With the summer months right around the corner, it’s always a good idea to have a few easy, mouthwatering recipes on hand for those nights when you decide to entertain. Now, we know what you’re thinking: What better way to impress the ones you love than with an Azurea restaurant classic? With Executive Chef Ted Peter’s Belgian Endive and Miniature Herb Salad recipe, anyone can be a world-renowned chef for the evening. Don’t worry, we won’t tell anyone.
Belgian Endive and Miniature Herb Salad
Maytag Blue Cheese, Spiced Pecan Praline
White Balsamic Vinaigrette
Yield 4 Servings:
20 ea Belgian Endive Leaves, Picked
1 C Baby Tango
1 C Baby Red Oak
1 C Lolla Rossa
½ C Circus Frisse
½ C Maytag Blue Cheese
1 oz Honey
1 T Dijon
1 T Shallots, Minced
4 T White Balsamic
4 T Grapeseed Oil
4 oz Canola Oil
1 pint Grape Tomatoes
1 t Fresh Garlic, Minced
1 T Fresh Basil, Chopped
1 T Fresh Parsley, Chopped
2 T Olive Oil
10 oz Pecan Halves
¼ C Granulated Sugar
2.5 oz Egg Whites
½ t Kosher Salt
½ t Cumin
¼ t Cayenne
For the Salad
Before beginning to make the salad, first make sure that you thoroughly wash all the greens in cold water and rinse well. Cut the Greens into small pieces for the salad and store in the refrigerator with a damp paper towel on top. For the Belgian endive, first cut the ends off, about an inch and a half from the bottom. Discard any leaves that look discolored or torn. Separate each leaf and store in the same manner as the other greens.
For the Vinaigrette
In a blender, combine the honey, Dijon, shallots and white balsamic vinegar and blend for 1 minute. While the blender is still running, combine both oils in a measuring cup or any cup with a spout, and slowly drizzle into the center of the blender. Once all the oil has been incorporated, taste and re season if necessary. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.
In a large bowl combine all ingredients except the pecans. Mix the egg whites, sugar, salt, and spices until they resemble wet sand. Then toss the pecans in with the mixture. Bake at 325 on a silicone baking pad or on a greased baking pan, for about 25 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes. Let cool thoroughly.
In a blender combine garlic, herbs, oil, salt and pepper and blend until combined. In a bowl toss the herb oil with the tomatoes and cook in the oven at 250 degrees for about 25-30 minutes. Let cool before adding to the salad.
Using a chilled mixing bowl, place the greens in the bowl but leave the endive out. Mix in about 4-5 tablespoons of the white balsamic vinaigrette and lightly toss. Taste and season with salt and pepper. On a chilled plate, arrange the greens neatly on the plate. We like to use a rectangle plate with the greens in a line. Place the endive throughout the salad with the light green tips pointing out. Finally, scatter the melted tomatoes, spiced pecans and the maytag blue cheese and enjoy.
We are delighted to announce that Courtney Slipko has been named pastry chef at Azurea restaurant and One Ocean Resort & Spa. In her new position, Slipko oversees the team of chefs delivering innovative desserts for all One Ocean events, meeting and weddings while incorporating local ingredients and complementing them with modern techniques.
Slipko is a graduate of the prestigious Johnson & Wales University, where she earned a degree in Applied Science, Baking and Pastry. Her avid enthusiasm for supporting local charities has inspired her to participate in such events as The Jay Fund, Taste of Jacksonville, Caring Chefs and Taste of Golf. “I believe in contributing to local charities because they help enhance the future of Northeast Florida,” says Slipko.
Chef Slipko has fostered her passion for pastry at resorts such as Ponte Vedra Inn & Club in Ponte Vedra, Fla., Grand Del Mar in San Diego, Calif. and Alpenglow Restaurant in Denali, Alas. as well as the Three Sisters Chocolate and Bakery in Jacksonville, where she perfected the art of consulting and designing custom wedding cakes.
“Chef Slipko’s dedication and meticulous attention to detail are a true asset to the team at Azurea,” says Executive Chef Ted Peters. “Her creativity sets her apart as she puts her indelible mark on the desserts at Azurea, ensuring that every guest’s dining experience is memorable.”
Stop by Azurea restaurant sometime soon and say hi to Chef Slipko! While you’re here, be sure to taste one of her delicious desserts – we guarantee you’ll be back for more!
Each year we are honored to pair with the prestigious James Beard Foundation to offer one culinary or hospitality student the opportunity to further his/her education with The Azurea Culinary Scholarship. The winner of this award will be granted $4,000 in scholarship funding along with the opportunity to cook alongside Florida’s First Coast’s top culinary masters at this year’s Friends of James Beard Benefit Dinner, taking place on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013 at Azurea restaurant. The winner will be chosen based on grade point average, extracurricular activities, financial need, letters of recommendation and a strong passion for culinary arts.
The James Beard Foundation is a not-for-profit organization that was founded in 1996 in honor of the culinary genius James Beard. The foundation continues to be the leader in the education in culinary arts, with its goal of celebrating and preserving the legacy of American cooking through industry awards, scholarships, publications and training.
Last year, The Azurea Culinary Scholarship was awarded to Florida College at Jacksonville student Natanja De Beer. Showing exceptional skill and passion for cooking, Natanja’s dedication to her craft was what made her stand out as the winner of this honorable award. With a major in culinary arts, Natanja balanced being a full time student with her job as a line cook in restaurants that ranged from 40-50 hours per week. As the recipient of The Azurea Culinary Scholarship, she was awarded $3,750 in scholarship funds and also cooked alongside top chefs at The Friends of James Beard Benefit Dinner.
The application process for The Azurea Culinary Scholarship is open from now until May 15, 2013. For information on how to apply, visit http://sms.scholarshipamerica.org/jamesbeard/