Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Top Chef!

I absolutely love Top Chef. It may very well be my favorite TV show. I love to cook and reality tv is always fun. Combine the two and it makes for the perfect show! This week I have had a little more time on my hands and I watched the Top Chef Masters. The chefs had to prepare a vegetarian/vegan meal for Zooey Descheneal. She is a vegan that also has gluten allergies. The chefs weren't too happy about preparing vegan dishes. However, they all prepared dishes that looked amazing.

Top Chef will be airing the new season tonight and before that the season finale of Top Chef Masters will air. I know I'll be watching them both. Look for it on Bravo!

Top Chef Masters, Season 1, Episode 8, Elimination Challenge, Winning Dish



1 pound quinoa spaghetti
6 cloves garlic, sliced
1 tablespoons capers, rinsed
1/4 teaspoon chili flake
6 each zucchini, cut julienne on Mandolin (length wise)
1 pint salsa verde
2 cups oven dried tomatoes
2 tablespoons gremolata, for garnish

2 bunches (or 3 cups) fresh Italian parsley
1 bunch (or 1 cup) fresh basil leaves
12 cornichons
2 tablespoons capers, rinsed
4 garlic cloves, minced
1-1/2 cups mild extra virgin olive oil
Gray salt to taste
Fresh ground black pepper to taste

1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/2 cup gluten free white crackers
1/4 cup parsley, minced
1 tablespoon minced garlic, sautéed lightly brown
1 tablespoon lemon zest

2 pints heirloom cherry tomatoes cut in half
2 teaspoons gray salt
1/4 cup good quality balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup garlic cloves, sliced thin
1 cup basil leaves
Pinch chili flakes


Bring two gallons salted water to a boil. Add pasta to water, stirring to make sure it does not stick together.
In large sauté pan, sauté sliced garlic in olive oil, and add capers and chili flakes when garlic is light brown. Stop the garlic from cooking by adding one cup pasta water to the pan.
Drain pasta, add to pan with zucchini and salsa verde, spoon oven dried tomatoes around plate. Using tongs or a meat fork create a nest of pasta in the center of the plate and top with Gremlata.

Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add herbs and blanch for 15 seconds. Drain into colander and submerge in ice water. When cool squeeze out all water and chop with a knife. Using a food processor or blender, blend all ingredients together, taste for seasoning and adjust consistency (with more olive oil) if need be.

In food processor chop pine nuts fine, gluten free cracker and parsley until fine and add other ingredients. Season with salt and pepper.

Combine gently, spread cut on cookie sheet and put in 275 degree convention oven for two hours.

© 2009 Michael Chiarello

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for popping by my food blog! It is still in its baby stages...


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