Tastes from the Coast of Italy with Chef Bill Brodsky

Before the Swampscott dinner party in Episode 5, Chef Bill Brodsky, chief culinary officer at Boston Nightlife Ventures, invites host Parker Kelley to enjoy a meal at one of his establishments, Southern Kin in Somerville’s Assembly Row. They discuss the Southern-inspired eatery that offers far more than barbecue. “Southern food is so much about bringing people together and enjoying a good memory,” he says. “It’s about good hospitality and there’s certainly some good food there, so it was fun to bring that to Boston.”

Parker tried a variety of dishes with chef Brodsky, from alligator tacos to catfish. “It was clear when we cooked together later on at the party, I’d be learning from a master,” says Parker Kelley.

For the dinner party menu, chef Brodsky created a meal that was reflective of his next restaurant, which is still in the works and will focus on coastal Italian cuisine. A few of his recipes are below for you to try at home:

Piadina Bread 

Ingredients

2 tsp dry yeast
1/2 tsp sugar
1 cup warm water (90 degrees)
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup bread flour
1 tsp kosher salt
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 1/4 cup bread flour

Directions

Combine the yeast sugar and water in a bowl and whisk until the yeast and sugar are dissolved. Add the second set of ingredients (wheat and bread flour), and mix together to a paste with a spoon.  Cover the bowl and let this mixture sit for 30 minutes until it begins to get airy and bubbly. Add the third set of ingredients to the bowl and knead until the mass comes together. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead for 5-8 minutes until it is a smooth ball. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, covered and let the dough proof for one-hour, or until the dough doubles in size. Punch the dough down and portion into 6 small balls.  Cover the dough balls and let them proof an additional 10 minutes.  Using a little flour, roll the dough balls into 6-inch rounds, and layer between wax paper until ready to cook. Place a pan or a pizza stone on the bottom shelf of an oven and preheat to 475 degrees. Bake the piadina until it is very lightly browned and cover it with a towel to keep it warm until ready to serve.

Lobster-Pumpkin Bisque

Ingredients

4 ounces canola oil
1 cup diced carrot
2 cups diced onion
1 cup diced celery
1 roasted sugar pumpkin, peeled and chopped
1 gallon rich lobster stock
1/4 cup rice
1 cup heavy cream
salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Sweat the carrots in the oil for 15 minutes over medium-high heat until they start to slightly brown on the edges. Add the onion and cook for 10 minutes. Add the celery and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Turn down the heat to medium low and add the pumpkin flesh. Cook for 15 minutes. Add the lobster stock and simmer the soup for 45 minutes. Add the rice and cook for an additional 20 minutes. Puree the soup, pass it through a fine sieve and return it to a pot. Bring back to a simmer and add the cream. Cook for 15 minutes. Adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper and chill it down.

Basil Parmesan Pesto

Ingredients

1 pint basil, stems removed and packed
1/2 cup spinach, stems removed and packed
1/4 cup pine nuts
0.45 ounces garlic cloves
2.5 ounces canola oil
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1.5 ounces extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/4 cup Parmesan, grated

Directions

Combine everything in the blender except the spinach and the Parmesan. Puree until smooth. While blending add in the spinach until smooth. Pour the pesto into a bowl and combine it with the Parmesan cheese. If necessary, adjust the seasonings with additional salt, pepper and lemon juice.

Celeriac Puree 

Ingredients

4 ounces canola oil
2 bulbs celeriac, peeled and quartered
8 ounces cream
1 tbsp truffle oil
salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Coat the celeriac in the oil and wrap in foil. Roast it in a 350- degree oven for one hour or until it is very tender. Place the hot celeriac into a blender along with cream, salt and pepper. Finely puree it and add the truffle oil in. Adjust seasonings and return it to a pan. To serve, heat up the puree with some freshly chopped herbs.

Cured Egg Yolks 

Ingredients

12 cups kosher salt
1/2 cup black pepper, fine
20 thyme springs
20 eggs, whole

Directions

Crush the thyme sprigs with a mallet and lay them on the bottom of a hotel pan. Combine the salt and pepper and pour half of it over the thyme sprigs. Using the egg, create a well in the salt for each yolk to sit in.  Separate the yolk from the white and the chalaza, (the white stringy mass found connected to the yolk) and place the yolk in each well without breaking it. Carefully top the eggs with the remaining salt and wrap it with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 48 hours. After 48-hours, the yolks should be firm and dry.  Remove them from the salt, flip them over onto a plate and let them sit at room temperature for an additional day to further dry them out. Once they are completely dry, store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 60 days.  

Polenta Cake

Ingredients

940 grams unsalted butter
940 grams caster sugar
15 eggs
525 grams fine polenta
750 grams AP flour
2 1/2 tbsp baking powder
7 oranges, juiced
Orange zest

Directions

Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a nine-inch round, nonstick baking pan. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time and mix thoroughly. While mixing, add the juice in a slow steady stream. Turn the mixer off and add all the dry ingredients. Mix on low until the mixture is homogenous. Transfer the mixture to the pan, spread evenly, and cook for 45 minutes until the center is cooked through. While the cake is baking, make the glaze. Remove the cake from the oven and let it cool for 20 minutes. Remove it from the pan and using a pastry brush, generously apply the glaze to the top and sides.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

Orange-Amaretto Glaze

Ingredients

1 1/4 pint orange juice
10 ounces amaretto
20 ounces caster sugar

Directions

Combine the juice and sugar in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Let it simmer for 20 minutes, then remove from the heat and allow to cool to warm. Drizzle the orange glaze over the top of the semi-cooled cake.

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