Red Beets with Pine Syrup, Cured Lardo, Tobacco and Sorghum
IMG_2244RECIPE

Yield 4 portions

Ingredients:

Beets:

16ea. Baby Red Beets (2"diameter)

1c. Apple Cider Vinegar

1 small branch, Long Needle Pine (rinsed)

2c. Beet Juice

½c. Red Wine

1c. Sugar

1/4c. Salt

For The Beets:

Rinse the beets under running water to remove all dirt and debris. Place the beets in a pressure cooker with 1 1/2c. water. Cook the beets for 12 minutes and quickly release the pressure on the cooker under running water. Peel the beets and place them in a dehydrator set at 120F 8 hours. Remove the beets from the dehydrator.

Combine the remaining ingredients in a sauce pot and bring to a simmer just to dissolve the sugar and salt. Let the pickle steep off of the heat for 30 minutes. Strain the pickling liquid and place it into a new pot. Add the beets to the pot and gently poach over medium-low heat just to rehydrate the beets.

Tobacco:

150G All Purpose Flour

40G 10x Sugar

90G Porcini Powder

1 1/2G Salt

200G Butter (softened)

1G Tobacco Leaf (dried and cured)

For The Tobacco:

Preheat a conventional oven to 300F. Combine all ingredients in a food processor. Shape the dough into a log and wrap with parchment paper. Frezze the dough until firm. Grate the dough in a single layer onto a silicone baking mat. Bake for 15 minutes or until the dough is completely dried.

Sorghum Seeds:

10G Sorghum Seeds

½ c. Sorghum Molasses

½ c. apple Cider Vinegar

3G Salt

1c. water

For The Sorghum Seeds:

Boil the sorghum seeds in heavily salted water for 40 minutes or until soft. You may have to add more water during the cooking process. Drain the seeds and reserve. Place the remaining ingredients into a pot and cook over medium heat until the sugar and salt dissolve. Add the seeds to the pickling liquid and let them simmer over low heat for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow them to cool at room temperature.

Sorghum Toast:

220G Sugar

225G Butter

1c. Sorghum Molasses

3ea. Eggs

460G All Purpose Flour

4G Baking Soda

245G Buttermilk

For The Sorghum Toast:

Preheat a conventional oven the 325F. Cream together the butter and sugar on medium speed in a stand mixer until fluffy. Stop mixer and add sorghum. Mix on low until combined. With the machine running add eggs one at a time. Be sure to scrape between each addition. Combine the flour and baking soda. Add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the buttermilk. Be sure to start with the flour and end with the flour. Pour the batter into a prepared loaf pan and bake for 40 minutes or just until the bread begins to pull away from the sides of the pan. Allow the bread to cool completely. Place the bread into a refrigerator. Once the bread is firm, slice it as thinly as possible, preferably with a deli slicer. Place each piece onto a silicone baking mat. Once you have a complete tray, place another silicone baking mat on top and place into the 325F oven. Bake for about 6 minutes or until brown and crispy. Set aside.

Summer Berry Preserves:

½ lb. Blackberries

¼ lb. blueberries

¼ lb. Elderberries

1c. Sugar

1ea. Lemon (juiced and zested)

2G Salt

¼ c. Raspberry Vinegar

For the Summer Berry Preserves:

Place all ingredients in a heavy bottom sauce pot. Mash the berries with a potato masher. Cook the berries of medium-high heat until the mixture reaches 220F on a digital thermometer. Remove the berries from the heat and transfer to a sanitized mason jar. Use the pressure method to seal the jar.

Chrysanthemum:

5G dried Chrysanthemum Flowers (sold at most Asian markets)

½ c. Southern Decadence Magnolia Shrubbery (sourced from   Rare Tea Cellars)

1c. Water

½ c. Sugar

¼ c. Salt

¼ c. Chamomile Vinegar (sourced from Lindera Farms)

For The Chrysanthemum:

Place the shrubbery, water, sugar, salt and vinegar in a pot and bring to a boil. Place the flowers in container and pour the liquid over them. Let them cool to room temperature.

Assembly:

Beets (sliced in half lengthwise)

Pine Syrup (sourced from Rare Tea Cellars)

Lardo (sliced paper thin)(sourced from Olli Salumeria if not making your own)

Tobacco Soil

Pickled Sorghum Seeds

Sorghum Toast

Pickled Chrysanthemum

Summer Berry Preserves

Place the beets in the bottom of a stainless steel mixing bowl. Season them with a bit of the pine syrup and salt. Mix and transfer them to service bowl of choice. Place small amounts of the berry preserves throughout the beets. Top that with random spoonfuls of the tobacco soil. Add the sorghum seeds sporadically in small amounts. Pick apart the chrysanthemum flowers and garnish the beets with them. Lay the lardo over the beets. The lardo will melt slightly from the beets. Finish the plate by placing the sorghum toast on top for texture and then pouring some of the beet pickling liquid in the base of the bowl.

"We had an idea to do a dish with as much Southern influence and local terroir as possible. At the time, we were getting amazing red beets from the Culinary Farm at SAS Campus, so we dove into different ways to cook them for a chewier texture. We then decided to use sorghum, tobacco, pork, pine, chrysanthemums, and local berries we preserved. These are all ingredients that we have an abundance of and are special to South or North Carolina.”

Chef Steven Greene, Herons Restaurant at The Umstead Hotel and Spa (Cary, N.C.)

Steven Devereaux Greene is executive chef of The Umstead Hotel and Spa, a Cary, North Carolina hotel lauded for its progressive American regional cuisine.  Greene’s passion for using ingredients and products from the rich Piedmont region to drive beautifully refined culinary experiences is evident daily in The Umstead’s award-winning dining program.  One of the country’s youngest executive chefs to helm the kitchen of a Forbes Five Star or AAA Five Diamond establishment, Greene’s tenure with The Umstead began in 2009 as chef de cuisine, where he guided Herons to its first Forbes Five Star rating.  In 2012 Greene departed to hone his skills as executive chef of Cary’s AN New World Cuisine (?n), a restaurant that shares ownership with The Umstead.  Greene returned to manage The Umstead’s culinary operations in 2014, and continues to provide creative leadership to ?n as its culinary director.