What a really fabulous way to kick-off the Holiday Season…the celebration always start in November. And I was so excited to “rub elbows” and “chit-chat” again with the ever-generous, ever-entertaining, ever-Mr. Personality Chef Rhett Dukes of Roy’s Restaurant. This was my second casual encounter with the Chef and he was at his usual best…so approachable and super excited to share his special menu for the November Supper Club patrons. The evening started with Roy’s signature Edamame appetizer…oh so glad to enjoy some edamame starters again, and Roy’s version with special seasoning mix will really make you remember Roy’s…it’s one of those “got-to-have-it” and better-than-bread culinary masterpieces. Roy’s Edamame recipe is included in this post.
The mini menu brochure detailed the different courses for the special dinner.
Lamb Ragout & Shiso Gremolata
Paired with Pierre Sparr, Brut Rosé NV Cremant d’Alsace, France
(Chef Dukes admitted he’s not a fan either of lamb, but it was a challenge for him to come up with a really mouthwatering and flavorful braised lamb. Verdict: Perfect dish. I’d quickly say no to lamb, but this time, it was more like “bring me some more lamb, please”…Chef, you’re just a genius (I won’t be surprised if you’d be envied by other Roy’s Chef Partners!). The Ricotta Agnolotti, I just referred to it as Ravioli, really had that “homemade” taste, I ate ’em all.
Allspice Roasted Duck, Butternut Squash
Maitake Mushrooms & Pepita Quinoa
Paired with Marques de Montemor, Red Blend Alentejo, Portugal 2009
(This was another interesting dish from Chef Dukes…roasted duck with a difference. It was cooked to perfection again…no gamey taste, crispy exterior and moist interior combination…I couldn’t believe I was enjoying this roasted duck (I could only wish Chinese chefs would take lessons from Chef Duke to make an enjoyable duck dish). And that healthy quinoa with its slighty crunchy texture with pepitas (pumpkin seeds) along with nicely-sauted Maitake mushrooms were lovely sides.)
Kukui Nut Coffee Cake
Caramelized Figs & Blueberry Frozen Yogurt
Paired with Cockburn 10 Year Tawny Port, Porto, Portugal
(I started with the frozen yogurt on a kiwi shell…the sweet and tangy combo was splendid. The Kukui nuts (from Hawaii), and not macadamia nuts, and this clever twist made this coffee cake unforgettable (a bit tangy for me, but everyone else had clean dessert plates and truly enjoyed the cake).
Again, hats off to the amazing Chef Rhett Dukes….he’s done it again, and again.
Roy’s Chicago (312) 787-7599 720 North State Street Chicago, IL 60654
Sunday-Thursday: 5-9pm Friday & Saturday: 5-10pm Aloha Hour: Sunday-Thursday 4:30-6:30pm
Roy’s Edamame (Serves 4)
Source: Roy’s website, http://www.roysrestaurant.com
It was as a young boy growing up in Japan that Roy began to love edamame. The Yamaguchi family embraced the Japanese custom of offering edamame at the beginning of each meal, and always kept some ready in the refrigerator as a healthy snack for the kids. To this day, Roy still regularly prepares and eats it as often as he can and explains, “Edamame is a great way to start a meal so you don’t get filled up on bread.”
Tip: When eating edamame, squeeze the seeds directly from the pods into your mouth using your fingers. Be careful not to eat the shell itself!
Roy’s Edamame Seasoning
8 oz. kosher salt
4 oz. shichimi (Japanese red pepper seasoning)
1 oz. granulated sugar
1/2 lb. edamame beans, in pods
1 tbsp. of Roy’s Edamame Seasoning Roy’s Edamame
Boil 7 cups of water in a large pan. Wash edamame bean pods well. Add edamame to boiling water, and let boil for 5–10 minutes. Drain the edamame, and sprinkle well-blended Roy’s Edamame Seasoning over them. You can serve edamame warm or cool.
If you don’t have the ingredients to make Roy’s Edamame Seasoning at home, sprinkle edamame with regular, kosher, or sea salt—whatever you happen to have.
My special thanks too to Mandev Khalsa for arranging my interview with Chef Rhett Duke for the CelebrEATy Circle. We (Veronica Leighton, Glenn Turner and me) all enjoyed the fabulous meal!