Pictures (aka Food Porn)

Tuna Tartar – Cubed Ahi Tuna is blended with capers, cracked green peppercorns, scallions, serano peppers, and a light wasabi/soy sauce, served atop an avocado & bacon salad. It is finished with truffle oil and topped with a nest of shaved asparagus.

Truffled Frites – is there anything more soul satisfying than good french fries? Yes, hand cut, twice fried (in a proprietary blend of duck fat, bacon fat and canola oil) fries, tossed with parmesan, truffle salt and parsley. For the record, deep frying gets a bum rap. Done properly, and in moderation, it is a great way to cook certain things – please ask me about this.

Beef Short Ribs on Dirty Rice with Mushroom & Shallot Coulis finished with a Barolo Reduction – Grass-fed Beef Short Ribs are brined for 24 hours, seared over high heat and then slow braised with seasonal vegetables, red wine, and sherry. The ribs are served atop a disc of Dirty Rice and topped with a of a mushroom & shallot coulis.  The plate is finished with a Barolo wine & honey demi-glace.

Barbara’s Salad – named for one Danny’s best friends who insists that he make this for her at every opportunity. It is arugula, lightly roasted asparagus, lardons of dry rubbed black forest bacon, crumbled stilton cheese, slivered almonds, sliced strawberries (when in season) shaved shallots, a honey/lime/mustard/rum vinaigrette.

Asparagus & Pancetta Risotto – there is no dish that more embodies the notion of “love as an ingredient” than risotto. Make the stock from scratch, carefully source ingredients, spend an attentive hour at the stove – show the pan some love. 

…speaking of risotto, if there is a better cocktail party canape than Arancini, we have not found it. Take some really good risotto, let it cool, add even more parmesan cheese, roll into balls, stuff with buffalo mozzarella, roll ’em in house-made bread crumbs, and deep fry them to a ridiculous state of golden brown deliciousness.

55 hour BBQ Ribs – here at Cogito Ergo Sauté we’re not just fine dining, we can throw down some ‘Que too; these are heritage pork baby back ribs that are brined for 24 hours, dry-rubbed for 24, braised for 4, smoked for 3, finished on the grill) with CES secret “ghostface-spilla” BBQ sauce… oh, and don’t even think about asking for the sauce recipe – in addition to the bourbon pie, it is one of three recipes we will not share. For anything else, just ask.

Pork Bolognese over Tagliatelle – This is the dish Danny makes when he’s had a really bad day. There is nothing magical about the individual elements of bolognese, but the process of slow roasting San Marzano Tomatoes, sweating garlic and leeks and shallots and everything else in the sauce with freshly ground pork and aged Parmesan turns the sum of the parts into a sublime balm for the palate and the soul.

Bourbon PieA cream based confection that is a heavily secured Boylen family recipe (only two people are allowed to have it at any time and Danny just gained access,) this pie is rich, luxurious but still feather light and screams of the spirit for which it is named… and because sometimes there is no such thing as overkill, it is garnished with a warm bourbon caramel sauce. 

CES Cheeseboard – a cheeseboard is an ego-less dish, sort of. Yes, one needs to source great cheese (and we source ours from the best local cheese shops) but that is just one part of the equation. Assuming that everyone has good cheese, it is the accoutrements that make the difference – the ones featured on this plate are Turffled Honey, Bacon Jam (as ridiculous as it sounds,) toasted almond slivers, and toasted baguette slices.

Brown Shugga Brownies – I dare you to find better brownies – that is all.

Spinach and Artichoke Bisque – Jerusalem Artichokes and Baby Spinach are roasted with shallots and leeks, pureed and then simmered to further develop flavor. Brandy is added for texture, cream for softening and luxury. The bisque is topped with crispy pancetta and finished with a marscarpone cream sauce.

A note about our photographs

In preparation for our close up, we did a fair amount of research on “Food Styling.” In the process we learned that many food photos are aided by various photo tricks.

  • Did you know that motor oil is a frequent substitute for chocolate sauce? The consistency and sheen make it easier to photograph.
  • Steam is often created by soaking cotton balls in water and then microwaving them.
  • Food dyes are commonly used to create a richer color or even to fabricate an entire dish like soup.
  • Baby Oil is brushed on things to give them a “fresher” look.

We at Cogito Ergo Sauté are not passing judgment on people who make the choice to alter their food or use various techniques to enhance their visual depictions, but we are proud of the fact that we didn’t. All of the food pictured on this page is exactly as described and made for a hella fun dinner party after the photo shoot.

 

 Most pictures taken by Carey Dougan – Urban Portraits. If you need a photographer, I have nothing but effusive praise for her.

202.596.2108 / danny@CESaute.com /  Site Map

Jul 11, 2011 | Posted by | Comments Off on Pictures (aka Food Porn)
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