Steve’s Magic Paste

Chop onion, white and light green part of the leeks, and garlic and sauté over low heat in butter for 6 hours, stirring occasionally until heavily caramelized and dark brown. Puree in food processor until it forms a dark brown paste. Season with salt. The paste can be kept refrigerated for several weeks for later use.

White Sauce

Melt butter in frying pan. Add flour to the melted butter. Flour/butter mixture should be runny but there should be no excess butter. If not add more flour or butter until the mixture is the correct consistency. Slowly add evaporated milk, stirring with a rubber spatula each time until no lumps remain. As sauce thickens, add heavy cream gradually while stirring until entire mixture is smooth.

Cheese Sauce

Make the white sauce recipe above but with half the flour. Add grated fresh Parmesan cheese until the consistency is thick enough. Do not use the cheap dried Parmesan (which comes in the green shake dispensers) or the sauce will not be smooth. The fresh bagged grated Parmesan sold in the supermarket dairy section works well.

Rosemary Demiglace

Place ingredients in sauté pan and mix thoroughly with spatula while gently simmering for 15 minutes. Remove rosemary branch and leaves. Rosemary demiglace is a great compliment to roasted leg of lamb.

Melanie's Cranberry Sauce

Scrape the outside of the orange skin with a vegetable scraper and save the orange scrapings. Remove and discard the white part of the orange skin. Place the orange scrapings and orange meat in a food processor with the rest of the ingredients and puree. Chill and serve. Serves 24 people.

Blue Ribbon Sushi Soy Sauce

Mix mirin and sake. Burn off alcohol. Mix with soy sauce, kombu and katsuo bushi and bring to boil. Mix and let sit for at least 2 days. Strain and age for 1 month.

Vietnamese Sweet and Sour Fish Sauce Recipe

Crush chili, garlic, and sugar in a mortar and pestle. Add warm water, fish sauce and lime juice and whisk to ensure that the sugar is melted. Add more sugar, fish sauce, and lime juice to taste.

Philippe Labbé's Lobster Fumet

Briefly blanch lobster heads in water with a little vinegar, lemon, dry fennel branches, Sarawak pepper, and salt. Discard gills and cut up heads into pieces small enough to lie flat in frying oil. Fry in hot oil for 5 to 10 minutes. Add butter, garlic, onion, and fresh fennel and sweat briefly without browning. Deglaze with white wine and reduce. Cover with water and add dried fennel. Simmer for 40 minutes, skimming off impurities but not the fat. Remove from heat and cover liquid with crushed pepper and fresh basil. Cover with plastic wrap and let infuse for 20 minutes. Crush all solids through a food mill to remove all the juice and meat. Discard the shells. Pour remainder of liquid through the mill to wash through any remaining meat. Strain through a fine chinois. Chill and skim off fat.

Clarified Butter

Melt butter in a pan over low heat. When the butter has completely melted, continue to heat it over a low heat. When the melted butter starts boiling, it will begin to foam and sputter at first as the water boils off. Continue boiling the butter, uncovered. As the butter melts, it will slowly separate into three layers: The thin top layer of foam is the butter's water boiling off. The middle layer contains the clarified butter. The bottom layer contains the milk solids.

The liquid on top will slowly become more transparent. When the clarified butter has a golden transparent color, there is very little foam left on the surface, and the solids have settled on the bottom, the clarified butter is ready. The cooking time is approximately 30 minutes. Remove from heat immediately as it can burn easily at this point.

Skim off the foam after removing from heat. Let the butter cool awhile to let more of the solids settle, and then pour or spoon out the clarified butter, leaving the remain milk solids in the pan. Or pour the hot melted butter through a fine-mesh skimmer to filter out the foam and solids that have settled.

Clarified butter can be stored, covered, without refrigeration in a glass or earthen jar for about six months. At room temperature, it becomes semi-sold. With refrigeration, it will harden and can be stored, covered, for about one year. Do not let any water get into the clarified butter jar. A drop of water can easily promote bacteria and spoil it.

Clarified butter is great for sautéing because it doesn't burn as easily as ordinary butter. It is useful in all kinds of sauces like Hollandaise and Béarnaise. It is also a delicious accompaniment for lobster or crab. Use in place of regular butter in your cooking.