Category Archives: Local Life

Go Hog Wild with this Pork Recipe

Another fun Local Life in Downtown Overland Park! It was a celebration of pork at The Culinary Center of Kansas City.  Chef Sergio worked a whole roast pig into a number of dishes that we gave as samples and sold as small plates in the CCKC kitchen, including Smoked Pork Belly with Red Wine Demiglace, Pork Leg Braised in Adobo Sauce (see recipe below), Roasted Pork Loin with Apple Whiskey Sauce and Roasted Pork Leg with Roasted Pork Gravy. Yum!

If you’re ready to go ‘hog wild’ in your own kitchen, try this out at home!

Pork Leg Braised in Adobo Sauce

Roasted Pork with Adobo SaucePork and Marinade

  • Pork leg, approx 10 lbs with skin removed
  • 10 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 white onion
  • 6 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1  1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon salt

Adobo Sauce

  • 8 Ancho Peppers, cleaned & deveined
  • 6 Pasilla Peppers, cleaned & deveined
  • 2 cups orange juice
  • 1 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 tablespoon coarse salt
  • 3 tablespoons shortening

For marinade, roast garlic and onion in skillet on medium heat.  Then in blender, add the garlic and onion mixture with bay leaves, oregano, black pepper, cumin, juice, vinegar and salt. Blend into thick, smooth sauce.  Cut incisions in pork leg and place in large baking pan. Cover with marinade, smoothing it into the slices in the pork. Marinade in refrigerator for 6-8 hours (or even overnight), turning the meat once in that time.

Prepare the adobo sauce by tasting the peppers in a pan or grill over medium heat. Don’t overcook – it’ll go quick. Then place the peppers in a small saucepan and cover with water. Simmer for about 8 minutes or until soft. Let cool, then drain the peppers and add to blender with orange juice, vinegar, salt and water. Purée until smooth.

Bring pan with pork leg to room temperature while preheating oven to 350ºF.

Melt shortening and spread with pastry brush over the meat, covering completely. Then brush half of the Adobo sauce over the pork leg. Cover with foil and place pan in oven.

Turn meat after 1 hour, basting with juices in pan.  Turn and baste again after another hour. Figure on 1 hour of baking time for every 2 lbs of meat – so approximately 5 hours for a 10 lb leg of pork. Turn and baste every hour. Keep foil right after each turning and basting, in order to keep meat moist and tender.  If meat starts getting dry, brush on more of the adobo sauce.

When meat can be easily pulled with a fork, uncover pan and turn up oven temperature to 450ºF, roasting another 8-10 minutes to brown the meat. Remove pan and let stand 10 minutes before slicing.

 

 

 

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Don’t W(h)ine – here are the recipes…

‘Wine Walk’ was the theme of 3rd Friday LOCAL LIFE in Downtown Overland Park in August. We had fun thinking through what to make for this one!

Here are some recipes that we enjoyed.
Try them out at home and ENJOY!

Watermelon Wine CocktailWatermelon Mint Wine Cocktail

  • 1 cup watermelon, diced, chilled
  • Ice cubes, as needed
  • 1 cup pink Moscato wine, chilled
  • 1 lime, sliced in half
  • Handful of fresh mint, coarsely chopped

In a blender, add the watermelon and puree.

Fill two stemless wine or cocktail glasses with ice. Pour half of the watermelon puree and wine into each glass, distributing evenly. Squeeze the juice from a lime half into each glass.  Add some mint and stir with a spoon. Serve immediately.  Makes 2 servings.

Lavosh Crackers

  • 1-1/2 cups bread flour, unbleached, plus extra for kneading
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon instant yeast
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/3 to ½ cup water, room temperature
  • Spray oil, for bowl and countertop
  • Poppy seeds, sesame seeds, paprika, cumin seeds, caraway seeds or kosher salt to taste, for topping
  1. In a mixing bowl, add flour, salt, yeast, honey, and oil.  In small increments, add water and mix with hands until mixture forms a ball.   (You may not need the full ½ cup water, but be prepared to use it all if needed.)
  2. Sprinkle flour on a clean countertop and place dough on top.  Knead dough for about 10 minutes or until the ingredients are evenly distributed. (The dough should pass the windowpane test and instant-read thermometer should read 77 to 81 degrees. It should be firmer than French bread dough, but not quite as firm as bagel dough.  It should also be satiny to the touch, not tacky, and supple enough to stretch when pulled.)
  3. In a mixing bowl that has been lightly sprayed with oil add dough ball and roll it around bowl to coat with oil.  Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set aside to ferment for 90 minutes or until dough doubles in size.  (You can also retard the dough overnight in the refrigerator in covered bowl immediately after kneading.)
  4. Transfer dough to a clean countertop that has been lightly sprayed with oil.  Using your hand, lightly press the dough into a square and dust top with small amount of flour.  Using a rolling pin that has been lightly dusted with flour,  roll dough into a paper-thin sheet that is about 15 to 20 inches in diameter. (You may need to stop from time to time to allow the gluten in dough to relax.  At these times, lift dough from counter slightly and wave it a little;  then lay back down, making sure to cover it while it is relaxing.)  Once dough has been rolled out to desired thinness, cover and allow it to relax for an additional 5 minutes.
  5. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Carefully lift the sheet of dough and transfer to baking sheet. (If it overlaps the edge of pan, snip off excess with scissors.)  Preheat over to 350 degrees with rack on the middle shelf.  Mist the top of dough with a small amount of water.  Lightly sprinkle your choice of toppings on dough, keeping in mind that a little bit of spices goes a long way. (You may use one spice to cover entire piece of dough or alternate spices in rows for variety.)   Transfer to oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the dough begins to brown evenly across the top.  (Check for doneness often as the time it bakes will depend on how thinly or evenly you rolled the dough.)  When crackers reach desired doneness, remove from oven and set aside to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes.
  6. To serve, snap dough apart into shards and place on serving platter or in a basket.  Serve immediately or store in an air-tight container.    Makes 1 sheet pan of crackers.

COOKS NOTE: If you would like to serve pre-cut crackers, use a pizza cutter/rolling blade and score diamonds or rectangles in the dough before baking. (Do not cut dough all the way through as they will snap after baking.)

Pimento Cheese DipHomemade Pimento Dip

  • 12 ounces white cheddar cheese, grated
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce, (preferably Frank’s)
  • 1 jar minced pimentos, drained well
  • 4 flatbread, cut into triangles and toasted in oven

Place the cheese in a bowl of a small mixer. Using a paddle attachment, start to mix the cheese. Add the mayonnaise, and spices. Mix well. Just before finishing add the pimentos and blend in slowly. Pimentos should be visible and not over mix.  Keep the cheese spread cold until needed. Should be soft enough to spread.

COOKS NOTE: We served the pimento dip with the lavosh crackers (recipe above). You might want to try those in place of the flatbread.

Marinara Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • pinch of hot pepper flakes
  • 1 (28 ounce) can of whole tomatoes, pureéd
  • 1/2  cup water
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup of grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1/4 cup of fruit forward red wine (like a California table red or a Zinfandel)
  • handful of fresh basil, chopped
  • handful of fresh flat leaf Italian parsley, chopped

In a large Dutch oven heat the EVOO and sauté garlic with hot pepper flakes for 20 seconds on medium heat… DO NOT burn! If you do, you have to start all over again. Beforehand, blend can of tomatoes and purée until smooth. Add the tomatoes to the pot along with 1/2 cup of water. Turn up the heat a bit and wait for the sauce to come to a boil then turn down heat to let sauce simmer. Add salt and pepper to taste (I’d start with 1/2 tsp of salt and ½ tsp of pepper and go from there… Keep tasting and adding). Add cheese, wine, and fresh herbs. Stir and let simmer until liquid is reduced and sauce is thick, this takes about 20 minutes. Add to your favorite pasta.

 

 

Whiskey-a-Go-Go Recipes!

Wow. What a fun night we had in Downtown Overland Park at 3rd Friday LOCAL LIFE!Local Life - Whiskey-a-Go-GoHere at The Culinary Center of Kansas City, we had fun, family-friendly activities and tastings going on out front under our tent and in our Kitchen Shop, plus a Whiskey-a-Go-Go theme in our Santa Fe kitchen with lots of great tastings (food, wine, beer & spirits), cooking demo, food and drinks for sale for dinner, plus live music by Whiskey for the Lady.

Don’t miss Local Life on the next 3rd Friday on August 18, 2017 – jot it down in your calendar now!

Here are some recipes that our chefs offered up for Local Life.
You’re going to want to make them at home…

Daniela’s Bourbon Roasted Sweet Potatoes

  • 3-4 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into even cubes
  • ½ cup Bourbon
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne powder
  • ½ cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 6 tablespoons butter, cubed

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Put cubed sweet potatoes on a large baking sheet and pour Bourbon over top. Toss well with your hands to evenly coat the potatoes.

Over the top of the potatoes, drizzle the olive oil and sprinkle salt, pepper, cayenne powder, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Toss again with your hands to coat.

Arrange potatoes in a single layer and evenly distribute the butter cubes over the top of the potatoes.

Place in the oven and bake for 30-45 minutes or until potatoes are golden and can be pierced with a fork.  Makes 6-8 servings.

 

The Wild Summer Whiskey SlushThe Wild Summer Whiskey Slush

  • 1 12-oz can frozen lemonade concentrate
  • 1 6-oz can frozen orange juice concentrate
  • 2 cups strong brewed black tea
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 7 cups water
  • 2 cups whiskey
  • 1 liter ginger ale soda

Mix all ingredients except ginger ale.  Freeze.  Scoop some into a glass and top with some ginger ale.  Enjoy.

Makes about 18 drinks.

 

 

A Taste of the Tropics

The  Caribbean Jerk Chicken is a big hit at our Peace, Love & BBQ, Caribbean-themed Local Life at The Culinary Center of Kansas City tonight. Lots of folks are asking for the recipe, so we’re sharing it here on the CCKC Kitchen Talk Blog.  Turn up the steel drum music and enjoy!

Note: we used boneless chicken thighs for ease of sampling and small plates. Take license with the recipe and get creative…

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Caribbean Jerk Chicken

  • 1 tablespoon Ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon Dried thyme
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon Ground sage
  • 3/4 teaspoon Ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons Salt
  • 2 teaspoons Garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Olive oil
  • 1/4 cup Soy sauce
  • 3/4 cup White vinegar
  • 1/2 cup Orange juice
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 Scotch bonnet pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 cup Chopped white onion
  • 3 Green onions, finely chopped
  • 2 lb chicken wings

In a large bowl, combine the allspice, thyme, cayenne pepper, black pepper, sage, nutmeg, cinnamon, salt, garlic powder and sugar. With a wire whisk, slowly add the olive oil, soy sauce, vinegar, orange juice, and lime juice. Add the Scotch bonnet pepper, onion, and green onions and mix well. Add the chicken wings, cover and marinate for at least 1 hour, longer if possible. Preheat an outdoor grill. Remove the wings from the marinade and grill for 6 minutes on each side or until fully cooked. While grilling, baste with the marinade.

 

Pick Up Some ‘Reuben the Great’ Casseroles For St. Patty’s Day

We us some St. Patrick’s Day here at The Culinary Center of Kansas City. We’re already gearing up for it! Chef Sergio cooked up some ‘Reuben the Great’ Casserole this week that is now available in our Dinners on Demand freezers in The Kitchen Shop. It’s an annual tradition around here – a fully loaded casserole with all the same delicious ingredients as a Reuben sandwich. If you love Reubens, you will love this! It’s great at any time of the year, but it’s a MUST in March.

Ever wonder where the Reuben sandwich got its name?
We hear that the story goes like this… 
The year was 1914. Late one evening a leading lady of actor Charlie Chaplin came into the restaurant and said, ‘Reuben, make me a sandwich, make it a combination, I’m so hungry I could eat a brick.’  He took a loaf of rye bread, cut two slices on the bias and stacked one piece with sliced Virginia ham, roast turkey, and imported Swiss cheese, topped off with coleslaw and lots of Reuben’s special Russian dressing and the second slice of bread.  He served it to the lady who said, ‘Gee, Reuben, this is the best sandwich I ever ate, you ought to call it an Annette Seelos Special.’  To which he replied, ‘Like hell I will, I’ll call it a Reuben’s Special.’
(from Patricia Taylor, daughter of Arnold Reuben, founder of Reuben’s, as described to Crag Claiborne of the New York Times in his book, ‘Craig Claiborne  – The New York Times Food Encyclopedia’)

Here’s the recipe for our ‘Reuben the Great’ Casserole.
Try it at home. Or stop by The Culinary Center and pick one up from our Dinners on Demand freezers. Enjoy!

‘Reuben the Great’ Casserole

  • 'Reuben the Great' Casserole1 loaf rye bread, cut into cubes, divided
  • 16 ounces sauerkraut
  • 1 ½ cups Swiss cheese, shredded, divided
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • ½ cup Thousand Island dressing
  • 2 cups corned beef, cut into small pieces
  • ½ cup butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place half of bread crumbs in 9 x 13-inch pan.  Spread the sauerkraut on top of bread layer.

In a small bowl, mix sour cream and dressing, and spoon half on top of sauerkraut layer.

Next, layer on 1 cup Swiss cheese, then the corned beef. Add a layer of the sour cream/dressing mix on top of the corned beef. Top with remainder of bread crumbs, then remainder of Swiss cheese. Drizzle melted butter over it all. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 10 minutes. Serve warm. Serves 8-10.

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BTW –
We know the perfect place to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day 2017… 

Come for a bit of kitchen “Craic” at Third Friday Local Life in Downtown O’verland Park! Celebrate St. Pat’s in our kitchens with Irish Fare Cooking Demo and FREE tastings of Dublin Coddle. FREE live music with Leprechaun Johnny Murphy; FREE beer, spirits and wine tastings. Aye but the craic is FREE, too! As always, a cash bar with Guinness to boot! Small plates for sale: Coddle, Irish Soda Bread, Corned Beef Sliders and Guinness Brownies.

Visit our CCKC Holiday Open House!

cckc-ornaments
Come Jingle Your Bells at our

HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE
this Friday at Local Life! 

Friday, Dec 16, 2017   |   5 – 9 p.m.

Happy Holidays! We’ll be jingling ours as we offer FREE tastings of wine, spirits & artisan food,
live local music and chef demo & tastings! We’re celebrating Third Fridays this week with a Holiday Open House at The Culinary Center of Kansas City at Local Life in Downtown Overland Park.

We’ll feature Elle Lebeaux ‘Naughty Elf’ and White Winds ‘Chaos’ & ‘Mischievous’ at our free wine tasting station. These local wines will have you feeling jolly!  (I mean… how can you NOT smile when trying a wine call Naughty Elf, right?)

Not one but TWO great distilleries will be offering tastings this month. Try out some Defiance Whiskey and spirits from Weston’s Holladay Distillery!

Our featured Local Maker of the Month is Boozy Botanicals. And they’ll be here with samples of their delicious flavors of simple syrup.  We’re offering 10% off your Boozy Botanicals purchases this month, and we have lots of other great gift ideas, stocking stuffers and gift certificates available in our Kitchen Shop, so finish up your holiday shopping while you’re here!

Culinary Center cooking instructor Daniela Mancinelli-Abel will be demonstrating how to make focaccia bread with a variety of toppings. Not only will you get a recipe to take home and try out on your own party guests, the samples will be amazing!

Dan Bliss will be entertaining us with live music…  and we may even be able to talk him into a few Christmas carols where we could all join in!  We will have a cash bar and small plates of food available for sale, so plan on staying for awhile to enjoy the fun.

You think that’s a lot going on?!  Wait…. there’s more!
That’s all just right here at The Culinary Center. There’s so much going on in the Downtown Overland Park area Friday night that you’ll want to spend some time walking around in our winter wonderland.  Click here for a listing of Local Life activities.

Local Life - Third Fridays in Downtown Overland Park

See You Tonight At Local Life!

Local Life in Downtown Overland ParkDon’t Be A Turkey…
Come Party with Us Tonight!
at 3RD FRIDAY LOCAL LIFE 
Last chance before you hunker down
on those recipes for the big dinner next week!
 

Friday, November 18   |  5 – 9 p.m.

LIVE MUSIC
  Johnny Murphini (& his band of merry groupies) 

 MAYOR’S XMAS TREE LIGHTING @ 5:30
(Right Across The Street Under the Clocktower) 

FREE WINE TASTING
Try some great wines perfect for your turkey dinner

FREE SPIRITS TASTINGS
Restless Spirits Distillery

FREE TASTINGS FROM A LOCAL MAKER
Hillsdale Bank BBQ Sauce

FREE COOKING DEMO & TASTINGS
CCKC Instructor Christine Robson will offer holiday appetizer ideas

COOL NEW HOLIDAY MERCHANDISE
IN OUR KITCHEN SHOP

Taste free wine then get your holiday shopping done.
How about a free cookbook with all gift certificate purchases?!

CASH BAR & SMALL PLATES AVAILABLE
Enjoy beverages and tasty things while you listen to music

That’s what will be going on at The Culinary Center of Kansas City.
There will be a lot more live music and special events
going on around Downtown Overland Park…

Local Life - Third Fridays in Downtown Overland Park