5@5 is a daily, food-related list from chefs, writers, political pundits, musicians, actors, and all manner of opinionated people from around the globe.
As commenters continue to fan the flames of Ron Eyester's epic 5@5 yesterday, we decided to keep things burning.
Christopher Hastings is the chef, cookbook author and co-owner - alongside his wife Idie - of Hot and Hot Fish Club in Birmingham, Alabama. He was also nominated for “Best Chef: South” by the James Beard Foundation in 2007, 2008 and 2010.
While it may not be time to start roasting chestnuts on an open fire just yet, that doesn't mean Eatocracy's proverbial flame can't be occupied with alternate edibles - and Hastings is here to tell you just what those should be.
Five Favorite Things to Cook Over Wood: Christopher Hastings
Cooking notes: The keys to successful whole smoked hog is green hickory wood and a heritage breed hog cooked low and slow, smoking over a small, even fire. Take your time to oversee the process with some Pappy Van Winkle bourbon and a few friends."
2. Wild trout, cured and smoked
Cooking notes: The good news on this is that it's simple. Take trout that’s scaled, gutted, boned and split open flat, and combine two parts sugar to one part salt to cover the trout on its flesh side. Cure for two hours, rinse and smoke over green wood collected from the camp site, using a grill grate and a method to cover the smoldering wood that keeps the smoke on the fish (tree fronds, aluminum foil etc.). Cook slowly with just a little heat and lots of smoke for about 30 minutes, or until the flesh is just firm from the smoke/heat/curing."
Cooking notes: Peel the eggplant and slice into one-inch thick slices. Sprinkle with salt and let stand for 30 minutes. Salt draws out some of the liquid and bitterness. Pat dry. Toss with fresh chopped basil and good quality olive oil, salt and pepper. Over a medium-high wood or natural charcoal fire, cook eggplant until golden brown on each side and just tender all the way through - approximately four minutes per side. Transfer to a platter and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and garnish with more fresh basil. Arrange with tomatoes and cheese."
4. Argentine beef
My technique and ingredient advice: book a trip to Argentina and set up a barbecue with the gauchos - a life-altering experience."
5. Foraged spring meal of turkey, ramps and morels
Cooking notes: Remove the breast from a wild turkey and cut into one-inch thick bias-cut slices. Season with an herb-and-garlic-infused salt, olive oil, fresh ground black pepper and let marinate for an hour. Grill the slices over a hot wood fire until just barely cooked through, about one minute on each side. Sauté the morels in butter and thyme until just tender – three to four minutes over medium high heat. Toss the morels, watercress and a little lemon Dijon vinaigrette together and divide up among guests. Place the turkey slices on the greens and morels and serve immediately."
Is there someone you'd like to see in the hot seat? Let us know in the comments below and if we agree, we'll do our best to chase 'em down.
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