The Gastromancer’s Guild - The Sims

HOPKINS COUNTY, KY (9/18/13) - First off, I’m a geek, and I’m a foodie, that was born and raised in Paducah, KY.

I’ve had an affinity for video games ever since the first time a controller graced my hands when I was six. My love for cooking took hold the moment I held a knife, and I started my career in food at 14. I’ve spent serious time playing every make and model of video game out there, while working every position in various area kitchens. At 21, I enrolled at Louisville Kentucky’s Sullivan University College of Culinary Arts and graduated with my degree two years later. From there, I spent the next three years in kitchens around the Washington, DC area. I’ve now returned to Western Kentucky and am completing another degree at Murray State University in Nutrition and Exercise Science. In my spare time, I co-host a video game podcast called TADPOG (Tyler and Dave Play Old Games).

I’ve had a strong desire to share my love of food and its preparation with others, and am honored that the good people at Sugg Street Post are giving me an opportunity to blend all of my passions together. I now have a place to present them to the public in the form of The Gastromancer’s Guild.


The Gastromancer’s Guild

Anyone out there know about what the most successful computer game of all time is? You don’t have to Google anything, it’s The Sims. In The Sims, food is important as they have to eat it everyday to live and satisfy their needs. Furthermore, a Sim can become interesting in the culinary arts and learn to cook many difficult dishes. If there are any The Sims fans out there they will know what recipes I’m talking about – let’s focus on those “high tier” foods in the computer game and weave them into real life.

Want to know more of what I’m talking about? Here is a clip:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q4Lbu1bWJB8

As always you can reach me with questions, comments and complaints at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

WEEK 34 – The Sims

Lobster Thermidor (Mage)

3 oz. whole butter
3 oz. fine dice shallots
1 pt. quartered mushrooms
salt and pepper to taste
8 fl. oz. lobster or shellfish stock
1 pt. heavy cream
3 fl. oz. brandy
3 fl. oz. dry sherry
½ tsp. worcestershire sauce
½ tsp. cayenne pepper
24 oz. medium diced, cooked, lobster meat
¾ cup fresh bread crumbs
1 tbsp. fresh chopped parsley
4 lobster body shells or pastry shells
4 tbsp. grated parmesan
julienne pimentos as needed

Heat a heavy saucepan. Add the butter and the shallots and cook until the shallots are translucent. Add the mushrooms and cook until they soften. Season the mixture with salt and pepper. Add the stock and cream. Bring to a boil and reduce by half. Stir in the brandy, sherry, Worcestershire sauce, and cayenne pepper. Return to a boil and cook for 1 minute. In a separate bowl, mix together the lobster, bread crumbs and parsley. Gently combine the lobster mixture with the mushrooms and sauce. Adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper. Fill four body shells or pastry shells with the lobster mixture. Sprinkle with parmesan and bake at 350 degrees until hot, approximately 10 to 15 minutes. Garnish with pimentos and serve.


Baked Alaska (Mage)

FOR SPONGECAKE
6 oz. sifted cake flour
11 oz. granulated sugar
10 eggs
1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract
1 ½ tsp. cream of tartar

Line the bottom of two spring foam pans with parchment. Do no grease the sides of the pans. Sift the flour and 6 oz. of the sugar together and set aside. Separate the eggs, placing the yolks and the whites in separate mixing bowls. Whip the yolks on high speed until thick, pale and at least doubled in volume (around 3 to 5 minutes). Whip in the vanilla extract. The yolks should be whipped until ribbons form. Place the bowl of egg whites on the mixer and, using a clean whip, beat until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and 1 oz. of the sugar. Whip at medium speed until the whites are glossy and stiff but not dry. Remove the bowl from the mixer. Pour the egg yolks onto the whipped whites. Quickly fold the two mixtures together by hand. Sprinkle the remaining sugar over the mixture and fold lightly. Sprinkle one third of the sifted flour over the batter and fold in. Repeat the procedure until all the flour is incorporated. Do not over mix, fold just until incorporated. Pour the batter into prepared pans, smoothing the surface as needed. Bake immediately at 375 degrees until the cake is golden brown and spongy (about 30 minutes). A toothpick inserted in the center should be completely clean when removed. Allow the cakes to rest in their pants until completely cooled (around 2 hours). To remove the cakes from their pans, run a thin spatula around the edges and remove.

FOR MERINGUE
16 oz. egg whites
32 oz. granulated sugar

Whip the egg whites to soft peaks. With the mixer running at medium speed, slowly add the sugar and continue whipping until very stiff and glossy.

FOR BAKED ALASKA
Neapolitan cream as needed

Place a layer over vanilla ice cream over the sponge cake and cover with the meringue. Bake at 500 degrees for 4 minutes.


Seviche (Journeyman)

1 lb. raw scallops of shrimp
1 lb. raw firm white fish
8 fl. oz. fresh lime juice
4 minced serrano chiles
6 oz. fine dice red onion
4 tbsp. fresh minced cilantro
1 fl. oz. olive oil
8 oz. tomato concassee
2 tsp. chopped garlic
salt and pepper to taste

Chop the scallops, shrimp, and fish coarsely but evenly. Place in a nonreactive container and add the lime juice. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 4 hours. The fish should turn opaque and become firm. Toss in the remaining ingredients and season to taste with salt and pepper. Chill thoroughly and serve as a salad or with tortilla chips.
If the seviche is going to be held for more than 2 hours, drain the liquid and refrigerate separately. The reserved liquids can be tossed with the other ingredients at service time.


Tiers of Difficulty

Apprentice – At this level, very few ingredients and basic preparation are used. Recipes of this level are often components of other dishes.

Journeyman – This is where applications of heat and knife-work may start, but the steps are still few in number.

Mage – A fairly competent level of work is required as a Mage. Recipes of this level require a fair amount of skill, use teachings from the previous tiers, and increase in complexity while adding more techniques.

Alchemist – At this level, very complex single dishes are created that require several applications of numerous techniques, as well as multiple ingredients.

Gastromancer – This is the highest degree of difficulty. This may take the level of the Alchemist, but will be multiplied into several dishes.

Sugg Street Post
Written by Tyler Holland
Photo by Jeff Harp

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