Dinner with Tetsuya…
**The winner of the win a masterclass with Tetsuya competition is Antony Burrows from Fitzroy, Victoria**
Congratulations and Enjoy!
About three weeks ago I received an invitation that knocked me off my feet: A masterclass and dinner at Tetsuya’s in Sydney. I was with friends eating dinner and in shocked silence passed my phone around the table, and as my friends squealed in delight for me, I hastily responded with a resounding YES! How could I say no to dinner at the restaurant ranked 17th in the world in 2009?? With an additional 2 hour session with the Master himself in his newly refurbished demonstration kitchen?
There I was 3 weeks later, ensconced in his sexy marble and black glass kitchen, with my terrible head cold, and 8 other bloggers having Tetsuya cook tasty treats for us as we watch in awe..
We were all invited tonight to partake in the christening of Tetsuya’s new Master Kitchen by Electrolux. A gleaming vision in white marble, stainless steel and black glass..this may be Tetsuya’s dream kitchen, but I’m sure many of us would love to have it in our own homes. My head is turned by the deep stainless steel tapless sinks, operated by kneepads for hands free operation, and the oven. Oh how wonderful it would be to have an oven that you could set to your desired temperature and not have to keep an eye on with an oven thermometer! Ah, I can dream!
The format of the evening was straightforward: we were warmly welcomed up to the kitchen, which is divided in two; on one side the sexy kitchen, on the other side the commercial kitchen:
Tetsuya then cooked a range of dishes for us which were served to us as canapes, accompanied by Pol Roger Champagne. After the almost 2.5 hour demonstration, we were seated for our degustation with matching wines. If I hadn’t been so ill, I might have been a little tipsy! Lucky we had chauffeur driven cars to get us home!
Rather than going through each bite and morsel in detail I just want to highlight a couple of the dishes that really stood out for me.
I’m surprised when Tetsuya starts putting together a dish that he made for us at the Sydney Seafood School, albeit using kingfish rather than tonight’s scallops. A warm saald using micro herbs, salted black beans and dried chilli, with hot oil poured over to lightly cook the scallops (if you want the recipe please let me know)…the result? Perfect. There’s virtually no way you can stuff the scallops up…ideal for someone like me who has never been game enough to cook them at home.
Tetsuya then startles us all by placing a gladwrap covered metal baking dish containing scampi tails into the oven. We’re all convinced that there will be a melted mass, but we’re shocked and surprised when he leaves it in for just minutes at 90°C after turning it down from 100°C The result is the most gently and delicately cooked seafood I’ve ever experienced. It was just barely cooked through, and oh so moreish…I could’ve been happy with the champagne, scallops and scampi tails for hours…
He then moves on to show us yet another great party dish. Steamed Alaskan Crab legs. Simple. Placed on a steamer until they change colour, voila and they’re done! No spices, sauces, herbs, absolutely nothing. So sweet and tender. More Champagne! More Crab legs! More scallops! (I think you can tell by now that I looove this kind of party food! ;-))
You know, if that had been the extent of it, I would have been thrilled. I would have gone home happy, sated and excited and inspired to get cooking. But as Tim the Demtel man use to say, “But wait, there’s more!”
We sit down at a long table between the two kitchens for Tetsuya’s famous degustation. A 10 course excursion through expertly handled seasonal produce.
Having read the other bloggers thoughts on our dinner it appears that only I and Billy of A Table for Two really liked this dish, and he managed to score himself another serve! Jealous! This little raviolo was filled with sushi rice and pieces of octopus, and flavoured with black olives and oregano..
And of course, how could I not mention Tetsuya’s signature dish of confit Petuna ocean trout. Luxurious in texture, gem like in colour, a magnificent treatment of a beautiful piece of fish, tonight served with chevre and unpasteurised roe and a salad of zucchini, though I’m sure he said eggplant on the night.
One of the things I have to comment on is the lightness of the entire meal. As opposed to other degustations I’ve experienced, I didn’t leave Tetsuya’s feeling full, bloated or overcome with that almost sick feeling when you’ve eaten too much rich food, as I have at other meals. The portions are small and well considered, making an effort to highlight one or two ingredients, not crowding your brain or your tastebuds.
On to dessert!!! I didn’t know what to expect at this end of the meal as I’ve never heard anyone mention desserts at Tetsuya’s, so I was very pleasantly surprised at the interesting dishes we were served. After our palate cleanser of Pione grape sorbet with Sauternes jelly, this creamy looking deliciousness was placed in front of us: Cannellini beans, with mascarpone, soy caramel and blue cheese anglaise. Oh yes. Yes, Yes, more please! I don’t know how to describe this dish. It’s Asian in influence with the beans in dessert thing, but the soy caramel is a brilliant and cheeky take on the recent fashion for salted caramel seen everywhere. The blue cheese anglaise adds a whole other dimension to this dessert and pushes it into the sublime. If you don’t like beans or blue cheese, you’ll hate this, but I LOVED it.
Our final dessert and last course for the evening, was a Floating Island with a double anglaise of vanilla and praline. Slowly chipping away at this incredibly lush dessert, we were all surprised by the raspberry and chocolate surprise it had hidden away:
I could have licked the plate clean it was that good.
Petit fours and a bracing macchiato got me up from my illness induced stupor to get in the car back home..where I dreamed of marble bench tops, induction stove tops and kneepad operated sinks…but guess what? You have the opportunity to win a place at another masterclass and degustation courstey of Electrolux!
1. Promotion is only open to Australian residents over the age of 18 years.
2. The 12 best entries received will win a single invitation to an exclusive Tetsuya Master class at Tetsuya’s restaurant, 529 Kent Street SYDNEY, NSW – on the evening of Tuesday 24th August 2010 from 6pm. This will include return economy airfares from the major prize winner’s nearest Australian capital city. One nights’ accommodation on the night of the Master class Tuesday 24th August 2010. A private car transfer for the winner from their accommodation within the Sydney Metro area (50km radius from Sydney city centre – GPO) to Tetsuya’s restaurant for the master class and then back to their accommodation within the Sydney Metro area stipulated above.
3. All entries must be received by 12 midnight AEST Tuesday 4th May 2010.
4. Click here for the Terms & Conditions.
Check out who else enjoyed Tetsuya’s with me:
529 Kent Street
02 9267 2900
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