Heart & Soul Food: A Winter Menu

Recipes from Chef Frederic Kieffer of Artisan Restaurant in Southport

Green Lentil and Smoked Ham Hock Soup with Wilted Chard

2 carrots
2 white onions
1 half bunch celery
2 ham hocks
3 fresh tomatoes
1 head garlic
4 bay leaves
3 sprigs fresh thyme
½ tsp black peppercorns
pinch of salt
1 bunch young rainbow chard (small leaves)
8 oz. crème fraiche

1 carrot, diced  
1 onion, diced
1 stalk celery
2 tbs. butter
1 lb. dried lentils
2 garlic cloves, sliced


Soak lentils overnight in cold water.
To prepare stock:
1.    Peel, dice and pan roast carrots, onion and celery until golden brown.
2.    In a large pot, combine ham hocks and pan-roasted vegetables. Add tomatoes, garlic, bay leaves, thyme and peppercorns.
3.    Cover with water and add a pinch of salt.
4.    Simmer for four hours, adding water as needed.
5.    When finished, spoon off excess grease layer from top and strain. Pick and hand shred ham meat from hocks. Refrigerate.

To prepare soup:
1.    Peel, dice and simmer carrots, onions and celery with butter over medium heat until light brown.
2.    Add lentils and cover with ham hock stock. Stock should be about 1 inch above the lentils.
3.    After 25 minutes, add two pinches of salt. Let simmer for 20 more minutes.
4.    When finished, spoon out one cup of lentils and save for garnish. Blend, check seasonings and strain.
5.    Wash chard and remove stems, cut chard into half-inch strips. Set aside.

To serve:
Bring it back to a simmer and stir in rainbow chard strips. Add shredded ham and stir in reserved lentils. Garnish with a dollop of crème fraiche.



Honey-Ginger Basted Whole Chicken

2 3½-4 pound all natural chickens
butter, softened
3 oz. honey
2 oz. fresh ginger, grated
½ cup warm water
salt & pepper
fresh parsley and chives

1.    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.    Truss the chicken, rub with softened butter and season generously with salt and pepper (including the cavity of the chicken).
3.    In a small bowl, combine honey with freshly grated ginger. Add ½ cup warm water, and a pinch of salt.
4.    Bake chicken at 350 degrees. After 15-20 minutes (when skin starts to turn brown), baste chicken with honey-ginger mixture every five to seven minutes until chicken is fully cooked. (Total baking time: 45-55 minutes). Save cooking juices for garnish.



Pan Roasted Winter Vegetables

2 medium white turnips
1 bunch carrots
2  medium red and golden beets
2 medium parsnips
1 winter squash
Small pearl onions
1 stick butter, melted
1 tsp. sugar
Fresh thyme
salt & pepper

1.    Preheat oven to 315 degrees.
2.    Peel all vegetables and cut into 1-inch pieces, keeping red beets aside. It is important that all vegetables are cut to the same size.
3.    Toss vegetables with ¾ stick of melted butter and 1 tsp. sugar, salt, pepper and thyme.
4.    Place vegetables in a baking dish and bake at 315 degrees until tender, approximately 30-45 minutes. Prepare red beets the same way, but separately.

To serve chicken and vegetables
Cut the chicken into 8 pieces (cutting leg and breast in two). Place warm roasted vegetables in the center of a large serving dish, and place chicken pieces around the vegetables. Add fresh herbs (parsley, chives) to the cooking juices and drizzle over the chicken and vegetables .
(Total baking time: 45-55 minutes). Save cooking juices for garnish.



Scalloped Yukon Gold Potatoes Au-gratin

3 lbs. Yukon gold potatoes
3 cups milk
3 cups heavy cream
Chopped garlic
Ground nutmeg
Salt & pepper
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

1.    Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2.    Peel and slice potatoes into 1/8-inch slices.
3.    In a shallow baking dish, combine milk and cream. Add chopped garlic, a pinch of nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste.
4.    Add sliced potatoes to the dish and mix carefully.
5.    Bake at 325 degrees for an hour or until potatoes are tender.
6.    Before serving potatoes: Top with grated cheddar and broil for 2-3 minutes or until light brown.



Jasper Hill Blue cheese, Red Bee honey, sweet butter, toasted bread

1 1-inch thick slice of Jasper Hill Blue cheese from Maine (or a blue cheese of your choice)
Wheat or nutty bread, toasted
Local Red Bee honey
Sweet butter

1.    Spread butter over toasted bread, place a slice of blue cheese on top and drizzle with honey.

Enjoy with a chilled glass of Vermont (or Canadian) iced wine.



Pear and Apple Cobbler with Almond Topping

Fruit mix
4 Bartlett pears
4  local green apples
½ pint fresh blueberries
½ cup orange juice
4 tbs. sugar
Fresh vanilla bean
2 oz. butter  

Almond crust topping
2/3 cup flour
1 oz. almond flour
3 tbs. brown sugar and cinnamon
3 tbs. sugar
½ stick butter, melted   

1.    Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2.    Peel and cut apples and pears into ½-inch dice.
3.    Split fresh vanilla bean in two and combine remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl.
4.    Place in a baking dish and bake at 325 for 30 minutes.
5.    While baking, prepare topping: Combine the flour, almond flour, cinnamon powder and sugar in a mixing bowl.
6.    Gradually add the melted butter and work the dough with fingers until all the butter is incorporated and dough forms small pieces.
7.    Crumble mixture over the fruit and bake for another 15 minutes or until the topping is golden brown.
8.    Serve the cobbler warm or room temperature with the ice cream of your choice. 



Artisan’s Caramel Cheesecake

3 cups cream cheese

1 cup sugar

1 vanilla bean, seeds only

1½ cups sour cream

¾ cup heavy cream

4 eggs, plus 2 egg yolks

1/3 cup butter, melted

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1.    Preheat oven to 225 degrees.
2.    In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine cream cheese, sugar and vanilla bean seeds and whip until soft.
3.    Slowly add the sour cream, then the heavy cream, mix.
4.    Add the eggs and egg yolks one at a time.
5.    Remove from the mixer and fold in the melted butter and vanilla extract.
6.    Pour the batter into the pans and bake for 30 minutes, rotating the pan 15 minutes.
7.    Cool completely then add the caramel sauce (recipe follows).

¾ cup sugar

2 oz. water

1 tsp. lemon juice

¾ cup heavy cream

2 tbs. butter

Sea salt

1.    Combine sugar, water and lemon juice in saucepan and cook until medium dark caramel color.
2.    Deglaze with the heavy cream.
3.    Add butter and simmer for 5 to 6 minutes.
4.    Cool and pour over cheesecake before serving. Top with a sprinkle of sea salt.