Hilton Head Top chefs share faves


Wise Guys - Russell Keane, Executive Chef

WiseGuys Fried Chicken and Waffles Entree with Spiced Pecan Syrup and Raspberry-Chipolte Drizzle

For the Belgian Waffles:
1.25 oz. pkg. active dry yeast
1/4 c. warm milk (110 degrees F.)
3 egg yolks, reserving whites
2-3/4 c. warm milk (110 degrees F.)
3/4 c. butter, melted and cooled to lukewarm
1/2 c. granulated white sugar
1-1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla extract
4 c. all-purpose flour

For the Pecan Syrup:
12 oz. premium quality real maple syrup
1/4 c. pecans, chopped, toasted
1 fresh Habanero or Scotch Bonnet pepper (or Jalapeno for milder spice)

For the Raspberry-Chipolte Drizzle:
6 oz. premium quality raspberry preserves
1 tsp. chipolte peppers, pureed with
1 sm. can Adobo sauce  (Mexican aisle)
For the Fried Chicken:
2 qt. peanut oil (substitute vegetable shortening, if allergic to nuts)
1 c buttermilk
1 c. flour
1 T. salt
2 tsp. black pepper, finely ground
1 tsp. granulated garlic
1 lb. boneless chicken breasts or chicken tenders, washed, patted dry

Garnish: Fresh chives, chopped (opt.)
Special equipment: Waffle iron


For the Waffles: Toast pecan pieces in a preheated 350 degree oven for 4 to 6 minutes, or until lightly browned and remove from oven to cool. In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in 1/4 cup warm milk. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes. In a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, 1/4 cup of the warm milk and the melted butter. Stir in the yeast mixture, sugar, salt and vanilla. Stir in the remaining 2-1/2 cups milk alternatively with the flour, ending with the flour.  Beat the egg whites in a clean, dry bowl, until they form soft peaks and fold into the batter.  Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap. Let batter rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees and preheat the waffle iron. Brush surface of waffle iron with oil and spoon about 1/2 cup batter (or as recommended by manufacturer) onto center of iron. Close the lid and bake until it stops steaming and the waffle is golden brown. Keep waffle warm in a 200 degree oven.  

For the Pecan Syrup: In a small saucepan, heat syrup over Low heat. Puree the Habanero or Scotch Bonnet pepper and add to syrup, adding to desired taste. Add toasted pecan pieces and let sauce simmer on Low heat until ready to serve.

For the Raspberry-Chipolte Drizzle: In a small saucepan heat preserves over Low heat. Remove from heat and strain and discard any seeds from preserves, if needed. Add the chipolte pepper pecan syrup, and stir well, to blend.

For the Fried Chicken: In a medium-sized, heavy-gauge pot, heat the peanut oil to 350 degrees. Trim any excess fat from the chicken and cut into 2 oz. pieces, flattening slightly with a meat hammer. Toss the chicken gently in buttermilk and let rest 20 minutes. Mix flour, salt, pepper and granulated garlic together thoroughly, and set aside. Dredge chicken pieces gently in flour and set aside in a bowl or on a plate. Carefully shake off any excess flour.  One by one, dip floured chicken back into buttermilk and then back into the flour mixture. Again, shake off excess flour. Drop chicken pieces into the hot 350 degree oil and fry until golden brown and chicken pieces reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees.  

To Plate: Cut waffles into quarters and arrange on plates. Ladle spiced pecan syrup over waffles. Place fried chicken pieces on top of waffles. Drizzle raspberry-chipolte sauce over the chicken.  Serve immediately, while hot. Garnish with chopped chives, if desired.

Yield: Serves 4

Alexander’s recipe for “Hog Wild” night

Chef Chaun Bescos

Marinated & Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Maple demi and Applewood bacon black pepper polenta

(serves 4)

2, 1 ½ pound pork tenderloins

2 cp apple juice
1 cp apple cider vinegar
½ cp extra light olive oil
1 t pepper
1 T salt
1 T honey

1 each onion (small diced)
¾ cup bacon (small diced)
1 ½ t black pepper
1 Qt. stock (preferably pork or chicken)
8 oz. instant polenta (cornmeal)
2 T Whole unsalted butter
Salt to taste
Maple Demi
2 quarts unsalted beef stock
2 T maple syrup
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
Dash of Worchestershire sauce

For Marinade
Whisk together all ingredients. Place tenderloins in marinade for at least 4 hours up to overnight.  Remove pork and pat dry.

To Cook
Rub tenderloins with olive oil and grill on medium high heat for 3 minutes, turn and cook another 3 minutes.  Turn over and lower heat to medium, or move to cooler spot on grill.  Cook 5 minutes and turn.  Cook another 5 minutes until reaching an internal temperature of 145 degrees.  Let rest and slice to order.

For Polenta
In 2 qt sauce pan on medium heat, cook bacon until browned, add onions and black pepper.  Cook til onions become translucent.  Add stock, bring to a boil constantly stirring with a wooden spoon.  Add cornmeal.  Continue stirring over med. Heat for 5-7 mins.  Take off heat and stir in butter and season to taste with salt.  Serve hot.

For Demi
In med sauce pan, bring stock to a simmer. Lower heat and reduce stock to about 2/3 to 1/1/2 cup so it coats the back of a spoon.  Add maple syrup and Worchestershire.  Stir well.  Season with salt and pepper.  Strain.  Hold warm til needed.

Michael Anthony’s Chef Michael Cirafesi

Chestnut Ricotta Cheesecake (Budino di Castagne e Ricotta)

For the Chestnuts:
1 pound fresh chestnuts
½ cup sugar
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
½ cup dark rum
1 to 2 tablespoons water if needed
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

For the Pudding:
2 pounds high quality ricotta cheese
4 large eggs, beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ cup sugar
4 tablespoons candied citron, minced

Preparing the chestnuts:
Preheat the oven to 400°. Cut a slit two thirds of the way around each nut.  Spread the nuts in a roasting pan and bake 45 minutes to an hour, or until tender. Cool about 10 minutes, then slip off the shells and the inner skin just under the shell.

Combine the peeled chestnuts, sugar, vanilla bean and run a saucepan over high heat. Cook at a low boil for 5 to 8 minutes, stirring often, until very thick. Add a little water if the chestnuts start to scorch.  The chestnuts should be almost whole. Cool the mixture and remove the vanilla bean. Crush the chestnuts until broken into bite-size pieces.

Finishing and baking:
Use the tablespoon of butter to grease the bottom and sides of a 10 ½ inch spring form pan.  Preheat the oven to 350°. In a medium bowl, stir the ricotta with the eggs, vanilla, sugar and citron until well blended. Lace the chestnuts through the ricotta mixture, creating streaks like a marble cake. Do not over mix. Turn the batter into the spring form pan smoothing the top.  Bake for 1 hour. Then reduce the heat to 325° and bake another 15 minutes, or until a knife inserted about 2 inches from the edge comes out clean. The center of the cake will still be a little creamy. Remove the cake from the oven and let it cool.

Unmold the cake by releasing the sides of the spring form pan.  Serve warm or cool, but not cold.