Hey Waiter, There’s Sh$$ In My Food!

Hey server there's shit in my food-2

As a cook, one of the scariest things I have experienced is seeing a server bring a plate back from the dining room. There is just a certain way you can just tell something is not right. Their body language and facial expressions always seems to say the same thing: “Something is wrong, and I’m… 

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rabbit poached in wild carrot broth

Rabbit Poached In Wild Carrot Broth With Chanterelles

I love rabbit, If you’ve never had it, you could compare it’s flavor to turkey: it’s sweet, tender, and mild. A little tradition that my boss instilled in me is serving rabbit with carrots. Far from being morbid, the pairing is a natural one. Now if you’ve read children’s stories like Beatrix Potter, you know… 

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Turkish Saffron Milkcaps With Cumin Yoghurt

I never dreamed talking to the open air would connect me with mushroom hunters from around the world, but it did. I used to be a little self conscious talking about my hunting “habit”. It’s just that where I live in Minnesota, to the great majority of people the term “wild mushroom” refers to morels,… 

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crispy pork snout with truffles and spruce tips

Crispy Pork Snout, Black Truffle And Spruce Tips

The last time I visited the Butcher Block restaurant in Minneapolis, Chef Fillipo Caffari gave us a tour of the kitchen. Fillipo moved here from Rome, where he used to be a butcher. I haven’t worked directly under him except for one or two special dinners, but I always admired the magic he works with… 

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lobster mushroom crusted walleye

Lobster Mushroom Crusted Walleye, Winter Wild Rice

Wondering what to do with all those dried lobster mushrooms? Here’s a great technique. At a restaurant I used to work at, the signature dish was veal tenderloin crusted with ground porcini and espresso. The first night I did a stage trying to get a job, they offered me some chow, whatever I wanted off… 

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jean louis palladin's black truffle ice cream

Jean Louis Palladin’s Black Truffle Ice Cream

Of all the chef’s I look up to, Jean Louis Palladin takes the cake. I only learned about his work after he died, hearing Anthony Bourdain talk about him on one of his tv shows. What Bourdain said was: “You and I will never cook like Jean Louis, no one will” I became a bit… 

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boar roast

Boar Roast with Pickled Ramp-Dried Fruit Agrodolce

Some foods really just sell themselves. I know if boar goes on a menu in any form, it’s going to fly like hotcakes. It doesn’t matter if it’s a sausage, headcheese, rib, tenderloin, whatever, diners want it. The flavor of boar is great, kinda like if venison and pork had a baby. It’s porky tasting,… 

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burdock salsify relish

Burdock Relish

The first time I saw burdock I was amazed. The entire roots were intact, most of them at least four feet long. I didn’t really develop an appreciation for them until I dug one myself though. Not only is the taproot difficult to unearth,  it’s also supported by little ancillary roots that come off of… 

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basic steak and morel sauce

Basic Steak and Morel Sauce

Out of all the things that can be made with dried morels, this is one of my favorites. Everybody loves a good steak, and the addition of mushrooms is classic. Using morels instead of cultivated mushrooms brings this basic combination to new heights. I’ll let you in on a little secret of mine too: when… 

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