Monday, August 23, 2010

Veggie Conquest 5, NYC

My daughter who is going to be 11 was my sous chef yesterday at a vegan Iron Chef type cooking competition called Veggie Conquest.

We planned and potchked in the kitchen for a few days here and there since the secret ingredient was unveiled a week ago ... basil.

Tough one having the center of your dish being an herb.

We spend much of Saturday cooking and I always had in the back of my mind that I was on call and could have been yanked out to work at a moments notice and half the food would have just drowned in the broth. A sad death to seitan cutlets to be sure.

Sunday we cooked all morning and put the finishing touches on the food and packaged it up for transport.

Friday we did the touristy thing with my niece, (where the Max Brennner and Yoga Cafe review came from), we also hit the Essex Street marked, Economy Candy, Baby Cakes and ended up at Chelsea Market. While strolling through the Bowery Cooking Supply we picked up two black Chef's Toques. We were a great team my kid and I.

Unfortunately, I can't find a picture, (and many were taken), of the dish but we cooked: Peppered Basil Seitan topped with a basil Bechemal sauce and dotted with a basil oil ... all over homemade basil colored pasta.

I did take these of sous chef Anna making the pasta and the seitan resting and in the process of being pounded:
You should have seen how happy Dad was!

This will make 8 cutlets.

Finally found a use for that meat tenderizer.
Notice the ever-present BASIL.

I just wanted to publicly compliment Anna on her work ethic, attention to detail, creative ability and just a great kid to hang out with. It was one of the most fun days I've ever had.

And we sort of had the feeling that if we didn't make anyone sick or have anyone spit the food out we'd have done alright. But we did get 5th place out of 6 by the judges and saw many of the voting chips in our voting box so I know that there were people there who loved our food. One man came up to me and told me he thought we should have won and that always makes you feel good about your food.

I agreed.  Anna agreed.  We went home happy.

The bottom line, we had fun cooking for 80 people, had fun working together, and loved eating a whole spectrum of vegan food. I also loved seeing non vegans really digging the food.

Now for 3 days of cleaning the kitchen.

1 comment:

Gone Pie Vegan Bakery said...

There is a pretty nice picture of your lovely dish on this blog.