Yield: 5-6 portions
Fry sausage with a bit of fat in medium heat pan. Add small amount of water to create a steam then reduce. Continue cooking until light brown or until sausage starts to draw fat. Keep in a warm place and slice.
Heat up casserole and add a small amount of fat. Sauté bacon until fat is rendered. Remove excess fat from bacon. Add butter and sauté onion and garlic until translucent. Add celery and sauté briefly.
Deglaze with white wine and reduce. Add chicken stock, thyme and bring rapidly to simmer. After 2 minutes, add the remaining vegetables and sausage. Allow to simmer for another 4 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper, if needed.
Espejo prefers to add a dollop of sour cream and parmesan cheese in this soup to balance the spiciness of the sausage and parmesan cheese for flavor. Do not overcook the vegetables.
Pan-fried Fillet of Halibut on Roasted Vegetable Salad, topped with rocket arugula relish in caramelized shallots and walnut vinaigrette
Yield: 4 portions
For roasted vegetables:
Preheat oven at 180ºC. In a roasting pan, place eggplant, tomatoes, bell peppers and onion. Add garlic, thyme, balsamic vinegar, anchovies and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Toss well to distribute the seasoning evenly. Place in the oven and roast for 5-8 minutes. Toss the vegetable halfway of the cooking process. Let it cool, cover and place in chiller.
For halibut: Pat dry the fish with paper towel to remove any excess liquid. Season fish with lemon juice, salt and pepper. In a medium heat sauté pan, put olive oil and butter. Dredge halibut with flour and place in a heated pan. Pan fry fish until golden brown for about 4 minutes on each side, depending on the size/thickness of the fish. When cooked, place fish on a warm place for plating.
For the vinaigrette: Place the lemon juice, olive oil walnuts and shallots in a mixing bowl and season to taste with salt, pepper and a bit of sugar.
For plating: Bed the fish with chilled roasted vegetables on the middle of a plate. In a mixing bowl, place the arugula or salad greens, capsicum, onions and drizzle it with the dressing, toss carefully and place the relish on top of the fish. Garnish with dried cranberry, feta crumbs and lemon wedge.
Yogurt with Caramelized Apple Cake and Lemon Yogurt Ice Cream
Yield: 1 quart ice cream; 6 portions 4-inch personalized cake
For Ice Cream:
For the caramelized apple: Heat pan, melt sugar and add apple. Caramelized apple nicely until golden brown. Add cinnamon and toss well. Carefully flambé with brandy and reduce. Cool, cover and place in the refrigerator.
Preheat oven at 180°C. In a mixing bowl, place eggs and sugar. Whisk until sugar is melted. Add yogurt, vanilla and flour. Mix well. Strain mixture using a fine sieve. Place apple onto a greased cake pan or silicon cake molder. Cover apple with batter and place in the oven. Cook for 15-20 minutes. When done, check the middle by inserting a toothpick and see if the inner part is cooked and not too moist. If it’s still liquid, just place it back in the oven for another 5 minutes. Let it cool and chill.
For ice cream: Place egg yolks, sugar and vanilla extract in a mixing bowl. Whisk until sugar is melted. Bring milk to boil and gradually add into your egg mixture. Add yogurt and return to sauce pan. Cook in medium heat, stirring continuously until it thickens. Fold mixture with the cream, lemon juice and the zest. Cool completely on ice bath or in chiller. Pour mixture into your ice cream maker and just follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and then freeze.