Thursday, June 27, 2013

Steamed Pork Buns

Sweet and Spicy Pork Belly Steam Buns
Yield: 4 servings, 10 buns
Prep time: 1 day
Cook Time: 4 1/2 hours

     This week a friend of our chef is throwing a block party and wanted to serve hand held food from different cultures around the world. Our suggestion was the traditional Chinese steamed bun. The buns are a great summer appetizer because they are light yet bursting with flavor and can be filled with any type of meat or vegetables that you like. Our steam buns are filled with succulent confit pork belly that has been cured overnight in herbs and spices and topped with char sui sauce. For your next get together try these pork buns out on your friends, you won't be disappointed.

Pork Belly Dry Cure
     1 qt kosher salt
     1 cup sugar
     2 cinnamon sticks
     1/4 cup allspice berries
     1/4 cup coriander seed
     2 ea star anise
     2 bay leaves
     1/4 cup fennel seed
     1/4 cup black peppercorns
     2 ea cloves
     3 garlic cloves
     5 sprigs rosemary
     5 sprigs thyme
Confit Pork Belly
     3 lb pork belly
     1/2 gal veg oil
     1 head garlic, split crosswise
     1 cup ginger, sliced
     1/2 bunch scallion          
Plated Steam Buns
     8 steam buns or lily buns
     confit pork belly, chilled, cut into slabs 3/4 inch thick x 2 in x 2in
     1 cup char sui glaze
     1 cup sliced radish
     1 cup cilantro leaves

1. Starting a day before you serve the steamed pork buns,combine all the pork cure ingredients in a large bowl. Pour half the pork cure in the bottom of a baking dish, lay in the pork belly and cover with the rest of the cure. Wrap the baking dish in plastic and refrigerate for 24 hours.
2. After 24 hours remove the pork from the cure and rinse thoroughly under cold water.
3. Preheat the oven to 275 F.
4. In a deep baking dish or dutch oven combine the oil, garlic, ginger, and scallion.
5. Lay the pork belly into the oil mixture, making sure it is completely submerged. Cover with aluminum foil and and cook for 4 hours. (The belly is cooked when a fork can be inserted into it with no resistance.)
6. Once cooked remove the belly from the oil and cool on a sheet tray in the refrigerator.
7. After being cooled remove the skin from the pork belly and slice into portions.
8. When ready to serve, steam the lily buns until softened and hot. To hold warm wrap in damp paper towel.
9. Heat a few teaspoons of oil in a saute pan and sear the pork until heated through. Lay one slice of pork into each bun, then top with sauce, cilantro, radish, and serve.

Chef's Note
     To create these pork buns the recipe requires a few Asian ingredients that may not be familiar to many cooks. Lily buns or stem buns are eaten all over china and can be filled with any type of meat or vegetables. They are traditionally made with wheat flour and can be found in many grocery stores as a frozen product. Once steamed they are very springy and soft and should be handled carefully. To keep them warm and moist once steamed wrap them in damp paper towel until ready to serve.
     Char Sui sauce is a sweet and salty sauce that is called the Chinese barbecue sauce. Traditionally this is not a sauce but a reference to the finished pork roasted with this sauce. It is now available in a jar in most grocery stores and largely produced by Lee Kum Kee.  If Char Sui is unavailable it can be recreated using hoisin sauce mixed with a little honey, soy sauce, and mirin.

To have your recipe repaired visit our website . Follow us on Facebook , Twitter, and Pinterest to receive updates on new recipes, photos, and chef tips.

Monday, June 24, 2013

New York Style Cheesecake with Blueberry Sauce

NY Cheesecake with Blueberry Sauce
Yield: 9-in cake, 8 servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Rest Time: 4 hours

     RMR recently got an email from Katrina G, asking for an improvement on her cheesecake recipe. The problem was that her cheesecake always browned too heavily and cracked on the top, while ending up too dense in the center. The trick we tell everyone making a cheesecake is to create two layers of crust which protects the top from overcooking and always leaves you with a nice presentation. By adding more liquid components such as the condensed milk and mascarpone for a tangy flavor the density of the cream cheese is reduced and your cake ends up with a more complex flavor. We love topping cheesecake with fresh fruit sauces so feel free to use whatever is fresh at the market, we are just coming into full blueberry season so it seemed like a great fit . This is a perfect dessert for your family or to serve a party on a warm summer night, we hope you enjoy.

1 lb 8 oz cream cheese
4 oz (1/2 cup) condensed milk
8 oz mascarpone cheese
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup heavy cream
3 egg yolks

2 cups ap flour
2 cups brown sugar
3 cups crushed graham cracker
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
2 sticks cold butter, cubed

1. Begin the cheesecake batter by adding the cream cheese,condensed milk, and mascarpone to a mixer and whip on medium speed using either a whisk or paddle attachment.
2. When the cheese mixture is light and fluffy add the vanilla extract, sugar, heavy cream, and yolks; blend on medium until smooth. Let stand until ready to fill.
3. Start the crust by crushing the graham crackers either by hand or in a food processor. Once crushed combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl or in the bowl of the food processor.
4. With the food processor running or using a hand mixer slowly add the butter cubes until a large sand texture is achieved.
5. Line a 9-inch spring-form pan with half of the crumb mixture pressing into an even 1/4 inch layer.
6. Pour the batter into the pan to reach jujst 1/4 inch below the rim of the pan
7. Melt the remaining cubes of butter and mix with the remaining crust to create large chunks. Sprinkle the new crust mixture on top of the batter lightly to make a 1/4 inch thick layer.
8. Place the spring-from pan in a large roasting dish and pour in boiling water until it comes halfway up the sides of the cheesecake. Bake at 300 F for 45 minutes until the cheesecake still jiggles a little in the center but is mostly set.
9. Remove from the water bath and refrigerate for at least four hours until fully cooled and firmed. To remove from the pan unlock the spring and use a thin spatula to run around the rim of the cheesecake.
10. Slice with a knife dipped in hot water and serve with a ladle of warm blueberry sauce.

Warm Blueberry Sauce
2 cups blueberries
1 Tbsp lemon zest
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar

Combine all ingredients in a small sauce pot and simmer over low heat until the berries start to pop and release their juice. Cook for five minutes until the sauce comes together and thickens. Let cool slightly before serving over cheesecake

Chef's Note
      Mascarpone is a soft spreadable Italian cheese made from cream. It has a tangy flavor and is used in this recipe to balance the richness of the cream cheese and sweetness of the sugar. In many other recipes this is usually done with sour cream, which can be substituted if mascarpone is not available.

To have your recipe repaired visit our website . Follow us on Facebook , Twitter, and Pinterest to receive updates on new recipes, photos, and chef tips.