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Top Chef! (spoiler here) - cjs - 06-13-2008

Whooooeee - I'm so glad Stephanie won, she's been my pick from the very beginning!

Here's two of her recipes from the Food & Wine newsletter - the first one is the one she made the final night and blew everyone away with her combination of flavors!!


Source: Stephanie Izard, Top Chef Season 4
Roasted Lamb Medallions with Maitake Mushrooms, Braised Pistachios and Blackberry
Serves: 8

1 rack of lamb, removed from bones (reserve bones)
2T yellow miso
Thyme to taste
1/2 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic
1/2 cup red wine
2 cups chicken stock
1 pint blackberries
1 cup white balsamic
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup shelled pistachios
Salt to taste
1/4 lb maitake mushrooms
2t olive oil
1t butter
Pepper to taste
1/4 cup manzanilla olives, minced
1 shallot, minced

Clean silverskin from lamb and rub with miso and thyme. Let sit overnight. Brown bones in the oven. Meanwile in saucepot, brown onios and garlic. Deglaze with red wine and let reduce. Add in 1 1/2 cups chicken stock and 1/2 pint blackberries; let simmer. Add in browned bones and reduce to nappe. Season and strain.

Place remaining blackberries in nonreactive pot with white balsamic and sugar. Reduce to thicken and strain.

Place pistachios in remaining chicken stock; season with salt and simmer until nuts are softened.

Break maitakes into bite sized chunks. When time to serve, sauté mushrooms in one teaspoons olive oil and butter with salt and pepper.

Wipe miso off of lamb, season and brown all sides. Place in oven for a few minutes then let rest. Mix together olives, shallot and remaining olive oil.

To Serve:
Place mushrooms on plate. Top with sliced lamb and spoon of tapenade. Place a few pistachios on each plate. Pour spoonful of sauce on top and drizzle with blackberry gastrique.

Seared Quail Breast
Source: Stephanie Izard, Top Chef Season 4
Seared Quail Breast with Butter Poached Lobster Ravioli and Mango

1 lb quail breasts, cleaned
4 garlic cloves, chopped
Thyme to taste
Pepper to taste

1/2 onion, chopped
1 mango, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
Small amount white wine
1/2 cup lobster stock
1/2 quail stock (make from roasted quail bones)

1 lb ravioli pasta
A dab of butter
1/2 lb seasoned lobster meat
1 egg yolk
Flour for dusting
Sherry Gastrique:
1 cup sherry vin
1/4 cup sugar
Combine quail breasts with garlic, thyme and pepper. Allow to marinate overnight. When ready to use, sear quail breasts until nicely browned and meduim.

Saute onion, mango, garlic and deglaze with white wine. Add in rich lobster stock as well as quail stock (make from roasted quail bones) and simmer for 30 minutes. Strain through chinois.

Roll out pasta thin. Place a dab of butter and seasoned lobster meat on pasta. Rub with egg yolk, and lay other pasta sheet on top. Use round cutter to cut out pasta. Keep on parchment with a light dusting of flour until ready to use. When ready to use, boil carefully, not rapidly.

Sherry Gastrique:
Combine ingredients in nonreactive pot and reduce until thicked.
To Serve:
Serve quail breasts over ravioli and drizzle with sauce and gastrique.

Re: Top Chef! (spoiler here) - Harborwitch - 06-13-2008

Oh thank you! I was going to get that recipe today! I hoped she'd win from the start too, she is very bright and her food looked like something I'd really eat.

We kept hoping Lisa'd get hit by a bus, fall on her chef's knife, or something. Bob liked Richard too - he and I were both interested in some of his more "playful" ideas.

Re: Top Chef! (spoiler here) - HomeCulinarian - 06-13-2008

My oldest son who is a chef, was hoping Stephanie would win. He doesn't miss an episode. I only watched one episode of the show this season. We don't watch very much TV.... He tried to get hired in her restaurant right out of Culinary School. No hard feelings on his part.

Re: Top Chef! (spoiler here) - labradors - 06-13-2008

Wow! I could dig any of those recipes!

Re: Top Chef! (spoiler here) - pjcooks - 06-13-2008

I was rooting for her, too, although I liked Richard as well. Lisa kept making it to the next round, just didn't know why. It seems they always have a somewhat talented or talented yet disagreeable, ornary person in the finals, to make it interesting, I guess.

Those 13 weeks went fast.


Re: Top Chef! (spoiler here) - Harborwitch - 06-18-2008

We did the the lamb dish last night. It was really a lovely dish - although I would prefer the pistachios raw and crunchy. All in all we loved the flavors and textures.

Bob stopped at the store and got an incredible bottle of wine to have with the dinner; Rioja, Cortijo III Tinto 2005, 100% Tempranillo. It was perfect with all the flavors in the lamb dish.

All in all it was a perfect dinner - it does dirty a lot of pots and pans, but worth every minute cleaning up! I know that we'll make this one again - it's a meal that really makes a Tuesday night very very special.

Next week's mission - the quail with lobster ravioli.

Re: Top Chef! (spoiler here) - cjs - 06-18-2008

Oh man and temranillo, too!!!! Died and gone to heaven! Next week come hell or high water, I'm making this! Thanks for letting us know Sharon.

For Father's day, I found a bottle (well two really...) of

Grochau Cellars, "tinto" - Roque Valley, 60% tempranillo andd 40% syrah. It's just delicious!

Re: Top Chef! (spoiler here) - Harborwitch - 06-18-2008

Oh does that sound good! I saved a tiny bit of the wine - for my lunch today!!