Quality ingredients translate into quality dishes—a simple but important concept emphasized by chef Frederic Kieffer. Kieffer is the executive chef of l’escale, a French-inspired fine dining restaurant in the Delamar Hotel, and Artisan, a farm-to-table American eatery in the Delamar Southport. He shares his recipes, which can be tried at home, for a five course meal inspired by spring. Also, on this clip, Theresa Rogers, owner of Horseneck Wine and Liquors, shares exceptional wine pairings that complement the flavors of each bite.
Smoked Salmon Hors d’Oeuvres
16 blinis or mini pancakes or toast points
¼ pound sliced smoked salmon
Horseradish cream (recipe below)
Cut the smoked salmon slices into small triangles and twist them. Place a half teaspoon of horseradish cream on the blinis. Arrange the smoked salmon on top. Garnish with caviar and dill sprigs.
4 tablespoons crème fraiche
4 teaspoons pickled horseradish drained
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
2 pinches salt
Combine the crème fraiche, horseradish, lemon juice and salt.
Maryland Crab Meat Stuffed Local Sole
Limoncello sauce (recipe below)
8 filets local sole or flounder
1 pound Maryland or Maine crab meat
6 ounces soft butter
2 ounces breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
Extra virgin olive oil
Soften the butter, mix in the breadcrumbs, egg and chopped parsley then delicately fold in the crab meat. Season the sole filet, spread the crab stuffing evenly over the filet then roll them into a pinwheel. Sauté the sole roulade with olive oil on both sides then bake them at 400 degrees for about 12 minutes. Sauté the spinach. Place the spinach in the center of the plate and set one roulade atop the spinach. Drizzle with Limoncello sauce.
1/2 bottle of Limoncello
3 diced shallots
2 tablespoon crème fraiche
½ stick butter
Combine the Limoncello with the diced shallot and reduce by 75 percent. Add the crème fraiche, bring to a boil, then whisk in the butter. Season with salt.
Spring Ricotta Gnocchi with Oregon Morel, Fiddlehead Ferns, and English Peas
20 ounces ricotta cheese
4 ounces all-purpose flour
1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons grated parmesan
Extra flour to roll the gnocchi
Morel sauce (recipe below)
In a mixing bowl combine all the ingredients. Knead the dough so it does not stick to the edge of the bowl, add extra flour if needed. Roll out and cut the gnocchi. Boil the gnocchi in salted water for about three minutes, drain and then drizzle a little olive oil over them. Blanch the fiddlehead and English peas for one minute. Make morel sauce. Before serving, quickly reheat the fiddlehead, English peas and gnocchi in a pan with olive oil. Place the morel sauce in the bottom of the plate. Arrange the gnocchi and vegetables over sauce. Garnish with freshly grated parmesan.
1 pound fresh morel mushrooms (or mixed mushrooms)
2 diced shallots
2 cups heavy cream
Salt and pepper
Wash the morels three times. Sauté the morels with a little butter and diced shallot. Add the heavy cream, reduce by half, season with salt and pepper.
Grilled Lamb Chops with Cumin-Coriander Roasted Spring Carrot
Goat milk yogurt sauce
16 lamb chops, preferably domestic, if not Australian
24 medium bunch carrots
½ teaspoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ stick butter
½ tablespoon local honey
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 sprig fresh rosemary
3 cloves garlic
2 cups goat milk yogurt
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar, or red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, grated
2 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
Season the lamb chops with salt and pepper and grill to medium rare. Serve with the roasted baby carrots and minted yogurt sauce on the side.
Carrots: Peel the carrots leaving a half inch of green tops. Toss the carrots with all of the ingredients, season with salt and pepper. Bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes.
Yogurt sauce: Whisk in the grated garlic, sherry vinegar, olive oil and chopped mint into the yogurt. Season well with salt and pepper.
8 ounces Roquefort cheese at room temperature
4 ounces salted country butter at room temperature
Squash blossom honey, or any good local honey
Dark rye bread, or sourdough bread
Toast the sliced bread. Spread the toast with butter. Place a nice piece of Roquefort on top. Drizzle a little bit of honey over the cheese. Serve immediately.