Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Lake House Chef's Challenge 2010 – Appetizer Course

The appetizer course of the First Annual Lake House Chef's Challenge 2010 was full of great dishes.  The kitchen was in a flurry and everyone was excited to get their first taste of competition grub.  The required ingredient for this course was avocado, and all competitors had to use their “secret ingredient” as well in the dish.   Here is what happened….
Jon served Bacon Wrapped Shrimp in Hoisin Sauce, served with Bacon Guacamole (recipe below)
Did I mention that we were judged on presentation as well?  Jon’s presentation was impromptu and amazing.

He even put an eye on the shrimp.

I made Jalapeno Bacon Sliders with an Avocado and Cilantro Slaw (recipe below)

Julie served up a Mango and Coconut Avocado Salad with Honey Lime Vinaigrette (recipe below)

The Perfect Pairing for the appetizer course was an Oak Run Slinger cocktail.  To earn extra points the competitors could provide a drink pairing for one course.  I was in charge of the appetizer course and came up with the Slinger recipe.  It is a combination of orange juice, lime juice, jalapeno simple syrup and tequila.  It was refreshing and had a little spicy kick.
Be sure to check out these recipes.  They were all fantastic!  Definitely competition material.

Stay tuned for the recap of the next two courses as well as the results.  I know you are all on the edge of your seat.

Bacon Wrapped Shrimp in Hoisin Sauce, served with Bacon Guacamole
Jon Rodgers, Perfecting the Pairing

·         15-20 fresh and deveined jumbo shrimp
·         1 bottle of Hoison sauce
·         1 bottle of BBQ sauce
·         1 package of thick cut bacon
·         Toothpicks
·         2 ripe avocados
·         2 tomatoes, diced
·         1 jalapeno pepper, chopped
·         1 small bunch of cilantro, chopped
·         Juice of 1 lime
·         5 pieces of cooked bacon, crumbled
·         Salt and pepper to taste
Cut pieces of bacon in half. Wrap half a piece of bacon around one shrimp. Use toothpick to secure bacon. Repeat for each shrimp. Brush each bacon-wrapped shrimp with a mixture of 3 parts hoison to 1 part BBQ sauce. Place on grill. Grill until bacon is crispy.
Mash the avocados, stir in remaining ingredients.
After you remove shrimp, brush once more with hoison/bbq sauce mixture. Serve with guacamole.

Jalapeno Bacon Sliders with an Avocado and Cilantro Slaw
Lindsay, Perfecting the Pairing

·         6 jalapeño peppers
·         6 slices bacon
·         3 pounds ground beef chuck
·         Salt and pepper
·         ½ cup (about 2 ounces) crumbled queso fresco or feta
·         ½ cup mayonnaise
·         ½ cup sour cream
·         2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
·         2 avocados, pitted and thinly sliced
·         1 bunch cilantro, chopped
·         ½ onion, thinly sliced
·         Slider-sized hamburger buns, split
Char the peppers in a hot oven or on the grill until the skin is completely black. Transfer the peppers to a bowl, cover and let cool slightly. Remove and discard the stems, skin and seeds; finely chop the peppers.
Meanwhile, cook the bacon in the skillet until crisp. Discard all but 1 tablespoon of bacon fat; chop the bacon.
In a large bowl, combine the chopped bacon, the reserved bacon fat, the beef and half of the peppers. Form into slider-sized patties; season with salt and pepper.
In a medium bowl, combine the cheese, mayonnaise, sour cream, 1 tablespoon olive oil and the remaining peppers. Season with salt and pepper, cover and refrigerate.
In another bowl, toss the avocados, cilantro, onion and remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil; set aside.
Grill the burgers, flipping once, until medium-rare. Just before the burgers are finished cooking, grill the buns until toasted, about 1 minute. Place a burger on each bun bottom, top with some of the avocado salad, drizzle with some of the sour cream dressing and set a bun top in place.

Mango and Coconut Avocado Salad with Honey Lime Vinaigrette
Julie Jacobson, Perfecting the Pairing

Honey Lime Vinaigrette:
·         ⅓ cup vegetable oil
·         ¼ cup rice vinegar
·         ¼ cup honey
·         2 T Dijon mustard
·         1 T chopped fresh cilantro
·         2½ t fresh lime juice
·         1 t sesame oil
·         1½ t minced red bell peppers
·         1 t minced onions
·         ¼ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
·         salt
·         1 to 1 ration of mango and avocado
·         Coconut

To prepare the dressing, combine all ingredients in a small glass bowl, mix well
Heat dressing in microwave on high power for 1 to 1½ minutes, or until mixture begins to bubble.
Remove from microwave and whisk for 1 minute - this emulsifies the dressing and it should thicken as it cools.
Cover and chill for two hours before serving.
For the salad, cut the avocado and mango into pineapple tidbit size chunks. Drizzle with Honey Lime Vinaigrette and gently stir (as little as possible to avoid the avocado turning the mango green).
Sprinkle with coconut.

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