WCL: Fighting Cancer at the Dinner Table

October is breast cancer awareness month, and some research suggests that adding certain foods to your diet can help fight the disease.

Lynette Bisconti, President of The Gateway for Cancer Research, and Chef Brad Parsons, Executive Chef for the Fairmont Chicago, stopped by to talk about these items and how they can benefit your health. Make sure to check out Chef Brad Parson's cancer fighting recipes below!

The Gateway for Cancer Research fundraising gala, Cures 2011, is being held on Saturday, Oct. 22 at The Fairmont Millennium Park. For more information, please visit www.DemandCuresToday.org.

Serves 10

10 Poblano Peppers
2 pounds Asparagus, grilled
1c Israeli Cous-Cous
6oz Tomato Vinaigrette
6oz Red Bell Pepper, medium dice
6oz Onion, medium dice
6oz Squash, medium dice
6oz Zucchini, medium dice
6oz Tomato, medium dice
8 oz Eggplant, medium dice
1t Garlic, minced
10 leaves Basil, torn
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Kosher Salt & Black Pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place the eggplant on a sheet pan, drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Cook the onions on the stove and when they become transparent, approximately 5 minutes, add the red peppers, squash, zucchini, garlic, eggplant and cook for ten additional minutes. Add tomatoes and torn basil to the pot and bake at 350 degrees for one hour.

Preheat grill to medium .

Rub poblano peppers with oil. Char the peppers on the grill 10 minutes on all sides, remove the peppers and place in bowl. Rest grilled peppers for 15 minutes. Peel the grilled peppers. Cut a slit in the top of the pepper and remove the seeds.

Toss the asparagus with salt and oil and grill until tender approximately 5-7 minutes.

Boil water and season with salt. Simmer the couscous until tender approximately 5 minutes and remove pot from the stove. Add the tomato vinaigrette to the couscous.

Cool vegetable mixture 10 minutes. Stuff grilled poblano peppers with the vegetable mixture and serve hot with couscous and asparagus.

Serves 10

20oz Organic Mixed Greens
1 pound Curry Cauliflower
10 Shiitake Mushrooms, sliced
one-half oz Fresh Mint, finely chopped
one-half oz Fresh Parsley, finely chopped
5oz Sunflower Seeds
10oz Parmesan Cheese, shaved
2c Orange Juice
1t Anise Seed
1T Dijon Mustard
3oz Red Wine Vinegar
1c Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1T Salt

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

To make the curry cauliflower, rub the cauliflower head with softened butter and then season generously with curry. Cut in half and bake at 400 degree oven for 40 minutes. Cut the florets from the head and reserve.

Place the fennel seeds in the orange juice and reduce by half. Cool down and mix the dijon with the orange juice and vinegar and place in a blender. Turn on the blender and start on low speed. Add the olive oil and salt.

Toss the mixed greens and lay on a plate. Lay the cauliflower around the greens. Toss the sliced mushrooms with the mint, parsley and sunflower seeds. Lay the mixture on top of the greens and garnish with the shaved cheese. Dress with the Orange-Anise dressing.

Serves 10

10 Grass-Fed Beef Short Rib, 5oz portions
1G Veal Stock
1 Onion, large dice
1 each Carrot, large dice
1 each leek, large dice
1c Red wine
5oz Barley
10oz Shiitake Mushrooms
2qt Mushroom Stock
20 each Baby Carrots, cut in half
2qt Braising Liquid
3oz Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper

Season the short rib lightly with salt and pepper. Heat a pot with oil until it shimmers and add the short ribs. Sear all four sides and remove from the pot and remove the oil. Add the onion, carrot and leek and sauté to brown. Add the red wine and reduce by half. Add the veal stock and bring to a simmer. Put the short ribs back in to the pot and cover. Place into a 350 degree oven and cook for 3 hours or until fork tender.

Remove the short ribs and reduce the liquid by half. Strain the liquid and set to the side. Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a pot and add the shiitake mushrooms. Cook to brown and add the barley. Cover with the mushroom stock and cook for 45 minutes. Once cooked add the carrots to the barley and cover. Lay the barley mixture on a plate on top with the short rib. Pour the sauce over the meat and garnish with the carrots.

Serves 10

7oz Chicken Breast
8oz Farro
2qt Chicken Stock
10oz English Peas
10oz Heirloom Tomatoes, diced
6oz Feta Cheese
1qt Smoked Artichoke Vinaigrette
Salt & Pepper
3oz Extra Virgin Olive Oil
5 each Artichoke Bottoms
1T Dijon Mustard
2oz Sherry Vinegar
10oz Extra Virgin Olive Oil
4oz Water

Smoke the artichoke bottoms and cool. (Alternate suggestion: if you do not have a smoker, you can grill the artichokes) Place in blender with mustard, sherry vinegar, water and salt. Blend until smooth. Slowly add the oil.

Heat the oil in a pan until it shimmers. Season the chicken breast with salt and pepper and sear the chicken. Place in 350 degree oven and bake approximately 20 minutes until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees.

In a separate pot, heat 1 oz. of oil and add the farro. Cook on low heat to toast the farro. Add the chicken stock and cook until tender, about 45 minutes. Add the peas, and tomatoes to the farro to heat through.

Remove from the heat and add the cheese. To plate, place the farro down. Slice the chicken breast and place on top. Pour the artichoke vinaigrette over the chicken.

Serves 10

Poached Pears:
1 Bottle Pinot Noir
one-half c Honey
one-half c Blackberries
one-half c Raspberries
one-half c Blueberries
1T Orange Zest
2 each Star Anise
2 each Cinnamon Sticks
1 each Vanilla Bean
3 ripe Pears, peeled and cored

Combine wine, honey, berries, zest and spices in a medium saucepan. Quartered the pears and add to the sauce pan. Bring the mixture to a low boil, remove from heat, and cover tightly with plastic wrap; allow to sit for at least 6 hours or overnight if possible.

Praline Brownie Base:

11g 58 percent Chocolate, melted (approx .4oz)
10g Unsalted Butter (approx ½T )
13g Sugar (approx .5oz)
11g Eggs, whisked (approximately ¼ of one egg)
6g All Purpose Flour, sifted (approx .2oz)
one-quarter cup Pecan Pieces, unsalted

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Melt chocolate and cool to room temperature. Cream butter and sugar together, add eggs. Add melted chocolate, fold in flour. Spread thinly sprinkle with pecan pieces. Bake at 300 in a small loaf pan until set approximately 10 minutes.

The finished praline brownie is very thin and cracker like. Because this item is so small, a scale must be used to make sure proportions are correct.

Chocolate Mousse:
6oz 58 percent Chocolate
6oz Milk Chocolate
6oz Heavy Cream
12oz Whipped Cream

Melt chocolates and heavy cream together over double boiler; whisk together and cool slightly. Gently fold whipped cream into chocolate mixture until just combined. Pour mousse over cooled brownie base; freeze until set approximately several hours.

Mascarpone Cream:
1c Heavy Cream
one-quarter cup Mascarpone Cheese
1T Sugar
one-quarter t Vanilla

Add pears and top with cream when you are ready to serve.