‘Bacon and Egg’

Bacon and Egg

Bacon and Egg

Winter is here again and with it cold weather, snow and that overwhelming feeling to hibernate.  Warm drinks and heartier meals become our go to comforts.  The “Bacon and Egg” appetizer on the new menu is a great example of highlighting the ingredients and preparations that help elevate us from the winter drag.  My wife started the idea in my head by reminiscing about a salad I once made for her with a warm soft boiled egg on it. She just loved breaking the egg and having the warm yolk become part of the salad dressing.

I wanted to take the egg a step further and lightly fry the egg to become a sausage-less version of a scotch egg. I experimented with soft boiling the eggs for 5, 6, and 7 minutes to determine the precise timing for a perfectly cooked white and a completely runny yolk.  Two dozen eggs were cooked and  6 minutes was the perfect amount of time.  The eggs are then breaded and reserved until orders begin arriving in the kitchen.  The other half of this dish is the slow roasted pork belly ,which since its debut on a menu about two years ago, has never left because its just soooo awesome.  The pork belly is cured for 3 days and slow roasted for 4 hours until meltingly tender. The egg and pork belly are rich and decadent and we balance them out with the pickled red onion jam that garnishes the pork belly and whole grain mustard emulsion that accompanies the egg.  You may think it was caloric guilt that caused the addition of the romaine lettuce under the egg, but it’s there to catch the yolk and be combined with the mustard for that memorable salad experience that inspired this dish. I highly recommend that after trying the “Bacon and Egg” separately that they be eaten together.

ENJOY!

-Chef John Urbinati

Slow Roasted Pork Belly Recipe

2 # Piece of boneless skinless pork belly

1 ½ c Kosher Salt

1 ½ c   Sugar

Mix salt and sugar in a bowl.  This is your cure. Line a pan large enough to hold pork belly, with the cure mixture. Coat the pork belly with the cure and place in the pan, then pour then rest of the mixture over the belly.  Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours.

After 24 hours flip the pork over and recover it with cure.  Cover and refrigerate for another 24 hours. Repeat step four again.

Preheat the oven to 450 F.  Remove belly from pan, rinse and pat dry.  Place on a rack over a baking pan. Roast for 30-40 minutes until the belly is a deep golden brown, then turn the oven down to 275 F and roast for 3.5 hours or until a thin knife inserted into the meat has little or no resistance.  Allow the bellies to cool a bit then refrigerate for later slicing.

Pickled Onion Jam Recipe

3 c Red onions, finely diced

1c Water

¾ c Red wine vinegar

½ c Red wine (cabernet works well)

¼ c Sugar

1  Bay leaf

1 tsp Whole black peppercorns

½ tsp Juniper berries

½ tsp Whole Cloves

2.5 tsp Pectin

½ c Sugar

In a pot of boiling water cook the red onions for 1 minute, then drain and place back in the pot with the water, red wine vinegar, red wine and sugar.  Bring to a slow simmer. Place the bay leaf, peppercorns, juniper, and cloves in cheesecloth and tie it with butchers twine.  Add to the pot and slowly simmer for 15 minutes. Mix the second sugar with the pectin and stir into the pot a little at a time until the mixture thickens.  Place in a container and cool.

Whole Grain Mustard Emulsion

½ c white wine vinegar

2 tbsp honey

½ c whole grain mustard

½ c dijon mustard

2 tsp kosher salt

3 tbsp water

1 c Soybean Oil

Place all ingredients in a blender except the oil.  Blend until smooth and incorporated. Drizzle oil in slowly to emulsify.

Crispy Soft Boiled Egg Recipe

8ea large eggs

1c all purpose flour

2c panko breadcrumbs

2 qt vegetable oil for frying

kosher salt to taste

Boil 6 of the eggs for exactly 6 minutes then immediately plunge the eggs into ice water and allow to cool completely. Place the last two eggs in a blender with a pinch of salt and blend until smooth.  Set up a breading station by having three bowls, one with flour seasoned with salt, the next with the blended eggs, and last the panko seasoned with salt. Peel the eggs carefully and always cook more than you need because there will be breakage. Bread the eggs with flour, then egg, then breadcrumb and place in the refrigerator for 15 minutes to allow the first layer of coating to set up.  Then using only the egg and breadcrumb bread the eggs again.

Preheat the oil in a small pot to 350F.  Also preheat the oven to 400F. Fry the eggs until golden brown about 1-2 minutes.  Then place in the oven for 3-4 minutes to fully warm the eggs interior.  Be sure to season the egg with salt before serving.