🧀 Smoked Salmon Grilled Cheese Sandwich 🧀
Inspired By Eric Ripert
The Chef is a genius at pairing seafood with minimal ingredients to create a dish where the diner is astonished that those simple components could be combined in such a way to result in something so spectacular.
Here a plain old grilled cheese sandwich is perfect in its four-star simplicity with just four items: smoked salmon, Swiss cheese, bread, and butter. After I came across this Instagram post by Eric Ripert, and being a lover of salmon in all its preparations, Smoked Salmon Grilled Cheese just had to be on my menu.
At Le Bernardin Chef Ripert is world-renowned for his exquisite, clean, seafood-centered cuisine. With this sandwich he proves that every dish does not have to be fancy to be sublime.
Smoked Salmon Grilled Cheese Recipe
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Citrus Salmon Crudo
(Orange-Lime-Lemon Emulsion, Yuzu Kosho)
Dinner at Mayfair Supper Club Las Vegas
A couple of years ago we had a wonderful dining experience at the Mayfair Supper Club at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. Fine food and wines, impeccable service, and mesmerizing entertainment made for a most memorable evening. Totally enamored by their Heirloom Tomato Salad, I re-created it here.
Well… we recently returned to celebrate my sister’s birthday. And the Mayfair Supper Club again did not disappoint with its glitz and glamour and old-school clubby ambiance.
Our Mayfair Supper Club Meal
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Gordon Ramsay Hell’s Kitchen Las Vegas
And His Crispy Skin Salmon Dish
Gordon Ramsay made a surprise visit to Hell’s Kitchen at Caesars Palace on the Las Vegas Strip to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the restaurant, which was the first of his six Hells.
We were there, but unfortunately just missed him by exactly one week! The one word we used to describe our lunch at Hell’s Kitchen was FUN! It was super enjoyable from the buzzing energy, to the studio-set atmosphere with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the Strip, to the relaxed yet experienced service, and it felt like the guests were all there to have a good time, too. And we enjoyed the crispy skin salmon dish so much, that I decided to re-create it at home.
Hell’s Kitchen in Vegas is on track to hit $55 million in annual sales, Ramsay said, a figure that places it among the highest-grossing independent restaurants in the world. The 300+ seat restaurant is open more than 12 hours a day, seven days a week, 52 weeks of the year. Just like casinos, Ramsay staffs Hell’s Kitchen in three eight-hour shifts. In fact, there’s a team dedicated to making Wellingtons throughout the night. (from Las Vegas Review-Journal here)
🔥 Hell’s Kitchen Las Vegas 🔥
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Russian Shuba Salad Verrines
AKA Fur Coat Salad
My Nana (paternal grandmother) was born in Kiev in 1894. She was an excellent cook, but she never served a Shuba Salad…most likely due to the fact that it was invented after the time her family fled to escape the pogroms when she was a young girl.
The story has it that sometime in the early 1900s, a restaurateur in Moscow named Anastas Bogomilov created the dish to calm and satiate his rowdy vodka-drunk customers.
Striking, super-flavorful, layered Shuba Salad is often served for Christmas and New Year’s now, and traditionally made with chopped pickled herring. Although I am a fan of pickled herring, here I substituted an appetizing fish with broader appeal, smoked salmon. Today, January 7th, is Orthodox Christmas – celebrated in Russia, Ukraine, and many central and eastern European countries as well as other parts of the world. It’s time to enjoy some Shuba!
The dish’s intriguing name “Herring Under a Fur Coat” is translated to English from seledka pod shuboi or shuba. Shuba means fur coat in Russian, here the fish is nestled under a coating of fluffy soft vegetables and dressing.
Nana did wear a fluffy Russian Sable Fur Coat to protect her against Chicago’s harshest winters, but alas, despite my Russian ancestry, there was no Shuba Salad in my youth…but I am more than happy to have discovered it now.
Fur Coat Salad Recipe
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with Fennel Seeds and Gin
A sushi-quality sockeye salmon fillet is rubbed with a mixture of salt, sugar, black pepper, and toasted fennel seeds. It is tightly bundled in a puree of blackberry and gin then refrigerated for at least 24 hours. The result is something a little different than the traditional gravlax with dill.
Last month we thoroughly enjoyed a Salmon Crudo with Blackberry Ponzu. It turns out the Pacific Northwest chefs’ secret is the marriage of salmon and blackberries. Now we know too.
The blackberry-gin mixture brings an interesting herbal fruitiness while fennel adds subtle anise notes. The exterior of the salmon is tinged a neat purple color. This was a fun project and a refreshing modern alternative to old world Nordic-style gravlax.
We plated our blackberry-cured gravlax with fresh blackberries, tomato, red onion, and lemon. Everything bagels, capers, and cream cheese were served on the side. Delightful and different!
Blackberry-Cured Gravlax Recipe
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