ECHOing Southern Coastal Cuisine with Chef Taylor Gann
Leigh Cort with Chef Taylor Gann
Professional chef tools/knives are essential to make dicing, mincing and chopping a breeze. And no other tool (the mandoline) is as useful for making the quick, clean cuts required for everything from freshly shredded cole slaw to the perfect homemade potato chip. ECHO’s dishes are artistically created to excite the eye AND the taste buds.
The mandoline is a cooking utensil used for slicing and cutting perfect slices and juliennes. It has attachments that can also make popular ‘crinkle-cuts’ in vegetables. Its name is derived from the wrist motion of a skilled user of a mandoline, which resembles that of a player of the musical instrument mandolin. Sous Chef Taylor Gann believes “If you want perfection, the mandolin has no equal for slicing radishes, apples, carrots, zucchini, potatoes, etc. The proof is in the use!”
There is a reason why the best kitchen knives are called ‘Chef Knives’. A good chef is a multitasker, and the knife is designed to handle multiple jobs. Imagine all of the slicing and chopping done each day in the ECHO kitchen. There has to be one single tool that can handle it all, although the best chef knife can’t be defined by a single set of features. According to Chef Gann and ECHO’s Executive Chef James Flack, it’s all about hand-feel. The right knife should feel almost like an extension of your arm. It’s also about the blade length and its composition ~ stainless steel is a favorite and the blade size allows for both precision tasks that might be tiny like garlic or larger jobs like cutting root vegetables.
Top #1: Wusthof 10” Cook’s Knife ~ Chef Gann’s #1 choice for slicing ~ i.e. tomatoes, onions, vegetables, fruit. www.Wusthof.com Family owned for seven generations, the company was founded 200+ years ago in Solingen, Germany. To this day, every Wusthof knife is expertly crafted in this legendary city.
#2: Shun 8” Shun Chef’s Knife ~ a ‘Kiritsuke’ premier knife popularly used for Chef Gann’s slicing fish & seafood in addition to vegetable. Shun Cutlery is a kitchen knife brand of the KAI Group, headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. In 1908 when the company was established, their cutlery included razors and folding knives; by 2002 the culinary line was introduced to the Western market and now are finding their way to noted chef’s kitchens. http://shun.kaiusaltd.com/
#3: Shun Deboning and fileting knife ~ Important to prepare fish in ECHO’s kitchen.
#4: Shun 4” paring knife that Chef Gann prefers to small detailed culinary accents, especially for slicing small garnishes and ‘garden manger’ (in today’s ECHO kitchen, it’s the art and craft of the cold kitchen that designs attractive finishing touches for many dishes).
#5: Shun Deboning Tweezers ~ A fish deboning tool that has an important role in ECHO’s seafood menu!
Chef Gann Serving Lump Crab and Avocado Salad ~ Grilled Tofu Tacos ~ Sausage Flatbread
ECHO continues to lure their patrons to the beach with one of the most exciting Spring menus on the island. Lunch is a perfect time to be adventurous and explore a few new tastes that seem classically popular but may have a new twist. The Grilled Tofu Taco is certainly worth a try ~ soy & sweet Thai chili marinade grilled tofu, Asian slaw, bean sprouts, toasted Georgia peanuts in a flour tortilla. It’s a superb Vegan choice.
A great sharing dish is the Sausage Flatbread featuring beer cheese, house made sausage, Gouda cheese, peppers, leeks, arugula, pickled onion and a sweet balsamic glaze. You won’t have to worry about your weight if you select the Blue Crab & Avocado Salad. Sweet freshly caught lump blue crab, fresh avocado, seasonal fruits, petite summer greens, tobiko, cilantro ~ all gently dressed with a tangy lime emulsion.
The fresh flavors of summer are on the way ~ along with the brilliant skies of ECHO’s favorite season. It’s always a high point of visiting The King and Prince ~ Oceanfront Dining!