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Don’t Hire a Caterer: Oscars 2023

DON'T HIRE A CATERER: OSCARS 2023

By Georgette Farkas

Georgette Farkas is officially our Culinary Ambassador at Great Performances, but we’ve also crowned her our Hospitality Maven. Drawing upon her experiences working at leading restaurants and spearheading her eponymous Rotisserie Georgette, she brings a wealth of knowledge and experience. In addition to everything she does at GP across all teams, she also regularly entertains at home, creating incredible dishes that have that extra special touch that makes the food even more memorable and delicious.

In this series, Georgette shares tips from the caterer’s tool kit to make entertaining at home (almost) effortless. From time saving shortcuts and grocery store secrets to garnishing hacks and presentation magic, she’ll help you host a party that’ll make your guests feel extra special and that you’ll actually be able to enjoy.

She’s also curated recipes for you, highlighting the tips she’s shared. Each month look for dishes and ideas that would be delicious on their own, but that together make up menus that will have you entertaining like a pro.

“Do you really need all those ingredients in your sauce ?“ I asked Theodore. Yes, he did, to make his chili chicken wings bold and bright – and spicy. Chef Theodore Coleman was spending the day with us in the Great Performances kitchen to review his recipes for a “Beard Box” menu. The dinner kits were created by up and coming chefs in the James Beard Foundation’s Fellowship program. This particular edition was for an awards viewing party. If you follow the culinary world, you’ll know that we have our very own “foodie Oscars” hosted annually by the James Beard Foundation.

Working with Theodore and the James Beard Fellows was a pandemic silver lining experience that has left an indelible impact. The program transformed the historic Bead House into a hub of development for talented emerging chefs with the goal of fostering a more equitable and sustainable culinary industry.

We collaborated with the 15 young culinary talents as they pursued professional development courses in small business management, media and social media, wine knowledge, and leadership skills. Our Great Performances team then guided them through menu development and recipe testing. Now, those recipes originally created for meal kits shipped across the country during the pandemic shut down will come to life once again at the new James Beard “Good To Go” kiosk opening this coming April at Pier 57. We’ve chosen one of our favorites for you to savor as you watch the Oscars.

As the fellows were asked to create dishes reflecting their own cultures, we tasted flavors from Jamaica to Puerto Rico , The Dominican Republic, Mexico, West Africa, Vietnam, Malaysia and beyond. Theodore’s Chili Chicken Wings pack some serious heat, nicely balanced by the cooling notes of his Cilantro-Mint Chutney. So, by all means, taste, test and make it your own, just as Theodore would.

We highly recommend following Theodore and keeping your eyes open for his pop-up dinners.

@cheftheodorevictor

@L8RSVN

RECIPE: CHILI CHICKEN WINGS

By Theodore Coleman

Serves 4

May be made a day or two ahead and reheated in the braising liquid.

Ingredients

  • 6 pieces chicken wings, separated into 3 parts
  • 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
Marinade
  • 2 ½ tsp ginger, grated                  
  • 2 ½ tsp garlic, crushed
  • 2 whole serrano peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  •  1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sushi vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp Szechuan sauce
  • 1 Tbsp red chili or chili crunch sauce
Cilantro Mint Chutney
  • ½ cup plain yogurt
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 small bunch cilantro
  • 1 cup mint leaves
  • 2 tsp ginger, grated
  • ½ tsp garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp palm sugar
  • 1 whole jalapeño, seeded and diced

Procedure

  1. Combine one teaspoon each garlic and ginger to form a paste. Combine remaining marinade ingredients in blender and set aside.
  2. In a large skillet over medium high heat add just enough vegetable oil to coat the bottom of the pan. Add ginger/garlic paste and cook stirring for a minute or two, but do not brown. Add wings in a single layer and sear on both sides. Cook in batches, as needed, depending on the size of your skillet. Add marinade, bring to a boil, lower heat to a gentle simmer. Braise wings in marinade for approximately 15 minutes. Serve hot with cold cilantro-mint chutney on the side.
  3. Combine chutney ingredients in a blender until smooth. Add jalapeno last, and just a little bit at a time so as to adjust seasoning to your taste.

Images courtesy James Beard Foundation