Mercy's chef one of nation's best
COON RAPIDS, Minn. 11/15/2007--Mercy Hospital's executive chef Travis Kempker won first place in a national recipe contest sponsored by Dannon Yogurt and Kempker's employer Morrison Healthcare Food Services.
The point of the contest was to find new and innovative ways to use yogurt in recipes people could use in everyday cooking. Morrison chefs and managers submitted more than 50 recipes.
Participants were randomly assigned to one of three categories: starter or appetizer, main course and dessert. Only 10 ingredients were allowed, except for salt, pepper and oil. One of the main ingredients had to be Dannon yogurt. And, the recipe had to be for only one serving.
Kempker submitted Spicy Crab Cakes with Citrus Yogurt Remoulade and used yogurt in both the crab cakes and the remoulade.
"I made the recipe to use one six ounce cup of yogurt per order, so a person could go to the store and buy one small cup of yogurt and have just the right amount for one order of crab cakes," said Kempker.
Kempker says the sponsoring companies will use the contest recipes in advertising.
Kempker received more good news recently. To reward him for outstanding performance and leadership, Morrison sent him to the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York for a week.
"I attended classes and enjoyed good food – Spanish, Indian, Thai and Mexican – and had lots of fun," he said.
Here's Travis award-winning recipe:
Spicy Yogurt Crab Cakes
- Yield: Three cakes
- Portions: One
- 1/2 tsp. peeled garlic buds, minced
- 1 tsp. olive oi
- 1 tsp. ginger, minced
- 2 Tbls. green onions, finely sliced
- 2 1/2 Tbls. Dannon all Natural Yogurt
- 1/4 tsp. Seracha, pepper sauce
- lemon juice, fresh squeezed
- 1/4 tsp. sea salt
- 1/4 tsp. fresh ground pepper
- 3 1/4 oz. blue lump crabmeat
- 1/3 C Japanese bread crumbs
Recommended for plating
- 1/3 C spring mix salad
- 1/2 tsp. chili oil
- Citrus yogurt remoulade (See recipe below.)
- In sauté pan, sauté garlic and ginger in oil to release flavor. Remove and allow to cool.
- Combine all ingredients (except crabmeat and breadcrumbs) mix until well combined. Gently fold in the crabmeat and breadcrumbs, take care to blend all ingredients. Do not "mash" crabmeat. Chunks should be visible. You may need to adjust Yogurt and Breadcrumbs, as crabmeat may be moist or dry. Double recipe for bigger cakes or two servings.
- Form into three separate cakes about one inch tall. It is very important they are flat on the top and bottom so they brown evenly.
- In hot sauté pan or flat top grill with a little olive oil, brown cakes well on one side (about two to three minutes). Turn over and repeat for another two minutes or so, until heated through with a good sear.
- Place spring mix lettuce in center of plate in pyramid shape, leave about an inch between the greens and the rim. Place the cakes at two, six and ten O-clock on the plate. Drizzle cakes with yogurt mustard sauce (recipe below). Drizzle lettuce with chili oil.
Citrus Yogurt Remoulade
- 1 Tbls. Grey Poupon Mustard
- 2 Tbls. Dannon All Natural Yogurt
- 1/4 tsp. sesame oil
- 1/4 tsp. ginger root, minced
- 1/4 Seracha Chili Sauce
- 1 tsp. cilantro, chopped
- 1 Tbls. lemon juice
- 1 Tbls. red onion
Combine all ingredients together and drizzle over crab cakes.
About Mercy Hospital
Mercy Hospital, located in Coon Rapids, Minn., is a 271-bed non-profit hospital that serves the northwestern Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area. Part of Allina Hospitals & Clinics, the hospital provided care to more than 165,000 people in 2006.
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