RECIPES: McCrady's Sean Brock

Photo: Platelist: Sean Brocks Table Is A Time Transport Machine To Antebellum South: McCradys Chef Loves Heirloom Seeds, Bourbon and the Power of Froot Loops
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Bev Eggleston's Pork with Herbed Cereals, Pickled Blueberries, Chanterelles and Sumac

A one-month pickling process, plus about 36 hours of cooking followed by 12 hours of pressing.

Serves 4

Ingredients for the pork belly:

2 pounds fresh pork belly

5 tablespoons kosher salt

1 tablespoon dark brown sugar

A pinch of TCM (curing salt)

1 liter of water

Sumac

Black pepper

Instructions for the pork belly:

Combine sugar, TCM and salt. Place in a pot and cover with just enough water to dissolve it. Cook over medium heat until the mixture melts. Add the remaining water and cool. Place the pork belly in the brine and refrigerate for 24 hours. After 24 hours, rinse the pork under cold running water for 10 minutes. Dry the pork completely. Season pork with sumac, a little salt and black pepper.

Cook for 36 hours at 71.1 C (160 F). When pork is finished cooking, shock in an ice bath for one hour. Press the pork between two sheet trays. Place some heavy pans on top to press the pork, this will improve the texture. Allow to press for 12 hours. When pork is finished pressing, portion it into eight 3 ounce pieces and reserve.

Ingredients for the herb puree:

1 bunch of chervil

1 bunch of flat leaf parsley

Instructions for the herb puree:

Pick all leaves from the stems. Reserve the stems in ice water to garnish the dish.

Blanch the herbs in heavily salted, boiling water for 40 seconds. Shock in an ice bath. Purée in a blender with just enough water to make the blade spin. Blend until smooth and strain through a fine mesh sieve. Reserve.

Ingredients for the cereals:

1½ cups of mixed cereals, such as buckwheat, steel cut oats, faro and wheat berries

1 cup of onion, small dice

1 garlic clove, minced

4 cups pork stock (a strong chicken stock can act as a substitute)

1 tablespoon canola oil

Instructions for the cereals: If you can't find a nice selection of grains and cereals, one grain will do.

Keep in mind that all the grains cook at different rates and will need to be cooked separately. Just follow the instructions below for each individual cereal. The cereals are done cooking when they are soft and pleasant to eat. When they are all cooked, mix them all together and reserve.

In a medium-sized pot over medium heat, sauté the onion until translucent, then add garlic. Cook for one minute more. When garlic is soft add the grains. Stir the grains into the onion and garlic mixture.

Begin adding the stock two ounces at a time, just like you would when making risotto. Continue until the grains are completely cooked.

Ingredients for the pickled blueberries:

8 ounces of fresh blueberries

1/2 cup water

1 cup lemon juice

1/2 cup vinegar

1 tablespoon sugar

>10 leaves of fresh eucalyptus

Instructions for the pickled blueberries:

Heat everything except the blueberries and lemon juice to a boil. Pour mixture over the blueberries and add the lemon juice.

Allow to sit under refrigeration for one month.

Ingredients for the chanterelles:

20 small chanterelles, scraped, soaked and dried

1 tablespoon lard

Instructions for the chanterelles:

In a large sauté pan over very high heat cook the chanterelles in the lard. Season with salt and splash of vinegar.

To assemble:

Sear the individual portions of pork belly on the plancha. While the pork is cooking, add the herb purée to the cereals and heat.

Place herbed cereals at the edge of the plate. Place two pieces of pork on top of the grains. Place five chanterelles over the pork and cereals.

Place seven pickled blueberries around the chanterelles. Sauce the pork with some pork jus. Sprinkle the plate with sumac and garnish with herb stems that have been tossed with warm pork fat and seasoned with lemon juice and salt.

Tennessee Foie Gras With Benton's Country Ham, Elderberry Jam and Heirloom Johnny Cakes

Less than 1 hour to prep and cook.

Serves 4

Ingredients for the Johnny Cakes:

2 cups Anson Mills heirloom corn meal

1 egg

1 cup of buttermilk

1 teaspoon each of baking powder and baking soda

Teaspoon of salt

Instructions for the Johnny Cakes:

Mix the dry ingredients. Mix the wet ingredients. Combine the two and refrigerate.

Ingredients for the Foie Gras:

4 two ounce pieces of fresh grade "A" foie gras

Salt and black pepper

Instructions for the Foie Gras:

Score the foie gras and season. Sear the foie gras on a plancha or a very hot cast iron pan.

While the foie gras is searing, start cooking the Johnny cakes. Each guest will receive four cakes each.

Use the fat that renders from the foie gras to cook the Johnny cakes. Make them the size of a half dollar.

Flip the foie gras when it is nice and golden brown. Allow to cook for one minute more. The foie gras should feel soft all the way though.

Turn the Johnny cakes when they are nice and golden brown and cook them for one minute more as well.

To assemble:

Place a small dollop of dark fruit jam, preferably elderberry, on each plate. Place one piece of foie gras beside the jam. Each guest will get a stack of four cakes. Place them beside the foie gras. Garnish the plate with a slice of country ham.

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