Chef Howard’s Mexican-Inspired New American Cooking: A Hole-In-One!

Happy New Year from the Eat In Chef team! Though we’re now a few days into 2016, we couldn’t help but tell you more about Chef Howard’s #EatInPopUp tasting in Brooklyn on December 18th, our last of 2015.

Chef Howard is currently the executive chef at a golf course and country club in the Bronx, but is seeking to expand his love for cooking and feeding others to personal chef work via Eat In Chef. His Mexican-inspired twists on New American cuisine left our host, Carlos Sebastian, and his guests feeling like this tasting was an absolute hole-in-one!

Scenes from our latest #EatInPopUp tasting!

The first course was a kale salad with poached pear and spicy pepitas. For those of you who are wondering, “pepitas” is the Spanish word for pumpkin seeds, which are a common ingredient in Mexican cooking.

Kale salad with poached pear and spicy pepitas.

Between Chef Howard’s Mexican heritage and his culinary school training, he was able to prepare an innovative and exciting menu for this tasting. His kale salad was well-balanced, with the bitterness of the kale, sweetness of the pears, acidity of the vinaigrette, and spiciness of the pepitas complementing each other perfectly.

Though we loved his kale salad, Chef Howard’s second course was even more impressive. For this dish, he used one of our favorite ingredients, duck! The duck breast was scored and seared in a skillet to render out the fat and produce a nice, crispy skin. Once sliced, you could immediately see that the meat was cooked perfectly on the inside, too.

Duck breast, cooked to perfection.

The duck was served atop a manchamanteles mole, a spicy stew-like sauce from Mexico comprised of ancho chili peppers, tomatoes, fruits, and spices.

Red hot chili peppers, used in Chef Howard’s mole.

Funny enough, manchamanteles translates to “table-stainer” in English, due to the deep red color of the mole sauce. Fortunately, the guests at this tasting were civilized enough to keep the tablecloth from getting too messy!

The dish also included a sweet potato puree, along with diced apples and pears as a garnish. Chef Howard once again showcased his ability to incorporate his roots with his extensive culinary knowledge and experience.

Seared duck breast with manchamanteles mole, sweet potato puree, apple, and pear.

We were definitely glad to end 2015 on such a strong note. Thanks again to our host, Carlos Sebastian, and Chef Howard for making this latest #EatInPopUp tasting a huge success. We can’t wait to turn your home into your new favorite place to eat in 2016!

Happy food-lovers at our latest tasting!

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