Archive for the ‘Richmond Lodging’ Category

Croissants from Paris France

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

This past winter Pat my wife and I were in Paris, France for 6-weeks, part vacation and part business.  Sometimes the business part of the trip is more fun than the vacation part, at least for me!  The reason; because it almost always includes food; sometimes talking with a chef, sometimes just trying different dishes, often trying to identify ingredients in the dish to reproduce it when we arrive home.

Making Crossiant

The Finished Product

The most special part of business is when I get an opportunity to attend a cooking school or sometimes just lessons.  Ferrandi, The French School of Culinary Arts offers some 5 and 10 day courses, but usually I confine myself to the 1 or 2 day events.  This past trip I took 2 classes from La Cuisine Paris; the first was Le Croissant and Traditional Breakfast Pastries and the second was French Macaron Class, more on the topic of the French Macaron in a later post. (more…)

RVA Street Art Festival

Friday, April 6th, 2012


The city is about to encounter another festival aimed at showcasing the talents of local and national muralists. What do Venice and Shepard Fairey have to do with the latest art event and what the city’s flood wall might look like? Read more on the RVA News site »

Striped Omelet at the William Miller House

Sunday, April 1st, 2012
Modernist Cuisine

50 lbs. of knowledge


Some months ago I purchased a copy of Modernist Cuisine an exciting cookbook collection that is as heavy as it is extensive.  This five book set was clearly an investment not only financially but in time to fully understand both technique and the science of food.  The good news for our guests is that I discovered the striped omelet.

The striped omelet took a bit of experimentation and is still a work in progress but the early taste tests are positive.  The initial omelet was presented by MAXIME BILET on the Modernist Cuisine website.  I have included the initial video of the Modernist Cuisine team demonstrating their version of the omelet, of course purchasing all of the necessary, custom made equipment is probably far beyond the reach of the average home chef or even a gadget freak like myself.

So I set off on a path to prepare and deliver the Striped Omelet to our guests using an alternative method.  First I had to locate a suitable non-stick product to
fitThe Striped Omelet as prepared at the William Miller House in the bottom of the sauté pan.  My first thought was to use a silpat, however, I could not locate one the was round, and according to the manufacturer it is not recommended that they be cut, because fiber-glass could get in the food, probably not very healthy.  So I searched for a teflon liner and cut it to the appropriate size.  Well the omelet is not square but round works just as well.  Next came to cooking, only one to a shelf because if you place two sauté pans in the oven together the egg has a tendency of running to the low side of the shelf, better balance in the center.  The egg filling and the mushroom marmalade, which can be made ahead, are fairly straight-forward.  I’m still working on getting the strips crisp and clear so if you have one that looks a bit fuzzy it not your eyesight!

Mike’s French Macron cooking class

Sunday, March 11th, 2012

Link to Mike’s class

Learning to make Croissant’s in Paris!

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

The basis of the class is/was to learn to make the basic Croissant dough, which become the foundation for many other pastries, like Chocolate Croissant, Almond Croissant, Apple Croissant, etc.  I think you can see where we are headed.

The process starts with the Détrempe or basic dough (this rests for 6-hours).  This is followed by the fun step, called the barrage, or incorporating the butter in to the dough, in steps, it best to have a glass or wine in between each step, which takes about 20-minutes.

Next we cut to croissants into their recognizable shape and roll them up. Then they proof for about 2-hours are 75-80 degrees.

Ready for the proof box

Now comes the hard part, you have to bake for 20-minutes, you can imagine baking a two ovens full of croissants, and the aroma of the melting butter.  If you were a serial killer you would have to cut someone up!Now they are ready, oh wait that have to cool!  Well not that long especially if you have an asbestos mouth.

The bottom line YUM!

la cusine paris
Our Croissants

Be sure to visit us soon!