HAMPTON ROADS, Va. - Chef Patrick Evans Hylton helps us celebrate National Rum Punch Day and National Potato Month.
CHEERS TO NATIONAL RUM PUNCH DAY
WITH OUR YO-HO RUM PUNCH
It’s National Rum Punch Day on September 20.
Rum was an important drink in early Virginia history. Punches made with rum were popular ways to enjoy the spirit.
Our Yo-Ho Rum Punch uses Four Farthing Spiced Rum. The rum comes from our friends at Chesapeake Bay Distillery. I designed the rum, which is full of flavor and lacks typical spiced rum cloyedness.
Four Farthing Spiced Rum is inspired by rums of 17th and 18th century Virginia. Fresh fruit and fresh fruit juices bring additional flavor to the party. One fruit used is pineapple, a longstanding symbol of Virginia hospitality.
Here’s how to make our Yo-Ho Rum Punch:
In a large pitcher, add 1 cup Four Farthing Spiced Rum, 1 cup pineapple juice, and a 1/2 cup lime juice. Stir. To serve, fill a collins glass half full with frozen pineapple chucks, and pour punch in about 3/4 full. Top with ginger ale and garnish with maraschino cherries on a skewer.
Four Farthing Spiced Rum comes from Chesapeake Bay Distillery; visit www.ChesapeakeBayDistillery.com
For more on Four Farthing Spiced Rum, visit www.FourFarthingSpicedRum.com
BON APPETIT TO NATIONAL POTATO MONTH
WITH VOUTINE, OUR TAKE ON CLASSIC POUTINE
It’s National Potato Month, and we love spuds in every shape and size.
Historically, Virginia’s Eastern Shore has been a big supplier of potatoes. To celebrate, we have a fun, local take on the Canadian classic dish, Poutine.
Poutine is traditionally a dish of french fries and cheese curds topped with brown gravy. It’s been popular for more than a half-century.
In our take, we make sweet potato fries; sweet potatoes are a hallmark of the Eastern Shore. Across the top of the fries, we add thinly sliced, Virginia country ham that is shredded. Drizzled atop that we add our Pimento Cheese Gravy, a creamy take on the classic dip.
Here’s how to make our Voutine:
Prepare the Sweet Potato Fries | Preheat oven to 475F. Wash and pat-dry 2-3 sweet potatoes. Cut potatoes into eighths lengthwise, but do not peel. Place cut potatoes in bowl and toss in about 1 tablespoon olive oil.
Evenly spread out fries on a large baking sheet lightly sprayed with cooking spray and bake for about 15 minutes. Turn fries with a spatula and continue to bake for about 20 minutes more, or until fries become crispy and brown.
Remove from oven and sprinkle coarse sea salt on top.
Prepare the Pimento Cheese Gravy | In a medium bowl, add a half-cup of prepared pimento cheese.
If you’d like our recipe for Pimento Cheese, email PatrickEvansHylton@gmail.com with “Pimento Cheese” as the subject.
To the bowl, add 2 tablespoons sour cream or plain Greek Yogurt and 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar. Stir to incorporate. You can add more sour cream or yogurt for a creamier gravy or more pimento cheese for a less creamy gravy.
Assemble the Voutine | On a platter or in a bowl, add a generous handful of sweet potato fries, 2 ounces thinly sliced Virginia country ham (we prefer Darden’s, www.DardensCountryStore.com [dardenscountrystore.com] ), and drizzle with pimento cheese gravy. Garnish with chopped chives.
FABULOUS FOOD FIND
WELCOME THE NEW CHEF AT ZOES RESTAURANT
The fine-dining Zoes Steak + Seafood has a new executive chef.
Paul Bonton is the tall toque at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront eatery. He brings years of experience, including Eat: An American Bistro and The Stockpot.
Bonton is also joined in the kitchen with a new executive sous chef. Kevin Dubel recently comes from The Tin Cup, and has cooked at The Cavalier and Terrapin.
On a recent visit I sampled dishes from Bonton. His execution of both steaks and seafood is spot on and a perfect match for such a distinguished restaurant.
For more, www.ZoesVB.com
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