All of these recipes were adapted from the no-measure, Power of Pok cooking session. I have adapted the recipes for the home cook with the intentions of serving two people. Pok and I recommend making the pavé ahead of time and the remaining dishes right before service.
Shrimp and Black Truffle Risotto
½ cup May peas
½ cup sweet corn
¼ cup diced country ham
½ cup Parmesan cheese
½ cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons butter
¼ cup white wine
5 cups hot shrimp stock
1 heaping teaspoon of oil-packed, sliced black North Carolina truffles
1 lb. peeled, deveined North Carolina shrimp
Outer Banks SeaSalt
Cracked black pepper
In a medium-size, heavy-bottomed pot, heat the oil and half the butter over medium-high heat. Add the rice, and stir until grains are slightly translucent around the edges. Add the country ham then deglaze with wine and stir until liquid is almost completely absorbed. Add the stock by the cupful, stirring until the rice has absorbed nearly all of the liquid before adding the next cup.
When rice is almost done, add the heavy cream, truffles, peas and corn. Add a good pinch of salt and a grind of pepper. The risotto should be creamy and tender, and the vegetables cooked but still firm. Right before plating, add remaining butter and Parmesan cheese.
While risotto is cooking, season the shrimp with a dusting of salt and pepper. Grill until pink and hot. Remove from grill to resting plate until ready for presentation.
Plating Pok Style: Using a rectangle plate, focus on using one- third of the plate to create lines of color, flavor and visual interest using home-crafted sauces. Pok used reduced balsamic vinegar-basil pesto made from garden-picked basil and a bit of fresh tomato and balsamic salsa. He then placed a mound of risotto on the other end and topped with tail-up grilled shrimp. Pok also added flash-fried kale to his plate.
2 thick-cut, pasture-raised pork loin chops
2 strips pasture-raised bacon, diced
½ medium sweet onion, diced
4 large collard leaves, julienned
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Outer Banks SeaSalt and cracked black pepper
Bring pork loin to room temperature and season with sea salt and cracked pepper. On a very hot grill, sear the pork loin until it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees. Remove from grill to resting platter until ready to plate.
Prepare the collards and gastrique while the pork cooks.
In a medium-size sauté pan, cook bacon and retain fat in the pan. Add onions and sweat over low heat until they are translucent. Add collards and stir to coat with bacon and onions. When the greens have wilted, introduce the vinegar and move the veggies around the pan to incorporate the fond — the delicious bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. Finish with the butter, a pinch of salt and grind of pepper.
2 large organic sweet potatoes, peeled
1 can organic coconut milk
2 tablespoons fresh, minced ginger
Freshly ground black pepper
4 oven-proof, 8-ounce soufflé cups
Using a mandoline, if available, slice the potatoes very thin. Layer potatoes in the soufflé cups, alternating with the ginger and salt and pepper. Gently add one-quarter can of coconut milk to each dish. Place cups on a lined baking sheet and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Remove from oven and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes. When plating for service, slide a knife around the inside of the soufflé cup to loosen the pavé. Carefully invert the cups onto the plates. Lift cup gently, and the pavé should slide right out like a little cobblestone of yumminess.
4 ounces Island Jam’s Strawberry Sparkler
3 ounces balsamic vinegar
3 ounces butter
Heat the jam and balsamic vinegar in a medium-size sauté pan, whisking to incorporate. Reduce by about a third then reduce heat to low and whisk in butter. No additional seasonings required; the jam has a kick from local jalapeno. Serve immediately. Island Jam is made with a bit of gelatin, so this sauce is best made right before service.
Plating Pok Style: Using rectangle plate, mound pavé at one end. On the other end of the rectangle, spoon a round of sauce. Place the back of a spoon in the middle of the sauce and pull it towards the pavé. Essentially, you are smearing, don’t get uptight about this; have fun! In the center of the plate, spoon half the collards and top with a pork loin chop. Garnish with micro greens and serve immediately.