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Late Winter Visit to Blue Hill at Stone Barns

April 4, 2017

It seems extremely appropriate that I should post about my meal from Blue Hill at Stone Barns right after finishing the Chef’s Table episode about Dan Barber.  Sadly, both were long overdue so the sequence of events is merely an excuse for my inexcusable tardiness posting these pictures.

JZ and I spent a magical afternoon exploring the grounds of Blue Hill at Stone Barns late February last year.  We spent some time meeting the various farm animals on the property including a flock of sheep and their minder, a vigilant enormous white dog.

Before we knew it, it was time to start our culinary journey inside the beautifully anointed restaurant, white table cloth and all.

There are no menus here, only little books describing all the seasonal ingredients that we will be feasting on.

We start with a delicate array of farm vegetables in their most basic element.

Then an aromatic sprig of fennel frond…

and sweet delicate carrots, top and all.

Radishes so thin that they are translucent…

was followed by picked asparagus with egg sauce.

We were then presented with a beautiful sculpture made with crispy kale and cabbage.

We then savored a number of treats made with all sorts of winter vegetables, house made speck and liver sandwiched between chocolate.

Of course, we had to work for our food because otherwise it would be too easy!  Trying our hands at foraging for tiny cheese sticks in a hay stack…

This was followed up with stunningly colorful plate of beets, almost like stain glass.

Next up were more beets, this time in the form of dainty burgers, two bites at most.

Ash smoked rings of acorn squash came presented on a t-rack, not quite what one expects for food to show up on…

More fun presentations… little cones filled with chicharrons.  Now if only I could have hoarded that entire board for myself…

The next little bite of cheese came with a prop and a show and tell.  Not wanting to waste anything on the farm, even the fruit leftover on the branches and bones used up from cooking are repurposed to make ashes to age the cheese.

We were finally finished with the small bites and now onto the meatier courses like this succulent pork belly…

and roasted bone marrow that I will always want more of…

and surprisingly hearty spinach salad that was a wonderful contrast to the rich marrow.

One more plate of cured vegetables and fish before we were whisked away…

into the belly of the beast where we enjoyed our next dish.

Perched on a two top table in the corner of the kitchen, we watched in fascination as the chefs moved so elegantly with a sense of purpose around the bright kitchen.  So this is where the magic happens.

We were presented with a brioche made with Barber wheat, specially designed for Blue Hill.

And with that, our time in the kitchen was up and we were ushered back to our seats and presented with the next few courses.  This savory taco was made with kohlrabi and filled with fresh vibrant herbs and fantastically grilled swordfish and corned beef.

A simple bite of tendon ushered in the final savory courses…

A make your own burrito station.  This was no ordinary burritos though… the almost dark purple colored crepes were airy and light, made with pig blood and the toppings were various parts of the pork, from the jowl to the belly.  Fresh herbs for us to snip onto our burritos with scissors of course.

And finally, we finish with a hearty salad of winter greens dressed with a drippings of a candle made from beef tallow.  Unbelievable.

A little little tasting of single udder butter with our salads… whipped light as air yet so full of flavor.

A little break before the desserts start…

First up, a beautifully baked sweet beet cake that was almost too pretty to eat…

And a loaf of almond cake for us to share.

And finally, the last two bites of an epic meal…

Blue Hill at Stone Barns | 630 Bedford Rd, Pocantico Hills, New York,  10591 | https://www.bluehillfarm.com

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