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Chef Scott Crawford Leaves Umstead, Opens Two Restaurants

Chef Scott Crawford Leaves Umstead, Opens Two Restaurants


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Chef Scott Crawford is looking to venture out on his own and open two new restaurants in the Raleigh, North Carolina area.

Chef Scott Crawford, the James Beard-nominated executive chef at the five star and AAA diamond-rated Umstead Hotel in Carey, North Carolina since 2009, has announced that he will be leaving his position to forms his own hospitality group and open up two new restaurants in Raleigh, North Carolina. Crawford has partnered with John Holmes of Hobby Properties to open up two new restaurants: Standard Foods and Nash Tavern under Nash Square Hospitality Group. Standard Foods, opening this fall, is a restaurant/grocery store hybrid featuring progressive Southern food that is supposed to set the standard for food in Raleigh. Nash Tavern, a modern American restaurant, will follow in 2015.

“I’m proud of my accomplishments in fine dining at luxury properties over the last two decades, and feel especially privileged to have been able to shape such a talented team at The Umstead,” said Crawford in a statement. “I’m excited to build on my own ideas – from the ground up – and to pursue concepts that I think are particularly relevant and integral to our community.”

Standard Foods, opening in the early fall, will feature modern twists on Southern comfort foods, like chilled strawberry soup with yuzu and jalapeno, fried rabbit with succotash, and pork cheeks with pickled peppers and apricot mustard.

Joanna Fantozzi is an Associate Editor with The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @JoannaFantozzi


Recipe: Farmers' market frittata

Western Wake Farmers' Market in Cary opens with its expanded hours on Saturday morning. It will be open from 8 a.m. to noon. Here's a yummy recipe you can make with ingredients bought at the market!

Farmers’ Market Frittata

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 pound unpeeled yellow potatoes, cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 1/2 pound asparagus, cut into 1 inch length
  • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 4 oz goat cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)

1. Rinse the potatoes, tomatoes, and asparagus first. Steam the potatoes until tender, for about five minutes, then set aside.
2. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil and the butter in a 10-inch oven-proof skillet over high heat. Add the potatoes, season with salt and pepper. While the potatoes are cooking, you can prepare the eggs.
3. In a large bowl, beat the eggs with milk, salt, pepper, and a dash of cayenne pepper if you want a little spice.
4. When the potatoes are brown and crisp, remove with a slotted spoon and turn the heat to medium-low. Add the asparagus and saute until crisp-tender, about two minutes. Add the tomatoes and saute two minutes longer, then flatten the tomatoes a little by smooshing them down with a rubber flipper or wooden spoon.
5. Stir back the potatoes, and pour the egg mixture in. Crumble the goat cheese on top, pressing on the pieces lightly so that it is nestled into the egg mixture. Reduce the heat to low and cook until the edges begin to set, but the top is still runny, about seven minutes. Set a large flat plate over the skillet and invert the frittata onto the plate. Add the remaining oil to the skillet and slide the frittata back in. Cook until the bottom is golden, about three minutes. Slide the frittata onto a large plate and cut into wedges.

Here's what's happening at the market in April!

  • Saturday, April 7: Western Wake Farmers' Market will "open" for its fourth season on Saturday. Hours will return to 8 a.m. to noon. Over 40 vendors will offer a wide variety of fresh, seasonal produce, meats, seafood, cheeses, eggs, breads, sweets, crafts and much more! In conjunction with Easter, the market will host an egg-themed market day with activities for kids including a make-your-own eggshell flower pot and an Easter egg hunt. Whole Foods Market of Cary will be in the education tent offering recipes and samples featuring farmers' market eggs and other local produce. Stevan Jackson will be accompanying the market in the music tent. Face painting by LynneSue Fisher will also be available.
  • April 14: Advocates for Health in Action (AHA) will be in the education tent promoting the What's On Your Plate? screening. Andrew Robbins will be in the music tent.
  • April 21: The North Carolina 10% campaign along with the Cary Dinner Fairy will be in the education tent and Kyle Scobie will be playing in the music tent.
  • April 28: Chef Scott Crawford of Herons Restaurant at The Umstead Hotel and Spa will feature delicious farmers' market recipes in the education tent and CityFolk will accompany the market in the music tent.

Find the Western Wake Farmers' Market on Morrisville Carpenter Road between Davis Drive and Highway 55 in Carpenter Village in Cary. Find recipes on Go Ask Mom every Friday.


An Insider’s Look at The Umstead Hotel & Spa

Just an hour and half flight from New York and a short 10 minute drive from the airport and you’ve arrived at one of the most hospitable, well-appointed, and luxurious destinations in The Research Triangle of North Carolina. The Umstead Hotel & Spa in Cary, North Carolina is more than simply a place to rest your head while you tour the area – it’s a place where you can spend every moment of a long weekend and leave feeling refreshed, well-fed, and taken care of as though you spent a weekend at home – that is, if your home is a Leading Hotel of the World with a newly renovated spa, and your mom is a Forbes 5-Star chef.

How do I know that you can spend all of your time over two days at this amazing hotel and not ever feel an ounce of anything other than taken care of? Simply put, while my husband and I went with a list full of sights to see and places to check out, Mother Nature wasn’t so keen on our plan. The area was experiencing torrential downpours, tornado warnings, and massive wind and so after a short trip to Barnes and Noble to pick up some reading material we settled back into our beautiful room and enjoyed all this hotel had to offer!

Flashback to arrival – which was at night during a rainstorm – and despite the conditions pulling up to the hotel can only be described as regal. Valet eagerly waits to greet you and you are welcomed to the hotel with a smile – check-in was a breeze, we passed the lounge area where live music and cocktails were being enjoyed, and we headed up to our room – which was truly lovely. I’m a sucker for a good soaking tub in a hotel bathroom and The Umstead didn’t disappoint, pair that with a rain shower, balcony overlooking the lake, and perhaps the most comfortable bed I’ve slept on apart from my own – and I was immediately smitten.

The following day was when the real adventure began. We started out day off right with breakfast at Herons the hotels’ AAA Forbes 5 Star restaurant (although I’m currently on a “healthy eating only” kick I have to recommend you order the doughnut holes with apple butter – unreal!). We enjoyed breakfast here Saturday and Sunday and each day was delicious with little added bonuses like a small smoothie-of-the-day shooter to start you off on a fun note! We finished up and hopped in our little rental car and tried to beat the rain…but alas.

Frankly, I’m a planner – to a fault – and we headed out to check out some spots that were “recommended” to my husband by hours of research on the internet – sure “someone told me,” really translates to “I read it in a forum” … but I digress. About 20 minutes into the drive the rain started coming down sideways, phones started blazing and alerting us of tornado warnings so myself and my amazing husband who somehow manages not to pull his hair out when I change my mind on a whim (or when I feel the need to say “be careful” and “watch out” every 5 seconds as he drives) decided that our best plan of action would be to head back to our beautiful hotel (why had we even left in the first place?!) with a few good books in tow (Sharper Objects by Gillian Flynn – amazing, disturbing, couldn’t put it down – literally finished it that day).

We caught a moment of relief and took a small walk around the lake – it was really beautiful, regardless of the weather. Even though you know there’s a highway behind the trees, the lake’s two fountains drown out any possible noise and you’re blissfully unaware as you take your peaceful walk. We headed inside to read a bit and then went downstairs to enjoy a bite to eat in the lounge – the butternut squash soup is a must have (especially on a rainy day!).

We took a walk around and enjoyed the hotel’s carefully curated art collection, featuring work from well-known local and national artists, including glass artist Chihuly, checked out The Gift Shop which featured pottery by local artists Ben Owen III and Mark Hewitt, beautiful jewelry, clothing, and unique pieces to take home (including the most adorable squirrel candle-holder), and meandered by a group enjoying Afternoon Tea, which is served Wednesday-Sunday from 2:30-4 pm in the lobby (reservations required) and is complemented by a live harpist. Needless to say – no matter what the weather conditions there is plenty to do at The Umstead – and I haven’t even gotten to the spa!

That night we enjoyed an amazing 3-course dinner at Herons with wine pairings – to say that the work that Executive Chef Scott Crawford and Chef de Cuisine John Childers have created is delicious wouldn’t do it justice. With the help of Culinary Farmer Maggie Lawrence, who grows fresh vegetables on an acre of land a mile away from the hotel, the team has created a menu featuring local farm partners, seasonal ingredients, and a refreshing and new way to enjoy American cuisine. The restaurant is intimate with just 98 seats, has a full-view kitchen so you know exactly what’s happening with your meal, ornate decor, and beautiful artwork. My husband and I both left saying that the roasted monkfish prepared with crispy oysters, fennel, pumpernickel and ale butter was easily the best fish we’ve ever had. Hai, our sommelier, picked the perfect wine pairings for each course which truly brought out the flavor and the hidden notes in the dinner and let me just say – don’t skip dessert!

Now to the truly fun part – the spa! In July of 2013 the already vast two-floor, 14,000-square-foot spa was renovated and expanded (to an additional 1,400-square-feet of relaxation and treatment space). From new decor, artwork, and fixtures, the entire spa was revamped from top to bottom in order to more fully immerse the guest into their experience, creating a deeper connection with nature and fostering an environment of mindfulness. With a total of 11 treatment rooms there is something for everyone on the menu – with treatments ranging from mani-pedis, to body treatments using the spa’s own line, to facials featuring many wonderful local brands. I experienced an amazing Couple’s Retreat which began with a milk bath soak and was followed with a 50-minute Swedish massage as well as a 75-minute Skin Perfecting Facial which included an amazing glycolic peel and Vitamin C mask that left me glowing! Sunday was apparently the “it-day” for couples – and the spa has lots of great areas you can relax with your sweetheart! From the new coed wet lounge with a heated whirlpool tub that has an open air concept to the new upstairs coed relaxation lounge perfect for enjoying a cup of tea post treatment – a day here leaves you feeling completely brand new!

If you’re still feeling extra high-strung from the holiday season, I would highly recommend The Umstead Hotel & Spa for a perfect long weekend away with someone special or even solo just to relax and unwind!


Ask the Locals: Raleigh, North Carolina

Peter Greenberg Worldwide broadcast from The Umstead just outside Raleigh, North Carolina. On air, Chef Scott Crawford shared his signature dish for fall, CAM Raleigh Executive Director Elysia Borowy-Reeder described the local arts scene, and Natural Museum of Science Director Betsy Bennett shared the best of the great outdoors. Today, we’ve rounded up all the local best into an updated Ask the Locals travel guide to Raleigh and tomorrow check out the latest Travel Today podcast for even more local favorites.

Elysia Borowy-Reeder, executive director of CAM Raleigh, has curated exhibitions in a number of great cities—from New York to Miami—but it is Raleigh, North Carolina that currently has her absolutely enchanted. She cannot speak highly enough about the city’s vibrancy, particularly within the Warehouse District:

Image Credit Wikimedia: CalderOliver

“This exciting neighborhood … is steeped in a rich and complex history that informs—but does not limit—the present and the future. I am reminded every day how Raleigh’s Warehouse District is a destination for adventure. Whether you seek fresh work from talented artists’ studios or unique gifts from Designbox, Visual Art Exchange or Rebus Works, or handcrafted jeans from Raleigh Denim or handmade chocolates from Videri Chocolate Factory or a Tasty Beverage, the warehouse district is the place to go.”

Tasty Beverage Company boasts an impressive collection of 1,200 packaged beers in addition to the six that they serve on tap. And a visit to Videri Chocolate Factory is an absolute must for chocolate lovers. You’ll feel as though you’ve won one of Willy Wonka’s golden tickets as you get an inside look at the “bean to bar” process and enjoy an opportunity to taste handmade chocolate. Videri Chocolate Factory and Tasty Beverage Company can both be found in the Raleigh Depot, which was originally built in 1912 to serve as the city’s freight depot. What could be better than artisan chocolate and craft beer in the same building? The two businesses live in glorious harmony as Videri welcomes you to bring your own beer or wine to enjoy on the patio as you dig in to their delicious chocolate.

To get your fix of fresh, local art, and support Raleigh’s artists, Designbox, Rebus Works, and Visual Art Exchange are all great places to go.

Scott Crawford, executive chef of The Umstead Hotel & Spa, has a number of great restaurant recommendations for you.

If you’re in the mood for Italian, Bella Mia in Cary serves up authentic coal-fired pizzas accompanied by a fairly extensive wine list. Or if Japanese is more your speed, Yuri Japanese Restaurant has fantastic sushi and sake. If you just want to relax with a nice cocktail, Mandolin is the place and its live music only adds to the ambience. But if you’re looking for a more unique experience, Amra’s Lounge and Cigar Bar is the only place in Raleigh to sit back, smoke a cigar, sip your favorite spirit, and enjoy live music all at the same time.

Or take the time to prepare your own meal. The State Farmers Market in Raleigh is open seven days a week and has great statewide representation. You can pack a picnic and spend a day at Pullen Park, where the carousel, train, peddle boats, and playgrounds ensure a fun time for anyone.

Betsy Bennett, director of the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, loves to be active outdoors and wants you to know how to enjoy North Carolina’s natural beauty.

The Mason Farm Biological Reserve in Chapel Hill is a beautiful place to go hiking, and, just outside of Raleigh, Jordan Lake is a great place to go kayaking. Both locations are also ideal for bird watching.

As far as food goes, Provence in Chapel Hill has the best French food in town. But if you’re looking for delicious Asian food sourced from local ingredients, Lantern is the place to go. It has been named one of “America’s Top 50 Restaurants” by Gourmet as well as one of “America’s 50 Most Amazing Wine Experiences” by Food & Wine.


Hotel Of The Day: The Umstead Hotel & Spa

What: Located in Cary, N.C., just outside nearby Raleigh-Durham, The Umstead Hotel & Spa, a Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star hotel, has a serene setting that’s both familiar and unexpected. The full-service retreat is situated on 12 acres of lush woods and overlooks a private three-acre lake, with interiors that take their cues from the resort’s natural setting. Each of the 150 spacious guest rooms is decorated in soothing tones of blue and taupe, and views from just about every direction take in the leafy surrounds of the resort. (Leave your room and you might just want to park yourself for the duration of your stay near the Umstead’s elegant outdoor stone terrace.)

Where: The Umstead’s close proximity to “The Triangle” (a nickname given to the tri-city area comprised of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill) puts guests within easy access to the region’s universities, medical centers and businesses. Whether you’re in the mood to museum hop in Raleigh or cheer on the Blue Devils at a Duke University home game, there’s plenty to explore within a short drive.

When: There’s no bad time to visit The Umstead Hotel & Spa, one of only two Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star hotels in North Carolina. The hotel’s Five-Star restaurant, Herons, serves local, seasonal dishes under the direction of chef Scott Crawford, which pair well with sommelier Hai Tran’s more than 2,500-bottle wine list. Visit while it’s still summer and you might spot recipes such as local cobia with blue crab, green wheat, squash and garlic natural hen with butter beans, carrots, wild rice and mustard and tempting desserts such as strawberry consommé with chévre, rhubarb and champagne. Warm weather allows for poolside relaxing or exploring the trails at the adjacent 5,579-acre William B. Umstead State Park. Winter offers the perfect chance to indulge in the resort’s traditional afternoon tea accompanied by a live harpist, or sip a local craft beer by The Umstead Bar and Lounge’s fireplace.

Why: While the Four-Star Umstead Spa has always had its unique eucalyptus steam room and meditation garden, guests will now find 1,400 additional square feet of recently added botanically-inspired space spread over two storeys. The spa now features an open roof current pool, new treatment rooms with deep-soaking tubs and a revamped nail salon.


New Fall Menus Debuts at Herons

Herons, the Forbes Five-Star, AAA Five-Diamond restaurant at The Umstead Hotel and Spa, has unveiled new fall menus that will warm patron’s palates with the season’s finest flavors. Throughout October and November, executive chef Scott Crawford will showcase North Carolina’s autumn bounty from The Umstead’s own farm, local farms and food purveyors in an exceptional line-up of breakfast, lunch, brunch, and dinner menus. A Chef’s Tasting Menu is also available and is ideal for celebrating an extra-special occasion.

Herons’ autumn prix fixe dinner menu offers guests the option of three or four courses. Beginnings include dishes like Pumpkin Soup with Marshmallow, Hickory Syrup and Rosemary Oats, and Butternut Squash Salad with Maple Ricotta, Dates and a Walnut Vinaigrette, and are followed by entrees like Scottish Salmon with Caramelized Onion, Hog Jowl and Horseradish Broth and Beef Tenderloin with Sage Crust, Chestnut-Potatoes and Marrow Sauce, and completed with desserts from Sweet Potato Soup with Pickled Raisin, and Cake “Toast” Sour Cream and Ginger Pudding with Buttermilk, Pickled Apples and Oats, to Warm Chocolate Mousse (for two) with Huckleberry Compote and Corn Nut Ice Cream.

For a midday indulgence, lunch menu highlights include appetizers such as Autumn Squash Ravioli with Chanterelle Mushrooms and Carolina Moon Cheese, and Parsnip Soup with Banyuls Vinegar, Pecan Brittle and Crispy Sage, and main dishes ranging from Red Beet Pasta with Pickled Raisins, Smoked Blue Cheese and Fried Almonds to Beef Short Ribs with Scarlett Turnips, Horseradish, Parsley Root and Red Wine. Diners can end their meal on a sweet note with treats including Cheesecake Crème Brulee with Cranberries, Pumpkin Spice Cake and Orange Caramel and Caramel Poached Apples with Soft Oat Cake, Vanilla Parfait and Salted Butter Sable.

A special five-course Chef’s Tasting Menu is available nightly and features Salmon Carpaccio with Paw Paw Vinegar, Hyssop and Shaved Radish Malted Parsnip Soup with Gala Apples, Ruby Port and Hazelnut Crumb Milk Poached Pheasant with Roasted Hickory Nuts and Foie Gras Sauce Wagyu Beef Belly with Creamed Collard Greens and Mustard Jus and Sweet Potato Pudding Cake with Currant, Goat Yoghurt and Cranberries. The Chef’s Tasting Menu requires the participation of the entire table and reservations are required. Vegetarian menus are also available upon request.

News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by FSR, Food News Media, or Journalistic, Inc.


Asian alchemy: Steven Greene cooks it up at An

The town of Ninety Six, S.C., might be known to history buffs as an important backcountry outpost for British forces during the Revolutionary War. But few people know that Ninety Six is the hometown of one of North Carolina’s most dynamic chefs, Steven Greene of Cary’s An restaurant. The 33-year-old Greene has had an alchemist’s effect on the restaurant since taking over in January 2012, turning a solid but unspectacular restaurant into one of the Triangle’s premier dining spots, only the third restaurant to be given a five-star review by The News & Observer’s Greg Cox.

“A two-hour-plus parade of so many courses I lost count, the meal was the most memorable I’ve had since I dined several years ago at McCrady’s, the James Beard Award-winning restaurant in Charleston – where, as it happens, Steven Greene has also worked,” Cox wrote last May.

How did a young, small-town Southern boy of French and Scotch-Irish descent – a cook with no formal training, and no direct connection with Asian food – become such a force of Asian cuisine?

He’ll tell you it comes down to relationships. With line cooks and master chefs, with native Asian cooks, with ingredients and techniques he came to love, and with mentors he found along the way.

Today at An, Greene serves up dishes like Siam noodles, duck curry, chili prawns and Thai wings, and features ingredients like tamarind and a variety of exotic citrus fruits like yuzu, sudachi, and kabosu. It’s a long way from Ninety Six, but Greene, who has wholeheartedly adopted the intricate nuances of a multitude of Asian cuisines, is right at home.

“Steven is all about details,” says Herons chef Scott Crawford, who has worked with Greene in two kitchens and over several years. “Fine, fine details. Things that other people don’t even recognize.”

An athlete’s drive

A solid athlete in his youth, Greene still looks the part: fit and trim in his chef’s whites, hair gelled in a boyish faux-hawk. He exudes confidence. He had opportunities to play sports in college, but competition on the field was not the source of his inspiration and motivation – food was.

As a teenager, he worked at a French restaurant in nearby Greenwood, initially as a dishwasher, then as a waiter, and finally as line cook. After high school, the chef he was working with suggested Greene head to Charleston and jump right into the business. He did. It was at the world-renowned McCrady’s Restaurant that then-chef Michael Kramer exposed Greene to Asian cuisine for the first time with a handful of exotic ingredients.

Next came a job at the acclaimed Dining Room at Woodlands Resort and Inn outside of Charleston, where Greene rose quickly through the ranks. He says his approach to cooking also grew. “At first, I treated my job as an extension of who I was in high school – an athlete – so cooking to me was a competition. How fast I could prep. How perfectly I could execute a dish. When I became executive sous chef, I became more than a cook. I took ownership of bringing something special to the table.”

It was also at Woodlands that Greene’s exposure to Asian cuisine broadened. Executive Chef Ken Vedrinski had spent a number of years working in Thailand, and he introduced Greene to ingredients, techniques, and ways to incorporate them into the menu of a European-style, high-end restaurant.

Greene took that education and ran with it, opening his own restaurant at the age of 25 in Greenville, S.C. Devereaux’s (after his middle name) became a huge success. Its menu was “all over the map.” Some dishes had Asian elements in them, as they had at the Woodlands, but no one would have called Devereaux’s an Asian restaurant.

Then, after four years of running his own show, worrying about payroll and other management concerns, Greene decided to focus solely on cooking again. He accepted an offer to join Scott Crawford, with whom he’d worked at Woodlands, as chef de cuisine at Herons Restaurant in Cary’s Umstead Hotel and Spa.

At Herons, Greene continued to dabble with Asian ingredients and was encouraged to experiment further. He took a trip to Thailand and Malaysia with Chicago chef Curtis Duffy, immersing himself in the local food traditions. But Greene was still by no means an Asian chef. He knew a lot about the food, the culture, and the techniques, but he hadn’t even mastered how to use what he refers to as the most important tool of the Asian kitchen: the wok.

At the end of 2011, that was about to change. Greene was approached by Jim and Ann Goodnight of SAS, owner of both the Umstead and An, with an offer: take over An, which had gotten stale in its food, ordinary in its service, and lacked direction. Greene knew how to cook and run a kitchen. He had a fundamental understanding of Asian food. But taking over a restaurant that was exclusively Asian would be an immense challenge.

Built-in knowledge

This time, there wasn’t a mentor or boss to help teach Greene about Asian food. Help instead came from his new employees, the existing cooks and sushi chefs at An, nine of whom are Asian by descent and know the region’s cuisine inside and out.

His education began when Chun Shi, a line cook and native of Shanghai, invited Greene to her house for a Chinese and Korean family-style meal. Greene says he realized at this meal that Asian food was immeasurably complex, with a soul bigger than its ingredients and techniques.

Understanding that his staff had a much deeper understanding of these cuisines and their mysteries than he had, Greene became a sponge, learning everything he could. He discovered new ingredients and techniques and also absorbed the ethos of the various styles of Asian cooking: the distinctions between the cuisines of Thailand, Malaysia, Japan, and regions of China.

At the same time, Greene believed his cooks and front-of-the-house staff needed a new direction, a new way of approaching their job. His changes were slow at the start. He provided standard uniforms to create more of a team-like atmosphere and made just a few tweaks to the menu, removing non-Asian dishes that had become commonplace, such as truffled polenta. And slowly, over the next eight months, with a lot of input from his staff, An became a restaurant transformed.

The menu was completely new, with more complex flavor combinations, more exotic and unusual ingredients – and all with a commitment to the Asian ethic. Western-based stocks, like chicken and beef, were replaced with Asian stocks like dashi, the tuna- and kelp-based stock essential to Japanese cooking.

He didn’t hesitate to source the best and freshest ingredients, including Madai snapper from Hawaii, or authentic Kobe beef from Japan. He says he knew the market was ready for luxury ingredients.

And he changed more than the menu. Plating of food became more interesting. Traditional china was replaced with shields of slate or rustic pottery. The entire cocktail program was reinvented. Even though Greene made it a more formal restaurant, he did not want it to get stuffy he still wanted customers to be at ease. So he tried to give the food a sense of whimsy: duck curry served in a Mason jar, for instance.

But in the end, Greene says, what’s on the plate is where his Asian journey is manifested, where An’s dishes demonstrate a balance and harmony, not only of flavors – the salty and sweet and sour and earthy – but also the colors, shapes and textures. Each plate is designed to be a work of delicious art.

Today, An – with more than 200 seats, not a small restaurant – fills up every night of the week. Greene credits his mentors, who gave him a foundation in understanding Asian ingredients, but it is his staff whom he truly praises, the line cooks and sushi chefs like Chun Shi, EJ Pyon and Hyun-Woo Kim. They are the ones who made the difference, he says. They are the ones who embraced this good-looking Southern boy from little ol’ Ninety Six and made him an icon of Asian cuisine. And, just like in his high school athletic days, he’ll tell you, it was all a team effort.

Chicken and Mushroom Ramen

The basis of most ramen dishes is the dashi, which is a broth of kombu, a dried kelp, and bonito, a dried, shaved tuna. This version boosts the flavor of the dashi with chicken, dried shiitake mushrooms, white miso and a mushroom soy. Use plain ramen noodles.

Ramen dishes can be topped with any ingredients on hand. Corn, meat, Japanese fish cakes, herbs, scallions, bean sprouts and eggs (poached, hard or soft boiled) all make good toppings. Simple homemade pickles of cucumber, rice wine vinegar, sugar and salt also work well as a topping. This recipe is for six people, but you can make the dashi in advance, making enough noodles for your present need, and freeze the remaining dashi. All ingredients are available at an Asian market.

1 ounce package of kombu (dried kelp)

1 ounce package of bonito flakes

1 whole chicken, giblets removed

1 ounce dried shiitake mushrooms

2 teaspoons mushroom soy sauce

Put the kombu in a large pot, cover with the water, and soak for 20 minutes. Heat the pot until small bubbles begin to appear around the edges. Remove the kombu from the pot. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil for 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and add the bonito flakes. Simmer gently, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes. With a slotted spoon, remove as much of the bonito flakes as possible. Add the chicken to the pot, and increase heat until the broth reaches a very mild simmer. Keep at this low simmer for one hour, skimming any fats or solids from the top of the broth.

Turn off the heat, remove the chicken (reserving the meat for the toppings), add the mushrooms to the pot, and let steep for 20 minutes. Remove the mushrooms (they can be pickled) and strain the broth through a fine mesh strainer lined with muslin or several layers of cheesecloth. When ready to serve, reheat the broth, stirring the miso into the broth (do not boil miso).

Chicken meat from chicken used for dashi

Prepare the toppings. Carve chicken used to make the dashi into bite-sized chunks. Cut the eggs length-wise. Cut the basil into thin ribbons.

Bring plenty of water to boil, add noodles and stir. Cook approximately 3 minutes, drain and rinse with cold water.

Divide noodles among six bowls. Add hot broth. Top with chicken, two egg-halves, scallions, basil, and bean sprouts.

Chicken Massaman Curry

Thai curries can be very simple affairs when using canned curry paste. Some of the green and red pastes can be blisteringly hot and are best as very simple curries. Massaman is a fairly mild curry that can be used with nearly every type of meat and seafood, but it’s particularly good with vegetables and fruit.

1 pound boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch cubes

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 can (4 ounces) of Massaman curry paste

1 medium onion, coarsely chopped

2 14-ounce cans coconut milk

1 red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch dice

1 cup butternut squash, cut into 1-inch dice

2 medium yellow or white potatoes, diced

1 cup cauliflower florets

1 cup fresh pineapple, cut into 1-inch chunks

¼ cup unsalted, roasted peanuts

12 basil leaves, chopped finely

Lightly brown the chicken with vegetable oil in a thick-bottomed dutch oven over medium heat, about 5 minutes. Remove chicken, add curry paste, and sauté for about 2 minutes. Add onion and cook another 2 minutes. Slowly add coconut milk, stirring, until the curry paste is totally incorporated into the coconut milk. Add red bell pepper, cinnamon stick, butternut squash, and potatoes. Simmer over medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add cauliflower, pineapple, peanuts and raisins, cooking 5 to 7 minutes more, until all vegetables are tender. Add chopped basil and chicken. Serve over prepared jasmine rice.


What's Cooking with Chef Scott Crawford

Chef Scott Crawford has been building up to this moment for his entire culinary career. The four-time James Beard semi-finalist and father of two has cooked at luxury hotels across the nation, and had a hand in his fair share of restaurant openings. And so, finally, he is opening his own. Crawford and Son is set to open in the Oakwood Neighborhood in Raleigh, North Carolina, in the fall of 2016. Crawford can’t wait to get back in the kitchen, so we sat down with the chef in our food studios to talk about his acclaimed (and accidental!) culinary career, Southern culture, and his all-time favorite foods to cook.

How did you end up finding the food industry?

SC: It sort of happened by accident. I was working in restaurants as a server and bartender. I enjoyed it, but I had no idea that it was a passion yet. And then, one day, someone in the kitchen didn’t show up, and I was asked to help. I had done some work cooking, but nothing really professionally. But when I went in the kitchen, it was sort of a natural thing. It was obvious that there was some natural ability that I didn’t know existed until I was working.

The kitchen asked me to come back, and so I continued to work, and I was better at it than most people who had been in the kitchen for a long time. I found this passion, and I left the front of house money to make no money to learn how to cook. Then, each job I chose was sort of the next level. I pushed myself to learn better and better techniques, better habits, and work for better chefs. I worked in my first restaurant when I was 18, and began cooking a couple years in. I lived in Florida, on the beach, I surfed all day and then I worked at night. At that time in my life, it was perfect. I was always thinking what is going to be long-term, but I really didn’t think it would be cooking until I actually did it. Something sort of flipped, and I realized this is what I’m supposed to be doing.

You’re originally from Pennsylvania. What draws you to Southern culture and Southern food?

SC: Growing up, early in my life, everyone canned. Everyone grew food, and everyone had great, fresh food. But somewhere in the 80s, that went away. Convenience food started creeping into our lives. All the fresh food, the gardens, all of that was sort of going away. Everyone was working more hours, and it was a different time period. I remember, that was very upsetting to me.

Fast forward, I moved to the South. I discovered the soulfulness and the love that goes into Southern cooking. And you know, that’ll hook ya. Not only just in eating it, because you taste that love that goes into that cooking, but also the camaraderie between people, the sharing of recipes, and the way food in the South is so much a part of the culture. It reminded me of those early years. So I stayed in the South. It’s not just the food that I like about the South. I like everything about the South. The culture and the products are amazing. To be a cook in the South is amazing. We are going back to fresh food and revisiting canning, fermenting, and preserving. It’s back to what I enjoyed as a child.

What is your all time favorite recipe to cook?

SC: One of my favorite things to make is soup. Of any sort. It’s sort of therapeutic for me. Soups can do two things. For instance, a gazpacho can refresh you, and bring life to you on a day that’s, like, 96 degrees. It can do so many great things on your palate. But then, when it’s freezing outside, and you’re going into a new season, you make an incredible soup with squash and brown butter and roasted nuts. You can reach someone’s soul in one bite with a soup. I love teaching people how to make soups. And puddings! Bread puddings. I love custardy things I love cornbread pudding, real custardy things.

Tell us about your latest project, Crawford and Son. Why did you want to establish it?

SC: I wanted to establish a neighborhood restaurant that people can enjoy multiple times a week, where we all sort of recognize each other, that people can truly identify with, and that you can dress up for special occasions. In choosing the location, I spent a good deal of time in downtown Raleigh.

I just fell in love with the Oakwood neighborhood, and so I searched for a good spot in that neighborhood. I hope to pull people from all over the area and beyond, but we really hope to see people from the Oakwood neighborhood come in multiple times a week. We wanted something small enough that we could change the menu every day and keep it really exciting. My favorite restaurants have the signature menu, but they’re not afraid to change the menu every day. That’s exciting to me, and exciting for the neighborhood.

What is the hardest thing about making this restaurant concept a reality?

SC: This process has been incredible. I’ve opened lots of restaurants where it’s not always been that way. Now, I have an incredible team, an incredible contractor, an incredible architect, and an incredible design team. The collaborations have been amazing. There are challenges when you get into construction, but those are easily overcome when you have such a cool, strong team. We discuss the issue, and we go.

What are some life lessons you’ve learned through food industry?

SC: I don’t know if you can only learn this through the food industry, but harnessing creative energy and channeling it through food has been something that I’m not sure I would have been able to do in any other career. Having a manic creative energy can be really good, if you have an outlet. But when I was younger and didn’t have an outlet, it wasn’t necessarily a good thing. So for me, what I learned was how to channel that creative, manic, great energy in a way that can make people very happy.

What about being a chef makes you love your job?

SC: My favorite part, the most gratifying for me, is not the cooking. It’s the team. Teaching people, mentoring people, and building teams-that can be magical. You can impact peoples’ lives in such a way that is beyond just cooking great food for guests. I’ve had people come back after I haven’t seen them for years and years, and they’ll say, “you have no idea how you changed my life,” through mentoring and the way we ran that kitchen. It’s pretty powerful stuff.

Let's try some rapid-fire. Chef Role Model?

Worst type of patron?

SC: Angry ones. Some people are just angry.

Best type of patron?

SC: Happy ones. Hungry ones.

Go-to meal to cook on a weeknight for the family?

His wife, Jessica Crawford: The go-to is anything that’s in the pantry. He can make it into something amazing.

SC: I can make something out of nothing. Like an onion and some grits-and it is going to be badass.

Dad of 4-Year-Old Slain in Dallas Apologizes for Leaving Kids

via Trevor GernonThe father of the 4-year-old boy kidnapped from his bed and dumped dead on a Dallas street says he will never forgive himself for leaving his son and his twin brother with a friend while he skipped town under a cloud of legal problems.Trevor Gernon released a recorded statement on his sister’s YouTube account both apologizing for not taking care of his son Cash and asking the public not to be too hard on him.Gernon said that when he moved to Dallas, he moved in with an old friend, Monica Sherrod, and when he moved back to Houston “after an unsuccessful job hunt amongst other things,” he decided they would be better off with her.“I felt it was in the boys’ best interest to not disrupt their routine,” he said of Cash and his brother, Carter, who was not harmed and is now with his mother.“They were comfortable, they were around other kids, and from what it appeared, Monica was a trustworthy person. This choice I made with best of intentions has resulted in a most horrific outcome.”On May 15, an intruder was caught on a baby monitor camera sneaking into Cash and Carter’s bedroom at Sherrod’s home and lifting the still-sleeping boy from his bed.Two hours later, a passer-by found the child’s body tossed on the street. Police said he had been stabbed.Darriynn Brown, 18, who has some nebulous ties to Sherrod’s family, was charged with kidnapping and burglary, but police are waiting for the results of forensic tests to make a decision on murder charges. Investigators have not released a motive, and Brown’s mother has said she believes her son is being framed.Sherrod told reporters that Gernon left town after being ordered by a court into rehab. CrimeOnline obtained court records showing several outstanding charges against Gernon in Harris County.Gernon referenced his legal issues, saying in the recording, “I have to fear for my freedom, as it is the goal of some to see me go to jail rather than grieve the loss of my little boy.” He did not disclose his location or legal status.Crying at times, he did take responsibility for failing to protect the twins.“I have paid the most ultimate and painful price for my poor judgment and I have to live with this devastation every single day,” he said.“I will never forgive myself. If I could, I would go back and do everything different. This is a nightmare that doesn’t go away once I open my eyes in the morning. We just don’t understand how this could happen to such a bright and cheerful kid.”Addressing the boys’ mother, Melinda Seagroves, he added, “I am so sorry that I failed to keep him safe. That is my job as his dad and I was not able to do that and I’m sorry.”As The Daily Beast reported, Gernon has racked up a string of arrests over the years, serving 68 days in county lockup for a 2018 assault on his father during an argument over a credit-card bill.The Strange New Turn in the Case of 4-Year-Old Cash GernonFollowing his indictment on felony drug possession charges last November, he failed to appear for a March 29, 2021, hearing and thus forfeited a $10,000 bond payment. There is now an open warrant out for his arrest.Johnny Flanagan, whose son gave Gernon a job at his shop until they had a falling-out, told The Daily Beast: “He’s one of these guys that kind of goes whichever way the wind blows, you know, and he’ll do good for several months and then do bad for several months and you know, just up and disappear.”In the recording, Gernon pleaded for mercy in the court of public opinion.“I’m barely getting through a day that doesn’t take me to a dark place,” he said. “I hope you all could understand how fragile we all are and how quickly things can turn upside down…“I would hope that we can all cooperate and band together to make sure Cash gets the justice he deserves.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.

Singapore provisionally approves 60-second COVID-19 breathalyser test

Singapore authorities have provisionally approved a COVID-19 breathalyser test that aims to show whether someone is infected with the coronavirus in under a minute, according to the local startup that developed the product. Breathonix, a spin-off company from the National University of Singapore (NUS), said it is now working with the health ministry to run a deployment trial of the technology at one of the city-state's border points with Malaysia. The breath test achieved more than 90% accuracy in a Singapore-based pilot clinical trial, the company said last year.

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'Made these girls feel humiliated': Parents voice anger over female students' altered yearbook photos at Florida high school

A Florida high school is facing criticism from students and parents after a teacher edited girls' yearbook photos to add more clothing.


Savory and Sweet: Meet the Gotliffes!

Over the next several weeks, we’ll be introducing you to the 2018 Taste for a Cure Chef’s Gala culinary team!

Let’s start with quite the dynamic husband-and-wife duo. Chef and farmer Blake Gotliffe – along with his wife, Megan Gotliffe, the pastry chef behind I Do Cakes – started Under the Oak Farm in the spring of 2015. This small, 3,000-square-foot, sustainable farm is tucked away behind their home, in a quiet neighborhood in the charming town of Clayton.

The culinary couple has been cooking in the Triangle area for five years. Blake honed the majority of his craft at Standard Foods, a restaurant/grocery just outside downtown Raleigh. During his two years there, he had the privilege of learning from talents like James Beard nominee Chef Scott Crawford, Chef Eric Montagne and Butcher Jeremy Hardcastle. Shortly after starting the farm, out of necessity for preservation, Blake started developing some fantastic recipes for both fermented and vinegar pickles that are now available for purchase via retail, wholesale and online. Blake’s passion for growing beautiful, nutritious produce is matched only by his desire to handle that ingredient with the upmost respect and care.

Megan, most recently of The Umstead Hotel in Cary, was also the pastry chef of Mandolin, an upscale, Southern-inspired restaurant in the Five Points area of Raleigh. Following her true passion, she created I Do Cakes, a custom cake shop for all occasions.

As a team, they strive to create an unforgettable dining experience for you and your loved ones, whether they are at your home, in a local venue or under the big oak tree 20 feet from their garden.


Middle of Somewhere

I have always thought of the North Carolina Piedmont, where I grew up, as the state’s under-appreciated middle child. Its 18th-century mill towns and cities—Durham, Chapel Hill, Charlotte—are sandwiched in the center between the more famous mountains, home to ever-funky Asheville, and the gorgeous coastal plains, with its beaches and dunes and fancy houses on the Outer Banks.

I was raised in the booming state capital of Raleigh, a city that sprawls outward from old streets lined with oaks and lacy Victorian porches. When I was young, those who came through the area usually had practical reasons: government careers, a stop at the area’s top-tier universities, a job in one of the glassy sci-tech engineering complexes. Savvy tourists headed for the rest of the state, if not to Charleston or Atlanta. The culinary hallmarks of plain-Jane Piedmont were straightforward fare, like barbecue, pimento cheese, and slaw-topped hot dogs. Recently, though, I’ve watched Piedmont become one of the South’s most exciting places to eat, partially because so few people have been paying attention.

“There’s a vibrancy to the food scene here because we are less afraid of messing up or stepping out of line,” says April McGreger, the founder of Farmer’s Daughter Brand pickles and preserves, all made by hand in the artsy community of Hillsborough. A former pastry chef under Andrea Reusing at Lantern in Chapel Hill (once the only contemporary restaurant known outside the region), McGreger notes a distinct difference between Piedmont cooking and the cuisine in Louisiana or her native Mississippi, where food with a developed storyline has long been a draw. There is “less clinging to tradition,” she observes, drawing a comparison to the Piedmont-style blues of the early 20th century, a blend of fingerpicking and ragtime rhythms. “No one cares that we are doing it ‘right’ they just care that we are doing it ‘good.'”

Like McGreger’s fig and muscadine grape jam (both fruits that flourish in Piedmont’s flower-filled backyards) or pickled sweet-potato greens (grown on a farm tended by Burmese refugees), the best things from the region tend to tease deliciousness from a loose intersection of custom, discovery, and craft.

Near the tiny town of Pittsboro (pop. 3,700, home of the North Carolina Zen Center), Chicken Bridge Bakery makes wood-fired, yeasted cornbreads and sourdough from locally milled flour. In even smaller Saxapahaw—a revitalized riverfront village with a hippie-meets-hipster vibe—Left Bank Butchery sells pho made with beef from local cattle and ciccioli with pork rinds that is Italian in lineage but Carolina in spirit. At Raleigh’s Garland, one of many new restaurants in that city’s once-dead downtown, chef Cheetie Kumar blends her Indian heritage with her Southern surroundings in dishes like ghee-griddled corn-and-poblano cakes topped with a tandoor-onion compote and a roasted tomato vinaigrette.

A bartender at Poole’s Diner in Raleigh Anige Mosier

“It’s not ‘down home’ Southern, but more of what we think of as N.C. cooking today,” says former Umstead Hotel chef Scott Crawford, who notes that the region has long been one of the South’s most progressive areas. When he opens Nash Tavern in Raleigh next year, he’ll fry collard croquettes, serve mussels with ham bone broth, and bake a modified chocolate chess pie dressed with crumbles of crunchy masa.

The marvel here isn’t that Crawford gets his chocolate around the corner, but that his collards are still grown nearby. “We are in the middle of such agricultural diversity,” says James Beard Award-winning chef Ashley Christensen, a Piedmont native who opened Poole’s Diner in Raleigh in 2007. Her perch near the center of the state means she cooks with both foraged goods from the foggy foothills and still-wriggling seafood from the nearby coast.

The region’s real appeal lies in homespun operations like Heritage Food & Drink in Waxhaw, a still-rural community that lured veteran Charlotte chef Paul Verica nearly two years ago. Having renovated a “little mom and pop” lunch counter on Main Street, he can now cook exactly what he wants, be it English peas and country ham in clarified potlikker, Korean-style beef with ponzu and North Carolina peanuts, or, because why not, good ol’ pulled pork and pimento cheese.


Watch the video: Chef Scott Crawford (May 2022).