Chef Tsai's Demo was loaded with stories and plenty of laughs.  Here is a clip from Chef Ming Tsai's Demonstration on Faking it!
Picture Chef Ming Tsai in action
Chef Ming Tsai in action preparing a delicious Shrimp dish
Ming Tsai was an engaging and delightfully fun in his Chef's Demonstration.  Stories were told all while working away on his award winning dishes.  The East West Chef creates a delicate balance and harmony of flavors, ending in one deliciously bold flavor.  What made him want to become a Chef?  Listen to Chef Tsai describe why he loves being a Chef.
Check out this video of Chef Ming Tsai preparing a Simple Shrimp dish as he answers the questions, "Will you son become a Chef also?"
Picture of shrimp dish prepared by MIng Tsai
Chef Ming Tsai
Chef Ming Tsai Loves Sake, a Japanese Rice Wine.  Find out which one is his favorite in this clip.
Beyond the fact that this Chef's Demo was full of laughs and absolutely delicious food, Chef Tsai is the National Spokesperson for NFCA (National Foundation for Celiac Awareness).  He is also good friends with our friend Alice Bast, Founder and CEO of NFCA.   It was a wonderful time meeting this East West Chef!
Are you looking for some unique and delicious savory tailgating dishes your guest will Love?  
Picture of Chef Ming Tsai
Chef Ming Tsai during his Chef Demonstration
Chef Ming Tsai is an expert of the East-West lifestyle, winning an Emmy award in 1998 for his Food Network show East Meets West.  Not only his is food finds balance and harmony, his living and work space considers Feng Shui and utilizes the principle of keeping the positie energy flowing.  Ming is a chef, restaurateur, author, TV host and producer, product innovator,  and a fabulous story teller.  More on that later.  
Picture of sliders
Chef Ming Tsai's Sliders courtesy of
2 T Grapeseed or canola oil 
2 medium red onions, 1/4" dice
2 T Garlic, minced
1 T Ginger, minced
1 C Celery, diced
2 T Sambal or hot sauce of your choice
11/4 C Hoisin sauce
1 pound ground Beef (ground chicken can be substituted for leaner dish)
1 pound ground Pork
Juice of 2 limes
8 oz Roma tomatoes, canned, chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 6 slider bunsbuns
Asian slaw*
Dill pickle coins

1. Heat a stockpot or other tall wide pot over high heat. Add the oil and swirl to coat the bottom. When the oil is hot, add the onions, garlic, ginger, celery and sambal. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft, about 2 minutes. Add the hoisin sauce and sauté 1 minute. Add the beef and pork and sauté, breaking up the meat, until just cooked through, about 6 minutes. Add the lime juice and tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the mixture has thickened enough to mound when ladled, 20 to 25 minutes.

2. Toast the buns and place a bottom half on each individual serving plate. Top generously with the meat mixture. Top with the slaw and pickle coins. Cover with the bun tops.

Asian Slaw
Serves 4 

1/2 C Mustard, grainy
4 medium shallots, roughly chopped (about 1/2 cup)
2 T Chinese black vinegar or balsamic vinegar
1⁄4 C Naturally brewed rice wine vinegar
2 T Soy sauce
1 T Sugar
1 C Canola oil
2 C  Green Cabbage, finely shredded
1 C Red cabbage, finely shredded
1 C Shredded carrots
1/2 bunch Scallions, thinly sliced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1.In a blender or food processor, combine the mustard, shallots, vinegars, soy sauce, and sugar and purée. With the machine running, slowly drizzle in the oil until an emulsion is formed. Season with salt and pepper, remembering that not much salt will be needed because of the soy sauce.

2. In a large bowl, combine cabbages, carrots and scallions. Add just enough vinaigrette to coat. Toss well and check flavor. Season if necessary and store in fridge, covered, for fifteen minutes before serving, to allow cabbage to soften.

TIP: This recipe yields more vinaigrette than you'll need for the slaw. Store in air-tight container and it will keep for two weeks in the refrigerator.

Spareribs from Chef Ming Tsai photo courtesy of
1 full rack baby back ribs brined overnight*
1 C Ponzu
1 T Ginger, minced
2 large red onions, sliced
2 C Cranberries, washed, dried
1 C Brown sugar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Canola oil

1. Preheat oven to 400°. Rinse the ribs and pat dry. Place brined ribs, cut in two, in pan and cover the pan with about 1/4-inch of ponzu.  Cover with foil and place in oven and bake until ponzu is evaporated, about 1 hour.

2. Remove ribs and place pan over medium-high heat and coat with oil. Preheat broiler. In pan, saute ginger and onions until soft and add cranberries. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.  Deglaze pan with 1/2 cup ponzu, add brown sugar and cook for about five minutes.

3. Carefully transfer to a blender. Remove stopper from blender top, cover stopper hole with folded over towel and, while placing hand over towel, start blending on low speed. Be careful of the steam rising out of the stopper hole. Adjust to high speed and blend smooth. Brush ponzu-brown sugar mixture on ribs and broil on both sides.  Slice and serve ribs stacked.

 * Brine method: Use sweet sea water ratio: 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 cup kosher salt to 1 quart water, multiply as necessary to fully submerge pork in a large container. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Rinse under running water before cooking.Sweet and Sour Spare Ribs

Picture of wings
Delicious Wings from Chef Ming Tsai photo from
1 small head of celery, stem end removed, washed Canola oil, for frying
2 pounds chicken wings, separated into drumettes and wings (discard the tips)
1 cup crumbled blue cheese
1 cup Soy-Dijon Marinade
Canola Oil, for Frying

1. Fill a medium bowl with water and add ice. Separate the celery head into stalks, trim the ends and leaves, and cut into 4-inch lengths, halving any wide sticks. Add to the bowl and set aside.

2. Fill an electric fryer with oil to the designated mark and heat to 375°F. Alternatively, fill a large stockpot one-third full with oil and heat over high heat to 375°F.

3. Drain and dry the wings well. Working in batches to avoid crowding, if necessary, fry the wings in the oil until brown and crispy, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove the wings with a flat strainer and transfer them to a large bowl. Add the cheese to the marinade, add the mixture to the wings, and toss well. Serve immediately with the chilled celery.

Soy-Dijon Marinade

Makes 6 cups
Lasts 2 weeks, refrigerated

1/4 C Cracked Black peppercorns, plus freshly ground black pepper to taste
Kosher salt to taste
1 cup red wine
1 1/2 C Dijon mustard
1/2 C Naturally brewed soy sauce
8 sprigs of fresh thyme, chopped, or 2 tablespoons dried
1/2 C Garlic, minced
2 1/2 C Canola oil

1. In a small, dry sauté pan, heat the peppercorns over medium-high heat, stirring, until the peppercorns are fragrant and just begin to smoke, 2 to 4 minutes.

2. Transfer to a medium nonreactive bowl and add the salt, wine, mustard, soy sauce, thyme, and garlic.

3. Whisk in the canola oil gradually to emulsify the mixture. Use or store.

Click here For more delightfully seasoned dishes from Chef Ming Tsai.
This week is designated as National Healthcare Foodservice Workers Week. These Foodservice workers have the important task of adhering to strict regulations, standards and patient diets.  Celebrate their hard work and dedication this week!
What a stunning sight to see the Eiffel Tower light up at dusk turning into a sculpture of illuminated beauty.  
Gustave Eiffel engineered the tallest building in Paris at 1,063 feet, which has become a global icon.  Erected in 1889, it served as the entrance to the World's Fair.  What a wonderful World's Fair that must have been.  
My visit to Paris was highlighted with a Amazing tour and a cooking course at Le Cordon Bleu with Chef Marc Vaca. Both were absolutely impressive!  
Picture of Chef Vaca
Chef Marc Vaca removing the Far Breton from the oven. Delicious!
After obtaining his CAP and BEP certifications in Cuisine, Chef Vaca completed several apprentice positions in Paris. The restaurant in the George V hotel and Grande Cascade, as well as, the Hyde Park Hotel in London, benefited from his talent.  After gaining years of experience in prestigious restaurants in Paris and in his birth country Morocco, he moved to Australia.  
Picture of Chef Marc Vaca
Le Cordon Bleu Cuisine Chef Marc Vaca
As Cuisine Chef at Chole's Restaurant, he won Chef of the Year along with many praises. He also worked in a New Zealand restaurant and opened his own restaurant in Pontarlier, France.  He now enjoys teaching as a Cuisine Chef at Le Cordon Bleu.
Feeling so thrilled after my course at Le Cordon Bleu
I felt so honored and excited to take a tour and a course at Le Cordon Bleu, as well as enjoy this accomplished chef's cuisine.
I'm looking forward to sharing some excellent recipes and more great photos.
To check out this prestigious school click here.
We are looking forward to the 2015 Chicago Gourmet.  Created by the Illinois Restaurant Association and  the Anton Family Foundation to celebrate and honor the Chicago Culinary scene and heritage.  Supported by  Bon Appétit magazine and Southern Illinois Wine and Spirit's, this year's Chicago Gourmet promises to be the best yet!  With Fabulously talented Chefs featuring over 150 Chicago Restaurants, with Wine, Beer and Spirits from around the world flowing all afternoon.   I cannot wait to taste the Delicious tapas sized dishes all afternoon.
Picture  of beautiful Sunday Afternoon from Chicago Gourmet
Scene from 2014 Chicago Gourmet
I'm looking forward to some illy Caffè and Mariano’s dishes, as well as. Gibsons Restaurant Group, Rockit Ranch Productions and Rosebud Restaurants offerings.

It should be quite an afternoon.  Stay tuned for details late September.

It was a beautiful day in Paris.  So, I decided on Chez Clément's outdoor area for lunch.  Conveniently located in the 9th arrondissment near Place de l'Opera in Paris, France, I found it to be warm and inviting.   I thoroughly enjoyed dining outside while watching passers by.
Picture of ChefThymeSavor at Chez Clement
Enjoying the sidewalk cafe at Chez Clement's, Paris, France
The Food was Fabulous, portion sizes were larger than the usual, and menu prices were comparatively reasonable!  The service was friendly and relaxed.  Plan to take your time and enjoy the experience in this French Cafe.  Lunch can last 2 hours!
Picture of chilled seafood platter
Delightful Seafood Options
The Cafe had so much character with beautiful art made from pots and pans.  The sculptures at any of Chez Clément's  locations, are worth seeing!  
Picture of pan sculpture
Chez Clement Scuptures
The view from the beloved Chez Clément looking across the 
street is the famed Café de la Paix. which opened in 1862, as a part of the Grand-Hotel de la Paix.  They have hosted royalty and movie stars, such as, the Lumière brothers (who enjoyed watching movies here), Orson Welles, the Prince of Wales and Edward VII.  
View from sidewalk luncheion
Thanks Chez Clément for being part of a perfect day in Paris!
We loved seeing Ace of Cake's Duff Goldman's Culinary Demo.
Duff Goldman was so much fun to watch.  He started off by throwing out sunglasses to the crowd, I actually caught a pair!
Ace of Cakes Duff Goldman throwing his glasses to the Audience.
So, we decided to try The Ace of Cakes Potato Pancake Recipe for National Potato Month.  I grew up eating Potato Pancakes for breakfast, brunch or a snack and I love the crispy edges.  I also enjoy preparing variations of the yummy dish.  
This recipe is courtesy of the Food Network and Duff Goldman's Mamo.
Picture of potato pancakes.  recipe from the food network and duff Goldman
Potato Pancakes
5 large or 6 small firm Yukon gold potatoes (about 2 1/4 pounds)
1 large onion, halved
1 large Egg
2 T all-purpose flour or matzo meal
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Vegetable or canola oil, for frying
Applesauce (I prefer Mullen's Applesauce) for serving

Peel the potatoes, immediately immersing them in very cold water as you finish each one.

Remove the potatoes from the water. Grate the potatoes and onion with a food processor fitted with the grating blade. Don't press too hard on the potatoes going in, just enough to get them through.

Transfer the potatoes and onion to a fine-mesh strainer; squeeze out all the water into a bowl. Let the potato starch settle, then pour out as much water as possible, leaving the starch in the bowl. Add the potato-onion mixture to the bowl and mix in the egg, flour, 1 t salt, and pepper to taste.

Heat a well-seasoned cast-iron skillet with a thin layer of vegetable oil over medium heat. Scoop large spoonfuls of the potato mixture into the pan and flatten them out (thin pancakes yield crispy ones). Fry until golden on the bottom, then gently flip and fry the other side, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels. (If you have to wait to serve, re-crisp them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper in a 
350 °F oven.)

Serve with applesauce, or try his family's favorite toppings: Duff's Great-grandmother put cinnamon in applesauce to serve with hers. His Grandfather loved his with heaps of cold sour cream and his mother tops them with tart, chunky homemade applesauce.

For my Gluten Free audience, just substitute Uncooked Oats for the Flour and add an extra egg.  This is a delicious variation even if you are not Gluten Free.

Another yummy variation is adding Bacon Bits!
Picture of Postcards in Paris
Postcards in Paris
I love the colors and patterns in these postcards.  So, I thought I would take a picture and bring them all home.
Picture colorful postcards
Postcards from Paris


    Chef Thyme Savor is a Personal Chef Service.Claire Vert's creations will delight discriminating palettes!  Let us handle all the details, so you have Time to Savor delicious dishes with your guests!  

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