About Me

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Chef David Martone is the owner and executive Chef of Classic Thyme Cooking School. Pursuing his interest in food, in the early 1980s, David owned an Italian market specializing in home cooked items and exceptional produce. After graduating from the French Culinary Institute in 1989, under the direction of world renowned Chef Jacques Pepin, David went to work at the Chez Catherine Restaurant in Westfield, NJ. David started teaching in the Westfield area in 1991 and pursued a higher level of culinary education earning the designation of C.C.P. (Certified Culinary Professional). David worked as a board member of The New York Association of Cooking Teachers, (NYACT) for several years. David is a member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals. Founder of ‘The Italian Club of Westfield’ he is also the host of the popular cable television cooking show, 'Cooking Thyme," which airs on TV 36. Chef David has been featured in numerous publications such as the Dining In section of The New York Times, Garden Plate Magazine, Savor section of The Star Ledger and New Jersey Monthly.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Ad Hoc Dinner

The other night I phoned my wife, who was just leaving work, and asked, what would you like for dinner? She replied, wine. I knew at that point she had a rough day. I had just worked teaching back-to-back classes and simply wanted to go home and order take-out. I really didn't want to make another trip to the market, which would have been my third that day, nor did I want to cook again and then clean up pots and pans after cooking. I really didn't remember that I had much at home to prepare but took a chance and raided my own refrigerator hoping to find not only food but inspiration for something tasty to quickly throw together before my wife got home. The first thing I did was take care of her only request; I went to my wine refrigerator and selected a nice bottle of a 2000 Bordeaux, one with some age, history, and depth.I poured two glasses to allow it to breath.

Next, I scoured the cupboards and raided the refrigerator pulling out anything I could possibly use for my ad-hock meal. I found a container of wonderful homemade chicken soup my wife had made hidden in the freezer. I immediately identified it by the luscious pieces of chicken along with diced carrot and celery peering through the container. I placed the container in the microwave to start the thawing out process. I placed a small pot of salted water on the stove to start cooking some Ditalini macaroni to go with the soup. OK, now we have a start.

While going through the refrigerator I came across some various cheeses, two different blue veined cheese, a creamy St. Andre, and a semi-soft Morbier. Things were starting to look up. A left-over piece of Italian bread would be the perfect accompaniment toasted and coated with some apricot jam, all tastefully arranged on a plate with some sliced pear drizzled with aged Balsamic and topped with pomegranate arils and a few water crackers.

To balance things out I threw together a simple salad of romaine lettuce, sliced tomato, slivered red pepper, a touch of baby arugula topped with a sliced hard boiled egg, just to add a protein component. A drizzle of some unfiltered extra virgin olive oil and a splash of some fig melon Balsamic I discovered hiding in another cabinet. It's amazing the things you rediscover when you forage in your own larder.

The only thing left was a finish for my now stimulating ad-hock meal. Some sweet clementine segments and a few morsels of bittersweet chocolate would bring this wonderful meal to a memorable conclusion.

Next time you think you have nothing at home to eat, think again!

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