Sunday, March 15, 2009

Meeting Chef Stephanie Izard

Yesterday, I was lucky enough to attend an event where Season 4 of Top Chef winner Stephanie Izard spoke and prepared some spring salads. It was interesting to hear her speak about her time on the show – one of my favorites!

She talked about her background, her time in Ann Arbor (she is a UofM grad) and about owning a restaurant before being chosen to appear on the show.

She made three dishes for us. The first was an oil poached shrimp tossed with roasted asparagus and roasted shiitake mushrooms and served over soba noodles with a vinaigrette made with fresh garlic, fresh ginger, soy sauce, honey, sriracha and sesame oil. She told us about making shiitake chips, which I am excited to try. She takes the caps and roasts them after tossing with oil, salt and pepper in a 300°F oven until crisp. That sounds interesting and tasty.

The second dish she made was a skirt steak marinated with an Asian garlic-chili sauce, soy sauce and honey. This was grilled medium, sliced thin and placed a top a salad of shaved fennel, fresh orange zest and juice, roasted red peppers and garbanzo beans then drizzled with a fresh chive yogurt sauce (Greek yogurt and chives blended until creamy). A treat she shared with us (again which I am interested in trying) is dipping garbanzo beans in rice flour and deep frying until crisp.

The third and final dish was a brown sugar cake, which was served as a mini cupcake. There were moist and tasty, sweet without being too sweet.

All three recipes will be available shortly on her website, She will be opening another restaurant in Chicago in the fall, The Drunken Goat (exact location TBD). It sounds like she has a lot of ventures she is involved in: TV, cookbook, new restaurant. I think she is going to be a rising star we need to keep our eyes on. I feel so honored to have had the chance to meet her. She has an even bigger fan now.

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