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Dinner for Dad: Ribs and More, from Chef Michael Flores

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Chef Michael Flores (Photo by Richard Mejia)

SavorSA welcomes guest blogger and chef, Michael Flores.  A man of many hats, Flores is a busy trained chef, cooking instructor, spokesperson, cookbook author, brother, son, friend and avid entertainer. While attending the prestigious Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY, Michael worked as chef-intern to Chef Susan Spicer of New Orleans’ acclaimed Bayona. Upon graduating with honors from the CIA, Michael returned to San Antonio to begin his career, infusing every dish he creates with his love of the multicultural richness that has so influenced his life.

By Michael Flores

We all know Father’s Day as a celebration which honors and celebrates fathers, paternal bonds, and the influence of fathers in society. In my experience as a chef, it is unlike any of the other “Sunday celebrations” (e.g., Mother’s Day, Easter, etc.).  Going to fancy buffets or restaurants are not the typical norm for dad’s special day.

He doesn’t want to dress up, stand in lines waiting for food, sip champagne, or use his best manners. After all, it is his day. Based on my knowledge, Father’s Day does not mean the same to men as Mother’s Day does to women; you don’t see pops walking around with a boutonniere that special Sunday that’s dedicated to him.  And the toughest problem that comes with Father’s Day is — the gift!

I offer you a simple solution for all of the above: Simply prepare him a meal at home.  How does that saying go: Food is the best way to a man’s heart.  Invite all of the family over; everyone can help in some part of the meal.  Have lots of his favorite drinks on hand.  Let him dress however he wants.  Tell stories, play games, and enjoy the love around the table.  Great memories go further than ties!

Meat on the grill, family close, is sometimes just what Dad want's for Father's Day.

As for the menu, I think I can help you out with that.  I recently taught a sold out class at Sur La Table entitled “Guy’s Night Out:  Ribs.”  The men, and one woman who dared to enter the cave, loved it.  We made three different ribs:  Beer Braised Ribs in Rum Barbecue Sauce, Spicy Honey Mustard Ribs, and Roasted Barbecued Spare Ribs. The sides included a Chopped Salad with Tamarind-Tequila Vinaigrette, and Roasted Corn with a Parmesan-Lemon Topping.

Now there is a Father’s Day buffet for Dad!  One where he does not have to worry about spilling something on his suit (assuming you got him to wear one), a plate to be cleared, or a new fork to be brought.  Not to mention the bill that he (usually) has to pay at the end of the meal.

The only item left is dessert.  This has a simple solution(s).  Every family has a favorite dessert that is served at all family functions. If dad likes it, make it.  If Aunt Gertrude’s gelatin salad doesn’t happen to be on his list of favorites, how about an assortment of cupcakes for him to choose from, or ice cream?  Or there is always my favorite, eight ounces of softened cream cheese whipped with one small jar of marshmallow cream, served with fresh strawberries for dipping.

To all you dads out there, or other father figures, I hope you get the Father’s Day of your dreams.  Happy Father’s Day from Chef Michael and SavorSA.


Recipes: See Links to Flores’ above recipes in the list to the right.

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