Gastronomes who adore top-class European cuisine recognise them as some of the country's top culinary maestros. But when Norbert Kostner, the executive chef of Mandarin Oriental Bangkok, and Erwin Eberharter, the executive chef of Dusit Thani Bangkok, team up to create a main course for the 2012 Bangkok Chefs Charity Gala Dinner & Auction, they are homeboys from a mountain who will charm discerning diners with their alpine classic.
Working on their superb main course are executive chef Erwin Eberharter, left, of the Dusit Thani Bangkok, and executive chef Norbert Kostner of the Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok.
The president's lamb duo is what the two chefs chose as a sumptuous representation of the Rastkogel mountain in the Alps. The Italian side is where Kostner's birthplace is situated while 40km away in Austrian territory is Eberharter's home.
"Lamb and potatoes are typical mountain food that also represent sustainable gastronomy which is currently popular worldwide," Kostner said.
"For the event, however, we will be preparing the lamb and potato in sophisticated styles and have chosen the produce that best suits our cooking techniques."
The high-end dish presents the lamb in two styles: the shoulder is slowly braised with a hint of smoke and burgundy red wine, while the loin is roasted in aromatic herbs and pan jus to celebrate the lamb's natural flavour. The meat is smartly accompanied by confit nicois, plum tomatoes and new potatoes gratin.
"Having participated in the event for the fourth time, we've been more clever every year and have learned what the guests like to eat. Statistics shows that 30% of diners today don't eat beef and the number of those preferring lamb worldwide is increasing," Kostner said. "So this year we decided to replace beef with lamb.
"It is no ordinary lamb but prime quality lamb from Ambassador, one of Australia's most prominent lamb suppliers, which the Mandarin Oriental has been using for over 30 years."
Eberharter added: "The name is representative of this particular recipe being one of the most excellent creations, that is befitting a president's banquet, just as we want our guests to be treated like a president."
The lamb will be accompanied by Chateau Fonroque, 2006, St-Emilion Grand Cru, Bordeaux, France.
PRESIDENT'S LAMB DUO: Shoulder slowly braised with a hint of smoke and Burgundy red wine and the loin roasted in aromatic herbs, natural pan jus, confit nicois, plum tomatoes, new potatoes gratin
SERVES: 6 people
Braised Lamb Shoulder
- Season the lamb shoulder with salt and pepper. Heat half the oil in a thick-bottomed frying pan and sear the lamb shoulder on all sides and place it in a thick-bottomed stew pot. Add the remaining oil to the pan and stir fry the vegetables until well caramelised and all the moisture has evaporated. Next add the plum tomatoes and the diluted tomato paste, stir and add the red wine. Bring to the boil slowly for five minutes. Add this preparation to the seared lamb shoulder and add water to submerge the shoulder. Bring it to a simmer and cover with a lid, leaving a small opening. Simmer gently until the meat is very tender. Remove the meat from the pot, let it cool and shred into small pieces. Place in kitchen rings and keep warm. Bring the remaining sauce back to the boil and strain through a fine mesh sieve. The sauce should be light and velvety. Cover the sauce and keep warm.
Roasted Lamb Loin
- Season lamb loin with salt and a generous amount of freshly milled pepper. Heat the oil in a thick-bottomed pan and sear until well caramelised all around. Add the thyme and rosemary to the pan and roast in a pre-heated oven 180-190C for 20 to 25 minutes until the temperature at the centre reaches 57-58C. Remove from the oven and keep warm and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Heat the oil in a thick-bottomed saucepan and start by stir-frying the onions until glossy. Add crushed garlic, eggplants and stir-fry until glossy and fragrant. Add bay leaves, thyme sprigs and all remaining ingredients, stir for a little while, season with salt and bring to the boil and let simmer very gently until well cooked.
- Gently boil the potato slices in the cream with salt, pepper and a little pinch of nutmeg. When the slices are cooked (about 20 minutes), remove them from the cream and line them by sets of 4 to 5 slices overlapping on a small greased tray and reserve until needed. Also reserve the remaining cream in which the potato was boiled as you will need it later.
- Glaze the potato slices with the cream in which they were cooked, sprinkle with the grated Gruyere cheese and bake in a very hot oven or under a salamander until golden brown. Reheat the confit nicois, reheat the rings with the lamb shoulder and saute the plum tomatoes. Arrange nicely on pre-heated serving plates, at the end cut up the roasted lamb loin and place it on top of the shredded lamb shoulder. Add the sauce to the dish and serve some separately.
About the author
- Writer: Vanniya Sriangura
Position: News Reporter