Saturday, October 23, 2010

2010 Lobster Chef of the Year

2010 Maine Lobster Chef of the Year Crowned!

Chef Kelly Patrick Farrin - Azure Café, Freeport

Chef Kelly Patrick Farrin - Azure Café, FreeportHerb Grilled Maine Lobster Tail on Arugula with Chive Ricotta  Gnocchi & Corn Milk
Download winning recipe here...

A strong desire to succeed, matched by a true passion for food, motivates the charismatic 27-year old Chef Kelly Patrick Farrin.  Chef Farrin began his mission for the best in culinary arts at age 18 in a small kitchen in Boothbay Harbor, Maine.  He cooked breakfast for the locals and was inspired to a career in the art of food.
Chef Farrin was educated at the New England Culinary Institute (NECI) in Essex, Vermont and earned an Associate’s Degree in Culinary Arts in 2008.  NECI gave Chef Farrin intense personal attention from world class Chefs and prepared him to master the culinary field. 

After earning his degree, Chef Farrin packed his bags and moved to Key West, Florida to work under Chef Timothy Pierre Labonte at the Hot Tin Roof on Ocean Key Resort. Here, Farrin served as lead line cook on a menu indicative of the many flavor influences of South Florida.

In 2009, Chef Farrin returned home to Boothbay Harbor, Maine as Sous Chef for the Rocktide Inn. His excitement for fresh local seafood & his modern take on recipes helped the Rocktide grow in popularity. 

In early 2010, Chef Farrin joined the team at Azure in Freeport, Maine working under Executive Chef Christopher Bassett.  At Azure, Chef Farrin uses Maine’s best ingredients to prepare flavorful and creative Italian cuisine.  In his free time, he heads to the Maine coast for a little competitive sailing.  He lives in South Freeport where he can continue to indulge himself in his love for the sea.  

Monday, October 18, 2010

In Praise of Butter

You have heard by now about "brown butter mashed potatoes" haven't you?  If not, then get thee to the kitchen, now!  Just make your mashed potatoes like you normally would (I use buttermilk), but this time brown a big wallop of butter in a pan.  Yes, I said "brown", sort of like burning it.  Heat it slowly, it will begin to foam and bubble as the water boils out, then the milk solids will start to brown.  Medium brown is good but don't let it burn.  Burned butter is bad.  Add that to your mashed with a few squeezes of the garlic press (the garlic will cook in the hot potatoes) and a few strikes of nutmeg across your micro plane.  You will be amazed at the increased complexity of flavors and you family and friends will regard you as the chef de cuisine.

Now, how about cornmeal in your pancakes?  Try it.  You make your pancakes from scratch right?  Flour, egg, baking soda, buttermilk, a little salt and sugar so they will brown.  If you use plain milk, baking powder is the levening agent - its an acid reactive thing.  Mix it all up to the consistency of pancake batter, you know the feel.  Now add a little cornmeal.  It's not so much for taste, but for the slight crunch that adds a little extra pizazz to your already good flapjacks.