Sunday, April 08, 2012

Cooking Demo: Season's Restaurant

Today's second demo was by Chef Mark Richardson, from Seasons Restaurant.  He prepared not one, but two dishes!

I haven't actually been to Season's yet, but it has been on my list for a while.  In particular, on Sunday and Monday nights, in the lounge, they have burger specials for $20.  There are a bunch of different burgers, each paired with either a beer, wine, or cocktail.  I don't even know how I'd pick one, as they all sound great.  And then I have to pick cocktail or wine?  Whee!

Anyway, the soup he prepared was amazing.  One of the best soups I've had in recent memory.  Attending this demo definitely just raised Season's placement on my TODO list!
Habanero deviled egg.
I've had a ton of deviled eggs lately.  They are on basically every bar menu these days.  And at the Taste of the Nation event last week, there were at least three very different deviled eggs - the famous Marlowe one (starts with classic mayo/mustard filling, but is served warm and topped with aged provolone, pickled jalapeƱo & bacon), and then Jasper's had a sweet pea and dungeness crab version (which was really, really good, surprisingly light too, which is not how you normally think of a deviled egg) and a romesco and marcona almond version.

And, I have always had a thing for deviled eggs.  In college, I made them regularly in the dining hall.  We had hard boiled eggs in the salad bar.  We had mayonaise and mustard in the sandwich bar.  We also had pickles|celery|onions and other random things in the salad bar that I'd play with adding in.  Or different salad dressings (thousand island mixed with mayo works well too).  I probably made them at least twice a week for most of college. And yes, everyone looked at me really strangely as I made these at the table :)

Anyway, these were just a standard mayonaise and mustard mix, with some chopped up habanero added in.  The habanero added a little kick, but these weren't really anything special.
Caramelized fennel soup with fava bean and orange relish.
This, however, was special.  Really flavorful, rich, and creamy.  Perfectly seasoned, with a nice level of saltiness.  I'm sure part of what made this insanely delicious is that it was about 90% oil + butter + milk + cream.  But then it had the really nice refreshing citrus relish on top, which did lighten it up slightly.  I've had plenty of raw fennel and citrus salads, so it makes sense that this pairing would work, and sure enough, it really did.  The favas added another hint of freshness, and a little promise of spring.

This was a really successful dish, and definitely makes me want to check out Seasons sometime.
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