Close Menu
Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette


‘Immerse’ yourself in new way of cooking

One of the great joys of being a professor in culinary arts lies in inviting guest speakers; it’s important to get students in front of other people in the industry in the hopes that they branch out when they head into their journey. This week we were honored to host Daniel Liberson of Virginia’s Lindera Farms, and local vinegar hobbyist Chef Chett Bland (he’s the brains behind setting up the workshop in the first place).
A young company that now services the likes of Daniel Boulud, Thomas Keller and Jose Andres, Lindera is the brainchild of the quintessential cook-turned-farmer-turned- producer Daniel [Liberson] and is housed at the farm in Northern Virginia. And his vinegars are good; damn good.
In his presentation, Liberson talked about what it takes to forage for ingredients, namely the safety aspects thereof, and the basics on how to make your own vinegars. There were no recipes, but he encouraged students to go out and explore the possibilities of the ubiquitous fermented nectar. Upon inquiry from students, he discussed some unique ingredients from which he has produced vinegar, how they can be used in everything from desserts to salads to entrees and drinks, and a little about the science and philosophy of cooking.
The seminar was a welcome respite from the daily grind, but more important than that, it was interesting and intelligent, something that my students don’t always get from me. It was fascinating to hear Daniel and Chett discuss their careers, the different paths down which they travelled, and the excitement for an industry that still leaves much to explore, even for the most seasoned veteran.
When the smoke cleared and I went home, I cooked a beautiful steak-for-two and used the ramp (wild leek) vinegar to finish the onion jam. In all of its complexity, it stood up to the jam and the steak splendidly, especially as I added it at the end and did not cook away those beautiful aromas and flavors. All in all, I’d say it was a pretty sweet and sour day.
Ribeye for Two
Serves two
1 2-pound ribeye, trimmed
4-inch sprig of fresh rosemary
2 Garlic cloves, peeled
1 sprig fresh thyme
Salt and Pepper, as needed
1/2 cup Whole butter
1 slice compound butter (recipe follows)
1/2 cup Onion jam (recipe follows)

1. Using an immersion circulator (if cooking sous vide)*, heat a water bath large enough to hold the steak
2. While water is heating, place steak with a 1-inch piece of rosemary, garlic salt and pepper in a vacuum bag
3. Seal the bag
4. When the water is at temperature, place the bag in the water and let it go. If you are using an Anova Culinary circulator, you can automate this through your smart phone. Check with the manufacturer’s website and app for more information on temperatures
5. When done, remove the steak from the bag and pat dry
6. Heat a cast iron skillet until very hot and add butter and remaining rosemary
7. Cook the butter until the water is gone and you have the wonderful aromas of the rosemary
8. Add the steak carefully and sear the garbage out of it. Since the steak is technically cooked, all you need to do is to cook a crust on the outside. The meat will be a perfect and consistent temperature throughout
9. Serve with compound butter and onion jam
*If you are not outfitted to cook sous vide (anova culinary is a great company for low-cost SV equipment) simply sear the steak and finish it in the oven
Compound Butter
Makes a little over a pound
1 pound Whole unsalted butter
2 Tbsp. Fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup Fresh herbs (Rosemary,
thyme, tarragon, parsley, etc.)
5 cloves fresh garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. Cracked black pepper
Salt, to taste
1. Bring the butter to room temperature
2. Place all ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer and combine with a paddle attachment
3. Remove from the bowl and place on parchment paper
4. Form a cylinder and straighten by pushing a flat edge against the paper (which is now surrounding the butter) to form it into a perfect circle
5. Peel back the paper so that it doesn’t get stuck in the butter after it sets up, and then rewrap the butter
6. Roll and tie the ends and place in the refrigerator until it is hard. This butter will keep for weeks in the icebox
Lindera Farms Ramp
Vinegar-Onion Jam

Makes about 1 cup
1 cup Julienne red onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1 shallot, minced
oil for sautéing
2 Tbsp. Dark brown sugar
Lindera Farms or other high-quality vinegar*

1. Place onion, garlic and shallot in a small amount of oil on medium heat to sauté, but don’t let them brown too much
2. Add the sugar and cook until the onions are very tender
3. Remove from heat and allow to cool for five minutes
4. Finish with Lindera Farm’s ramp vinegar or other high quality vinegar and then season to taste with salt and pepper
5. Serve room temperature
*For this recipe, I used Lindera Farm’s Ramp (wild leek) vinegar, which is absolutely stunning. But, since it is small batch, it might be hard to get a hold of. In this case, just use a great, savory vinegar. Lindera has a nice selection of vinegars at