Wednesday, January 30, 2013

IACP in New York

For the International Association of Culinary Professional's Conference in New York we partnered with Chef Virginia Willis.  We featured her Kale Omelet served quiche style at one of the nutrition breaks. I have tried several of Virginia's recipes from the her book Basic to Brilliant, Y'all but the omelet is one of my favourites. Here a picture from the last time I made it for brunch:

Kale Omelet
3 slices thick bacon, cut into lardoons
or 2 Tbsp canola oil 30 mL
1 onion, preferably Vidalia, chopped
5 cups kale, cleaned, stemmed and chopped 1.25 mL
¼ tsp salt 1 mL
¼ tsp pepper 1 mL
2 Tbsp water 30 mL
6 large eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese 125 mL
¼ tsp red pepper flakes 1 mL
¾ cup ricotta cheese 175 mL
1 Tbsp canola oil 15 mL 
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F (180 C). Line a plate with paper towel.
  2. Heat a large nonstick, ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add bacon, 5 to 7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to the prepared plate; set aside.
  3. Pour off all but 1 Tbsp (15 mL) of the drippings (reserve the excess fat for another use or dispose). Alternately, heat 1 Tbsp (15 mL) canola oil in the skillet over high heat until shimmering. Add onion and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until golden, 4 to 6 minutes. Decrease the heat to medium-low, add half of the kale, and toss until they begin to wilt, about 1 minute.  Add the remaining greens and season with salt and pepper. Add the water. Toss to coat. Decrease the heat to low. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the greens are wilted and tender, about 15 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the greens to a large bowl, leaving any cooking liquid behind.
  4. Rinse and dry skillet. To the greens add the eggs, ¼ cup (60 mL) of the grated cheese, the reserved bacon and the red pepper flakes. Stir to combine. Fold in the ricotta. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Return the now-clean skillet to the stovetop over medium-high heat. Add 1 Tbsp (15 mL) canola oil and rotate the skillet to coat the bottom of the pan. When the canola oil is shimmering, pour in the egg mixture and spread evenly with a rubber spatula. Cook over medium-low heat until the omelet is barely set at the edges, 5 to 7 minutes. Sprinkle the remaining ¼ cup (60 mL) grated cheese over the eggs.
  6. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until set, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and, using a butter knife or long spatula; loosen the omelet from the sides of the skillet. Give the skillet a shake and slide the omelet out onto a clean cutting board. (Don’t use a knife in the nonstick skillet!) Using a serrated knife, slice into wedges and serve immediately.
  7. To serve in tart shells:  Prepare the recipe as directed but rather then cooking it in a skillet, pour egg mixture into tart shells and bake at 350 F (180 C) for 10 to 15 minutes.   Yield: 18 tarts.
Reprinted from Basic to Brilliant, Y’all: 150 Refined Southern Recipes and Ways to Dress Them Up for Company by Virginia Willis, copyright © 2011.

Some of my Favourite Pics from IACP in New York 2012:
Leah, me and Virginia getting ready for the Nutrition Break
Virginia's Kale Omelet's ready for the Nutrition Break

Leah, me and Nathan at a reception overlooking Central Park.

Food Art

Leah and Janice
On Times Square with my favourite foodies!
At Martha Stewart Show:  We 'won' tickets!

Celebrating with George! Cooking Instructor of the Year!

Leah and I had one day to tour as many food spots around the city as possible:

Fresh Mozzarella

Nettie and I


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