Saturday, June 11, 2011

new post finally...thanks Bryan

So I am on. It has been a long time because we are in the middle of the busy season but here are a few new things....

This past week has been the busiest of our season. Most of the chefs are doing 80 hours plus a week and some are even sleeping over at the venues where we are having late dinners and early breakfast. We did our famous Columbia reunion and Fordham reunion. That means for all the class reunions in total we have about 28 parties in one day. They range in size from 90 - 1,600 people. Fordham in the largest that day at 1,600 people for a french style dinner. The food is hand servered on large silver trays carried by one waiter as another waiter serves tableside. We pre-platted the salad course, a stacked yellow and red tomato salad with a piquillo pepper. A side of mixed greens, valbreso feta, several marinated olives, a parmesan crisp, and a white wine vinaigrette. We did a large platter with filet mignon, grilled vegetables, and a mushroom sauce. The vegetarian option was an herb crusted halibut and for Vegans we offered a tofu and vegetable stuffed phyllo purse. Dessert was tiramasu, which on a hot day required fast plating. In the hustle of everything I only got around to taking pictures of the dessert plating. I did however get a picture of the meze platter that we served at the other columbia reunions. It is a platter that consisted of roasted artichokes, marinated 5-type olives, valbreso feta, sun dried tomatoes, roasted red peppers, diced red onions, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, and stuffed grape leaves. So here are a few photos...

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Hello Kitty and Sweet Sushi

My niece Emele turned two and this past Saturday my family gathered together for a Hello Kitty themed party. Of course she was the only girl at the party but all the little boys in our family are young enough that it didn't matter. For the party I decided to bring some rice crispy treat sushi. I got the disposable sushi boxes from work and the chopsticks from a local sushi joint.

I went around through the candy lane in the grocery store. I settled on several types of fruit roll ups, strawberry, tie dye, and an assortment pack that contained fruit by the foot, gushers, and fruit roll ups. The assorted pack was great because the fruit by the foot was cut into designs which worked so wonderfully in making little flowers. I also grabbed a box of blue fruit by the foot, twizzlers, gummy worms, and nerds.

For the rice crispy treats I followed the instructions on the box but added an extra tablespoon of butter and a half teaspoon of vanilla extract for flavor.
I took the solid colors of red fruit by the foot and laid them out in a line three rolls long. It was important to keep some pan spray nearby to put a little on your palms before touching the rice cripsy treats. It will help if you do this as fast as possible because the treats will harden the longer you work with them. You can push and form the rice crispy treat to fit the size of the fruit roll up. Once there is a thin layer of the rice treat on the fruit roll up place a twizzler and gummy worms for lay inside the treats. Then roll from one side in to make the roll. Allow to sit for an hour to help hold together and then you can cut them into pieces.
For the rice crispy treat nigiri you can take some of the rice crispy treat in your palms and squeeze them into ovals. Use a rolling motion to shape but use firm pressure to keep them holding together. Once the balls are all formed you can go back and add the fruit roll up squares that you can cut from a large fruit roll up. You can also cut the fruit roll ups into strips to be the "nori" around the nigiri. You can place a swedish fish on top of a few of them. I used the nerds to act as the fish eggs but they were tricky. I placed a square piece of fruit roll up on the crispy ball and then with a little water I wet the top. I allowed it to get a little sticky then rolled it in the nerds.
For the soy sauce you can use a little bit of chocolate syrup in a bowl. For wasabi I took some sour sugar powder that was green and rolled a balled up piece of tootsie roll in the powder. The green grass was a green fruit by the foot that I cut into the grass shape. It's better to have all the grass, wasabi, and other items for garnish out of the wrappers and laid out ready to be used before making the rice crispy treats.

They were a big hit and here are the pictures...
Also some pictures of the kids from the party.... all adorable!