Savour the flavour of BBQ
Barbecue is a way of life in this part of the world.
Weekends wouldn’t be the same at this time of year without a trip to Safa Park for a turn on the grill, or armed with disposable barbie and goodies in the cooler bag.
We all think we know a thing or two about it. But one man boned up on his barbeque is chef Max Grenard, executive chef at Dubai Creek Golf and Yacht Club.
The Legends steakhouse offers diners the chance to enjoy their own barbie out on the Creek, sitting pretty in one of their floating table ‘BBQ Donuts’. The restaurant serves up notable Wagyu brands Master Kobe and 182 – where the beef pure bred and long grain fed – as well as a wide range of select tenderloin and ribeye beef including Angus and organic grass fed.
It’s all delicious, but BBQ boys and Barbie dolls may ask if there really a difference between the options. Chef Max explains: “There are subtle differences between the two (Wagyu and Angus). Angus is slightly more lean and appeals to those who like their meat cooked very rare. Wagyu is considered a delicacy and has a slightly more intense flavour due to the higher fat content and is very tender.”
Another quandary that comes to many when buying for the barbie is the organic option. We know it costs more. But does it taste any better? Chef Max says yes: “Organic beef means that the cattle have been given no hormones or antibiotics
and have been fed on a very natural diet. Grass fed beef comes from cattle that have been allowed to graze in pastures and this results in a healthier meat as it is lower in saturated fat and higher in natural nutrients. Some farms raise their cattle in sheds and give them stable feed, which can be made up of all sorts of different products including fish meal and corn husks. This is cheaper and doesn’t taste as good as organic or grass fed beef and this is not something we would ever serve at the restaurant!”
Chef Max is well travelled and has worked off the beaten track in the past in search of new flavours. He enjoyed one stint in Gabon, Africa, and explains: “It was not easy, but it allowed me to discover a new culture and cuisine. It was the first time I’ve ever tried Manioc, for example, which is also known as Cassava or Igname. It’s a root vegetable that is boiled, grated and cooked and can be made into dumplings or used in soup.”
Another stint in New Caledonia, in the south west Pacific, taught him a lot about a unique fusion style which boasts a French influence as well as other Asian cultures including Vietnamese and Japanese. One of the highlights was ‘Buogna’, a combination of coconuts, shellfish, reef fish and tropical fruit all wrapped in banana leaves and cooked over hot stones. But another dish, also distinctive and a favourite of the locals, took him by surprise – bat stew. Chef Max says: “It’s also called ‘Civet de Rousette’. The stew is very strong and gamey, most similar to wild rabbit. That is why coconut milk is used, it’s an acquired taste!”
INGREDIENTS – for four people
200g tempura flour
10g carrot juliennes
10g beetroot juliennes
oil for frying
salt & pepper to taste
30ml sweet chili
20g tomato ketchup
20g lemon juice
10g white vinegar
1tsp mince shallots
1tsp mince red chilies
5g blanch tomatoes chopped
5g chopped coriander leaves
salt to taste
>> De-vein the shrimps and leave behind the tail end, set aside to marinade with salt and pepper
>> In a mixing bowl, mix the tempura flour with ice cold water to make the batter
>> Dredge the shrimps with flour and mix with the batter and fry till golden in colour
>> Place this into a bowl that has been garnished with julienne of raw vegetables and serve with chili sauce
For the chili sauce
>> Mix all ingredients in a bowl and serve cold