My Fear of Freedom Suffocation Conquered Through Restraint -Go Figure…
On place where creativity and restraint meet is in the use of bitters in the kitchen. We certainly know that the world is in a craze when it comes to bitters in drinks and on the cocktail scene, but don’t underestimate the value of bitters in your food. I have started to experiment with bitters in cooking mainly because we have them around with due to the experimenting we do in the cocktail arena. Of course I have this utter need to try new things and it just seems totally natural to read a little bottle that says Meyer Lemon or Xocotal Mole and want to use it in food. Essentially it makes perfect sense to cook with bitters or use them in food making. Bitters are essentially and alcohol based bittersweet herbs roots and plant botanical flavored tincture with a very low alcohol content. Cocktail bitters have a way of adding complexity and deepness to cocktails with just a few drops, they can provide similar benefits in food. So what I have learned in my beginning stages of “playing” with my food and bitters is that a little goes a long way so restraint is key.
Here are a few ideas on some of our favorite local bitters plus recipes that I created for the Buffalo Trace and Hemispherical Bitters event at Ger-Nis!
Rhubarb Bitters- Strawberry Rhubarb Tartlets with a few drops in Blood Orange Thyme Glaze or in Rosemary Rhubarb Sorbet
Meyer Lemon Bitters-we added some to our Meyer Lemon chicken Salad Sandwiches and it was delicious.
Black Mission Fig Bitters- add a few drops to Prosciutto Panini with Caramelized Onions and Fig Compote or try a drop mixed into Meyer Lemon Finishing Salts
Siracha Bitters-a few drops added to a Mushroom and Buckwheat Noodle Ramen, I added some to my own homemade hoisin sauce, and even added a few drops to my Spicy Mayo on my Bahn Mi Sandwiches.
Xocolatl Mole Bitters-A few drops in the tamle dough for Red Chili Mole Tamales
Grapefruit Bitters-Place a few drops on the grapefruit on my Tarragon Grapefruit Brule
‘Elemakule Tiki Bitters-This one is perfect in my Jamaican Jerk Slaw
Boston Bittahs-Perfect dropped in a little ceviche
Burlesque Bitters- Perfect in a new recipe I created using balsamic peppered strawberries
Orange Cream Citrate-Perhaps this one seems obvious but…Orange Creamcicles is calling for it!
Orchard Street Celery Shrub-I used a few drops of this on the garnish of a soup I created (the recipe will be up soon…promise!) Celery Root and Apple Potage with Crispy Shallots and Apple Crème Fraiche
Hellfire Habanero Shrub- A few drops in your eggs before cooking!!!! Yum
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