2/12/09

This is Top Chef, Not Top Pussy



That was the best line I have heard in... forever. Now before you get all up in arms. It's true it's also the first time someone on Top Chef acted like a chef instead of a whiny ______ , I'll let you fill in the blank. Let me give a little back story first. For people who watch Top Chef, which should be all of you. You know what happened. But for those of you who don't Fabio, cute, charming and very Italian broke his pinkie and kept on cooking. When stoner Leah says she might have given up with a broken finger, Fabio says, "This is Top Chef, not Top Pussy." and when asked if he wants to go to the hospital he says "No way, hospital? I’ll chop it off and sear it on the flattop so it dosen’t bleed anymore, and tomorrow I’ll deal with my finger.”

And there you go. Chefs are like doctors, policemen, firemen, pilots, nurses. We expect them to do a consistent job 24/7. Home life, illness and injuries DO NOT get in the way of their jobs. You do not pussy out, you do your job and suck it up.

Matter of fact Fabio's attitude reminded me of the great Ronnie Lott.



*if you don't know who Ronnie Lott is, go ahead and google Ronnie Lott and pinkie. I'll wait. Whistling.... Waiting... Twittling thumbs.

See what I mean?

Brasato al Barolo or fancy talk for Braised Short Ribs with Horseradish Gremolata: The Babbo Cookbook, Mario Batali

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
4 16-ounce beef short ribs
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
1 onion, roughly chopped
2 celery stalks, roughly chopped
5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 cups Barolo, or other full-bodied red wine
1 16-ounce can of peeled tomatoes, crushed by hand with their juices
1 cup brown chicken stock (I used water because I ran out of chicken stock)
½ bunch thyme
½ bunch rosemary
½ bunch oregano

Gremolata:

Leaves from 1 bunch of flat leaf parsley
Zest of two lemons, cut into julienne strips
¼ pound fresh horseradish, grated (I couldn't find fresh horseradish anywhere so I use a couple cloves of garlic)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a large, heavy-bottomed skillet or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over high heat until smoking. Season the ribs with salt and pepper and cook them over high heat until deep brown all on sides, about 15 minutes total.Remove the short ribs to a plate and set aside. Add the carrots, onion, celery and garlic to the pan and cook over high heat until browned and softened, about 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and stir in the red wine, tomatoes and juices, chicken stock and herbs, scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to dislodge the brown bits. Bring the mixture to a boil and return the short ribs to the pan. Cover with aluminum foil and place in the oven. Cook for 2 hours, or until the meat is very tender and literally falling off the bones.

Gremolata:

In a small bowl, combine the parsley, lemon zest and horseradish and toss loosely by hand. Place one short rib in each bowl, top with a little of the pan juices and a handful of the gremolata, and serve immediately.

Tasting Notes: When I made this last night, everyone but me loved it. I thought it was so-so. I thought it smelled better than it tasted. BUT... today I warmed it up to take some pictures and eat the leftovers and I loved it. Go figure.

24 comments:

asthmagirl said...

I love Mario Batali. Thank goodness we're on different coasts.

That's a great line. Seriously! And no, I haven't been watching top chef. I got a little burned out on next food network star...

Tanya said...

I wanted to watch Top Chef just for Fabio, but I just haven't had the chance. He used to frequent a message board I lurked on and from what I could tell, he's a serious chef. I love that he continued working. I one time sliced off a chunk of finger on a meat slicer at work and while everyone told me I should take the next day off, I came back anyway. It sucked, but I still did all my work.

ntsc said...

I kind of gave up on food reality shows when they faked the results of Next FN Star. The bean counter on the judging panel is a bit wierd too.

Broken fingers can hurt enough that you can't keep working. I've broken 3 and in all cases the first thing done was imobilize the hand until a surgical suite opened up.

DiaperPin Up Girl said...

Yup he nutted up and I was thrilled he didn't give up. I choked on my tea when he said it to Leah.

As much as I heart Fabio, Carla is my favorite. She gets so excited about EVERYTHING.

Mandy said...
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Mandy said...
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KitchenKiki said...

I don't have cable so I miss out on Top Chef. That is probably one of the 3 shows that make me wish I had cable.

noble pig said...

OMG Krysta this is dang beautiful...wow, I love it!

melissa said...

Great photo on this one! I have this recipe page folded down in my copy. Hope I like it more than you did upon initial serving...

Don't talk to me about pinkies. Mine is still dead right now from slamming it shut in my car door on Tuesday.

SaintTigerlily said...

OK. First of all, we've made this recipe and it ROCKS. The Boss made it for the first time last year during the NYC Marathon. We had just had our first real fight as a couple (almost two years in, we are actually surprisingly docile with each other for two such strong willed people) but all I could do was hug him when this came out of the oven.

SECOND. The Boss, being Italian, adores Fabio more than anything in the world...somewhat more than I am comfortable with, in fact...and LEAH? Should have been dispensed with weeks ago. "Ehhh, this whole de-boning fish thing is haaaard, I know you are Ripert and everything but I caaaaan't so I'm just going to roll my eyes and give up while the audience at home throws things at their tv screens."

Exasperating. What was she even doing there to begin with.

(though, to be fair, her breakfast amuse was really good.)

cakeflower said...

Fabio rocks...but I LOVE Carla and her crazy eyes!

Hillary said...

I loved this comment from Fabio too! I still think Stefan is going to win the whole thing but what do I know - I always predict the wrong person going home :)

Louise said...

Oh, Fabio, what a charmer! But for the classic end of the season T-Shirt quote, I don't know if they'll get away with that one. At least we all know it is the best quote ever! (and may I add, a nice balance to Fabio's feminine side)

On a totally different topic, so glad to know that I am not the only one who photographs leftovers (much better light in the morning and all).

Once again, way to go Evil Chef Mom!

Kristin said...

No cable, no Top Chef. And all I can think of when I see the name "Fabio" is that nasty beefcake with the long blond hair who used to be on romance novels or something. Ew.

Mayberry Magpie said...

I can't believe I'm saying this, but if my dinner looked that good, I don't care how it tastes.

katie said...

I loved that line, Fabio is awesome and I am glad he made it to top four even though his food has been consistently on the bottom all season.

Those short ribs sound delicious and I have often heard that you should make them the day before and then eat them left over. But I never have the discipline.

The Yummy Mummy said...

I luuuurved that comment. And Fabio. Fantastic!

I had all kinds of things to say here but I erased my comments by mistake.

Well anyway, here's the most important part - thanks for using the word "pussy" on your blog. That makes you the coolest food blogger ever.

Kim

MrOrph said...

We were all like "WOW!" when Fabio continued and won! He definitely is a trooper. I also remember Ronnie Lott cutting off his pinky to finish playing a game. Extreme!

Gotta love braised short ribs. I have to give this version a try before winter is gone.

Mayberry Magpie said...

Just popping back in to tell you Mr. Mom really liked the Bread Bible as his Valentine's Day gift. I told him if he made me the bread on the cover, he could have anything, anytime.

jennyonthespot said...

As long as he doesn't sear my food on that flattop after he sears his finger.

I don't know if I am making sensaabshbdg. I am very intoxi........... yay tequila!

Brittany (He Cooks She Cooks) said...

Fabio is my favorite, and I'm glad the short ribs convinced you the second time around. It looks delicious.

Lo said...

This looks absolutely fabulous. I particularly love the horseradish gremolata... mmm. Funny how leftovers sometimes grab you in a new way. Happens all the time at my house.

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