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Chef David Burke’s Ideal Holiday Meal

Chef David Burke’s Ideal Holiday Meal

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James Beard Award-winner David Burke describes a mouthwatering holiday meal that you can make in the comfort of your own home

Many of us want to impress our guests during the holidays, and what better way to do so than with a menu developed by a James Beard Award-winning chef and restaurateur? David Burke discusses his ideal three-course holiday dinner, and some of his choices may surprise you.

Burke, known for some of his more innovative dishes and artistic plating, starts traditional with some hors d'oeuvres and provides a menu that you can recreate at home to make this your best holiday party yet.

Instead of serving a traditional Christmas turkey or roasted chicken, Burke has his own thoughts on which type of bird should make it onto your holiday table and shares just how to prepare it to maximize your flavors.

If you have a sweet tooth, you may find yourself drooling over some of Burke’s dessert suggestions. His last one, though, may also surprise you. Burke suggests taking an old holiday "favorite" — if you can call it that — and revamping it.

In addition to his belly-filling tips, Burke provides some top-notch holiday dating advice as well.

Follow Eva on Twitter @EvaZaccaria.

THE CHEF: DAVID BURKE Ringing In the New Year With Luxury and Ease

SOME people greet the New Year with totemic foods -- black-eyed peas and collards, soba noodles, even grapes -- as symbols of prosperity. But David Burke goes straight for the prime rib.

"Decadent, decadent," the chef uttered over a magnificent standing rib roast that had just emerged from the oven at his restaurant David Burke & Donatella. But the roast is also relatively easy, a worthwhile consideration for someone like Mr. Burke, who was looking forward to a post-holiday sabbatical at his home in Fort Lee, N.J. "Once this goes in the oven, you're done with it," he said, leaving you time to mingle with friends and family. The accompanying potatoes and sauce could all be done beforehand. "Now that's your holiday meal."

The rib roasts his mother made on special occasions were seasoned with salt and pepper and served au jus. But that's too Rockwellian for his tastes: note the gold leaf on his bundt pan meatloaf, the seaweed brine in his roast chicken at his new squeeze of a bistro in Bloomingdale's. So this chef chooses dry aged meat and roasts it with a crackle crust of cayenne and cumin.

Mr. Burke prepared the roast for the oven, carving away at its mottled rind and wondering out loud why prime rib seems to have fallen in favor to rib steaks in recent years.

"It's much easier," he said of the roast, which comprises the seven ribs between the chuck and the loin. He recommended cooking it on the bone for juicier results. "And it's more festive," he added.

Then there are the leftovers, which come in handy in the lazy aftermath of the holidays. The days after I followed his recipe were fat with roast beef sandwiches, deviled beef bones and countless snacks consumed in the furtive chill of the open refrigerator.

As Mr. Burke trimmed his roast, he noted that many cooks leave the thick cushion of fat on while roasting to keep the meat moist. But dry-aged beef is denser, having lost water weight during its 14- to 28-day hang, so it loses less moisture when it cooks.

"It won't bleed on the plate, even when it's rare," he said. So off went the fat, leaving just enough behind to create a caramelized crust.

His beef came from Creekstone Farms, whose black angus he visited in Kentucky on a reconnaissance trip with the restaurateur Steve Hanson. The two are opening a steakhouse together in Chicago next year and the venture has allowed Mr. Burke to dabble in the science of dry-aging.

"Dry-aged fat is phenomenal," Mr. Burke said, touting its funky, ripened cheese qualities. He handed some scraps to his chef de cuisine, David Amorelli, who melted them in a pan. "Best fat to sauté your potatoes," Mr. Burke said.

"Or turn into love," Mr. Amorelli added.

Love is a marinade made of dry-aged fat, mustard and roasted garlic, Mr. Amorelli explained. He slicks it over grilled steaks to give them that come-hither sheen and unctuous mouth-feel.

"We call it love because the cooks say 'give me some love,' or 'hit it with a little love,' " Mr. Burke said, proving that chefs who share a kitchen, like old couples, often speak a language entirely their own.

The chef tied up his roast, knotting under each bone, and patted it down with a peppery rub that sparkled with salt. He discussed the nuances of roasting.

"You can roast at a lower temp for a long time, and then crank it up at the end to brown the crust," Mr. Burke said. That slow-low method yields uniformly cooked meat, but it takes forever.

High heat roasting, the game plan for the day, creates slices with a crispy, well-cooked rims and supple, rosy centers.

What to Cook This Weekend

Sam Sifton has menu suggestions for the weekend. There are thousands of ideas for what to cook waiting for you on New York Times Cooking.

    • Gabrielle Hamilton’s ranchero sauce is great for huevos rancheros, or poach shrimp or cubed swordfish in it.
    • If you’re planning to grill, consider grilled chicken skewers with tarragon and yogurt. Also this grilled eggplant salad.
    • Or how about a simple hot-dog party, with toppings and condiments galore?
    • These are good days to make a simple strawberry tart, the blueberry cobbler from Chez Panisse, or apricot bread pudding.
    • If you have some morels, try this shockingly good pan-roasted chicken in cream sauce from the chef Angie Mar.

    "With dry-aged meat, there's not a lot of pan juices," he said. "So we make sauce, instead of au jus."

    He dumped Worcestershire, ketchup and Tabasco in a pan and let it reduce until it smelled meaty and sweet. It was a flashback to his Smith & Wollensky days, when he concocted some popular bottled sauces.

    He called this one Worchestobascetch.

    "There's lots of citrus, tamarind, chili," he said of the supermarket sauces he employed, warning against doctoring fancier ones that often contain too much sugar or modified starch.

    With his roast in the oven and his steak sauce done, he passed boiled potatoes through a sieve and started whipping them with milk heɽ steeped with garlic. He beat in some butter, then olive oil, then some of that deeply flavored melted fat.

    If he were cooking at home, he might use baked potatoes. "Less moisture so you can put more fat in them," he said.

    As if these potatoes weren't already a triple threat.

    On the stovetop sat a roast that had been resting for a good half-hour. He carried it to a busy workstation and his kitchen came to a sudden halt. It was as if a gorgeous woman had just entered the room.

    "That's prime, baby," the chef said of the highest grade of beef yielding these marbled slices that cut like butter. Prime rib, he pointed out, refers to the cut.

    He dunked slivers in sauce and handed them out. Then he ran his knife along some bones and wiggled them off.

    "I love these deviled," broiled to a crisp with mustard, he said. So did James Beard, who called deviled ribs "one of the most satisfying gastronomical experiences I know."

    But Mr. Beard never tried them with Worchestobascetch and a little love.

    SPICE-CRUSTED PRIME RIB WITH WHIPPED POTATOES Adapted from David Burke Time: About 2 1/2 hours

    For the roast: 13-rib portion of prime rib (6 to 8 pounds, preferably dry-aged), trimmed of excess fat (reserve it) and tied 1/2 cup ground cumin 1/3 cup ground cayenne 1/2 cup kosher salt 1/3 cup freshly ground black pepper

    For the steak sauce: 2 cups Worcestershire 1/2 cup ketchup 2 tablespoons Tabasco 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened2 teaspoons sesame oil

    For the potatoes: 3 pounds baking potatoes, peeled and quartered 1 tablespoon kosher salt 1 scant cup whole milk 3 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed 1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil.

    1. Remove roast from refrigerator 2 hours before cooking. Heat oven to 375 degrees. In a small bowl, combine cumin, cayenne, salt and pepper. Set roast fat-side up on counter and rub a thick layer of spice mixture over entire surface. Transfer roast to a wire rack in a shallow roasting pan and place in oven for 13 to 15 minutes per pound.

    2. While meat roasts, prepare steak sauce and potatoes. In a medium-size pot, combine Worcestershire, ketchup and Tabasco and set over medium heat. Reduce for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until mixture has thickened. Lower heat to warm and whisk in butter and oil. Transfer to gravy boat or bowl and allow to cool before for serving. (Stored in an airtight container, sauce will last in refrigerator for 2 weeks.) 3. While sauce reduces, place some trimmed fat in a small, heavy-bottomed pot over low heat until it melts. Place potatoes in a large pot, cover with cold water, add salt and place over high heat. When water boils, lower heat to medium and simmer until potatoes are soft, about 20 minutes. Shut off heat.

    4. After roast has cooked for an hour, check temperature by inserting a meat thermometer deep into its thickest part, away from any bone. For medium rare, remove from oven at 125 degrees. Allow to rest 15 to 20 minutes before carving.

    5. While roast rests, finish potatoes. Place a small pot over medium-low heat,add milk and garlic and simmer for 10 to 12 minutes. Shut off heat and discard garlic. Drain potatoes in a colander. Pass them through a potato ricer or sieve back into pot in which they were boiled. Add butter, milk, salt and pepper, place pot over low heat, and stir vigorously with a wooden spoon or whisk. Add olive oil, stirring, and a few tablespoons of rendered fat. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat to warm.

    6. Carve roast. Remove bones by slicing down their sides: reserve for later use or serve in a bowl with meal. Carve an inch-thick slice per person. Place on plate with whipped potatoes and sauce on the side.

    Chef David Burke’s Ideal Holiday Meal - Recipes

    The InMarket Holiday Cooking Series

    Featuring Top Celebrity Chef David Burke

    Join InMarket and Chef David Burke for an exclusive, online cooking event showcasing Chef Burke's best holiday meals including appetizers, a main course, desserts, and more!

    Wednesday, July 29, 2020 – 6:30 PM EST

    It’s been a tough year, so we’ve planned this fun event as our gift to you to take some time to celebrate the Moments that matter. Join us as we share our recipe for success for this coming holiday season and cook up some classic holiday fare.

    Space is limited, so reserve your spot with Chef David Burke today and you too can become a top Chef Master!

    Fueled by passion, grit, and a knack for artful innovation, David Burke is one of the best known and most respected chefs in modern American cuisine.

    At just 26, Burke’s kitchen mastery won him the executive chef position of New York City’s legendary River Cafe. While there, he became the first American ever to win the prestigious Meilleurs Ouvriers de France Diplome d’Honneur, cementing his reputation as a leading international chef. He subsequently won Japan’s Nippon Award for Excellence, the Robert Mondavi Award of Excellence and two nominations for James Beard Best Chef. Burke was also awarded a coveted three-star New York Timesreview for the River Café and later became a familiar guest on TV’s Top Chef.

    Make sure to include your home address for a special holiday treat from InMarket and Chef Burke!

    Chef David Burke's Holiday Feast

    This is a time when many of you are entertaining friends and family. It can be a bit stressful trying to create meals everyone will love. David Burke of David Burke and Donatella, located in New York City, visits The Saturday Early Show to share recipes that will certainly wow your guests.

    He shows everything from a delicious holiday drink to creative leftover recipes.

    The following are his recipes:

    Meatloaf Pancake with Goat Cheese Salad and Fried Eggs
    Serves 8

    8 large warm Buttermilk or other plain breakfast pancakes
    Approximately 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
    8 large eggs
    8 1-inch thick slices of Not-So-Basic Meatloaf
    8 cups frisee, washed well and dried
    2 cups goat cheese, crumbled
    8 tablespoons Red Wine Vinaigrette (see below)

    1. Preheat the oven to 200. Place the pancakes on piece of aluminum foil in the warm oven. Heat the butter in a medium nonstick frying pan. When very hot (but not smoking) add the eggs and fry according to your preference.
    2. Place one warm pancake in the center of each plate. Place a slice of meatloaf on the pancake. Place frisee, goat cheese and vinaigrette in a mixing bowl and quickly toss together. Place equal portions of frisee salad on top of each of meatloaf.
    3. Finally, place the fried egg on top of the frisee salad and serve immediately.

    1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
    2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
    1/3 cup of olive oil
    Salt and pepper to taste

    In a bowl, whisk together Dijon mustard and vinegar. Slowly stream oil into the bowl, whisking constantly to emulsify. Once the mixture has emulsified, continue to stream the oil into the bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

    Not-So-Basic Meatloaf
    Serves 8

    5 strips lean bacon, finely chopped
    6 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
    2 medium onions, peeled and finely chopped
    1 medium carrot, trimmed, peeled, and finely chopped
    2 pounds very lean ground beef sirloin
    2 large eggs
    1/2 cup milk
    1 cup finely ground bread crumbs
    1/4 cup Dijon mustard
    1/4 cup barbecue sauce
    1 TBS bottled horseradish, well drained
    1/2 cup finely chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
    2 TBS coarse salt or to taste
    1 TBS fresh ground pepper or to taste
    1 tsp. finely minced fresh thyme [or 1/4 tsp dried thyme]
    2 or 3 cups croutons
    10 whole unpeeled garlic cloves
    4 bay leaves
    1 sprig fresh thyme

    1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
    2. Place the bacon in a medium sauté pan over medium-low heat. Sauté for about 5 minutes or until the bacon has begun to crisp and most of the fat has rendered out.
    3. Add the minced garlic along with the chopped onion and carrot and continue to sauté for about 4 minutes or until the vegetables are soft and the onions are translucent but have not taken on any color. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the vegetables to cool.
    4. Place the ground sirloin into a large mixing bowl. Add the eggs and milk and, using your hands, work the liquid into the meat. Add the breadcrumbs and continue to work the liquid and crumbs into the meat. Add the cooled vegetables, mustard, barbecue sauce and horseradish along with 1/4 cup of the parsley, salt, pepper, and thyme.
    5. Using your hands, gently work all of the ingredients into the meat until well combined.
    6. Place half of the croutons into a shallow baking dish at least 14 inches long.
    7. Transfer the meatloaf mixture onto a clean, flat surface and, again, using your hands, shape it into a loaf about 3-1/2 inches wide by 2-1/2 inches high by 12 inches long. Press the remaining croutons into the loaf, making sure that they are partially pressed down into it. Gently press the unpeeled garlic cloves into the top of the meatloaf.
    8. Carefully, lay the loaf on top of the croutons in the baking dish, reforming the shape with your hands if necessary. Pierce the top of the meatloaf with the bay leaves and thyme sprig. Place the meatloaf in the preheated oven and bake for 1 hour or until the internal temperature reads 165° on an instant-read thermometer and the top is nicely browned.
    9. Remove the pan from the oven. Allow the meatloaf to rest for about 5 minutes before transferring it to a serving platter. Remove the bay leaves and thyme sprig sprinkle the remaining parsley over the top of the loaf and around the platter. Cut the loaf cross-wise into 1-inch or thicker slices and serve.

    Sea Scallop Benedict
    Serves 8

    For Chorizo Oil:
    1/2 cup canola oil
    1/4 lb chorizo (half reserved for chorizo oil, other half finely sliced for plating with scallops)
    1 whole clove garlic, cut in half
    1/4 tsp paprika
    pinch salt

    For Pancakes:
    2 large baking potatoes, peeled
    3 shallots, peeled
    1 egg
    Coarse or kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
    Butter or olive oil for sautéing

    For Sea Scallops and Quail Eggs
    4 large sea scallops - cut in 1/2 crosswise to make 8 medallions
    8 quail eggs
    1 TBS Chopped Chives
    Black olive paste - [can be bought at a gourmet grocer]

    1. In a medium skillet, over medium heat, combine canola oil, the chopped half of the chorizo, garlic, paprika, and pinch salt.
    2. Cook together, stirring often, until oil is inundated with the flavors of the other ingredients. The chorizo should be slightly crispy, but not burnt, 5-7 minutes. Let rest, then strain.
    1. Combine potatoes, shallots, and egg in a food processor and grate.
    2. Spoon grated-potato mixture into a bowl and add salt and pepper. Heat clarified butter or olive oil in a large sauté pan, preferably with a non stick surface.
    3. Spoon 2 or more tablespoons of potato mixture into pan for each pancake. The thickness and diameter of the pancake will depend on how they are to be used. Cook pancakes until golden brown, turning frequently. Let rest on a paper towel.
    1. Sautee chorizo in a small sauce pan, over medium heat until the fat begins to render, then, add the sea scallops and continue to sauté until crisp.
    2. Cook quail eggs in small frying pan with a little butter. Season with Salt & Pepper.

    Barbecued Chicken and Jack Cheese Dumplings
    Makes 24-30 hors d'oeuvres

    10 oz raw skinless and boneless chicken
    1 egg
    2 teaspoons salt, or to taste (plus some extra for sprinkling)
    1 teaspoon black pepper
    1/2 cup barbecue sauce
    1/3 cup jalapeno-jack cheese, small dice
    1 package wonton skins
    2 eggs
    1/2 cup chopped chives

    Equipment List: Bamboo skewers or chicken wing bones

    1. Fill a heavy bottom medium sauce pan 1/2 way with water, and heat on medium high heat.
    2. Cut the chicken into small pieces and place in a food processor. Add egg, 2 teaspoons salt and pepper and begin to process. While processing, gradually add the barbecue sauce and pulse until combined. Remove and put into bowl.
    3. Fold in cheese, and stir to mix.
    4. Place 1 tablespoon of chicken mixture in the middle of each wonton. Egg wash the edges.
    5. Place a skewer or chicken leg in the mound of chicken, sticking straight up.
    6. Seal the wonton by pinching around the skewer. Repeat this step with all wontons until filling is gone. Continue until all is done.
    7. By this time, your water should be boiling. Place dumplings in the pot and boil for 3-4 minutes. Remove carefully.
    8. Sprinkle with salt and dip bottom in remaining 1/4 cup barbecue sauce, then the chopped chives. Serve immediately, dim sum style.

    French Toast:
    8 small loaves home style bread or brioche
    6 cups heavy cream
    3/4 cup fresh orange juice
    1/3 cup Gran Marnier
    8 large eggs
    1 1/4 cup sugar
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    Approximately 8 cups vegetable oil

    1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside
    2. Using a bread knife, trim the crust off of each loaf of bread leaving a neat rectangle about 6 inches long. Using an apple corer or a small sharp knife, make three holes equal distance apart. Set aside.
    3. Whisk together the cream, orange juice and Gran Marnier in a deep bowl. Add the eggs and whisk to combine. Add the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg and continue whisking until the sugar has dissolved. One at a time, dip the loaves into the cream mixture to soak well. Place the wet loaves on a baking sheet or platter.
    4. Heat the vegetable oil in a deep fat fryer over medium high heat to 360 degrees Fahrenheit on a candy thermometer.
    5. One at a time, place the soaked loaves into the hot oil, making sure the loaf is submerged. Fry for about four minutes or until the outside is crisp and golden brown. Remove from the fat and place on a triple layer of paper towels to drain. Place the fried loaf on the prepared baking sheet in the oven to keep warm while frying the remaining loaves.
    1. When ready to serve, place a loaf on each of eight serving plates. And place a pirouette cookie into each of the three holes in the top of each fried loaf.
    2. Place the confectioners' sugar in a fine sieve and tap gently to dust the plate with sugar. Serve immediately.

    2 oz Absolut Peppar Vodka
    1 1/2 oz Sour Apple Pucker
    Splash of Grenadine
    Red Hots, or Hot Tamales, crushed

    Place all liquors in a shaker with ice, and shake aggressively for 10 seconds. Strain into a martini glass crusted with crushed Red Hots or Hot Tamales. Enjoy.

    Lobster Cobb Salad

    We’re thrilled to have Chef David Burke, the critically acclaimed culinary master behind BLT Prime by David Burke in Washington, D.C., share his recipe for Lobster Cobb Salad.

    Cobb Salad is one of my favorites. It’s fresh and straightforward, loaded with delicious ingredients, and makes a perfect entree. Traditional Cobbs typically have chopped greens, chicken, tomatoes, boiled eggs, and bacon and cheese, topped with a vinaigrette.

    Chef David Burke: Photo: BLT Prime by David Burke.

    Chef Burke’s upscale version of this American classic is a festival of greens with romaine lettuce, watercress, iceberg lettuce, arugula, tarragon leaves and scallions. The dressing is simply luxurious with scallions, parsley, garlic, oregano, chili powder in a base of low-fat mayonnaise and buttermilk.

    A Culinary Superstar

    We couldn’t find a better culinary mentor. Burke is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America and has been perfecting his craft for more than 25 years. He has a flair for fun and whimsy with a heart of gold to match. His honors include the coveted Meilleurs Ouvriers de France Diplome d’Honneur from his stint in France induction by the James Beard Foundation into the Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America – not to mention his turn on the second and fifth seasons of Bravo’s Top Chef Masters.

    Equal mixtures of inventor (his dry-aging process for steaks using pink Himalayan salt is patented), philanthropist, celebrity and passionate chef, he’s truly one of the pioneers of American cooking.

    Take advantage of this opportunity to recreate his scrumptious Lobster Cobb Salad.


    • 10 slices of bacon, 2 slices coarsely chopped
    • 2 garlic cloves
    • 3 tablespoons dry bread crumbs
    • 3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
    • 3 tablespoons milk
    • 1 large egg
    • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
    • 1/4 teaspoon finely chopped rosemary
    • 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
    • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
    • 3/4 pound lean ground sirloin
    • 12 slices white or sourdough bread
    • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
    • 1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce, stemmed and chopped
    • 2 beefsteak tomatoes, thinly sliced
    • 4 Bibb or romaine lettuce leaves
    • Cornichons and mustard, for serving

    Preheat the oven to 375°. Line a baking sheet with a wire rack. In a food processor, pulse the chopped bacon with the garlic cloves until minced. Add the bread crumbs, Parmesan, milk, egg, thyme, rosemary and hot sauce, season generously with salt and pepper and process to a paste. Transfer the paste to a medium bowl and knead in the ground sirloin.

    Preheat a griddle or grill pan. Spread the meat mixture evenly on 4 slices of the white bread. Top with another 4 slices of bread and brush both sides of the sandwiches with olive oil. Brush the remaining 4 slices of white bread lightly with olive oil and set aside. Place the sandwiches on the griddle and top with a heavy skillet. Cook over moderate heat, turning the sandwiches once, until they are golden, about 6 minutes total. Transfer the sandwiches to the rack and bake until the meat is cooked through, about 8 minutes longer.

    Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, cook the remaining 8 slices of bacon until crisp, about 6 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Toast the remaining 4 slices of white bread on the griddle until golden, about 2 minutes per side.

    In a small bowl, blend the mayonnaise with the chopped chipotle chile. Spread the mayonnaise on the meatloaf sandwiches and top with the bacon, tomatoes, lettuce and toasted bread. Cut each sandwich in half. Secure each half with a toothpick and serve with cornichons and mustard.

    Chef David Burke’s Ideal Holiday Meal - Recipes

    [1] A seacuterie plate from Oceana restaurant, with octopus salami, gravlax with dressed microgreens, and crab spread on toasted baguette (photo © Paul Johnson | Oceana Restaurant).

    [2] A put-it-together seacuterie board: You can purchase most of what’s here. Here are the recipes fi=or the rest (photo © Wild Alaska Food).

    [3] An ample lunch, first course, or dinner at PB Catch raw bar in Palm Beach (photo © PB Catch).

    [4] An individual seacuterie board from PB Catch, with octopus salami, salmon pastrami and smoked cod (photo © Libby Volgyes | PB Catch).

    [5] The start of it all: Chef David Burke’s Pastrami Salmon. Here’s the recipe (photo © David Burke Group).

    Back in 2017 we wrote an article about seacuterie (see-KEW-tuh-ree).

    It’s the seafood-based version of charcuterie.

    Instead of cured meats (mortadella, prosciutto, salami, etc.) and cheeses, seacuterie leaves the “turf” for the “surf”: seafood choices that are equally tasty, more healthful, and appeal to consumers who want to eat less meat or more sustainable foods in general.

    We have long served charcuterie—and now, seacuterie—on a board with cocktails, or individually plated as a first course with dinners.


    Seacuterie is a different approach to two popular starters:

    Seacuterie expands the concept of the seafood platter, which is mixed shellfish, both raw and cooked, served cold, usually on a bed of ice with condiments of mignonette sauce, cocktail sauce and lemon wedges.

    Beyond The Seafood Platter

    A classic seafood platter is laden with some assortment of clams, crabs, langoustines, lobster, mussels, oysters, prawns, scallops and shrimp.

    Occasionally, more exotic mollusks like cockles, periwinkles or snails will appear and if we’re lucky, one of our favorite shellfish, sea urchin (uni).

    Seafood platter items are served raw or lightly cooked (boiled, poached).

    Here’s where a seacuterie board or plate diverges:

    Seacuterie can include some seafood platter items, but it adds complexity to the variety by adding fish and preparations.

    And the good news is that you don’t have to prepare them all yourself (or even any of them, if you so choose).

    A seacuterie plate or platter can include elements that you purchase, ready-to-eat:

    And, it should include recipes that you have prepared:



    Seacuterie pairs best with white wine or rosé and sparkling wines.

    But you can serve lighter reds like Beaujolais and Pinot Noir. Plus:

    For cocktails: Martinis are ideal, but a Bloody Mary also hits the spot.


    The birth of seacuterie is attributed to the endlessly creative New York Chef David Burke.

    In 1998 at the helm of the [late, lamented] Park Avenue Café in Manhattan, he riffed on the Scandinavian cured salmon dish, gravlax [source].

    It was a dazzling concept, bursting with flavor, unheard of at the time.

    Trading the traditional dill, sugar and salt marinade, he used the more assertive “pastrami spices” (actually black pepper, coriander, parsley, paprika and maple syrup.

    Once marinated and preserved, the salmon sides are sliced in the same way as pastrami.

    Instead of the thin slices of gravlax, he sliced the cured salmon in the manner of pastrami. Here’s the recipe.

    The result, Pastrami Salmon, became a sensation among food writers and the foodies who follow them. Burke subsequently trademarked the name [source].

    And the kernel of a future trend—seacuterie—was born.

    We are fortunate to have had Pastrami Salmon numerous times at the Park Avenue Café.

    Chefs have continued to evolve fancy seacuterie options with preparations such as octopus pastrami, salami or torchon scallop mortadella swordfish ham tuna bresaola and tuna ‘nduja and other visual- and palate-excitement [source].

    *Plateau de fruits de mer is pronounced plah-TOE duh froo-EE duh MARE. It is a French term for means a platter of the fruits of the sea, i.e., seafood. In French, plateau means platter or tray, as opposed to its meaning in English, a geological term for a high plain.

    †You can purchase a loin of tuna or salmon, freeze it and slice it thinly while still partially frozen. Note that with salmon, you should be sure that the pin bones have been removed.

    'GMA' Cookie Search: Favorite Holiday Cookie Recipes

    "GMA" viewers showcase their favorite original cookie recipes.

    'GMA' Viewers Share Best Recipes in Christmas Cookie Search

    — -- "Good Morning America" gave viewers the chance to showcase their favorite original cookie recipe in the Great American Cookie Search throughout the month of December.

    "GMA" viewers responded by sharing their family traditions, from a gingerbread recipe passed down for generations to Norwegian Christmas cookies made with a secret ingredient. Celebrities from John Legend to Katie Holmes even joined in on the fun, sharing the holiday cookies they love to make with their families.

    Two viewer recipes were chosen as finalists.

    Cherie Michaud, 28, works at the University of North Carolina and said she learned her cooking skills from her grandparents. Michaud shared a recipe for pumpkin graham cracker cookies that features a butter frosting.

    Zenobia Dewely, from New York, is a 44-year-old mother of three. She said she was born into a baking legacy created by her two grandmothers and now pays it forward by donating boxes of cookies to people in need. Dewely shared her recipe for banana pudding cookies.

    Food & Wine magazine's Gail Simmons and Cookie Monster himself joined "GMA" today to select the winning recipe: Cherie Michaud's pumpkin graham cracker cookie.

    Read below for the finalists' recipes plus more recipes submitted by "GMA" viewers, celebrities and chefs. Try them in your kitchen this holiday season.

    'GMA' Viewer Cherie Michaud's Pumpkin Graham Cracker Cookie: The pumpkin flavor of these cookies from Cherie Michaud, of North Carolina, evokes the holiday season. Click HERE for the recipe.

    Chef David Burke’s Ideal Holiday Meal - Recipes

    David Burke serves the donuts with three small squeeze bottles of the fillings, and you get to inject your own filling. It’s fun.

    Although we haven’t gotten to one of his restaurants to try them, we cobbled together our own version using store-bought donut holes (not as good as homemade, but they let us try the concept).

    The recommended wine pairing is a sparkling rosé.

    The drunken donuts are powdered sugar munchkins with several plastic needle pointed syrups that you squeeze into the donuts holes.


    Prep time is 15 minutes plus 5 minutes frying.

    Ingredients For 2-3 Dozen (depending on size)

    Plus fillings: see note below.


    1. COMBINE the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder together, sift together and set aside as you whisk together the egg, milk and vanilla extract in a small bowl.

    2. ADD the oil to a deep, heavy saucepan and heat it to 350°F over medium heat. Watch the thermometer closely: If the oil goes above 350°, your donuts may get too crunchy.

    3. ADD the egg mixture into the flour mixture a bit at a time, and whisk until the dough is well combined. Add the melted butter and thoroughly combine.

    4. DROP small balls of dough into the hot oil, using a small cookie scoop (plan B: roll them in your hands). Fry in small batches: You don’t want to crowd the pan, because the dough balls need to float without making contact with each other. When they start to turning brown on the underside, flip them over with a fork. Continue to cook until both sides are golden brown.

    5. REMOVE the donut holes with a slotted spoon, onto a baking sheet or platter lined with paper towels. Allow them to cool and then roll them in the optional sugar. We used a bit of cinnamon sugar on half of them (we’re not keen on powdered sugar garnishes: they’re too messy).

    Taste and add more as alcohol as desired. You should go for a subtle layer of flavor, not a knockout.


    First, we thank the Dutch for olykoeks, meaning oil cake, batter fried in oil.

    While dough was fried the world over, we can thank the Dutch for the sweet balls fried in hog fat that became modern doughnuts.

    An old word for ball was nut a doughnut is literally a nut (ball) of dough. The term “doughnut” was first used in print in 1809 by American author Washington Irving in his satirical “Knickerbocker’s History Of New York.” Irving wrote of:

    “…balls of sweetened dough, fried in hog’s fat, and called doughnuts, or olykoeks.”

    Because the center of the cake did not cook as quickly as the outside, the softer centers were sometimes stuffed with fruit, nuts, or other fillings that did not require cooking (think of the chopped onions in the center of a bialy).

    What about the hole?

    Per Smithsonian, a New England ship captain’s mother made a notably delicious, deep-fried doughut that used her son’s spice cargo of nutmeg and cinnamon, along with lemon rind. She filled the center with hazelnuts or walnuts.

    As the story goes, in 1847, 16-year-old sailor Hanson Crockett Gregory created the hole in the center of the doughnut. He used the top of a round tin pepper container to punch the holes, so the dough would cook evenly.

    He recounted the story in an interview with the Boston Post at the turn of the century, 50 years later.

    He effectively eliminated the need to fill the less-cooked center, and provided an inner cut-out that enabled the dough to be evenly cooked.

    This was a breakthrough not just for donut holes, but for the donut in general. Previously, it had been cooked as a solid piece (no hole), so the sides were always crisper than the center. In fact, toppings were often put on the soggy center to cover up the flaw.

    After the creation of the doughnut hole, donut makers also fried the dough “holes.”

    It took more than a century and a mass marketer to popularize donut holes in America.

    While the forerunner of Dunkin’ Donuts began in 1948 (here’s the history of Dunkin’ Donuts), Munchkins “donut hole treats” were not introduced until 1972. Tim Hortons followed with Timbits in 1976.


    The first known printed record of the shortened word “donut” appears (likely an inadvertent misspelling) in “Peck’s Bad Boy And His Pa,” a story by George W. Peck published in 1900.

    The spelling did not immediately catch on. That impetus goes to Dunkin’ Donuts.

    Donut is a easier to write, but we prefer the old-fashioned elegance of doughnut. Take your choice.

    Doughnuts didn’t become a mainstream American food until after World War I. American doughboys at the front were served doughnuts by Salvation Army volunteers. When the doughboys returned, they brought their taste for doughnuts with them [source].

    The name doughboy wasn’t related to the doughnuts, by the way. It dates to the Civil War, when the cavalry unchivalrously derided foot soldiers as doughboys. Two theories are offered:

    We'd be remiss if we didn't mention Burke's own cookbook, filled with what he calls "contemporary classics" - favorite dishes that chefs can innovate with added twists.

    He devotes a portion of the book to "Second Day Dishes": Recipes that build on each other. Traditional Broiled Shrimp with Scampi Butter and Tomato-Rice Pilaf can be turned into Sau téed Shrimp with Spinach-Lasagna Roll and Crisp Spinach, and then further transformed into Shrimp Fried Rice and Sausage the next day.

    Watch the video: Holiday Even Brighter with Couple in the Kitchen: Holiday Meal for Two (June 2022).


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