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Recipes: NYC Chefs Shim & Admony | LA Chefs Ronnen & Fox | Destination Dining


With the pandemic in full swing, many of us aren’t able to enjoy some of our favorite restaurants or meals.  Many of us aren’t leaving home unless it is necessary.

With Valentine’s Day coming, I thought it would be fun to share the following four exclusive recipes from  S.Pellegrino's 'Destination Dining' Series: an East Coast, West Coast Signature Dish Swap.

The dish swap saw eight restaurants in New York City and Los Angeles swap their favourite creations, bringing a taste of their signature dishes to the opposite coast. The series also supports Relief Opportunities for all Restaurants (ROAR NY), an organisation providing direct assistance to restaurant workers. 

Perhaps you can create these at home for your special Valentine. I am looking forward to trying these recipes myself. I am especially intrigued by the Moroccan cigars.

New York
Steak & Eggs by chef David Shim.
Restaurant: Michelin-starred Cote, New York City's first Korean steakhouse.

Dish: Everyday Cauliflower by chef Einat Admony
Restaurant: NYC’s popular modern Israeli restaurant Balaboosta

Los Angeles
Impossible Moroccan Cigars by chef Tal Ronnen.
Restaurant: Refined plant-based LA restaurant Crossroads Kitchen.

Dish: Beets and Apple 'Charoset' with Feta, Horseradish and Pecan by chef Jeremy Fox.
Restaurant: Birdie G’s, named “hottest restaurant of the year” by LA Times.

Editors Notes

"If you love cooking we've documented the exclusive recipes of the Destination Dining series so you can have a go at recreating those iconic flavours at home”
Ryan King of Fine Dining Lovers.

Credit Link

About Destination Dining 
Destination Dining is the cross-coast dish swap event between the two states that saw eight restaurants in New York City and Los Angeles swap their favourite creations, bringing a taste of their signature dishes to the opposite coast. The series also supports Relief Opportunities for all Restaurants (ROAR NY), an organisation providing direct assistance to restaurant workers. 

Quote re Destination Dining
“Experiencing new cuisines is such an integral part of why we travel however, with trips still on hold, people are craving those unique dining and cultural experiences. With Destination Dining, we’re able to give food lovers a culinary escape while also lending support to independent restaurants during these challenging times.”
Filippo Mazzaia, Senior Market Development Manager for S.Pellegrino. 


Impossible Moroccan Cigars by Chef Tal Ronnen, Crossroads Kitchen.

Serves: 8

1 1/2 tsp Aleppo pepper
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp sweet paprika
3/4 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1/8 tsp cayenne
1 1/2 tsp butter
1 shallot (minced)
8 garlic cloves (minced) 
12 oz (340g) Impossible Burger
1/4 cup (60ml) vegetable oil
1 cup (155g) shallot (chopped)
5 garlic cloves (chopped)
1 tbsp harissa paste
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
Vegetable oil for frying
10 wheat-based Chinese spring roll wrappers, each about 6.5 in (16.5cm) square
1/4 cup (60ml) plain yogurt or use plain unsweetened almond milk

Step 1
To prepare the spiced filling:
A day before you plan to make the cigars, prepare the spiced filling.
In a small bowl, whisk together the Aleppo pepper, cumin, black pepper, paprika, salt, turmeric, and cayenne. In a large skillet over medium heat melt the butter. Add the shallot, garlic, and spice mixture, stirring to combine. Cook until soft and fragrant, for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool completely. Crumble the 'Impossible Burger' into a large bowl and add the cooled butter mixture. Mix until well combined, then transfer to a food processor and process into a smooth paste. Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate overnight until well chilled.

Step 2 
To make the flavoured oil:
In a large skillet over medium-high heat warm the oil. Add the shallots, garlic, harissa, salt, black pepper, and pepper flakes, and cook, stirring, until fragrant, for about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool. Stir in the lemon juice and parsley. Set aside. Add 1½ to 2in [4 to 5 cm] vegetable oil to a large heavy skillet and heat over medium-high heat until the oil is hot, but not smoking (about 350°F/180°c on a deep-fry thermometer).

Step 3
To Assemble and deep fry the cigars:
While the oil is heating assemble the cigars. Transfer the cold 'Impossible Burger' filling to a pastry bag with a half-inch-wide tip. Fill a small bowl with warm water and place it next to your workstation. On a work surface, cut the spring roll wrappers in half diagonally so you end up with two stacks of triangles. Place a damp kitchen towel over the wrappers to keep them from drying out. Working with one triangle at a time, arrange the wrapper with the central point facing up.

Pipe the filling lengthwise across the wrapper, about 1 inch (2.5 cm] from the bottom edge to about 1 inch (2.5 cm] from the top edge. Fold each side of the bottom of the triangle over the mixture and, using the palm of your hand, roll the pastry and filling towards the point into a tight cylinder. Dip your finger in the warm water and wet the inside tip of the triangle point to help seal the cigar. Set aside on a baking sheet. Repeat to use all of the filling and wrappers.

Line another baking sheet with paper towels. When the oil is hot enough, fry the cigars in batches, turning occasionally, until golden brown all over, for 3 to 4 minutes. Using a wire skimmer, transfer the cigars to the paper lined baking sheet to drain. Repeat to fry all the cigars.

To Serve:
To serve, arrange the cigars on a serving plate. Put the yogurt in a shallow bowl and top with the flavoured oil. Serve the yogurt mixture alongside the cigars for dipping.

Beets and Apple 'Charoset' with Feta, Horseradish and Pecan by chef Jeremy Fox, Birdie G’s.

Serves: 8

12 raw baby beetroot (reserve 2 raw to shave)
250 g feta
250 g cream cheese
4 apples (peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces)
50 g horseradish (add to taste)
4 tbsp of pecans (toasted)

Make the brine
Apple cider vinegar
300 g still mineral water
300 g caster sugar
10 g kosher salt
2 g black peppercorns
2 g mace
2 g fennel seeds
1 bay leaf

For the honey mustard
40 g Dijon mustard
30 g wholegrain mustard
80 g apple cider vinegar
70 g honey
80 g extra virgin olive oil
80 g grape seed oil (or similar)

Step 1
Make the brine
Bring the ingredients to the boil, strain and cool completely.
Refrigerate until ready to use.

Step 2
Cook the beets
Preheat oven to 375F.
Wash beets under cool running water and pat dry.
Lightly coat beets in olive oil and a pinch of kosher salt.
Place beets in a baking dish with just enough water to cover the bottom of the dish.
Cover with a lid or foil and cook for about 45-60 minutes, until there is no resistance when pierced by a fork.
Remove from oven and let cool down enough to handle, then carefully rub the skins off.
Cut the beets into the desired bite-size shape and submerge with the cold brine.
Beets will hold indefinitely in the brine under refrigeration.

Step 3
Make the whipped feta
Let feta and cream cheese sit at room temperature for an hour.
Combine all ingredients in a stand mixer with paddle attachment.
Whip until smooth and creamy.

Step 4
To make the honey mustard
In a mixing bowl, combine mustards and vinegar with a whisk.
Slowly add the oils while whisking until emulsified.
Add the honey and mix well.
Refrigerate until ready to use.

Step 5
To plate
Spread whipped feta on the bottom of a plate or bowl.
Sprinkle the feta with chopped toasted pecans.
Arrange the beets and apples on top.
Squeeze small dots of honey mustard evenly.
Slice raw beets very thinly and arrange on top.
Grate fresh horseradish over if available.

Dish: Steak & Eggs by chef David Shim, Cote.

Serves: 1

For the steak tartare
17g beef tenderloin, trimmed and brunoise* (*diced into tiny cubes)
1.5tsp extra virgin olive oil 
10 g caviar
Salt and black pepper to taste
1 tsp chives (finely chopped) 

For the toast
A loaf of milk bread or brioche
Room temperature

For the steak tartare
1. Prepare two small mixing bowls of similar size - one to mix the steak and one bowl to hold ice water. Have one mixing bowl filled with half ice and half water to make a proper ice bath. Put the empty mixing bowl on the ice bath.
2. Brunoise* the tenderloin, put it in the mixing bowl and coat it with extra virgin olive oil. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Place a 1.75-inch diameter ring mould/cutter into the serving bowl and fill it with the seasoned tenderloin. While filling the mould, gently press the meat down to make a firm and even base. Just like a hockey puck.
3. Sprinkle finely-cut chives on top of the meat. Now take the mould out.
4. Quenelle the caviar and place it on top of the tartare.

For the toast
1. Preheat the oven to 375F on the convection baking setting.
2. Get a fresh loaf of milk bread or brioche and slice it into 1/2inch slices. Cut the sliced bread into smaller sticks, 3/4-inch width x 3-inch length.
3. Prepare a sheet tray with parchment paper and place the bread sticks on it. You can temper the butter for a smoother spread (it should be like mayonnaise consistency). Spread ½ tbsp spoon of butter on each side of the bread and toast it in a 375F oven until it becomes golden brown. You will need 2 pieces each of toast to complement the dish.

Dish: Everyday Cauliflower by chef Einat Admony, Balaboosta

Serves: 4

1 cauliflower head cut into 1 inch florets
2 cups Rice flour
1 x 5.6 oz bag Bamba*
Canola oil for frying
*Bamba are an peanut butter-flavored crisp like snack popular in Israel. Alternatives would be any puffed corn crisp with a nutty or neutral flavour.

Peanut Tahini (makes one cup)
1 tsp lemon zest
4 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp fine sea salt
1 x microplaned clove garlic
1/2 cup tahini
1/4 cup unsalted peanuts
3 tbsp chopped parsley

Step 1
Make the tahini
In a medium bowl, whisk together ½ cup cold water, lemon zest and juice, salt, and garlic. Whisk in the tahini until there are no clumps. Remove, whisk and stir in the parsley and chopped peanuts. Taste and adjust with salt as desired. 

Step 2
Make the cauliflower
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together rice flour and 1 cup of water to make the batter. Set aside for later.  
Step 3
If you have a thermometer, bring the oil to 350-375 degrees. If you don’t have a thermometer, you can turn the pot on medium-high and give it a few minutes to get hot. Add a small drop of the batter to test if the oil is hot enough. If you see lots of small rapid bubbles then you are ready to go. Add the cauliflower to the bowl of batter and coat evenly. Using a slotted spoon, remove cauliflower from the batter and add to the hot oil in batches to avoid overcrowding the pot. Fry each batch for about 2-4 minutes until golden brown. Give the cauliflower a quick stir right when you drop them in the pot to make sure they don’t stick together. Remove cauliflower to a plate lined with paper towel.  

Step 4
To serve 
In a large mixing bowl toss together the hot cauliflower with ½ cup of peanut tahini and broken pieces of bamba*. 
Taste and add more tahini and salt as desired.