Vegetarian menu—please read

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by isaac, Aug 1, 2003.

  1. isaac

    isaac

    Messages:
    444
    Likes Received:
    10
    I am applying for a private chef position on Monday and they would like me to submit a 6 course tasting menu. They are vegetarian and to be frank, I do not have a lot of experience in non meat cooking. Here is what I have come up with so far.

    1-Mushroom Napoleon with bell pepper caviar and cilantro oil
    2-Ravioli (not sure what I will stuff it with)
    3-Couscous salad with black bean pure
    4-Palate Cleanser: Melon granite with freckles of aged balsamic vinegar
    5-Oven poached lemon encrusted sea bass with pea and corn risotto
    6-Trio of crème brulee (saffron/ lemon grass/ chocolate)

    The family does eat eggs and dairy products.

    Any help would be wonderful…please!!!!
     
  2. miahoyhoy

    miahoyhoy

    Messages:
    252
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    Hi Isaac,

    Looks pretty good. Are you sure they eat fish? If not try the same recipe with baked tofu.

    Also, are the vegetarians for health reasons or ethical reasons or both? Creme brulee may not be the best bet if they are on a health crunch.

    check out this book; "Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone" by: Deborah Madison.

    Lot's of ideas in there.

    Good luck,
    Jon
     
  3. isaac

    isaac

    Messages:
    444
    Likes Received:
    10
    Thank you Jon.


    I want menu items that are different and not just the norm items they get at restaurants when they order vegetarian.


    any suggestions?
     
  4. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

    Messages:
    7,375
    Likes Received:
    67
    Exp:
    Professional Caterer
    the largest complaint I hear from vegetarians is that at restaurants there is not a non-meat protein....the chefs cover about everything in cheese.....
    I stay really seasonal with your veg...they will be more flavorful.
    love the mmelon with baslamic.

    Mushrooms stuffes with wild shrooms, grind and add an herb and a hit of makers mark...leave out the cream.
    the dough on your naopolean may have butter.
    You'll need to know th dairy/egg question.
    is the couscous black with the puree...???? a dice of veg with a viniagrette on a base of greens would be pretty.
    right now is tomato season....possibly a green veg in fillo....swiss chard is great with a whole grain and vegetable filling topped with a tomato roasted pepper sauce spiked with oj and cayennne....old but good.
    I use the nu mori tofu soft silken to make mousse kinds of things... no dairy and loads of flavor the tofo is just a bland medium....freeze the goo and make a sauce with fruit....I make a blueberry frozen mousse with grand marnier and a berry sauce Wed. for a low fat client. Your menu if served the way it reads is heavy in carbs...couscous, napolean, rav, risotto....there are tons of whole grains and beans to play with ..
    Again the biggest question is do they eat dairy/cheese/eggs....it can make life sooooo much easier. I invest in viniagers for my Pritikin client....no they eat no-fat and loads of veg/grains/limited meats. Herbs and vinagers save me.
    Good Luck.
     
  5. cape chef

    cape chef

    Messages:
    4,508
    Likes Received:
    32
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    questions,

    How do you "encrust"your Sea Bass when it's poached?

    What is "Red pepper caviar" ?

    No dairy or eggs.why a Creme Brulle trio for desset?

    Asking these questions as a client.
     
  6. miahoyhoy

    miahoyhoy

    Messages:
    252
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    Good questions CC,

    I'm curious about those things too now that you mention it.

    Isaac said they [ U]do[/U] eat eggs and cream.

    Jon
     
  7. isaac

    isaac

    Messages:
    444
    Likes Received:
    10
    Cape Chef:

    They CAN eat dairey including eggs and cream with the addition of fish.

    You can encrust a fish and still oven poach it. You prepare the crust and encrust the fish with it and lay it gently on a sheet pan that has been sprayed with non stick. Then you add some liquid, be it wine or stock, and then oven poach it. This works really nicely.

    Bell pepper caviar is a bruniose cut of pepper that resembles caviar.




    THE REVISED MENU

    I took some consideration to what Shrromgirl said and I revised some parts of the menu according to seasonality and attention to starch intake. Here is what I have come up with.


    1st course: Mushroom napoleon with bell pepper caviar accompanied with cilantro oil

    2nd course: Carrot and rhubarb stuffed ravioli with caramelized shallots with a corn and pea coulis

    3rd course: Smoked tomato, arugula, and radicchio salad with an orange- honey vinaigrette

    4th course: melon granite with freckles of aged balsamic vinegar

    5th course: Phyllo wrapped marinated tofu enrobed with tomato and fresh basil sauce and soybean and garlic cous cous

    6th course: Trio of crème brule (saffron, lemon grass/ and berry)



    what do ya all think?
     
  8. suzanne

    suzanne

    Messages:
    3,853
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Food Editor
    Isaac: do you really want to work for people who claim to be vegetarians yet eat fish? That is, who are not honest in simply stating, "We don't eat meat or poultry," but couch their preferences in trendy terms of supposed health or morals?

    Sorry to rant like this, but it's more than a semantic distinction to me. If you are a vegetarian, you do not eat flesh; if you eat any kind of flesh that had to die first, you are NOT a vegetarian.

    But to answer your request:

    1st course: Mushroom napoleon with bell pepper caviar accompanied with cilantro oil

    Do you mean using mushrooms for what would normally be the pastry layers? If you slice roasted portabello caps on the bias, you can get pretty large, thin slices. And what for the "cream filling?" Whipped herbed goat cheese, perhaps? Yum. In any case, this should be absolutely gorgeous to look at (red bell peppers, right?).


    2nd course: Carrot and rhubarb stuffed ravioli with caramelized shallots with a corn and pea coulis

    Is your idea to offset the tartness of the rhubarb with the sweetness of all the other components? I might do the dish in reverse; that is, stuff the ravioli with a corn-and-pea puree, sauce it with the carrots and rhubarb, and garnish with the shallots. There's just something about the idea of savory rhubarb-filled ravioli that doesn't appeal to my palate. However, whichever way you do it, the colors will be really nice.

    3rd course: Smoked tomato, arugula, and radicchio salad with an orange- honey vinaigrette

    Unfortunately, I don't think the colors will work here: clashing shades of reds and orange seem a bit too busy. And, if you use a sweet-tart sauce for the ravioli (as I suggested above ;) ), you're repeating that flavor here. Why not take full advantage of tomatoes and do an heirloom tomato salad with arugula and a smoked tomato vinaigrette? The vinaigrette uses the less-than-perfect-looking tomato specimens.

    The next two courses of the menu sounds very, very good; no comments there.


    6th course: Trio of crème brule (saffron, lemon grass/ and berry)

    Consider panna cotta instead of crème brûlée. If they want light and healthy, that's a better choice. You can do all the same flavors. Just find out if they eat gelatin.


    Best of luck, and keep us posted.
     
  9. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

    Messages:
    7,375
    Likes Received:
    67
    Exp:
    Professional Caterer
    so what kinda gig is it? That's a pretty exstensive menu to make for a private chef job. They gotta be doing some serious entertaining to have you make that. What do they want day in and day out?