Richard Jallet, Executive Chef of Baltimore Country Club, enjoys using local and unique ingredients to make delicious dishes for members and guests.
On Baltimore (Md.) Country Club’s property, there are 57 apple trees representing at least seven different varieties, including McIntosh, Braeburn, and Granny Smith. Executive Chef Richard Jallet often features the club’s apples on menus, as they represent the true taste of the property. (The club also donates hundreds of pounds of apples to a local charity, because the trees are so productive.)
During a recent wine dinner, Jallet wanted to highlight the flavors of the apple trees while also teaching his interns a few new tricks. Thus, the lobster dish was born.
“It represents a mixture of old and new,” says Jallet. “I learned how to make that lobster butterfly when I was 18. It’s a fun little trick to teach the interns who are always eager to learn.”
Similarly, Jallet is eager to work with new and unfamiliar products.
“Three months ago, I had no idea what pawpaw was,” says Jallet. “Turns out it’s a little-known native fruit that is making quite a comeback in this area. I met someone who grows it and he invited me to come take a look at the farm. I thought it would be a couple of trees in his backyard, but I was wrong. This guy is one of the largest producers of pawpaw.”
Jallet was immediately intrigued. He brought some pawpaw back to the kitchen and began experimenting.
“It has the consistency of banana, but the flavor of a mango,” says Jallet. “It’s starchy, so you have to add acid. When we tried it as a coulis, we knew it would pair perfectly with our signature coconut shrimp.”
Follow Chef Jallet on Instagram: @richardjallet