Monthly Archives: July 2011

Quick Release Video

Here is a fun look at what a Jimi Hatt and I do on our spare time!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v​=n9w6aPM8msM

–matt bolus

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Filed under Books, Brown Sugar, Butcher, Buthering, butter, Canning, Charleston, Cooking, Cream, Garden, Ideas, Matt Bolus, Pickling, pork, Potatoes, Radishes, Salt Curing, Travel, Uncategorized, Vegetables

Marrow vegetable

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This post came about in two ways. The first, was when my local farmer Joey Barnes form Barnes Produce at the Nashville Farmers Market brought me this gigantic zucchini looking vegetable. The only reason he brought it to the restaurant is because he had never seen anything like it and wanted to see what we could do with it. Neither of us knew what it was exactly (besides a zucchini on some NFL style vitamins) but he had been told that people cut out the seeds and stuff it with meat and then roast it. I of course thanked him for the unusual and told him that I would update him on what we did with it and how it tasted. Well it happened that we needed a large amount of roasted squash and zucchini for a party menu and thus it ended up in a nice medium dice roasted with bacon fat, shallots, thyme, and mint. Overall it tasted lovely but I was disappointed at the fait that it had met.

The second point comes with the annual review of the canning recipes and the desire to start making pickles, jams, and other various projects to put the summers bounty away for future use. My wife Kelly had been reading a canning book that sparked my interest. While looking through the index of the book, which I often start with, I noticed a recipe that I could not believe was possible. It was a canning recipe for “Pickled Marrow and Onions”. How could this be? You mean to tell me that you can pickle and can beef marrow with onions? That has to be delicious, or disgusting, depending on who you ask. Well the answer quickly came when I turned to the appropriate page. The recipe called for vegetable marrow, which I of course not only did not expect but was disappointed to see. I then realized that I had never heard of “vegetable marrow”.

Research on the web led me to discover that vegetable marrow, also known as a marrow vegetable, was a zucchini type vegetable. Originally cultivated in England, these vegetables can grow to be the size and weight of a large pumpkin. They are also notorious for having a bland flavor and are traditionally stuffed with meat of some sort and roasted whole. Then it dawned on me that I had not only seen this vegetable but had just recently turned it into a mere fast saute. What a shame. The next one I get will not experience such a meager fate I promise. The picture here includes a common power socket in an attempt to show the actual size of the marrow vegetable.

–matt bolus

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Filed under Books, Canning, Cooking, Flavor, Garden, Ideas, Marrow Vegetable, Matt Bolus, Pickling, Uncategorized, Vegetables, Zuchinni

Finished Bottarga

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The bottarga came out of cure today. The scent is wonderful, salty, essence of the sea, citrus, and the slightest hint of coriander. The texture is firm, no give in any section. And the color as you can see is an orange yellow with a little rosy color through the center. With two large lobes of roe and two smaller lobes I decided to cut one of each in half to see inside. The uncut portions have been wrapped and returned to the walk in. The cut portions I decided to put in the dehydrator on 100 degrees Fahrenheit. The reason behind this is that all of my research into bottarga has mentioned the element of sun drying after the salt curing. I can only imagine what kind of bugs I might attract if I were to leave fish roe uncovered out in the summer sun. So the dehydrator is going to have to be the best substitute. I have to admit that I was to busy today to try any type of cooking with it today. I plan to try it out with a simple pasta and butter dish as soon as possible. I will of course compare both the dehydrated and the refrigerated side by side to see if there is any difference. I was also thinking that in the worst case scenario the dehydrated version could be ground to a powder for an unknown enriching agent in a sauce, soup, or pasta dish.

–matt bolus

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Filed under Bottarga, Cooking, Coriander, Eggs, Fish, Fish Eggs, Fish Roe, Flavor, Ideas, John Dory, Matt Bolus, Roe, Salt Curing, Uncategorized

Bottarga Half Way Finished

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Just a quick look at the bottarga that I am working on using the wonderful roe harvested from a John Dory fish. I originally cured the roe in a mix of salt, corriander seed (not toasted), and lemon zest. At this point the roe has been in the cure for two weeks. I brushed off all of the salt mix possible, but did not rinse it off. I am now going to cover it all again in just plain kosher salt and allow it to finish curing. The roe has a noticeable stiffness though I can still feel some softness in the center of the larger sacks. The smaller roe seems to be a bit stiffer but is still very flimsy, but that may be due to the size as opposed to the amount of time in cure. The smell is of the sea with hints of citrus.

–matt bolus

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Filed under Bottarga, Eggs, Fish, Fish Eggs, Fish Roe, Flavor, Ideas, John Dory, Matt Bolus, Roe, Salt Curing, Uncategorized