I hope you are not getting sick of the Beard House yet, Ill tell you that this opportunity is as good as it gets if your a chef. Sure there are many chefs who get to cook at the JBH more than once, some even a few times a year.
I'm just happy to go there once, to say I did it, in the same kitchen that so many of the chefs I grew up admiring did. To somehow feel the tradition and the vibes of all those who have cooked and especially feel the vibe of James Beard himself.
I'm excited, what can I say. I'm excited for my Chef De Cuisine, for my family who is coming to enjoy the dinner, who rarely get to experience my cooking at this level.
I'm excited for my crew that is staying back at the restaurant, without them I would not be able to go to NYC, I'm excited that they get to put all that they have learned into 4 days of running the show, making sure that the guests are blown away with the cuisine and service. Letting them challenge themselves to assure that every detail that Matt or myself will take care of is taken care of.
This week I will post "The Road To The JBH" a 3 part journal of the days ahead, the prep work, the packing , the last minute changes. I hope it is as much of a entertaining read, as it is a glimpse of what it takes to pull it off. Especially when you don't have a big budget, large staff, and are not even in the State of New York.
MONDAY MARCH 30, 2009
We began with some of the non perishable prep work and the foie gras torchon. Meyer lemon fluid gel(which we had to make 3 times before we got the final product right), champagne and bacon vinaigrette in the form of a fluid gel. Merlot gelee, Chocolate & Almond "soil".
I finished ordering all the food that we will need to bring with us, and ordered all the food that we have had the luck of getting delivered to the JBH. Finalized all the prep sheets, one for the Beard House and one for us to complete at the restaurant. And finished putting the equipment list together that we need to bring. Although the JBH kitchen is stocked with the basics, we need to pack the ISI canisters, immersion circulators, special small wares, portable food saver and make sure we have enough coolers and ice packs, make sure the ice packs get frozen(that's important).
Tomorrow Matt will begin to break down 20+ guinea hens, turn the legs into a mousse, stuff the breasts with the mousse, roll the breasts into a roulade, wrap them in the guinea hen skin,make a seamless roulade using transglutamine and let them set for 24 hours, then finally poach them sous vide. We will take the poached birds and sear them off for service at the Beard House.