Wednesday
Mar172010

Bluefin tuna !!!

Tuna hits highest price in nine years at Tokyo auction

 

A tuna has been sold at auction in Tokyo's fish market for 16.28 million yen ($175,000, £109,000), the highest price paid in Japan for nine years.
The bluefin tuna weighs 232 kg - nearly four times as much as the average Japanese man.
It was caught off the northern tip of Japan's main island of Honshu, in waters famed for high quality fish.

Tuna is prized in Japan, where people eat it raw in sushi, but there is concern that stocks are dwindling.

RECORD-BREAKING FOODS
One of the biggest truffles found in decades fetched $330,000 (£165,000) at auction in 2007
A salad filled with caviar, kreel-caught langoustines, Cornish crab and lobster cost $1,024 (£635)
A Glasgow chef made a $3,467 (£2,150) pizza for a couple in Rome - topped with edible gold, lobster and champagne-soaked caviar
The most expensive sandwich in the world was recognised in 2007 at $161 (£100)
A Belfast hotel claimed it offered the world's most expensive cocktail at $1,209 (£750)
The record-breaking tuna was put on the block in the first auction of the new year at Tokyo's Tsukiji fish market.

The tuna was bought jointly by one of the city's most upmarket restaurants, and an entrepreneur from Hong Kong who runs a chain of sushi bars.
Last year a similar fish made less than 10 million yen.
Bluefin tuna is known as the king of sushi and the Japanese eat more of it than any other nation, according to the BBC's correspondent in Tokyo, Roland Buerk.
Conservationists are calling for a moratorium on fishing to save the bluefin tuna from extinction in the Atlantic and Mediterranean.



Monday
Feb222010

EL BUlli to close permanently after losses of 500,000 euro a year

 

Ferran Adrià, the Catalan chef who for two decades has been the leading catalyst and inspiration for avant-garde cuisine, has decided to permanently close his restaurant El Bulli, considered by many to be the world’s greatest, and to replace it with an academy for advanced culinary study, Mr. Adrià said in an interview on Friday.

In January, Mr. Adrià had said that the restaurant would go on a hiatus starting in 2012 , but that it would reopen in 2014. For many years El Bulli, in the Mediterranean town of Roses, north of Barcelona, closed for half the year so Mr. Adrià and his chefs could spend the off months developing new techniques, like the foams, airs and other culinary wizardry that he has created.

He told The Wall Street Journal at that time that his research would “be focused on sustaining and growing our brand however possible. A brand with goals like ours requires a big capital investment.’’

On Friday he said he decided to close the restaurant for good because he and his partner, Juli Soler, had been losing a half million Euros a year on the restaurant and his cooking workshop in Barcelona.

“At that level of contribution,’’ he said of the losses, “I think we would rather see the money go to something larger that expands the concept and spirit of what El Bulli represents.’’

He said he would use that money — which he earns mostly from consultancies and other businesses — to establish his new academy and to finance scholarships so the world’s most talented cooks can attend.

“We had planned to use the two years to see how El Bulli could evolve,’’ Mr. Adrià said in a telephone interview. “We’ve been looking at many options, but yesterday we decided that the foundation would be the most satisfying.’’

He said of the demands of the restaurant, “at that bestial pace, it would be impossible to continue.’’

Adrià said the academy would be “a place for free thinking and kicking around ideas’’ about food. The El Bulli academy would likely work with many cooking schools around the world and would seek students — perhaps 25 in the first year — who had the highest levels of professional training.

“Throughout the history of El Bulli we’ve made seemingly drastic decisions in order to maintain our level of creativity,’’ he said.

Mr. Adrià, 47, arrived at El Bulli in 1983, when it was a French restaurant. Soon he took charge of the kitchen and by the 1990s it became known as a laboratory for daring innovation.

“Mr. Adrià’s idea, as he describes it, was simply to ‘do new things ’’ Mark Bittman wrote in 2006. “So, seeing chicken.with old concepts,’ curry as a concept and determining to do something that hadn’t been done before, he developed a dish, now famous, in which the sauce is solid and the chicken liquid.’’

In 1997 he won three Michelin stars. He has since been proclaimed by many to be the greatest chef in the world. He has been widely influential in the spread of “molecular gastronomy’’ — a term he has renounced.

The restaurant will reopen for six months on June 15 after its winter break and will close for good in December 2011.

The 3,000 people on the waiting list for one of about four dozen seats, will just have to hope that someday Mr. Adrià will open another restaurant.

He said that has no plans to, but the academy might be open for breakfast, or an occasional lunch. (And he is the director of gastronomy at El Bulli Hacienda Benazuza hotel near Sevilla.)

“Everything new looks strange,’’ Mr. Adrià said.



Monday
Feb082010

El builli closing !!!!!

 

 

Ferran Adria is closing El Bulli. It's time to tackle his cookbook 

The world's best chef is taking a two-year break – but foodies need not despair

Ferran Adria's Folie salad. It includes cat's claw shoots (a creeper found in South America) and pickled daisy buds.

So, Ferran Adria has announced that El Bulli – the best restaurant in the world – is set to close for a couple of years, and jaws have dropped wide enough to shove a whole tasting menu in. "No meals will be served in El Bulli in 2012 and 2013," Adria told the Madrid Fusion gastronomic conference on Tuesday. "With a format like the current one it is impossible to keep creating. In 2014, we will serve food somehow. I don't know if it will be for one guest or 1,000."

First, some numbers: Adria, 47, serves his €200 [£174] tasting menu to 50 people a night, for just six months of the year at El Bulli, the three Michelin-starred restaurant north of Barcelona, where he has been head chef since 1983. He receives requests from two million people for one of the 8,000 seats available each season. And the rest of the year is devoted to concocting new creations in his laboratory in Barcelona. But Adria has always shunned the "molecular gastronomy" tag, preferring to describe his work, when pressed, as "avant garde" or "deconstructivist".

Where will the critics who slobber at his feet, and foodies who would gratefully lap up his potato peelings, go now? You could book a table at La Alqueria, Adria's sister restaurant near Seville, which serves a smaller tasting menu of old El Bulli favourites, but it won't be the same – and it's still not clear if this will stay open anyway. No, from 2012, there is only one way to sit down with the El Bulli 30-course tasting menu, and that is to make it yourself, with the help of Adria's cookbook, A Day at El Bulli.

This, according to the book, is what you need to do to serve your own El Bulli-inspired meal. First, you should know that dinner there is divided into four acts. Act One – 14 separate dishes, and a margarita that you eat with a spoon – should be, for authenticity's sake, served on your terrace overlooking the Costa Brava coastline. This will include Adria's signature Spherical-1 green olives – not actual olives, but little green balls that remind me of bath pearls. The idea is that the membrane bursts in your mouth, flooding it with an intensely flavoured olive juice. The book tells you how to whip them up in five simple steps: you will need some algin (a gelling agent), xantana (a thickener) and calcic (which helps turn the olive juice base into a sphere). Oh, and at least 48 hours to prepare.

Act Two "consists of the savoury tapas-dishes". Ten, in fact, starting with "Thaw 2005". The preparation of this includes making an infusion of green pine cones, then freezing it in your Pacojet, a machine that creates frozen powders. You will also need to freeze pine nuts in liquid nitrogen, make two different meringues (liquorice and pine cone), a slice of caramel and several other mind-boggling components, before arranging them on a plate in specific locations (Adria advises that you think of a clock face to help with this).

I can't face even trying to comprehend the recipe for "Folie" salad, other than to say that, among its complicated sub-recipes and numerous obscure ingredients, it includes those spherical olives, cat's claw shoots (a creeper found in south America), pickled daisy buds and lecite, an emulsifier that is used to make foams ("tuna oil air" in this case).

Act Three consists of desserts, such as peach liquid (crack open the liquid nitrogen again for this) and chocolate air with crispy raspberry sorbet, which involves the use of a freeze-dryer for 48 hours. And the final act? A passion fruit tree: first freeze-dry the passion fruit infusion you made earlier, then spin it into candy floss in your candy floss machine and serve on some twigs.

To stay true to Adria's menu, you'll need to create another three desserts to consume before coffee, one of which – yoghurt and raspberry mochi – you won't be able to make anyway, because of a confidentiality agreement with the man who taught the chefs how to make the dough for the mochi, a Japanese rice cake. See, it's simple.



Thursday
Feb042010

cavo ......

Richard Farnabe in at Cavo”


Richard Farnabe is the new chef at Cávo, a modern Mediterranean restaurant in Astoria. Farnabe, who has worked with luminaries like Jacques Maximin, Daniel Boulud, and Jean Georges Vongerichten, most recently consulted at two-star Michelin restaurant Picholine.

His menu includes dishes like langoustine with summer vegetables salad, kalamata olive tapenade and mozzarella texture; squid ink linguine with bay scallops in caper saffron sauce; sea salt encrusted baked branzino filet with artichoke-fennel salad and tzatziki; and grilled New Zealand lamb chops with herb-roasted potato and sweet orange skordalia croquette. For dessert he's serving a manouri cheesecake with graham cracker crust and sour cherries, and a rich hazelnut chocolate bomb filled with crème brûlée ice cream.

Cávo is located at 42-18 31st Avenue, Astoria, New York. Cávo is open for dinner Tuesday - Sunday from 4:00 PM to 1:00 AM. A five-course tasting menu is also available Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings for $75 per person. For reservations or more information, please call 718-721-1001.

Tuesday
Jan262010

Robert buns supper at Highland restaurant 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Burns supper is a celebration of the life and poetry of the poet Robert Burns, author of many Scots poems. The suppers are normally held on or near the poet's birthday, 25 January, sometimes also known as Robert Burns Day or Burns Night (Burns Nicht), although they may in principle be held at any time of the year.

Burns suppers are most common in Scotland and Northern Ireland, but occur wherever there are Burns Clubs, Scottish Societies, expatriate Scots, or lovers of Burns' poetry.

The first suppers were held in Ayrshire at the end of the 18th century by Robert Burns' friends on the anniversary of his death, 21 July, In Memoriam and they have been a regular occurrence ever since. The first Burns club, known as The Mother Club, was founded in Greenock in 1801 by merchants born in Ayrshire, some of whom had known Burns. They held the first Burns Supper on what they thought was his birthday on 29 January 1802, but in 1803 discovered from the Ayr parish records that the correct date was 25 January 1759, and since then suppers have been held to 25 January, Burns' birthday.

January 25th is Burns Night, an evening for honouring Scottish poet Robert Burns. All over Scotland, and anywhere in the world where people celebrate their Scottish heritage, there will be Burns Suppers with haggis, poetry and whisky on the menu.

If you’ve heard haggis is made with a sheep’s lungs, heart and liver chopped and stuffed into a sheep’s stomach, don’t let that bother you. It’s mixed with oatmeal and spices, and by the time it reaches your plate, it’s just a savoury mound of sausagey stuff.