PORTLAND, Maine — Chef Daron Goldstein from Provender Kitchen + Bar in Ellsworth visited the 207 kitchen at O'Maine studios with some of the most popular dishes from his restaurant. First up, Baked Manchego Cheese.

Baked Manchego Cheese

4 oz. block of four-month-aged Manchego Cheese

(Provolone, Aged Cheddar could be substituted)

2 eggs

1 cup all purpose flour

2 cup Panko breadcrumbs

INSTRUCTIONS

In three separate bowls, place your flour, eggs (whipped with one TBSP water) and Panko breadcrumbs.

First, place cheese in flour covering all of the cheese and shaking off the excess.

Next, dip in to egg mixture and cover completely.

Finally, place into breadcrumbs pressing down on the cheese to make sure it is well covered.

 

SQUASH PUREE

1 butternut squash, about 2 pounds

Salt to taste

2 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon honey

⅛ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

⅛ teaspoon ground allspice

Pinch cinnamon

Freshly ground pepper to taste

Pare the squash, remove the seeds and cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes. Put in a saucepan, cover with water and add salt. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 5 minutes or until tender.

Drain the squash and put it through a food mill or processor. Return the puree to the saucepan and add butter, honey, nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Blend well until smooth.

 

SPICED HONEY

2– 4 hot chiles (such as Fresno, Holland, or Thai), thinly sliced

1 cup honey

Bring 2 chiles and honey to a light simmer in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Reduce heat to low and let cook 1 hour to infuse. Taste honey and adjust heat with another chile or two, remove from stove, and let sit 30 minutes. Transfer to a small jar, straining if desired. Cover and chill.

Do Ahead: Hot honey can be made 3 months ahead. Keep chilled.

HAZELNUT GREMOLATA

1 cup packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

1 lemon, zested and juiced

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/3 cup hazelnuts, toasted

1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, more or less

Finely chop the parsley and place it in a bowl with the lemon zest and garlic. Mix in the hazelnuts. Add oil slowly, until it reaches your desired consistency. Stir in the juice of 1/2 a lemon and salt, to taste. If you want the garlic finer, grate it on a rasp-style grater. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

To plate this dish:

In a cast iron dish, or something with a thick bottom, spread the squash puree, about 3 or 4 oz.

Place breaded cheese on top and roast at 450 degrees for 12 minutes or until cheese starts oozing out. The cheese will be soft all the way through but not completely melted.

Finish with Spiced Honey and Hazlenut Gremolata, serve with your favorite toasted bread.

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For a gluten free version, you can find gluten free Panko and gluten free Flour in specialty stores, and for a Keto version crushed pork rinds are available in your local stores. Not a fan of butternut squash? Try cauliflower or celery root puree! To learn more about Provender and Chef Goldstein, click here: https://www.eatprovender.com/ .