In the kitchen with Chef Wayne Johnson

This segment is produced with and sponsored by Alessi & Pete's Fresh Market.

We're "In the Kitchen" where we send our favorite cooks out to shop and to create a dish that they love!

Today's "In the Kitchen" cook is Wayne Johnson.

We followed Wayne as he shopped at the Pete's Fresh Market in Wheaton to see what ingredients he wanted to use. Then this morning, Wayne made his dish step-by-step.

Our Friends at Alessi sent Wayne home with a gift basket of goodies. Visit their website for all the Alessi products.

Alessi and Pete's Fresh Market have a surprise for our viewing audience. Until 2 a.m. tomorrow, CLICK HERE for your chance at winning one of these great prizes:

$50 gift certificate to Pete's Fresh Market
$90 Alessi gift box

And you can opt in for a free package of Alessi Tuscan White Bean Soup.

Plus one lucky member of our studio audience went home with the Alessi basket of goodies and a $100 gift card to Pete's Fresh Market!

For the Pete's Fresh Market near you, check out their website.

Here are Wayne's recipes:

Puff Pastry Pesto Turkey

Ingredients
2 Sheets Puff Pasty
Alessi Pesto
Parmesan Cheese
1 Egg
Toasted Sesame Seeds

Method
Thaw puff pastry at room temperature until soft and and bendable without cracking the seams. Use a rolling pin to roll each sheet flat. Use plates, bowls, cookie cutters or whatever you may have to achieve the circular shapes below. With the first sheet of pasty, cut the largest main section/tail piece and place it on a piece of parchment paper. Transfer it to a baking sheet. Spread a generous amount of pesto on this piece of puff pastry and sprinkle parmesan cheese over the pesto. Using the rest of the first piece of pastry, cut the circle for the feet and split it lengthwise and then crosswise as indicated below. Cut the head circle and then cut out the eyes. Cut the body section and then cut a small triangle for the beak.

With the second piece of pasty, cut a matching main body section/tail piece. With this large piece, cut out where the body and feet will be located. Lay this large piece over the first large piece, carefully matching all edges and sides. Line up the feet sections to where they will go and cut away the top portion that falls into the area where the body circle will be. Also, with your excess pastry, cut a small rectangular piece to go in the space between the feet.

Place the body piece in the hole you cut (this creates a nice seam when the pasty bakes. Add the head and beak (You can cut the beak shape out of the head piece so the head and beak pieces fit together. Then cut strips in the main/tail sections at about 1 1/2" intervals, cutting through both layers. Hold both layers and of a strip and twist it twice. Continue until you've twisted all the tail pieces. Whisk an egg and then brush it over all the exposed puff pasty. Sprinkle sesame seeds just in the area between the body piece of pastry and the feathers. Place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. While pasty is still warm, slightly press down and adjust any elements (eyes, feet, beak) that might have shifted while baking.

Slide onto a serving tray and enjoy.

Spicy Pumpkin Soup With Roasted Pine Nuts and Cheesy Rice Biscuits

Ingredients
3/4 cup Butter
2 tbl Alessi Olive Oil
1 lg Onion, finely chopped
2 Jalapeños, seeded and finely minced
11/2 tsp Alessi minced Garlic
3 cu Pure Pumpkin Puree
6 cu Chicken Stock
1/2 tsp. salt
2 Chicken Bouillon Cubes
1/4 cu Heavy Cream (optional)
3 tbl All-Purpose Flour

Garnish
1/4 cu Sour Cream
2 tbl Alessi White Balsamic

1/2 cu Toasted Pine Nuts

Cheesy crispy rice cracker for garnish (recipe below)

Method
Melt butter over medium heat with olive oil. Add onions and jalapeños and sauté until soft, about 5-7 minutes. Add garlic and cook for about two more minutes. Add pumpkin, chicken stock, salt, and bouillon cubes. Bring soup to a boil and simmer for about 30 minutes.

Remove from heat and puree in a blender in batches. Be very carful as you start the blender because contents can sometimes fly out (doing it in small batches is a best practice). Return to a medium heat. Add cream here if you choose, making sure not to bring it to a boil. Take out 1 cup of soup and blend it with the flour in a small bowl, stirring until all lumps are gone. Add mixture back to soup. Cook for an additional 5 minutes until flour mixture is fully heated and incorporated. Season soup to taste. Ladle soup into serving bowls.

Mix together sour cream, white balsamic and 1 tablespoon of soup. Transfer to a squeeze bottle if you have one, or a sealable plastic bag with a small hole cut in one corner. Swirl a bit of this mixture on top of each soup serving and top with pine nuts. Pass a plate of rice biscuits for guests to enjoy alongside.

Rice Cheesy Biscuits

Ingredients
1 pkg Vigo Yellow Rice
2 cu Water
1 tbl Butter
1/3 cu Grated Parmesan
1 Shallot, minced
2 lg Eggs
1/4 cu Alessi Seasoned Bread Crumbs
1/2 cu Milk
Canola Oil
2 cu Bread Crumbs for Dredging
Salt (optional)

Method
Bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a small pot. Add rice mixture and butter and stir for 1 minute. Reduce heat to a simmer and cover for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely.

Preheat oven to 400F.

When rice is cool cool, combine it with grated Parmesan cheese, shallot, eggs, 1/4 cup bread crumbs and milk. Place the additional bread crumbs in a shallow bowl. Scoop out 1 tablespoon of the rice mixture and roll it in your hand to form a ball. Coat it with flour and then place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Press the ball down to form a disk. Repeat with remaining mixture (you may need to moisten your hands after assembling a few biscuits. Bake for 15-18 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven, sprinkle with a bit of kosher salt (optional), and serve warm.

Pork Loin Stuffed with Bacon Farro and Apple

For Windy City LIVE, I only made a 2 pound Pork Loin. If you're planning on a large dinner, then you can double this recipe and use a 4 pound pork loin.

Ingredients
1/2 cu Alessi Farro
1 tbl Butter
6 slices Bacon, chopped
1 lg Granny Smith Apple, peeled and small diced
1 lg Shallot, finely chopped
1 1/2 tsp Alessi Garlic
2 tsp Fresh Rosemary, finely minced
3 1/2 oz Alessi Sun Dried Tomatoes, drained, patted dry, and chopped
1 lg Egg
2 lb Pork Loin (be sure to not confuse with a tenderloin)
Salt
Black Pepper
2 tbl Dijon Mustard

1 cu Chicken Stock, possibly a bit more
1/2 med Onion, sliced
Kitchen Twine

Sauce
1 shallot, minced
1 cu Chicken Stock
2 tbl Balsamic Reduction

Method
Put 1 cup of water in a small saucepan. Add farro, a pinch of salt, and 1 tablespoon of butter. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and cover tightly for 25 minutes until all moisture has been absorbed. Remove from heat and set aside.

In a large saucepan over medium high heat, cook bacon until tender but not crispy, about 3-4 minutes. Drain all but 1/2 of tablespoon fat from the pan. Add the apple and shallots to the bacon and cook until softened, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in the garlic puree and cook for an additional minute, then stir in the rosemary and and cooked farro. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and a 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Remove from heat and set mixture aside to cool to room temperature.

Preheat oven to 450.

Butterfly the pork loin. Using a sharp knife, place the loin fat side up, with the short end toward you. Cut across the middle, splitting the loin lengthwise but not cutting all the way through. Open the loin like you're opening a book and lay it flat. Now split each side lengthwise as well, starting from the center of the loin and cutting outward, again, not cutting all the way through. After opening up the loin from the two additional cuts, you should have a long rectangle. Set the loin aside until the filling has fully cooled.

Once the filling has cooled, add one large egg and mix thoroughly.

Season the pork with salt and pepper. Transfer the filling to the center of the pork loin and then spread it to within about an inch of all sides. Starting with a short end, roll up the pork loin tightly and then secure it, seam side down, with kitchen twine at about 2" intervals.

Place the onion slices in roasting pan. Top with the pork loin. Season the outside with salt and pepper and brush (or rub) on the dijon mustard. Add 1 cup chicken stock to the pan and few sprigs of rosemary.

Place the pan in the oven and roast for 15 minutes at 450F then reduce the temperature to 325F. Roast until internal temperature is 140. This could take up to an hour. If, after 40 minutes the pan is dry, Heat an additional 1/2 cup of stock and carefully pour it into the pan. When the loin has reached temperature, remove it from oven, transfer it to a serving place, and tent with aluminum for 15 minutes.

Place the roasting pan over a medium high heat burner. Add 1 cup of chicken stock and break up the crunch bits on the bottom of the pan. Stir until mixture begins to bubble. Add minced shallots and stir for a minute. Then add balsamic reduction and stir to combine. Strain the mixture into a serving boil and set aside. Remove the strings form the pork loin and slice it into individual servings. Spoon the sauce on top.

Side Dish
A great side dish for this recipe is sautéed green beans with roasted red peppers. Simply wash and trim 1 pound of green beans in cold water and shake dry. Sauté them in 1 1/2 tablespoons of Alessi Olive oil for 3-4 minutes over medium heat. Add a teaspoon of Alessi garlic puree, a teaspoon of salt, and toss for another minute. Add a few tablespoons of water to the pan and cover for 1-2 minutes to steam. Then toss in 6 ounces of Alessi Fire Roasted Red Peppers that have been roughly chopped. Stir to combine and then transfer to a serving plate, arranging the red peppers on top.

Sweet Potato Cannoli
1 1/2 lb Sweet Potatoes
1/2 tsp Salt
3.4 oz pkg Instant Vanilla Pudding
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1 tsp Cinnamon
8 Alessi Amaretti Cookies
1/2 tsp Salt
2 tbl Maple Syrup
1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
1/2 cu Whole Milk
1 cu Heavy Cream
12 additional Amaretti Cookies, for garnish
1/4cu White Chocolate Chips, chopped, for garnish
12 Alessi Hand Rolled Cannoli Shells

Method
Peel sweet potatoes and cut into 1" cubes. Place in large pot and cover with water. Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes until tender. Drain and allow to cool. Mash potatoes, yielding about 2 cups. Chill for 30 minutes.

Place the 8 amaretti cookies in a food processor and process until smooth.

In a large bowl, whisk together amaretti crumbs, pudding mix, nutmeg, cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Add cooled sweet potato, maple syrup, vanilla, and whole milk and beat with a hand mixer until smooth.

Separately, whip heavy cream in a large bowl until stiff peaks form, about 3 minutes. Carefully fold whipped cream into pumpkin mixture until smooth. Pipe filling into cannoli shells.

Break up 12 amaretti cookies in your hand and press them into one end of the cannolis. Press the chopped white chocolate chips into the other end. Chill until ready to serve.