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Sunrise Chef: Jeremy Bialker

Published On: May 30 2014 12:42:47 PM CDT

Sunrise Chef Jeremy Bialker

The Two Rivers Brewing Company in Easton is a farm-to-table gastro pub known for its local craft beers and New Orleans-inspired cuisine.

Chef and general manager Jeremy Bialker and owner Troy Reynard stopped by our kitchen to cook for us!

Shrimp and Grits with Fried Green Tomatoes
Feeds 3

1 cup hominy grits
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2-3 dashes of your preferred hot sauce
1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese
1/4 cup Pecorino-Romano or other hard aged cheese
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 Tablespoons butter
Fresh cracked black pepper to taste
1 Tablespoon salt
1 lb. 16-20ct peeled and deveined shrimp
1/2 cup chopped bacon
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup butter
1 ½ Tablespoons Cajun seasoning
4 large green tomatoes
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup bread crumbs
2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 quart vegetable oil for frying

Fried Green Tomatoes

1. Slice tomatoes 3/8 inch thick. Discard the ends.

2. Whisk eggs and milk together in a medium-size bowl. Scoop flour onto a plate. Mix cornmeal, bread crumbs and salt and pepper on another plate. Dip tomatoes into flour to coat. Then dip the tomatoes into milk and egg mixture. Dredge in breadcrumbs to completely coat.

3. In a large skillet, pour vegetable oil (enough so that there is 1/2 inch of oil in the pan) and heat over a medium heat. Place tomatoes into the frying pan in batches of 4 or 5, depending on the size of your skillet. Do not crowd the tomatoes; they should not touch each other. When the tomatoes are browned, flip and fry them on the other side. Drain them on paper towels.

Grits:
Bring chicken or vegetable broth to a boil. Slowly whisk in grits. Bring to a boil while stirring and reduce to simmer. Cook 15 minutes while stirring frequently until it starts to thicken. Add remaining ingredients until well combine and cheese has melted. Add more hot sauce or cracked black pepper if desired.

Shrimp:
Heat a large sauté pan on the stove on high until it smokes slightly. Coat the pan with olive oil. Add bacon to pan and sauté for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the shrimp and Cajun seasoning. Sauté shrimp until firm, then add lemon juice to de-glaze the pan. Reduce the juice by 1/3. Pull the pan from the heat and stir in butter until the sauce has thickened and is silky in texture. Add the parsley and toss together.

Presentation:
Spoon grits onto plate. Place the shrimp on top, followed by the green tomatoes. Top the whole dish with the sauce. Enjoy!

Apple Cider Doughnuts
Makes 12

2 red apples, such as Cortland or McIntosh
2 1/2 cups apple cider
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2/3 cups granulated sugar
3 Tablespoons vegetable shortening
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
1/4 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
Vegetable oil, for frying

Core and coarsely chop the apples (do not peel). Combine with 1 1/2 cups cider in a medium saucepan over medium heat; cover and cook until softened, about 8 minutes. Uncover and continue cooking until the apples are tender and the cider is almost completely reduced, about 5 minutes. Puree with an immersion blender or in a food processor until smooth. Measure the sauce; you should have 1 cup. (Boil to reduce further, if necessary.) Let cool slightly.

Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, salt and nutmeg in a medium bowl.

Beat 2/3 cup granulated sugar and the shortening in another bowl with a mixer on medium speed until sandy. Beat in the egg and yolk, and then gradually mix in the applesauce, scraping the bowl. Beat in half of the flour mixture, then the buttermilk and vanilla, and then the remaining flour mixture. Mix to make a sticky dough; do not over mix.

Heat 2 inches of vegetable oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with paper towels. Using a small ice cream scoop, slip 6 or 8 doughnuts at a time into the hot oil and fry until golden brown, turn so all sides are browned, adjusting the heat as needed. Transfer to the paper towels to drain.

Toss donuts in cinnamon and sugar and serve.

Steamed Mussels with Smoked Andouille, Fennel, and Tomatoes
Serves 2-3

2# fresh mussels
8oz. medium diced good quality smoked Andouille sausage
2 Tablespoons sliced garlic
1 cup sliced fennel
1/2 cup sliced celery
1/2 cup diced tomatoes
1 cup wheat, saison, or kolsch beer.
1/3 cup butter
2 Tablespoons chopped parsley
6-8 slices rustic bread
Clarified butter or light oil
Extra virgin olive oil

Brush bread with EVOO and grill until toasted with a little char.

Heat a large sauté pan on the stove until it smokes slightly. Add enough clarified butter to coat and add Andouille sausage, cook for 3 minutes, and add garlic, fennel, and celery. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the mussels and cook until they start to open. Add the beer and butter and reduce by 1/3. Cover for 1 minute. Remove from heat and toss in chopped parsley. 

Serve in bowls with grilled bread on the side for dipping in all that delicious broth!