This week I ate entirely too much fried food in New Orleans: trout, quail, shrimp, chicken, eggs, sausage, rabbit. I could go on, but I’ll stop. The best combination was at Domenica on Baronne Street—burrata with pumpkin marmellata, toasted pecans and fried prosciutto. I paired that with the fried kale, also on the menu. Something sweet, something salty. Something creamy. Something crispy. It was so delicious I made the waiter taste it and asked for the recipe. “English,” a.k.a. Jonathan the sous chef, was kind enough to give it to me, as well as a jar to take home. I need to send him some persimmons! Here you go:
Cooking liquid: Equal parts sugar, rice wine vinegar, and water.
Spice bouquet: cinnamon, cloves, star anise, allspice (all whole toasted in a cheese cloth).
Peel and dice the pumpkin. He used cushaw pumpkin, which my Southern friends say is really a squash, but sugar or other pumpkins will do. Place the pumpkin in a non-reactive pot with just enough of the cooking liquid to cover the pumpkin and spice bouquet. Cook on lowest heat and reduce to a thick syrup. Add a pinch of salt while warm and stir gently. “English” dices it up into even smaller pieces when he serves it on the burrata. I’m thinking of dicing it up and adding a few shallots and serving it as a relish. But I don’t want to compete with my cranberry relish or mess up his recipe. Maybe I should just let it be and cook it as he taught me and serve it with my daughter’s favorite cheese, Cowgirl Creamery Mt Tam triple cream brie, since I neglected to ask for the burrata recipe. Shoot!