Smoked Salmon Crepe Gateau
By Chef Daniel Pliska CEC AAC
Yield: 24 portions – 3 each crepe gateau

15 each                                    Buckwheat Crepes (recipe to follow)
1 side                                       Cold Smoked Salmon, sliced (more if needed)
3 lbs                                         Butter (Plugra or other high-quality butter)
2 cups                                      Chopped Chives
Optional for garnish                Caviar (Sevruga, Osetra, or other suitable caviar)

  1. Whip the butter with the chives until light and airy
  2. Layout a crepe and pipe on a small amount of butter
  3. Spread out to an even layer
  4. Top with a layer of smoked salmon
  5. Top with another crepe
  6. Continue until five layers of crepes are stacked up
  7. Follow this procedure to build 2 more crepe gateau
  8. Press between cardboard cake circles and weight down with a number 10# can
  9. Refrigerate until chilled and butter has hardened
  10. At service cut each crepe gateau into 8 wedges
  11. Serve with watercress, endive and radish salad and garnish with crème fraiche, grapefruit Supremes and caviar if desired

Buckwheat Crepes
Yield 15 to 18 – 8” crepes

3 each                                      Eggs (large)
1 Tbl                                        Melted butter (Plugra)
1 cup                                       Buckwheat Flour
½ cup                                      Milk
¼ cup                                      Water (more if needed)
¼ tsp                                       Sea salt (fine ground)
As needed                               Grapeseed oil (for cooking)
As needed                               Butter (for cooking)

  1. Whisk the eggs together in a bowl
  2. Add the buckwheat flour and mix until smooth
  3. Mix in melted butter and the salt
  4. Mix in the milk
  5. Mix in the water to form a light batter
  6. Strain and let rest for 10 minutes
  7. Add a small amount of grapeseed oil to hot non-stick pan
  8. Add a small amount of butter and pour out any excess
  9. Ladle in about 1 ½ ounces of batter or just enough to cover the bottom of the pan
  10. Once brown turn over and cook for a few seconds
  11. Take out of the pan and cool on parchment paper
  12. Continue the process until all of the crepe batter is used.

Dressing for salad
1/2 cup                                    Grapefruit juice
4 TBL                                      Champagne vinegar
1/2 cup                                    Minced Shallots
1 tsp                                        Black pepper, fine ground
2 tsp                                        Chopped Tarragon
2 tsp                                        Chiffonade Basil
1/2 tsp                                     Sea salt, fine ground
2 cups                                      Grapeseed oil

Using all of the ingredients prepare a simple vinaigrette. Toss the watercress, endive and radishes with a small amount of the dressing.

Salad mix as needed:
Water Cress leaves, Belgium Endive split core removed and cut on a thin bias, Julianne Radishes
Garnish as needed:
Grapefruit Supremes
Cream Fraiche


Vegan Spicy Lentil Rice Cake with Vegetable Curry
By Chef Daniel Pliska CEC
Yield: 4 portions
 Spicy Lentil Rice Cake

1/2 cup                        Dried Lentils (washed)
1/4 cup                        Red Onion, minced
3 Tablespoons             Celery, fine diced
3 Tablespoons             Carrot, fine diced
1 teaspoon                   Garlic minced,
1 Tablespoon               McCormick Mojito lime spice
1/4 Cup                       White wine
1/4 Cup                       Tomato Juice
1 1/2 Cups                  Water
2 Tablespoons             Cilantro, coarse chopped
2 Tablespoons             Scallions, chopped
Salt to taste if needed

2 Tablespoons             Flaxseed meal
6 Tablespoons             Water
1 cup                           Cooked- basmati rice
1/2 cup                        Bread crumbs

Olive oil for a sautéing
Bread crumbs for coating cakes

  1. Sautee the Onion, Celery, Carrot, and Garlic in a small amount of olive oil
  2. Add the Mojito lime spice and stir and cook for 1 more minute
  3. Add lentils, wine, tomato juice, and water then bring to a boil
  4. Cover and reduce to a simmer
  5. Cook until lentils are soft, add more water if needed
  6. While the lentils are cooking soak the flaxseed meal in six tablespoons water
  7. Once the lentils are cooked and soft cool slightly then puree half of the lentils and leave rest whole
  8. Add the cooked rice, cilantro and scallions and stir well
  9. Add the flaxseed water and the mix well with ½ cup bread crumbs
  10. Adjust seasoning with salt if needed
  11. Form into 8 cakes and coat with bread crumbs
  12. Prepare the vegetable curry and reserve warm
  13. In a hot pan brown the lentil rice cakes in olive oil on both sides and then put into the oven and bake at 375F until cooked through
  14. Serve with the Vegetable Curry

 Vegetable Curry

2 Tablespoons             Jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
1½ Tablespoons          Garlic, minced
¼ cup                          Red onion, minced
1 Tablespoon               Ginger root, minced
2 teaspoons                 McCormick Ground Turmeric
1/2 teaspoons              Ground Black pepper
1½ teaspoons              kosher salt
1½ teaspoons              McCormick Curry Powder

3 cups                          Water
¼ cup                          All-purpose flour
2 tablespoons              Tomato paste
¾ cup                          Coconut milk
¼ cup                         Olive oil
1 Tablespoon               Olive Oil
½ cup                          Onions, diced
½ cup                          Celery, diced
½ cup                          Carrots, diced
½ cup                          Red bell peppers, diced
1 cup                           Butternut squash, diced
1 cup                           Cauliflower, flowerets
1/4 cup                        Golden raisins
½ each                         Lime
2 Tablespoons             Cilantro, chopped

  1. In a 2 quart sauce pot Sautee the jalapeno, garlic, ginger and red onion in the olive oil
  2. Add the salt, pepper, spices and flour and cook on medium heat to create a roux, cook for 5 minutes stirring frequently
  3. Add the tomato paste and cook and stir for another minute
  4. Whisk in the water and the coconut milk and bring to a simmer
  5. Simmer for 10 minutes and then puree with an emersion blender
  6. Heat another Sautee pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil and brown the onions, celery, carrots, peppers and butternut squash
  7. Add to the curry sauce and simmer for 3 minutes, add the cauliflower and golden raisins and simmer until all vegetables are tender and then squeeze in the lime juice and add the chopped cilantro just before serving
  8. Reserve and serve with the Lentil Rice cakes
  9. Garnish with Lime wedges, Cilantro leaves and chopped ScallionsOptional- Top with an arugula and julienne apple salad
FullSizeRender (61)
Mexican 8 layer dip is easy to make at home for any party serve with corn tortilla chips.

Mexican 8 Layer Dip
Yield: 12 to 16 portions

1 ½ cups Grated Cheddar Cheese
1 ½ cups Sour Cream
1 ½ cups Re Fried Beans
1 1/2 cups Diced Tomatoes
1 cup Guacamole
2 cups Roasted Corn (season corn with Mexi spices and roast at 375 until golden brown)
1 ½ cup Black Beans
2 cups Shredded Lettuce


  1. Line a cake pan with plastic wrap
  2. Layer in the ingredients starting with the cheese then pipe in the sour cream, refried beans and continue with the rest of the ingredients finishing the last layer with the shredded lettuce
  3. Top with a layer of plastic wrap press down and chill
  4. Take off the top layer of plastic, invert onto a serving platter and remove the cake pan serve with tortilla chips

Mexi spices are chili powder, paprika, cumin, granulated garlic, and cayenne pepper
Additional herbs can also be added such as cilantro and scallions when layering into the pan

Seafood Market Chowder
Yield: 1 ½ gallons

1 1/2 cups                                diced onions
1 ½ cups                                 diced celery
2 cups quarts                         diced Yukon gold potatoes skin on
3 cups                                      canned diced tomatoes with juice
1/2 pound                                butter
1/2 pound                                flour
3 quarts                                   fish stock
2 quarts                                   half and half
2 cups                                      chopped clams, canned or frozen
½ teaspoon                           saffron
1 cup                                        white wine (dry)
1/2 cup                                    chopped parsley
1/4 cup                                    chopped chives
1/4 cup                                    chopped basil
1 quart seafood scraps       scallops, shrimp, mussels, and firm flesh fish such as sword fish, cooked
Salt and black pepper to taste


  1. In heavy bottom stainless steel pot melt the butter and sauté the onions and celery.
  2. Add the flour to make a roux and cook for 10 minutes.
  3. Steep the saffron with the wine for 5 minutes in a small pot.
  4. Add the saffron wine essence to the roux along with the tomatoes and the clam juice (reserve the clams until the end of the cooking).
  5. Whisk until smooth and add the fish stock and the half & half.
  6. Simmer for 30 minutes. Then add the potatoes and cook for 10 more minutes or until the potatoes are soft.
  7. Add seafood scraps, clams and chopped herbs.
  8. Adjust the consistency with more half and half if too thick, or a cornstarch slurry if too thin; then season with salt and pepper.
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French Apple Tart with Caramel Sauce and Cream Anglaise.

French Apple Tart- At home recipe

Yield: 8 servings

 4 Each                                     Granny Smith Apples, peeled, cored & cut into wedges
3 Each                                     Eggs, extra large
6 ½ Oz (about 1 Cup)             Granulated Sugar
1 ½ Oz (or 3/4 stick)              Unsalted Butter, room temperature
3 Tbl                                       Apricot Jam
Cinnamon to sprinkle on top

Pate Brisée (Dough)

12 Oz (or 2 ¾ Cups)               All-Purpose Flour
6 Oz (or 3 sticks)                    Unsalted Butter, chilled
½ Tsp                                      Salt
6-7 Oz (or 3/4 Cup)                Water, ice cold

 To Prepare Dough

  1. In a large bowl, mix the flour and salt and then cut in the butter with a pastry blender or two forks until the butter is the size of peas.
  2. With your fingertips, gently work in the ice cold water just enough to form a ball.
  3. Wrap the ball in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

To Prepare Custard

  1. In a bowl, mix the sugar and butter together until smooth.
  2. Add the eggs one at a time while vigorously mixing until a smooth batter is formed.

To Prepare Tart

  1. In a 10-inch tart ring with removable bottom, roll out the dough and place into tart ring. Let the excess dough hang over sides.
  2. Take two forks and then poke holes all around the tart dough.
  3. Use a piece of foil paper and rub with oil or spray with Pam and push down into dough in order to hold it down into pan.
  4. Fill pan with dried beans.
  5. Bake in preheated oven at 350 degrees F for approximately 20 minutes.
  6. Remove from oven. Take out beans and foil (note: you can save the beans and re-use them again).
  7. Roll over the top of tart ring with rolling pin to cut off excess dough hanging over sides.
  8. Evenly spread bottom of the tart dough with apricot jam.
  9. Place the apples wedges in a circular pattern to fill up the tart ring.
  10. Pour the custard mix over the apples evenly, then lightly sprinkle with cinnamon.
  11. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes or until the custard has set and does not jiggle when the pan is shaken.
  12. Remove from the oven and let cool.
  13. Serve with vanilla ice cream or sauce.
Rheinischer Kucken and Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Tart – photo by Madeline Beyer

Rheinischer Kucken / Cherry Almond Pound Cake
Specialty from the Oberkassel Backhaus

Yield: Six Loaf Pans

1500 gr Butter
1500 gr Sugar
300 gr Almond paste
1500 gr Eggs
300 gr Water
50 gr Vanilla extract
1000 gr Cake flour
1000 gr Bread flour
45 gr Baking power
50 gr Salt

1. Cream the butter, sugar and almond paste.
2. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together.
3. Mix the eggs and water together and then mix into the butter, sugar and almond paste alternating with a small amount of the flour mix so as not to curdle.
4. Add the rest of the flour and mix until smooth.
5. Bake in loaf pans lined with puff pastry and push in IQF cherries or fresh plums then top with sliced almonds.
6. Bake at 350 until brown and then reduce the heat to 275 until done.
7. Brush with apricot glaze and fondant if desired.

Wrap in puff pastry, garnish with cherries and sliced almonds, apricot glaze to finish.


Photo by Harry Katz

Braised Short Ribs of Beef
With Wild Mushroom and Sun-dried Tomato Risotto
By Chef Daniel Pliska CEC
Yield 8 Entrée’s

Braised short ribs
8 pieces (about 10-12 oz each) beef short ribs
1 bottle Norton or other robust red wine
1 Cup large diced onions
½ cup large diced carrots
½ cup large diced celery
2 Tbl chopped garlic
1 cup tomato paste
3 quarts brown veal stock or beef broth
6 bay leaves
12 each fresh thyme sprigs
2 each 4” fresh rosemary sprigs
½ cup olive oil
½ cup butter
2 cups seasoned flour with salt, black pepper, dry thyme, granulated garlic and paprika
1 cup Arborio rice
2 tbsp olive oil
3 ½ to 4 cups chicken broth
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup diced Portobello mushrooms
1 cup diced shiitake mushrooms
½ cup diced Re- Hydrated morel mushrooms
1 cup diced Re –Hydrated Sun dried tomatoes
¼ cup minced onion
2 tsp minced garlic
Salt and pepper to taste
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
Ingredients to finish the dish
3 each parsnip peeled and then cut with the peeler into ribbons
2 cups diced root vegetables (can be beets, parsnips, carrots, turnips)
2 cups seasoned flour with salt and pepper for dredging the parsnip ribbons
Approximately 2 tsp white truffle oil

Preparation for the Beef
1. Dredge the short ribs in the seasoned flour.
2. In a braising pan melt the butter and with the olive oil and brown the beef on all sides.
3. Remove the meat from the pan and add the vegetables and the garlic.
4. Then add ½ cup of the seasoned flour and stir while cooking to form a roux.
5. Return the beef then add the red wine and tomato paste and return to a light boil.
6. Add the stock and the herbs and bring back to a light boil cover and cook in a pre-heated oven at 375F for 2 to 3 hours until meat is very tender.
7. Remove the meat strain the sauce and hold until plated up.

Preparation for the Risotto
1. While the beef is cooking in the oven prepare the risotto in a separate sauce pot.
2. Heat the olive oil and then brown the rice.
3. Add the garlic, onions, mushrooms, and sun dried tomatoes stir for 2 minutes until the mushrooms are cooked.
4. Add the white wine and stir frequently until the wine has evaporated.
5. Add the stock in 3 batches stirring each time frequently until absorbed.
6. When the stock is all incorporated and the rice is tender add the cheese and season of needed with salt and pepper then hold warm until plated up.

Plate Up
1. Toss the parsnip ribbons in the seasoned flour and then fry at 350F then remove to a pan lined with napkins while finishing the beef.
2. Sauté the root vegetables in the olive oil until golden brown and tender.
3. On 8 plates scoop out the risotto and surround with the vegetables.
4. Top the risotto with the beef.
5. Ladle a generous portion of sauce over the beef and drizzle with the truffle oil.
6. Garnish with the fried parsnips and serve.

Coconut Rice Pudding with Strawberry Lavender Sauce- Photo by Madeline Beyer

Coconut Rice Pudding with Strawberry Lavender Sauce

Yield: 30 – 3 ounce portions


2 cups              Jasmine rice
1 quart             Milk
1 each              Star anise
1 each              Cinnamon stick

2 cups              Coconut flakes unsweetened toasted light brown
3 cups             half and half
3 cups             coconut milk unsweetened
12 ounces        granulated sugar
9 each             extra large eggs
6 each            yolks
1 each              vanilla beans, split lengthwise
½ teaspoon      salt

1 quart             Whipped Cream, whipped to soft peaks

Sliced strawberries for garnishing
Mint for garnishing
Swiss Meringue
Strawberry lavender syrup
Wafer cookies if desired

  1. Rinse the rice well and drain
  2. Simmer  the rice in the milk with the star anise and the cinnamon stirring frequently so as not to scorch, cover pot when not stirring
  3. When the rice is cooked and soft drain any leftover milk spread on a sheet pan and cool
  4. Scald the half and half, coconut milk and sugar and split and scraped vanilla bean
  5. Whisk into the eggs and yolks one ladle at a time to make custard mix
  6. Strain out the vanilla bean and add the rice and toasted coconut
  7. Pour into a baking pan cover with foil and bake in a low heat oven at 250F on a sheet pan  filled with water until set about 3 hours
  8. Refrigerate until chilled, mix to break up the rice custard and fold in the whipped cream by hand
  9. When it is time to serve scoop the  rice pudding into bowls
  10. Prepare the Swiss meringue and pipe onto the rice pudding
  11. Lightly brown with a butane torch
  12. Garnish with sliced strawberries, strawberry lavender syrup, and a crisp wafer cookie (if desired) and a sprig of mint.


Swiss Meringue


8 each Egg whites separated from extra-large eggs
1 cup Granulated sugar
Pinch Cream of tartar (optional)



  1. Whip the egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar in a large bowl over a pot of boiling water until hot and temperature reads 145F.
  2. Immediately put into the mixing machine and whip on high speed until thick and stiff peaks are formed


Strawberry Lavender Sauce


1 quart                                                 Strawberries washed and sliced        

1 tablespoon                                       Dried lavender flowers
2 cups                                                  Water
1 cup                                                   Granulated sugar


  1. Bring to a boil the water, lavender, and sugar
  2. Pour into a stainless steel bowl and add the strawberries
  3. Let come to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate over night
  4. Strain the syrup and serve.