Recently, I was invited to a special event hosted by the folks over at BBC America to promote their new show, “No Kitchen Required” which airs starting Tuesday, April 3rd.
The show is actually the first program that BBC America has developed and funded internally, rather than re-broadcasted from the UK. In a nutshell, I would describe the show as a combination between Iron Chef/Chopped and Survivor.
The three chefs, all who have outdoorsy-type experience, are sent to remote locations in order to forage, hunt, and then cook inspired dishes with native ingredients using only the most primitive of cooking methods and the most basic culinary equipment and spices supplied (basically knives, pans and cooking vessels, salt and pepper only, no electric appliances allowed).
It doesn’t sound like a very easy challenge. But I’m really looking forward to watching the show.
In any case, BBC America invited a group of bloggers to meet some of the stars and the producers of the show, at the ultra-secret headquarters of New York Bite Club.
- Also Read: A Peek inside the Bite Club (2007)
To pair with the New Mexico themed opening episode of No Kitchen Required, Bite Club prepared a Mexican degustation menu that would befit a Mayan emperor or a Mexican head of state.
Ready for some seriously legit Mexican food elevated to the standards of New York Bite Club? Click on the “Read the rest of this entry” link below for more.
I got to spend a little time in the kitchen before dinner started and watched the food being prepared. These are fried plantain cups, or Tostones, which were filled with a Bluefish Ceviche in a horseradish sauce for the amuse bouche. Plantains aren’t particularly Mexican, they’re more of a Caribbean sort of thing, but I’ll cut Bite Club some slack — one of the chefs on the show is from Jamaica, and they definitely eat plantains there.
This is a Guacamole being prepared, with lots of Cilantro in it. They also used a nice amount of lime juice and serrano chiles in it as well, which gave it a great bite.
Elements of the posole soup being prepared, with shredded pork and spoons of chopped hot chiles and red onion for swirling into the dish at the table.
Table setting, with iPads.
Toston Relleno amuse bouche, stuffed with Bluefish Ceviche in Horseradish sauce.
One of the several cocktails we were served that evening. Each course was matched with a corresponding cocktail, and I must admit that I walked out of Bite Club really woozy that night and most of the evening remains a blur.
Posole Soup, with shredded pork, avocado slices, chicharron (fried pork skin). Loved this.
Huitlacoche Quesadilla. This is a deep fried fresh masa pocket, topped with queso fresco stuffed with a type of fungus that is technically a corn disease. In Mexico, it’s a delicacy, but in the US farmers consider it to be a crop blight. Literally “Corn Smut”. In my opinion it was the best dish of the evening. I wish you could get them at Taco Bell.
Pipian de Pollo. Chicken leg smothered in a special kind of mole sauce made with pumpkin seeds over Mexican rice.
Chivo Enchilado, stewed baby goat on a fresh tortilla. The Bite Club folks picked out a live animal at a local purveyor and had it slaughtered for the occasion. Heavily seasoned, with a ton of different chiles in it. The soup accompaniment which was a broth made from the offal of the baby goat was fantastic and soothing. Nothing wasted.
A creamy Flan accompanied by Horchata, which is a beverage made from ground almonds and rice, seasoned with vanilla and cinnamon.
By the way, I think my photos weren’t up to standard this time because I didn’t bring any lighting equipment with me. So if you want to see some really beautiful shots of this stuff, take a look at what Spanish Hipster , Craig’s Grape Adventure and Alice Gao at Lingered Upon did.