Almost Famous Chef's Seared Veal

January 26, 2008 2:00:14 PM PST
Almost Famous chef regional winner Timothy Michael visits ABC7 Chicago.

Timothy Michael is from The International Culinary School at The Illinois Institute of Art-Chicago.

The search for the next big culinary star is under way, with more than 60 culinary students sharpening their knives in hopes of making it to the finals competition in Napa Valley. The 2008 S. Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef Competition kicks off its sixth year by partnering with more than 30 of the top culinary schools in the United States and Canada, giving participating students the rare opportunity to compete against one another in 10 regional competitions and the chance to prepare their respective winning signature dishes for an esteemed panel of chef and media judges.

Winners from the regional competitions will be flown to the finals event at The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in Napa Valley, Calif., taking place March 7-10, 2008, where they will compete in three categories: the Harvest Mystery Basket, Signature Dish and People's Choice Tasting Gala. Individual winners from each competition will receive a cash prize and the opportunity to apprentice at a world-renowned restaurant. The overall winner will receive a $10,000 cash prize as well as a year-long job opportunity to work with a nationally recognized chef.

To continue the passion and excitement of the Almost Famous Chef Competition, S.Pellegrino will team up with Bravo Top Chef winner Harold Dieterle, chef/owner of Perilla restaurant in New York, along with award-winning actress, famous for her role on The Sopranos on HBO, Lorraine Bracco, president of Bracco Wines. Dieterle, who will serve as the master of ceremonies and celebrity chef at the finals competition in Napa Valley, will also host the Northeast regional event being held at the Institute of Culinary Education in February. Bracco will co-host the People's Choice Tasting Gala along with Dieterle to announce the 2008 S.Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef winner.

RECIPE: Seared Veal Chop

Menu Description: Bourbon Mushroom Sauce, Corn Bread Pudding and Stuffed Fried Okra

Recipe Yield: 8 servings

8 ea. 10-12 oz. veal loin chops, frenched

1 lb. Unsalted butter

6 oz. Bourbon

1 and one-half lbs. of mushrooms, crimini, quartered

3 ea. Shallots, roasted

3 cloves of garlic, chopped

16 oz. Veal demi-glace

Salt and pepper to taste

Starch Name: Corn Pudding

3 ea. White corn, on cob

1 qt. Heavy cream

3 ea. Eggs, beaten

1 ea. Brioche loaf

1-2 Tbsp. Paprika

To taste salt, pepper, Old Bay seasoning

Vegetable: Roasted Red Pepper and Goat Cheese?Stuffed Fried Okra

16 pcs. Okra

one-half lb. Goat cheese

2 ea. Red bell peppers

1 can All-Purpose flour

2 ea. Eggs, whole

1 one-half cups Buttermilk

1 lb. Cornmeal

3 oz. Olive oil

Protein Preparation Method:

1. Combine 2 ounces bourbon, butter and salt in mixer and blend until well mixed. Set aside.

2. In hot sauté pan, cook mushrooms, shallots, and garlic until mushrooms are lightly browned. Add 4 ounces of bourbon to deglaze and reduce to au sec.

3. In a saucepot combine demi-glace, mushrooms, shallots and garlic; then reduce and finish with 6 ounces bourbon butter. Remove from heat and puree using immersion blender. Pour sauce through chinois and keep warm until service.

4. Rub both sides of veal chops with bourbon butter and pan-sear until browned on both sides, about 30 seconds on each side. Finish in oven to desired doneness, about 3-4 minutes for medium-rare.

Starch Preparation Method:

1. Husk and then parboil corn. Once corn is parboiled, season with salt, pepper and paprika; then roast in broiler or oven.

2. Remove kernels, reserving few kernels for garnish, and place them in bowl. Using back of knife, scrape down cob to remove milk into separate bowl.

3. Cut brioche into small dice. Place bread into bowl and add cream and milk from corncobs and let soak.

4. Fold beaten eggs into bread and cream mixture, adding Old Bay seasoning, salt and pepper.

5. Put bread pudding mixture into well-greased 2"-deep half hotel pan to protect pudding and bake until inserted fork comes out clean (about 45 minutes); remove from oven.

Vegetable Preparation Method

1. Bring pot of water to boil and blanch okra; shock in ice-water bath.

2. Using small knife, cut tops off okra pieces and remove seeds.

3. Coat red bell peppers in olive oil and roast them. Once they cool, remove skin and cut into small dice, reserving small amount for garnish.

4. In food processor, combine roasted red pepper and goat cheese until smooth consistency is reached.

5. Using piping bag, fill each piece of okra with goat cheese and pepper mixture.

6. Beat eggs and combine with buttermilk to make egg wash.

7. Set up three-step breading station: Coat okra in flour, dip in buttermilk and then coat in cornmeal.

8. After all the okra pieces are breaded, place them in freezer to firm goat cheese.

9. When goat cheese is firm, fry okra in deep fryer at 325oF until golden brown.

Service (Plating Instructions)

1. Cut the bread pudding with a cookie cutter and then cut in half.

2. On a warm entrée plate, place one piece of the corn bread pudding on end.

3. Place one veal chop leaning against the right side of the bread pudding, and then ladle one ounce of sauce on chop.

4. Place two pieces of the okra crossing each other on the other side of the bread pudding.

5. Garnish with a few kernels of corn and a small amount of diced red pepper.