point. Writing on (and in our case working in) the food biz requires some strategy if you’re going to be surrounded by all sorts of delicious treats all the time.  Salad can be one of those things.  I like Lang’s — every day for the last few years, he has eaten a vegetarian salad for lunch. Boom. Keeping it simple. Check out his full story “The Easy Secrets to a Good-Ass Salad” here (also with an addictive salad dude GIF on repeat) and since we’ve shared the recipe for Fi’lia’s Caesar salad before here on the blog, try this beauty from Chef’s cookbook, as pomegranates start showing up in the market to put the principles to work at home.  Since persimmon is a fall ingredient, don’t try to find a good one. Customize! Opt for Florida or Georgia peaches, coming into season now.

#MGFDsalad is a beautiful hashtag. Click to see why.

One of the most stunning images from Michael’s Genuine Food, Credit Ben Fink Photography

Persimmon and Pomegranate Salad with Crumbled Ricotta and Pomegranate Vinaigrette

A salad of unusual qualities, this vividly colorful combo celebrates exotic autumn fruit of persimmon and pomegranate. The combination of tastes is awesome: peppery watercress, sweet-spicy persimmon, tart pomegranate seeds, and salty cheese, all held together by a tangy vinaigrette. Leftover pomegranate vinaigrette will keep covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 week and is goes great with grilled meats.

Serves 4 as entrée, 8 as starter

1 bunch watercress, stems trimmed (about 4 cups lightly packed)
2 medium heads frisée (about 8 cups lightly packed)
2 ripe Fuyu persimmons, peeled and thinly sliced (see Ingredient Note)
1 shallot, minced
1/4 cup Pomegranate Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
1/4 cup crumbled firm Fresh Homemade Ricotta salata or store-bought ricotta salata
1/4 cup pomegranate seeds

In a mixing bowl, combine the watercress, frisée, persimmons, and shallot. Drizzle with 1/4 cup of the pomegranate vinaigrette, tossing with your hands to dress the salad lightly and evenly. Divide the salad equally among chilled plates. Top with ricotta and pomegranate seeds.

Pomegranate Vinaigrette​

Makes about 1 cup

2 cups pomegranate juice
1/4 cup champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup canola oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Pour the pomegranate juice into a small pot and place over medium-low heat. Cook until the juice has reduced to 1/4 cup and is thick and syrupy, about 20 minutes. Set aside to cool.

In a small mixing bowl or mason jar, combine the cooled pomegranate syrup, champagne vinegar, balsamic, olive and canola oils; season lightly with salt and pepper. Whisk or shake to blend and dissolve the salt; reserve at room temperature until needed. Keep any leftover vinaigrette covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Mother’s Day at Fi’lia | Mom’s Got More than Just a Pizza with Her Name on It

Mother’s Day calls for making things a little more special than your average Sunday.  The bar is high!  Fi’lia by Michael Schwartz takes this to the heart Sunday, May 14 with a supplemental menu of a la carte dishes fit for a queen and her party, available during breakfast and lunch.

So, what’s our move?  How about toasting with Emilia, a bewitching cocktail of Solerno blood orange liqueur, Mancino Chinato, blood orange juice, Dimmi and Prosecco, packing as vibrant a punch as it does color. Perfectly forked stacks of Wood Grilled Peaches, whipped ricotta, pistachio pesto and peppery arugula need follow.  Then Mom’s Pizza would hit the table to share, spring’s swan song in bechamel, fava beans, morels, mint, onion, pecorino and Calabrian chiles.  The combination is almost too much for one mind’s eye to contemplate.  But to be bewitched by Plum and Brandy Custard Brulée?  That’s the Mother’s Day dreams are made of. Reserve now by calling 305.912.1729 or emailing filiareservations@slshotels.com.

Wood Grilled Peaches with whipped ricotta, pistachio pesto, arugula

 

Welcoming a Happy Hour to Cypress Tavern with New Snack Menu & Summer Cocktails

CT HH presenter

The Cypress Tavern_Back of MenuCheers to summer.  Today Cypress Tavern introduces its first Happy Hour, featuring half price signature cocktails, beer and wine by the glass with chef de cuisine Max Makowski’s all new snack menu which will be available both at the bar and in the dining room.  Visit Michael’s American Grill & Cocktail Bar Tuesday through Friday from 6 to 8pm to toast over  Spiced Marcona Almonds (5), Marinated Olives (5), Mini Cypress Burgers with Jasper Hill Landaff and onion marmalade (9), Shrimp Fritters with chili lime aioli (8), and Potato Chips with creamy leek dipping sauce (7).  Take a dip into four new cocktails for the occasion, as we welcome the new season with a little refreshment, including:  SPICE OF LIFE Tequila Ocho Blanco, Sombra Mezcal, watermelon cordial, scotch bonnet agave (13), PINEAPPLE PISCO SOUR Pisco Waqar, lime, pineapple, egg white (13),  HEMINGWAY OLD FASHIONED Avion Silver, Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur, grapefruit bitters (13), and MILLIONS OF PEACHES Glenlivet 15 yr, Stills Crossroads ‘Shine, lemon, peach oolong, honey (14).

“Summer cocktails shouldn’t just be for poolside enjoyment,” shares Amanda Fraga, beverage manager at The Genuine Hospitality Group. “The thinking here was to liven the list by adding fruit in interesting ways. We chose a grassy, bright spirit like Pisco in a Pineapple Pisco Sour for a result that is neither sticky nor sweet, and shines with the classic combination of pineapple and lime. Peaches are finally coming in, so we wanted to celebrate that with a play on sweet tea. Jojo’s oolong brings a floral, nutty balance to mellow this fragrant stone fruit and its orchards full of ‘Millions of Peaches’.”

See you at the bar or make a reservation by emailing reservations@cypresstavern.com or calling 305.520.5197. For our a current list of The Genuine Hospitality Group Happy Hours, visit our Genuine Happy Crawl post.  There’s plenty of cheers to go around!

Here’s What’s for Dinner at ella after 2!

 

Ella_after 2_menu_finalOne week from this Thursday, Michael heads behind the counter for ella after dinner service again.  He just finished the menu, and wine director Mr. Eric Larkee the wines. We definitely aren’t in Hanoi anymore!  There are a few spots left at 9:15 and 9:30 p.m. on Thursday, August 27.  Click here to snag a ticket before they’re gone!

Screen Shot 2015-08-17 at 9.47.25 AM

Stumbling upon MGFD pastry chef Amy Kalinowski’s first round of hempseed baklava testing!

[RECIPE] Sweet Summer Sundaes Using Perfect Peaches

Ella Schwartz joins us this summer for three weeks as brand intern. She’ll be a senior at Ransom Everglades in the fall, rows crew and studies photography. Follow her on Instagram @ellaschwartzz and stay glued to our company handles where she’ll also be contributing during her stay with us. IMG_8932 Summer is here. The sun is shining and the heat is unbearably hot. But worry no more! You’re not the only one who will roast this season. The Roasted Peach Sundae combines fresh, juicy peaches with creamy yogurt sherbet and crunchy oatmeal pecan streusel, while keeping it light and sweet for these hot summer days. I went behind the scenes at Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink, where this delicious summer sweet is new to our dessert menu, to find out how it’s made. 10:30 | The kitchen was bustling with excitement. I walk to the pastry station where spices are stacked high and the Kitchen Aid is spinning rigorously. “Step into my office,” pastry chef Patty Lopez jokes as she turns off the mixer and brings what looks and smells like a delicious granola to her counter. As she chops pecans to add into the granola looking mixture, which I soon find out is oatmeal pecan streusel, she explains the elements of the sundae: the star of the show — the peaches, the light yet creamy sherbet, and the crunchy, nutty streusel. The key to roasting perfect peaches, I learn, is to make sure they are firm and not yet ripe. This way, they don’t fall apart when you roast them and they retain their freshness. But under-ripe peaches are not the only measure taken to ensure the firmness of the peach. Patty carefully pits the fruit with a melon baller and is cautious to provide minimum bruising. She also warns to only place the peaches into the sugar and spice mixture right before putting them in the oven. If not, the sugars will make the peaches mushy, a word banned from this recipe’s vocabulary. Only a short minute after putting them into the blazing hot wood-burning oven, I start to see the skin char and blacken under the flames. Out of the oven. Flip. Wine to deglaze. Back into the oven. The tops of the peaches bubble uncontrollably as I look into the fire, wide eyed. Out of the oven. The peaches are removed from the pan immediately to stop cooking and then cut into beautifully-charred quarters. I know what you’re thinking. What happens to that beautiful, flavorful peachy wine reduction leftover?! Into the oven once more for a couple minutes, and it becomes a ooey gooey caramel to end this dessert right. The streusel is also baked in the hearth and broken up into just the right sized crumbles to begin the assembly of this highly anticipated sundae. Streusel, then ice cream, peach quarter, ice cream, peach quarter, streusel, caramel, basil to garnish. 11:30 | “It’s all yours,” Patty says. As I take a bite my dreams come true. It’s perfectly perfect. The yogurt sherbet keeps it light, while still adding a creamy aspect, reminding me of peaches and cream. The streusel’s crunch is perfect and the nuts go perfectly with the peaches. The honey adds just enough sweetness while the char on the peach isn’t overwhelming but just right. The peach is still firm yet soft and tender. All I can say is, peach perfection in a bowl.

 Roasted Peach Sundae
serves 8

4 peaches halved and pitted
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground ginger
¾ cup dry white wine
1 quart Yogurt Sherbet (see recipe below)
3 cups Oatmeal Pecan Streusel (see recipe below)

Pre-heat oven to 450° F.

Mix sugars and spices in a half hotel pan or baking dish. Spread along the bottom of the pan evenly and place peaches cut side down in the sugar. Place in oven for 3-4 minutes, or until the skin of the peach starts to lightly char. Pull out and deglaze the sugars with the dry white wine. Flip the peaches and spoon the liquid over the tops, then place back in the oven and allow to roast for another 3-4 minutes, or until the tops are bubbling. The peaches should be soft on the outside, but firm on the inside. Remove from the pan to cool on a platter. Cut each half in half. Assemble sundae alternating two peach quarters, two scoops of yogurt sherbet, and a handful of streusel.

Yogurt Sherbet

yields 1 quart

2 cups greek yogurt
½ cup simple syrup
¼ cup lemon juice
1 ½ cups honey
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon vanilla paste

Whisk all of your ingredients together in a large bowl and churn in an ice cream machine according to manufacturer’s instructions or until the churned product resembles a frozen yogurt. Store in airtight container in the freezer.

Oatmeal Pecan Streusel

yields 3 cups

1 cup oats
½ cup whole-wheat flour
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup brown sugar
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ cup chopped pecans
3 ounces cold butter

Preheat oven to 350° F.

In a medium bowl combine oats, flours, sugars, cinnamon, and pecans. Using your hands, work the butter into the dry mix, pinching with your fingers until the mixture is crumbly. Lay out on a silpat or parchment lined baking sheet, and bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Crumble finished streusel and store in a cool dry place. Keeps for about a week.