Pho is actually really simple to make, but I wanted to breakdown what I've learned from my mom, and many iterations of trying to replicate her version. I wouldn't say this recipe is traditional or authentic. I'd just say it's good. Having eaten pho a dozen times and a dozen different ways, all over Vietnam, I can only say there are good and bad preparations of this dish, but no official one that rules them all.
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I'll admit, growing up in the culinary industry, I always saw Martin Yan as sort of a joke; a relic of early 90's cooking shows that spawned a series of pseudo-chef personalities that we see today. But I didn't give him nearly enough credit...
This week we embraced the fall season's color and flavors.
Ubuntu is closed now, but I never posted these pictures, so here you go.
When I heard the Chef de Cuisine of French Laundry, Corey Lee, left to open up his own restaurant in San Francisco, I was really excited. I think we all were; us cooks in the Bay Area, at least.
While the bar was preparing our drinks, we were served the dessert course, which was an assault on all the senses. Each one consisting of only one or two bites.
We saved the tenderloins from a whole goat we purchased from Marin Sun Farms. I had an idea to do goat lollipops. We seared the loin quickly to medium-rare, and then immediately spread it with a very smooth hummus before rolling it into a pangretto of falafel crumbs.
gin & tonic | carbonated gin-infused cucumber - pickled fennel - lemon meringue - borage flowers
Inspired by Chef Dave Arnold.
beets | a dessert salad of beets in several forms
I put a lot of work into this dish, only to find out half of the table didn't like beets. Thanks for telling me...
We call the general area of our offices, the Shire. On one of the rooftops, we've installed an urban garden, where we acquire most of our herbs and flowers for Chef's Table. This is the Sous Chef's course. He takes care of it every week, tweaking it a bit this way and that, each time.
A pea soup and salad combo. Feta cheese, mint, and peas work so well together. This salad is a celebration of their unity.
smucker's jar | peanut butter mouse - crumbled peanuts - strawberry sorbet - salted brioche crisp
I don't do desserts often, but this is something simple that I could pull off without pulling my hair out (I don't like working with sweets). It's a playful take on a Smucker's jar, with the salted brioche crisp as the lid. You crack the brioche into the jar with a spoon, and enjoy the textural and temperature juxapositions these familiar ingredients would otherwise provide.
brioche-crusted halibut | white corn pudding - israeli cous cous - corn shoots
My sous-chef, Cecile, taught me a really cool technique with corn. Basically, you juice raw corn, saving the flesh, pulp, and cob for another purpose. Take that raw corn juice and heat it up, and the starches from the corn will thicken the liquid, making an incredibly intense corn-flavored pudding.
korean blt | bulgolgi bacon - bacon powder - cherry tomato - butter lettuce heart
The eggplant is deep-fried whole, dunked in ice water, then peeled. I like eggplant this way because it has a very clean taste. The texture is almost like that of a giant grape.
Sometimes I create dishes purely on a certain look that I'm aiming for. I have a picture in my head of how I'd want the dish to look, and then I make it work from a taste and culinary perspective.