October 12, 2011

FOOD FIGHT: GSP (Georges "Rush" St. Pierre) - The Legacy Dinner

Current UFC Welterweight Champion

In my opinion, Georges St. Pierre, is MMA (mixed martial arts). I would have never started watching MMA if it were not for this athlete; this incredible specimen. He's currently ranked #1 in the Welterweight division by, MMAWeekly and other numerous publications. He's currently ranked by ESPN Sports as the #2 pound-for-pound fighter.

Over the course of the last 4 years, St. Pierre has been dominating the welterweight division in the UFC. It's even been stated that there's a term for what a challenger goes through after losing to St. Pierre. It's called "The GSP Fatigue"; when a fighter scores continuous losses due to the mental and physical havoc St. Pierre wreaked on him. It's simply a theory, but on October 29th, 2011 he will be defending his Welterweight Title against his teammate, Carlos Condit, at UFC 137. If St. Pierre is once again victorious, we will then see if this theory is true since it happened to Jake Shields, Thiago Alves and Dan Hardy. To read more, click here: The GSP Fatigue

St. Pierre had a difficult childhood; attending a school where other children would steal his things; even his clothing. At age 7, he started learning Kyokushin Karate from his father in order to defend himself from a school bully. Then he gradually started learning other forms of fighting. In every sense of the word, St. Pierre is a world class MMA-ist (Jiu-jitsu black belt, Gaidojutsu black belt, Kyokushin 3rd black belt, accomplished wrestler, well versed in Muay-Thai and boxing, not to mention his amazing core strength). He's an all-around fighter. To date, St. Pierre has 22 career fights and has only been defeated once by both Matt Serra and Matt Hughes; of which he has avenged those losses. 

The first time I saw St. Pierre fight was on December 29th, 2007 against Matt Hughes; in which St. Pierre won the Interim Welterweight Championship. He also received submission of the night, dealing an arm-bar to Hughes for the win. Every woman likes a man who can fight and bonus points if he looks like St. Pierre with those bright, mesmerizing blue eyes and charming smile. In 2010, St. Pierre took home the Guy's Choice award for "Most Dangerous Man"; beating out boxer, Manny Pacquiao. Ass-kicking ability aside, St. Pierre's very likable, humble and a gracious individual. You can't help, but immediately like the man for who he is... an ideal human being and iconic champion in the world of MMA. A champion who relents from talking trash about other fighters and instead lets his skills do the conversing and a fighter who motivates, trains, and treats others with respect, dignity and understanding.

It was truly difficult to create a worthy recipe for Georges St. Pierre. Over the course of planning, I decided to create a full meal; three courses to honor this amazing and respected individual. In my book, he's a cataclysm of all things great. For some strange reason, I keep thinking he could possibly smell like pine and bacon (for he is Canadian); therefore, that was my jumping off point. He's also a man rich in knowledge, well-traveled, adorns himself in fine clothing, but enjoys simplicity and calm. In the end, after weeks of commiserating over recipes in books and my head, I opted for courses tied together with bacon: an edible bacon bowl salad, roast bacon-stuffed beef loin (rich, worldly and a well loved protein), and apple crepes covered with caramel and candied bacon bits. Similar to this man, I hope this meal is an extraordinary dining spread which carries with it a certain spark of "legacy" that is Georges St. Pierre. I dubbed this three-course meal The Legacy Dinner.

Bacon Salad Bowl

Bacon Salad Bowl - What you will need:
1. Baking glass cup (use for custard)
2. A baking dish
3. Tin foil
4. Bacon

Turn baking glass cup upside down. Cover completely with tin foil. Place tin-covered baking glass cup in a baking dish. Layer bacon over the cup. Bake at 350 degrees until bacon is crispy. Let completely cool before removing from the baking glass cup and foil.

Roasted Stuffed Beef Loin

Roasted Stuffed Beef Loin

2 cups cut fresh spinach
4 slices of bacon, diced
1 small white onion
2 Tbsp. of olive oil

1. Salt and pepper beef loin.
2. Fry bacon and onions until caramelized and then add spinach. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove mixture and let cool.
3. Make a tunnel in the middle of the beef loin and stuff with mixture. 
4. Rub olive oil on beef loin and bake in oven for 45 mins. at 350 degrees. 
5. Remove from oven and let rest at least 10 mins. before cutting into it. 

Apple crepes with candied bacon and caramel. 

Basic Crepes Batter:
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup water
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 Tbsp. of butter, melted

1. In a bowl, mix the flour and eggs. Gradually add in the milk and water. Stir together to combine. Add the salt and melted butter. Beat until smooth.
2. Heat a lightly oiled non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Pour a scoop of the batter into the pan, using approximately 1/4 cup for each crepe. Tilt the pan in a circular motion so batter can coat the surface evenly.
3. Cook crepe for about 2 mins. until the bottom is light brown. Loosen with a spatula, turn and cook the other side.

Apple Stuffing:
2 apples (I used Honeycrisp) - diced
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract

1. In a pot, combine apples, sugar and vanilla extract.
2. Cook over medium heat until apples are lightly caramelized; stir often.
3. Remove from heat. Serve hot or cold. 

Candied Bacon:
2 slices of bacon
1/4 cup of brown sugar
Parchment paper
2 baking sheets

1. Mix bacon and brown sugar together.
2. Lay bacon on parchment lined baking sheet.
3. Place another layer of parchment paper on top of the sugared bacon. Then place the other baking sheet on top to help keep bacon flat.
4. Bake at 325 degrees for 25 mins. 
5. Remove and let cool completely. Bacon will harden.

Stuff apple mixture into crepes and roll. Add caramel sauce and crumbled candied bacon on top. Garnish with raspberries and candied bacon slices (optional).

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