|Me with Chef Dave Martin|
I met Chef Dave at the CVI last year when he was in town for the monthly CVI Earth to Table dinner, coincidentally held on Mother's Day weekend, so his mother and sister were in attendance at the dinner, which was so sweet. It was refreshing to see that he was just as much fun in person, and that focusing on his true passion in food - doing events and teaching vs. restaurant work, just like it did for me, really makes him happy.
We subsequently became Facebook friends, and I was really touched when he sent me messages occasionally during my cancer treatments to check in and see how I was doing. When he was in town about a month ago for a dinner at The Wooster Inn with Certified Angus Beef Brand, he invited me to be his guest and we had a great time.
I wanted to repay his kindness by offering to help prep for his BBQ Bonanza class at CVI. The written menu blew me away, and I looked forward to working with the stunningly gorgeous produce of Chef's Garden.
Cool French Green Bean Salad with Purple, Green & Yellow French Beans with Sherry & Pomegranate Molasses Vinaigrette
Heirloom Tomato Caprese with Berkeley Tie-Die, Big Yellow Zebra, Cherokee Purple, Copia, Dr, Wyches, Great White, Pineapple & Velencia Heirloom Tomatoes stacked with Lime and Lemon Basil Leaves, Fresh Buffalo Mozzarella and sprinkled with Rogue River Bleu Cheese, Nueske's Cherry wood Bacon and Thai Basil Oil
Summertime ‘Pickle Me This' -Ver 2.0 A medley of pickled garden veggies to include Cherry Bomb & French Breakfast Radish, Dragon, Red, White & Pink Carrots, Romanesco Broccoli, Orange Cauliflower and more
‘Crave' House Salad-Bibb & Lolla Rossa Lettuces , Olive Leaf Arugula and Gold Leaf Spinach dressed with a Fresh Lemon & Chive Vinaigrette and topped off by Roasted Mushrooms & Shaved Parmesan
Animals, Animals, Animals....
Grilled Buttermilk Marinated Free Range Chicken with Dave's Roasted Poblano BBQ Sauce
Smokey Rubbed Certified Angus Beef Brand Hanger Steak with Groovy Gorgonzola
‘Out of this World' Chimichurri Marinated Certified Angus Beef Brand Skirt Steak
Hoisin and Apple Cider Marinated ‘Duroc' Pork Tenderloin served with Dave's Killer Peanut Sauce
All About the E2T....
‘Hells Bells'-Fire Roasted Cherry Bomb, Green Jalapeno, Hungarian Wax and Poinsettia Peppers
‘Don't Cry for Me, Milan'- Bianca DiMaggio, Candy Apple & Red Cippolini Onions marinated overnight in Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Greek Oregano , Thyme, Sea Salt and Green Peppercorns and Grilled to perfection
Roasted Fingerling ‘Tata Salad' SANS Mayo- Enjoy this tasty Salad of Roasted Red Thumb, French,
Purple & Peanut Fingerling Potatoes with a Tasty Asian Lime & Ginger Vinaigrette (without any mayo in sight)
Summer Squash & Eggplant Medley- Santana, Lao White, Kermit & Bambino Eggplant along with Magda, One Ball, Gold & Green Zucchini with secret sauces for dipping
The Sweet Stuff....
Butterscotch Pudding with Nutmeg Cashews and Salted Cream
House made Crème Fraiche Ice Cream Sundaes with ‘from scratch' Hot Fudge & Caramel Sauces with Banana & Penny Royal Mint
|The CVI Kitchen|
After an hour drive, most of it on the turnpike, I arrived at the Culinary Vegetable Institute bright and early at 9:00 am to help prep for the 4:00 class and dinner for nearly 80 guests, which included the family of one of Dave's Make a Wish kids.
The menu started with Dave's demo on making a beautiful caprese salad, using some of the amazing heirloom tomatoes from Chefs Garden. Garnishing the salad was an amazing cherry wood smoked bacon from Nueskes, which would tempt even a vegetarian.
|Trays of Heirloom Tomatoes|
|Dave Martin's Stacked Caprese|
|Colorful Mixed Beans & Shrooms|
The vegetables that accompanied the meat courses were these melt in your mouth tender grilled onions with fresh thyme:
|Onions with Herbs|
|Roasted Fingerling Potato Salad|
|Creme Fraiche Ice Cream|
|Flavor Quest, Volume 2|
|Chef Dave Martin in the CVI Kitchen|
On August 27th, one of my favorite local monthly events, Dinner in the Dark, will be held at CVI (on a Saturday vs. the usual Monday). There are still tickets available, and I guarantee you it's worth the drive and you won't be disappointed. (the 'dark' part is that you won't know which 6 local chefs will be cooking that evening, nor what they are making, until you arrive; don't worry, the lights will be on and you won't be blindfolded). Go to Eventbrite to buy your tickets, which include the six course meal, beverage pairings with each course, plus tax & tip. Just show up and feast! I'll be there, will you?
Also, be sure and visit Dave's website to buy the BBQ sauces and rubs, and stay tuned for those delectable chocolate and caramel sauces. (there are also some tees with his Top Chef signature phrase...)