The following was written to pep up Dose coffee and push them a lil bit further. We had many a successful year together. I miss them fondly. This is an insight into my mind and preparation for a new job.
I have written the following for my own amusement and justifications so please do not take it all too seriously. Food is still fun, no matter how pretentious I am about to seem. I shall not cost a thing as I have simply whipped this up on a whim and do not have the patience to track down supplier lists at this point. Any ideas I have are simply ideas.
I enjoy indulgent things that make people swoon or gasp. I know what I enjoy to eat and I know that what I like is often not available anywhere. I have not worked or designed anything for the daylight edible hours in a very long time. Nothing is perfected or untouchable but this is the fun of the evolution of menus and ingredients. This is also many more items than I would ever wish on a chef working in a small kitchen.
Menus and dishes should flow so that we can reduce waste from spoilage and preparation time. A salad that can top a pancake can easily top a roast fish dish if you or your guests were so inclined.
I do think food should be prepared simply and efficiently, this does not mean to say the final product is not something with a great deal of time and thought put into it though. Preparation makes the service simpler.
Snacking is a wonderful invention created to help us share preprepared intelligent items designed for the people that have other things going on. The pastry case has historically been a place for both sweet and savoury and everything in between. This is something I like very much as it gives a chance to offer a smaller helping of something very easy for service.
I do love a composed plate of something sweet but this intimidates most serving said item. However it can be made easy using a little squeezy bottle of sauce or caramel and a toasted or candied nut or two.
I will also include a rough weekend style menu but I shan’t explain myself further, it is the weekend and people should indulge.
I have been looking to put on a healthy Canadian dish (I fear B.C. has a very weak culinary identity?). Canadian wild rice from Ontario is beyond healthy. cook it simply, dress it simply. Accompany with some fun local fresh fruits and vegetables (very simply prepared) and possibly a pantry item of the freeze dried variety as this will add pep and zing to a hearty dish.
The indulgent glutinous side of me loves hazelnuts and all things associated. Cooking a grain in the style of porridge is older than the invention of porridge, so no points for innovation. However most have forgotten how simple it can be to blanch a grain and then simply reheat it in a delicious liqour (thickened with a knob of butter to keep the cold off our hips). Again do not complicate, add dried fruits rehydrated in a pot of tea along with some crunchy nuts, seeds or grains for a textural balance.
You do have a beetroot powder. Cook any grain in a beetroot liqour and watch the colour ‘pop’. A fresh cheese will add a creamy salt element saving your costs in the butter department.
The simplest of daytime foods for the busy service kitchen is simply baking eggs. Craft a lovely puree or sauce with your fine bunty blender (please reserve some vegetables from this to add our friend texture back again). Place said puree and vegetables in a little bake-able dish built for one. Wrap and refrigerate. When serving; cook in oven and crack an egg on top and cook through. A bit of dairy or a big ball of herbaceous salad atop gives flair, elegance and an idea of health. The salad must be this variety as it has the advantage of being stirred in and seasoning the dish.
Oatcakes are a wonderful thing. Truly inexpensive and easy to make and freeze, allowing you to big batch that bad boy and keep your lights on all winter. Defrost, warm however you wish (they can be very moist anyway), top with a safe and happy breakfast protein and a delightfully light salad. Creamy, fresh and allium flavours all work well with a yeasty beery base.
Panisse is an item that may take some working if you are confident in your colleagues. It is prepared in advance, chilled in a lined tray and portioned to your specification. You can season this panisse mix when you cook it or you can keep it plain. Fry off portions as I suppose anyone would and top with anything your heart desires. Sweet poached fruits, savoury meaty proteins, light fresh salads, spicy peppery sauces. Let your friends get creative, steal a topping from a previous item above.
A wonderfully unctuous cheese toasty should be the height of Brooklyn hipster indulgence and not to be crafted for the health conscious (if we must, you can always put some pickles in a little salad next to it). Rarebit is so often a disaster because people make it overly complicated. I make a very simple sauce that is thickened so it can be chilled and portioned into slices ready to go, placed on toast and finished in an oven or grill. It even freezes and can be defrosted so again no need to waste. Rarebit is a great cheat to half your bread costs as well!