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Savory Options Rule at Boiler House During Restaurant Week


It was easy to choose the Boiler House as the first meal for Culinaria’s Restaurant Week: Of all the menus posted, it was the only one that offered three savory courses for the $35 price. Dessert could be had for an extra $6, but for three people who didn’t want — or need — a dessert, we found ourselves sitting pretty.

Salmon Ceviche is one Restaurant Week option.

Salmon Ceviche is one Restaurant Week option.

Our meal started with a choice of braised pork belly with a Kraken rum demi-glaze and house-made mustard, a variation on Chef Jeff Wayne White’s recipe, which we recently ran on SavorSA, or an attractive tower of salmon ceviche.

I started with salmon, and on yet another day that topped 100 degrees, I found the cooling mixture of diced raw seafood, avocado and cilantro-lime sauce to be perfectly refreshing. The pork belly, which my friends ordered, was substantial and deliciously porky, especially when a touch of the outrageously good whole-grain mustard was applied.

For an extra $25, you could get wine pairings for each course, the first of which was a Vanishing Point Pinot Grigio, bright and clean with a light fruitiness the complemented the pork while cutting through the silky voluptuousness of the avocado.

Cool off with a crisp local greens salad.

Cool off with a crisp local greens salad.

The second course was a local greens salad with plenty of applewood smoked bacon, nuts, cheese and tomatoes. A green goddess dressing had a surprising hot pepper tingle that worked well with the black peppery arugula in the mix of greens. The matching McDaniel Chardonnay was pleasantly clean and bracingly cold, balanced well with its oak flavor.

Main course options included a roasted salmon, a Kurobuta pork chop and prime rib.

One friend went for the pork chop, a massive piece of meat that was rich but slightly dry, despite a mention on the menu of a buttermilk brine; there were no complaints about the creamy white beans with the ham hocks that filled out the plate or the touch of red onion jam on the side. The pork came with a glass of Guard Shack Red Blend.

Prime rib arrives in an onion-flavored jus.

Prime rib arrives in an onion-flavored jus.

A generous slab of prime rib arrived with no side dishes, and it didn’t really need any. I had a delicious crust, with plenty of salt and the meat was tender, set in an onion-rich jus. The two of us who ordered the prime rib would have enjoyed our cuts cooked a little less, but we weren’t asked how we wanted it. The beef was paired with a fairly indifferent Wire Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon Blanc.

For an extra $9, you can add a trio of oysters Rockefeller to any plate, and I would suggest you add them, because they were the highlight of the evening. A welcome touch of heat cut through the cheesy sauce, which had coated spinach, garlic and, of course, the oysters. A little leftover Chardonnay was a perfect partner.

If you haven’t been to the Boiler House yet, which my friends hadn’t, don’t let Restaurant Week pass you by. It’s a great introduction to this lively newcomer to the Pearl Brewery.

The Boiler House Texas Grill & Wine Garden
312 Pearl Parkway
(210) 354-4644
Lunch, dinner daily
www.boilerhousesa.com

 

 

 

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Chefs’ Corner: Boiler House’s Kraken Rum Glazed Kurobuta Pork Belly


Are you in need of an appetizer recipe that will impress your guests and that you can make largely ahead of time?

Kraken Rum Glazed Kurobuta Pork Belly

Kraken Rum Glazed Kurobuta Pork Belly

That’s the beauty behind chef Jeff Wayne White’s Kraken Rum Glazed Kurobuta Pork Belly, which takes three days to get together. Most of the work, however, is done in advance. All you have to do is heat and assemble, before sending the hot plates out of your kitchen.

Haven’t got three days? White has just added this exciting dish to his menu at the Boiler House Texas Grill and Wine Garden in the Pearl Brewery, 312 Pearl Parkway, so you can let him prepare it for you.  Either way, you’re sure to love this version of pork belly.

You can also shorten the recipe by using a store-bought whole grain mustard, but don’t skimp on the glaze, the pickled radishes or, least of all, the pork belly itself.

You can find Kurobuta pork belly through Williams-Sonoma, but you might also want to ask your butcher or contact the folks at South Texas Heritage Pork about getting some from them.

Kraken Braised Pork Belly

1 teaspoon pink curing salt
1 cup dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon cracked black pepper
1 sheet pork belly, preferably Kurobuta
Oil
2 yellow onions, sliced
1 large carrot, sliced
3 ribs celery, sliced
6 cloves garlic, smashed
1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
3 bay leaves
4 sprigs thyme
2 quarts smoked ham hock stock
1 quart pineapple juice
2 cups Kraken rum

For plating:
Kracken Rum Sauce (recipe follows)
Pickled Radishes (recipe follows)
Micro arugula
Grain Mustard (recipe follows)

Mix pink salt, brown sugar, salt and pepper together in a bowl. Rub pork belly with seasoning mix and let cure for 24 hours.

The next day, heat your oven to 275 degrees.

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large, oven-proof braising pan.

Sear belly on both sides.

Remove from pan and set aside. In same pan, caramelize onion, carrots, celery and garlic.

Add peppercorns, thyme and bay leaves, then deglaze pan with ham hock stock, pineapple juice and rum.

Bring contents of braising pan to a boil, remove from heat and cover pan with foil. Place in oven and braise for 3 hours.

When done, remove belly from pan and place on sheet pan.

Place another sheet pan on top of belly and weigh down with canned food or something of weight and refrigerate overnight.

Strain braising liquid and reserve for sauce.

Remove belly from refrigerator and cut into even 2-inch squares.

For each serving, sear 3 squares in hot sauté pan skin side down. Flip over and roast in 275-degree oven for 4 minutes.

Place squares on plate.

Heat Kracken Rum Sauce in pan then mount with butter.

Pour sauce over pork belly. Garnish with plenty of Pickled Radish and micro arugula. Serve with Grain Mustard on the side.

Kraken Rum Sauce

2 yellow onions, sliced
2 cups cider vinegar
1 cup sugar
1 cup Kraken rum
Braising liquid from the pork belly pan
Salt, to taste

In 2 tablespoons oil, caramelize onions.

Add cider vinegar and sugar, and reduce by 75 percent.

Add rum and reduce by half.

Add braising liquid and reduce by 75 percent.

Season to taste.

Pickled Radish

Bouquet Garni:
1 sprig tarragon
1 sprig mint
1/4 teaspoon toasted cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon toasted fennel seeds
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

Brine:
2 cups white balsamic vinegar
1 cup water
2 tablespoons sugar

1 pound red radishes, sliced

For bouquet garni, wrap tarragon, mint, cumin, fennel and peppercorns in cheese cloth and tie closed with twine. Add to a saucepan containing brine ingredients: white balsamic vinegar, water and sugar.

Bring brine to a boil then turn down heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

Place sliced radishes into a glass jar.

Pour hot brine over radish and let cool to room temp.

Once cool, seal jar tightly and refrigerate for 1 week.

Grain Mustard

½ cup ground brown mustard seeds
1/2 cup ground yellow mustard seeds
½ cup whole brown mustard seeds
1/2 cup whole yellow mustard seeds
¼ cup mustard powder
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons sugar
½ cup champagne vinegar
1 ½ cup water

Combine mustard seeds, mustard powder, salt, sugar, vinegar and water. Mix well, and leave covered at room temperature for 2 days before refrigerating.

Makes about 3 cups.

From Jeff Wayne White/Boiler House Texas Grill and Wine Garden

 

 

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