THE NIBBLE BLOG: Products, Recipes & Trends In Specialty Foods
Also visit our main website, TheNibble.com.

Archive for June 4, 2017

FOOD FUN: Cheese Omakase, A Cheese Tasting Dinner

Like sushi? Like cheese? In honor of National Cheese Day, June 4th, combine them both.

We don’t mean the Philadelphia roll, the only mainstream sushi with cheese (Philadelphia cream cheese and smoked salmon, to be precise.

But last year, Rachel Freier, a cheese monger at Murray’s Cheese Bar in Greenwich Village, created a whimsical yet sophisticated 10-course cheese dinner—an omakase, as it were.

Inspired by an omakase she had recently enjoyed at a sushi restaurant, her 10-course tasting dinner did not seek to emulate sushi, although one course is an homage.

Here’s the cheese omakase menu, which is simple enough to copy at home:

  • Amuse Bouche: Milk punch made with chamomile, sweet vermouth and some sweet hay from Jasper Hill Farm in Vermont. It was inspired by a visit to the dairy, where, Freier said, “We sat on a hay bale inside a hay dryer just licking the air it smelled so good.”
  • First Course: A dish called Salting the Curd, made from squeaky fresh curds with fried curds (not shown in photo).
  • Salad Course: A goat cheese salad that featured St. Maure, a bloomy-rind goat cheese from France’s Loire Valley that Murray’s coats with ashes to help it ripen. Looking like a piece of pressed sushi, the rectangle of cheese sits atop a shiso leaf. Instead of soy sauce, there’s a vinaigrette made from pickled cherries and honey, and instead of wasabi, there are wasabi peas. Freier paired the course with a Loire Valley chenin blanc.
  • Pasta Course: Reverse ravioli, two squares squares of mozzarella (instead of pasta dough), filled with tomato sauce, garlic and basil. It was paired with lambrusco, a red wine from Italy (not shown).
  • Frisée aux Lardons With Poached Quail Egg: A spin on the classic, cubes of cheese rind (Spring Brook Reading raclette from Vermont; and Hollander, a sheep’s milk cheese from the French Pyrenees) standing in for the bacon lardons, along with some sautéed mushrooms.
  • Alpine Fondue: A blend of three mountain cheeses, Etivaz, Vacherin Fribourgeois and French raclette. Served with toast fingers and the cornichons, dates and julienned green apples.
  • Palate Cleanser: A shot of whey mixed with apple, ginger and spinach (not shown).
  • Main Course: A mini pot pie filled with Ardrahan, a washed-rind cow’s milk cheese from Ireland. Pungent washed rind cheeses are meaty and brothy (some call them stinky) and should be paired with a hearty wine: In this case, Bordeaux.
  • Cheese & Fruit:Tarte tatin” with cheese; Norway’s national cheese, gjetost, with the apples and crust of the tarte tatin. Gjetost is a caramelized cheese, cooked from goat’s milk cream. It substituted for the caramelized apples of tarte tatin. This course was paired with Eden ice cider.
  • Dessert: Ice cream bon bon, a stilton center, enrobed in chocolate.
  •  

    Cheese Omakase

    Cheese Sushi

    [1] Some of the courses in the omakase dinner (photo courtesy Murray’s Cheese). [2] A close up on the “sushi” course: Saint Maure cheese from France, the second item in the top photo (photo courtesy Chopsticks and Marrow).

     
    Here are close-up photos of the courses.
     
    MORE

    Cheese Glossary: The Different Types Of Cheese

    Sushi Glossary: The Different Types Of Cheese

      

    Comments

    TIP OF THE DAY: Use “Everything” Bagel Topping On Everything Else

    Everything Fish Fillet

    Everything Burger Bun

    Everything Bagel Spice Blend

    Everything Topping

    [1] At OB Surf Lodge in San Diego, the “Everything” salmon entrée, has the spice topping with a variety of sides (*below). [2] and [3] Homemade burger buns from King Arthur Flour, which sells the topping. [4] What should you top first (photo courtesy Take Two Tapas).

     

    First there was the “everything” bagel (history and recipe below), for people who wanted it all: onion, garlic, poppy seed, salt and sesame seed.

    Then it ported to everything crackers, lavash, hamburger buns, bagel chips, dips, pretzels, popcorn…and now, to protein.

    You can purchase it ready-blended (see photo #3 and check Trader Joe’s and other stores) or customize your own topping, e.g., leave out the salt and add red pepper flakes. If you mix up a lot, you can give it as gifts.

    Then, here’s what you can do with it. Notes:

  • A little goes a long way, so start small.
  • When baking, the garlic can burn after a while. Keep an eye on it and cover with foil when it turns light brown.
  • For baking bread, use an egg wash before sprinkling on the topping.
  •  
    EVERYTHING BREAKFAST

  • Avocado toast.
  • Cream cheese: Top the brick with the seasoning.
  • Eggs: For fried, first toast the seasoning mix in a non-stick pan with a bit of oil. Then add the eggs and sprinkle more seasoning on top. When ready, flip. For scrambled eggs, add more at the beginning; then no need to sprinkle on top.
  • Plain yogurt and cottage cheese.
  • Buttered toast.
  • Regular bagels (sprinkle it on the cream cheese, or brush the bagel with water and adhere to the top).
  •  
    EVERYTHING LUNCH

  • Burgers: Bake “everything” buns, or brush plain buns with water and sprinkle on the topping.
  • Cole slaw and potato salad.
  • Green salads.
  • Pasta: Sprinkle on mac and cheese.
  • Pizza: Mix into the dough, or sprinkle on the top.
  • Salad dressing.
  • Sandwich filling garnish.
  •  
    EVERYTHING DINNER

  • Grilled chicken or fish.
  • Pan-fried fish: Rub an inch-thick tuna or other steak with olive oil and everything mix. Sear in a very hot cast iron skillet with about a tablespoon of olive oil, two minutes per side.
  • Pasta: Use with butter, olive oil, red or white sauce
  • Soup: Spread some Dijon mustard on the top, add the seasoning, drizzle with olive oil and roast in a 400°F oven for 5-8 minutes.
  •  
    EVERYTHING SIDES & SNACKS

  • Corn on the cob.
  • Dips.
  • Hard boiled eggs.
  • Focaccia.
  • Hummus.
  • Popcorn.
  • Potatoes and grains.
  • Soft cheeses: goat cheese log, ricotta.
  •  

     
    RECIPE: EVERYTHING BAGEL TOPPING

    Ingredients For About 1/3 Cup

  • 2 tablespoons black or white sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons poppy seeds
  • 2 teaspoons minced dried garlic
  • 1 tablespoon minced dried onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon† coarse salt (kosher, sea salt)
  •  
    Preparation

    1. TOAST the sesame seeds in a medium skillet over medium heat, until lightly browned, stirring occasionally (3 to 5 minutes). Transfer to the storage container and let cool.

    2. ADD the poppy seeds, onion, garlic and salt to the bowl and stir or shake to combine.

    3. STORE in an airtight container. As with all spices and dried herbs, store in a cool, dry place away from sunlight.

     
     
    THE HISTORY OF THE “EVERYTHING” BAGEL

    When a high school student, David Gussin had a part-time job in a bagel shop in Howard Beach, Queens. He says he invented the “everything” bagel sometime around 1980.

    One of his jobs was to sweep out the the seeds that had fallen off bagels. Instead of throwing them out, he swept them into a bin and snacked on them, enjoying the toasty mixed flavors.

    One day, in a stroke of inspiration, Gussin envisioned a new bagel topping: poppy and sesame seeds mixed with other toppings. He proposed the “everything” bagel to the owner, and it was an instant hit with customers.

    Following a 2008 New Yorker article with his story, the digital marketing pioneer Seth Godin wrote on his blog, “Unfortunately, I worked in a bagel factory in 1977…baking bagels…including the “everything” bagel.

    Gussin’s response: “The last thing I want is a brouhaha over the ‘everything’ bagel. It brings smiles to people’s faces. It doesn’t deserve controversy. It’s a nice thing’.”

    _______________

    *In this dish, the chef has crusted the salmon with “everything,” and sauté it until the topping is toasted. The salmon is finished in the oven and served with crisp fried capers, lightly wilted arugula with red onion, polenta and buttermilk sauce.

    †We use much less salt than most recipes. We find “everything” bagels to have too much salt.

     
      

    Comments



    © Copyright 2005-2017 Lifestyle Direct, Inc. All rights reserved. All images are copyrighted to their respective owners.