|Chef Marcus Samuelsson|
Our stop featured guest speakers, including Jorge A. Chicas, the executive chef of The Bazaar by Jose Andres (one of my favorite LA restaurants), mixology expert Michael Green, road food guru Michael Stern, and Top Chef Master Marcus Samuelsson.
|The Bazaar's Liquid Olives|
Chef Chicas showed us how to make tomato and watermelon skewers, demonstrated the technique for The Bazaar's famous liquid olives (encapsulated olive juice that explodes in your mouth), and passed around liquid olives for us to taste. He also answered questions and spoke at length about The Bazaar's new upscale tasting room, Saam, which I can't wait to try in the new year.
|Mixology Expert Michael Green|
Then, we hit the road (metaphorically) with road food aficionado Michael Stern, who writes the wonderful website Road Food. He spoke about the best way to find great food (hint -- roll down your windows and use your nose), his favorite BBQ dives, and his recent meal at Phillippe the Original in downtown L.A. (read his review here). The next time I plan a road trip, I'll be using his website to find great places to stop for grub along the way.
|Chef Marcus Samuelsson|
After taking a seat, we were served steaming hot bowls of Chef Samuelsson's version of Shrimp and Red Grits (recipe below). The savory dish was packed with flavors (spicy, sweet, umami) and textures (grits, shrimp, tomatoes). No wonder he won Top Chef Masters -- I can't wait to try making this recipe at home.
Chef Samuelsson answered a number of questions from the audience, offering advice on essential cupboard spices and cookware, waxing poetic about the superiority of California's farmers markets (sorry New Yorkers!), and complimenting the meal he has last night at Animal (interestingly, the last time I dined there, Chef Samuelsson ate at the table next to me with fellow masters Jonathan Waxman and Rick Moonen -- my review and pics here).
|"New American Table" by Marcus Samuelsson|
Thank you to Buick, Food & Wine, Travel + Leisure and everybody who worked the event for making it such a fantastic foodie occasion.
Chef Marcus Samuelsson's Shrimp & Red Grits
Serves 4 people
Cooking time: about 30 minutes
1 red onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon paprika powder
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup grits
1 bay leaf
1 cup canned crushed tomatoes
1 cup corn
1/2 cup white wine
3 cups water
juice from 2 lemons
12 U-12 shrimp, peeled and de-veined
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1 tabelspoon chopped cilantro
salt and pepper
8 cherry tomatoes, halved
Add the onion, garlic, half the dry spices and half the olive oil in a pan. Add the grits and bay leaf, saute for 30 seconds. Add the canned tomato. Add corn. Add half the white wine and water. Let simmer for 25 minutes.
In a bowl, add half the lemon juice, a tablespoon of the olive oil, remaining spices and shrimp. Let sit for 15 minutes.
In a pan, saute the shrimp and remaining garlic on high heat for 3 minutes. Toss in remaining lemon juice, remaining white wine, chopped parsley and chopped cilantro. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Add cherry tomatoes and serve.
To serve, place 2 tablespoons of grits in a bowl. Top with 3 shrimp per bowl.
|The Bazaar's Executive Chef Jorge Chicas|
|Chef Chicas Making Watermelon Skewers|
|Liquid Olives in Olive Oil|
|"Old Way" Olives|
|Ingredients for Liquid Olives|
|Ginger Gin Sour "Mocktail"|