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Frank's Tips For an Amazing Cheese Plate Posted on 6 Feb 15:47 , 0 comments

For An Amazing Cheese Plate

From: Frank's Journal

 

Frank Bonanno of SupperBell Cheese Plate

 

Last night, I had an amazing platter at Sushi Sasa—all of the kitchen elements worked in harmony: the caliber of chefs; the freshness, temperature, and perfectly sliced fish; the quality of rice and simplicity in seasoning. . .

That sushi plate got me to thinking about meat and cheese plates, because the same components can make or break one: the caliber of chefs; the freshness, temperature, and thickness of each slice, the quality of bread and simplicity in seasoning . . .

I was recently victim of a bad cheese plate at a restaurant up the road: yesterday’s bread, ice cold and week-old Burrata, cappicola cut so thickly that I had to chew it like an oily, meaty, wad of gum, prosciutto as fat as Oscar Meyer bologna. Here are these beautiful (or once beautiful) products, made in the manner they were a hundred years ago with real attention and care, and yes, love, leaving the kitchen with anything but attention or care or love.

In truth, I’ve mostly given up on meat and cheese platters in restaurants because it can be such a disappointing way to start an evening out—-but it has that potential; it could be, should be a wonderful start to a night, whether it’s Friday dinner with the family or Thanksgiving for a throng. These little touches that enhance salumi, they are so small, so simple, that I can lay them out here for the home chef. In five simple steps.

 

 

FIRST

Pick up your products from a trusted vendor (probably not the grocery store). In Denver we have Tony’s, Marczyk’s, Chef’s Mart, The Truffle, St. Killians—really, we’re lucky to have a nice assortment of butchers and cheese mongers–people who know what they’re talking about. (If you’re looking for something specific, shoot me an email and I’ll help if I can.)


SECOND

There’s a reason Berkel makes a slicer just for prosciutto—so that it can be cut to near sheer. You shouldn’t really have to chew it at all. The rich, salty-sweet texture should just melt on your tongue. A butcher has thousands of dollars’ worth equipment–let him use it to slice the cured meat to its appropriate thinness. (Once cut, use it within 24 hours, though, because room temperature meat —see next tip—will oxidize in short order and turn.)

THIRD

Most meats and cheeses should be served between 68 and 72 degrees–room temperature. Consider food (all food, really) the way you would wine: too cold or too hot, and you lose the slight variations in aroma and all of the nuances in the flavor profile.

 

FOURTH

Some cheeses do not improve with age. Burrata, for example, is defined by the Cheese Primer as “meant to be eaten the day they are made.” If in doubt, ask your monger, and serve accordingly.

 

FINALLY

Pay heed to the bread. Fresh, grilled, rubbed with garlic after grilling, drizzled with a good extra virgin olive oil. Well done bread will heighten every flavor on the plate.

Don’t make your guests, your date, yourself a salumi victim. It’s easy to be amazing instead.

 

 

RELATED RECIPES

Frank's Homemade Pizza

Carbonara Pizza

Making Cheese With Frank

Mizuna Lobster Mac N' Cheese

The Perfect Grinder

 

Sourcehttps://www.bonannoconcepts.com/industry/for-an-amazing-cheese-plate/

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Frank's Pizza Recipe + Tips For Making It At Home Posted on 1 Feb 16:44 , 0 comments

My Heart is Pizza Shaped

From: Frank's Journal

 

SupperBell Frank Bonanno Pizza Recipe

(Actually, Luca’s heart is doughnut shaped)

 

I look at a slice of pizza the way my son looks at doughnuts. I could eat a slice any time anywhere, and mostly I don’t even care if the crust is too thick or the cheese off-brand or toppings too intense. From the synthetic saltiness of a self-rising frozen Freshetta that gets doctored up before hitting the toaster oven, to the slice that comes from the back of a truck in a Larimer alley.

 

Pizza is great.

 

Oh, I have a favorite style—just like my son with his doughnuts. Luca goes crazy for Long’s doughnuts, fresh from the oven of an Indianapolis bakery that smells like Sundays and always has a line. Sure, he’ll eat chocolate Donettes or powdered Entemann’s; he’ll wait in the winding queue of the Dunkin’ up the street—but what he really loves, what he looks forward to months in advance and talks about for weeks after, is the simple, plain, lightly glazed, slightly crunchy on the outside and soft and rich in the middle flavor of a Long’s doughnut. A doughnut so perfect you can smell how it’s going to melt on your tongue as you draw one to your face. Little bits of the sugar glaze will stick to the corners of Luca’s mouth and fleck across his cheeks like glitter long after he’s taken the first bite–and before he’s even finished the first glass of milk, two, three, six have landed in his belly without a moment’s guilt or second thought. That’s me and pizza.

 

My style is a nice thin crust—one that’s been tossed rather than rolled so there are crispy bubbles here and there that brown up under the topping. I like real mozzarella strewn with a heavy hand over a sauce rendered from genuine tomatoes that ripened in the sun. I want to fight a little with the cheese and toppings that try to keep a single piece attached to its brethren in the pie, and I want to fold the piece in half, just so, and ignore the few good drops of grease that come to the tip of the pizza triangle and land on my shirt– because a little bit of grease is part of the experience.

 

Who doesn’t love pizza? Even the gluten allergic go to great lengths to figure out how to get a pizza fix. As I sit here typing, my office mates are demolishing a Cosmos pie. They’re pretending to work, but I can see the NCAA games streaming on the computers, and sports and pizza are just too good a match to let work interfere. Let them have their pizza moment.

 

The smell of pizza brings me back to grade school, when I folded pizza boxes in trade for slices from Rudi’s. By sixth grade, the guys at Frank’s had actually taught me how to make dough. Vitto even let me spin my own. Those pies weren’t exactly round, and Frank would tell me I put too much cheese on top—but is there ever too much cheese on a pizza? Even today, Burton at the Osteria has to remind me to calm down with the cheese.  Still. In college, I tossed pizza for Anthony’s by DU and on one of my first dates with Jacqueline, I slipped into their downtown kitchen to make our pie. I could measure the milestones in my life by the pizzas I’ve made.

 

I can’t eat chain pizza, though, because it seems sacrilegious, a violation–like going to the mall to worship your God. I think it was the chain pizza parlour that ruined ranch dressing for me, because I know in my cook’s heart that ranch dressing was put next to a pizza crust to disguise mediocre ingredients on a cardboard circle slathered with plastic cheese. Sadly people bought it, literally and figuratively, and came to believe in other false gods: diet cola, lite beer, chickens that fly on boneless wings. Even my sons know the difference between what’s so wrong-mindedly offered up as pizza in school, and what is made with the calloused hands and cooked over a fire. When the boys have friends over and we go to Marco’s Coal-Fired, or Osteria Marco, or Cart Driver, or any number of other local pizza spots, I make the kids order from the menu (no Plain Cheese). What starts as a fussy, grumbly, eye-rolling obedience to the parent at the table always ends in the joy of fantastic smells that can’t be reproduced from a refrigerated truck, real flavors from ingredients that grow in the earth and from symbiotic combinations on crusts that have rested and risen and browned in the oven. They always leave satisfied. Happy. These are the pizzas they will recall in adulthood as the Gold Standard, because everyone loves the pizza of childhood and comfort.

 

Whenever I take someone to Frank’s or Vitto’s or Rudi’s in Jersey—even when I personally spin pizza for friends—I know they’re enjoying it (how can you not? Pizza’s such a happy thing) –but I can see in their faces the comparison to Home, to First Love Pizza—the pizza they ate after a game with their buddies or had by raffia-bottled candlelight on Fridays with Aunt Marge.

 

That’s the beauty of pizza. Pizza greatness can be achieved over coal or wood or the flames of a Blodget. It can be smoked over a grill or toasted under a salamander or baked in a cake pan in an oven at home; it can be covered with basil or shrimp or sausage or pepperoni or bacon or mother loving okra and: it’s all great because pizza greatness is achieved in the simplest way. Pizza greatness comes from flour dusted finger prints and love; it comes through laughter and passion and flavors that cannot be bottled or shrink-wrapped or frozen and thawed and frozen again.

 

So here I offer to you three recipes and a couple of tips. The recipes are for the pizza I make at home, and really, they’re approximations recipes because at this point—like Marco Dym and Kelly Whitacker and Frank and Vitto and Rudi and every other pizza cook out there—

I make my pizzas by heart and not by recipe,

by feeling rather than branding, by intuiting over cooking. But these recipes, I tell you are a great start, because they come from my heart–a heart that’s pizza shaped.

 

 

Pizza Basics: The Crust; The Red Sauce; Bechamel

A note: If you get into making pizzas at home, unless it’s deep-dish, buy a pizza stone. Pizza stones hold and radiate heat, so you won’t have a soggy crust. They’ll also crisp up a crust for reheating.

A note on making dough: The texture you seek is slightly stickier than modeling clay. As with making pasta, if you’re indecisive about the texture, better to be too moist and sticky than too dry–its’ much easier to work with a wet dough than a dry one.

Another note on the dough: Rest the dough in the refrigerator overnight. Plan ahead and don’t skimp on time here. A pizza cook’s worst nightmare is dough that won’t be stretched and shaped.

A note on the Red Sauce: The Pizza Sauce calls for standard, over-the-counter “Italian Herbs.” Skip fresh herbs in the sauce, because they’ll turn black when you cook the pizza. Instead, save the fresh herbs to use as a topping.

A note on the Béchamel: All pizza needs a sauce, and for white pizza that sauce is Béchamel. For consistency, you’re aiming for roughly the thickness of a good New England clam chowder.

 

PIZZA DOUGH
Yields Three 8″ Pizza

Ingredients

  • 2 ¼ tsp dry active yeast (not instant)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • ¼ cup tepid water
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup water
  • ½ cup water, over ice
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

    Tools
    Cereal bowl; sifter. Stand mixer with dough hook. Extra flour for dusting; greased cookie sheet; plastic wrap.

    Process

    1. Mix ingredients together in a large bowl. Refrigerate until needed, good for up to one week.
    2. Stir yeast and sugar into warm water. Set aside for five minutes.
    3. As the yeast blooms, sift the flour and salt into the stand mixing bowl. Set speed to medium low.
    4. As the dough hook spins, gently pour the yeasty water and olive oil into the flour.
    5. Add the ice cold water; reduce the speed to low. Mix 15 minutes.
    6. Check dough for texture-which is slightly tacky and moist, but not enough to stick to your fingers.Add water or flour by teaspoon as necessary. Mix 5 minutes more.
    7. Move dough to a floured surface and portion into three balls. Fold dough balls into themselves, seal and dust with flour. Transfer to greased baking sheet, sealed side down. Wrap in plastic and store in refrigerator OVERNIGHT.

     

    PIZZA SAUCE
    Yields 1.5 cups     Tools: Spoon, large bowl

    Ingredients

    • 1 12oz can San Marzano tomatoes, crushed
    • 2 tsp Italian seasoning
    • ½ tsp salt
    • ½ tsp sugar

      Process

      1. Mix ingredients together in a large bowl. Refrigerate until needed, good for up to one week.

       

      WHITE SAUCE (Béchamel)
      Yields 2 cups     Tools: Knife; medium sauté pan; wooden spoon. Fine mesh strainer; medium bowl set into a larger bowl of ice water.

      Ingredients

      • ½ yellow onion
      • 2 Tbsp butter
      • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
      • 2 cups milk, in a small pitcher
      • fresh nutmeg
      • ¼ tsp white pepper
      • ½ tsp salt

        Process

        1. Heat the pan over a medium high flame while you slice the onion into thin strips. Reduce the heat to low; place onion and butter in the pan. Sweat onions until translucent.
        2. Gently stir in the flour. Continue stirring over low flame 4-5 minutes.
        3. Slowly stream in the milk, stirring all the while.
        4. Raise heat to medium and grate nutmeg over the sauce (roughly four passes). Stir in salt and pepper. Simmer for 8 minutes more, adding extra milk if the Béchamel is too thick.
        5. Pour sauce through the strainer and into the medium bowl that has been cooling in the ice bath.
        6. Refrigerator until needed– up to five days.

         

         

        RELATED RECIPES

        Carbonara Pizza

        Making Cheese With Frank

        Mizuna Lobster Mac N' Cheese

        The Perfect Grinder

         

         

        Source: http://www.bonannoconcepts.com/industry/my-heart-is-pizza-shaped/

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        Simple & Easy Winter Soup Recipes Posted on 28 Jan 19:37 , 0 comments

        A great meal is only a few ingredients away...

        This time of year has us grabbing for big bowls of hearty soup and cozying up on the couch with our old friend Netflix. This wintertime staple has our hearts since it can be made in a flash with on-hand ingredients. And since we found out that it's National Soup Month, we just had to share our two favorite *easy* soup recipes.

         

        First up, Classic Cream of Tomato Basil Soup:
        This creamy, rich tasting tomato soup is made with loads of juicy tomatoes and a touch of cream to transform the tomato base into a luxurious soup. Finished with sweet basil and salty Parmesan cheese, a bowl of this is sure to bring back memories of childhood.

         

        INGREDIENTS

        • 1/2 oz olive oil
        • 1 1lb 12oz can diced tomatoes
        • 1/2 ea yellow sweet onion, diced
        • 1/2 oz garlic, minced
        • 3/4 oz fresh basil, chifenade
        • 1/2 oz lemon juice
        • 1 oz grated parmesan
        • 1 pint heavy cream
        • 16 oz whole milk (may need more)
        • salt
        • pepper

        INSTRUCTIONS
        In a sauce pot over medium heat saute onions and garlic with the olive oil till the onions are translucent. Add all other ingredients and bring to a simmer. Let simmer while stirring occasionally and reduce the mixture by a 1/4 (about 30 min). Blend the soup in a blender or with a stick blender and serve.

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        ***BONUS RECIPE***
        Ultimate Grilled Cheese
        INGREDIENTS

        • 8 slices good quality thick cut Artisan bread
        • Mayonnaise for spreading
        • 12 oz Gruyere cheese sliced thinly, at room temperature
        • 6 oz cheddar cheese sliced thinly, at room temperature
        • 3 Tbsp butter divided
          INSTRUCTIONS
          1. Preheat skillet over medium heat.
          2. Generously butter one side of a slice of bread. 
          3. Place bread butter-side-down onto skillet bottom and add 1 slice each of gruyere and cheddar. Spread one side of the other slice of bread with a little bit of mayonnaise.
          4. Place the slice mayo-side down on top of the sandwich and butter the top. Grill until lightly browned and flip over; continue grilling until cheese is melted.
          5. Repeat with remaining slices of bread, butter and cheese.  

          ------------------------------------------------------------------------- 

           

          For comfort in a bowl, ladle up creamy butternut squash soup. We purée tender, roasted squash with sautéed onions and tart apples for a smooth, creamy soup.

          ------------------------------------------------------------------------- 

          INGREDIENTS

          • 1 large raw butternut, dice
          • 1/2 lbs raw carrot, chopped
          • 1/4 Tbsp Herbes de Provence
          • 1/2 lbs yellow onion, diced
          • 1/4 lb celery, dice
          • 1/2 ounce minced garlic
          • 1 dash cayenne
          • 1/2 cup white wine
          • 1 1/2 cups veggie broth
          • 16 oz milk
          • 16 oz heavy cream
          • 3-4 oz Granny Smith apple, cubed and peeled
          • garnish with fresh sage
          • 2 tbps (or to taste) korsher salt
          INSTRUCTIONS
          1. Toss the diced squash and carrots with the Herbs de Provence and roast in the oven at 350F until tender.
          2. Sweat the onions, celery, garlic and apples in a sauce pot until the onions are translucent, then deglaze with white wine.
          3. Stir in the vegetable broth, cream, milk, cayenne, salt, squash and carrots.
          4. Bring mixture to a simmer over medium heat, then reduce to low and allow to simmer for 30-40 minutes to allow the flavors to richen.
          5. Blend the soup in a blender. If to thick add water to your desired thickness. Finish each serving with chopped fresh sage.
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          The Man Behind the Meals - Father's Day Edition Posted on 14 Jun 22:40 , 0 comments

          We believe a meal is more than just food. This is especially true for Chef Kylan, our Chief Culinary Officer. It all started for him in a humble kitchen in Beaumont, Texas. Chef Kylan realized that cooking a delicious meal is more than just nourishment; it also brings people together. His inspiration comes from generations of sharing meals as a family - a tradition he honors when creating meals for your family.

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          Introducing Baby Fresh Organics, A New Food Concept for Babies & Kids Posted on 6 Oct 00:13 , 0 comments

          SupperBell is excited to announce our exclusive partnership with Baby Fresh Organics, Denver’s first-ever organic baby food meal delivery service. 

          Baby Fresh Organics makes it easy to serve your child fresh, healthy, organic food. The unique “farm to bib” concept begins with sourcing the freshest organic ingredients from local purveyors. Visit babyfreshorganics.co to shop all of the delicious and nutritious food. Place your order and let our local kitchen prepare and deliver right to your doorstep! Yes, it’s that easy! Just like homemade, we make and deliver everything the same day, it’s just made in a kitchen down the street instead of your own!

          Baby Fresh Organics is rooted in functional nutrition that is evidence-based and backed by science. Our philosophy for feeding babies is thoughtful and purposeful since every bite counts, yet fun and flavorful, because food should be!

          Our in-house Holistic Functional Nutritionist approves every recipe, so you can rest assured that your child is getting the right nutritional balance.

          We offer products for babies 6+ months all the way through kids meals suitable for all ages:

          Stage 1: 6+ months: Simple pureés for first food introduction

          Stage 2: 8+ months: More complex pureé blends to introduce new textures

          Stage 3: 10+ months: Foods to refine pincer grasp, dexterity, and ease the transition to kids meals

          Stage 4: All ages: Nutrient-dense kids meals to nourish a growing body and broaden the palate

          At Baby Fresh Organics, we focus on healthy, whole foods that nourish and are developmentally appropriate for your child. We select foods based on their nutritional profile to provide a wide variety of nutrients. Learn more about our Feeding Philosophy at babyfreshorganics.co.

          We are so proud of this partnership and honored to play a part in bringing this new food concept to the Denver market. Bon appétit!

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          Happy Birthday to Us! Posted on 23 Feb 14:22 , 0 comments

           

           

           

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          Celebrating the SupperBell Drivers Posted on 19 Feb 20:27 , 0 comments

           

           

           

          Several members of the driver team getting ready for action...

          Culinary Chauffers. Delivery Ambassadors. Careful Couriers of the Chef Handcrafts!

          We've come to realize how much both our Customers and our Chefs appreciate the calculated, dedicated work of the SupperBell Drivers! They... hand-pack and ultra-chill each customer bag with fury... dash into the most rush-hour, traffic-laden window of road congestion... surmount snow-hell, high water, staircases and elevator cars... dodge raging dogs, sleeping babies, clueless spouses, curiously unlit alleys and unmarked duplexes... employ on-the-fly maneuvers to carefully deposit five-star meals for their clients, whether a single entree or a cart-loaded dinner party... and truly, express severe self-disappointment on the rare occasions that they cause an error.

          Okay, you get it. SupperBell's drivers MAKE or BREAK SupperBell, even though they passionately strive to MAKE... and categorically never BREAK... SupperBell.

          One of our most frequent customer complaints has been that drivers cannot be tipped during online checkout.

          We've realized that we need to improve the SupperBell culture in a way that better celebrates our Drivers, follows industry practices, and even listens to what Emily Post has to say about gratuity

          We’ve lost many opportunities to retain "Rock Star" Drivers. We have not been ensuring that drivers are competitively compensated. Ultimately, this has been a disservice to our Customers.

          Customers, Driver Gratuity has been enabled for online checkout.

          Drivers, we appreciate you!

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          Denver Flea + SupperBell Posted on 7 Aug 16:53 , 0 comments
          It's that time of year when you must... shop for yourself! August is pretty darn hot, and summer is in full swing. While the pool may be a welcome refuge, who can deny a day in the park imbibing with Denver's best makers and crafters? This weekend, August 13th + 14th, we're partaking in the festivities for Denver Flea's 10th pop up market at City Park. It's going to be quite the bash with 150+ local vendors. 
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          We're Knocking On Your Door Posted on 15 Jul 13:35 , 0 comments

          You asked, we've answered. SupperBell is excited to announce our larger delivery area. This week we expanded our delivery services into Aurora, Littleton, and Englewood and will now deliver our tasty chef-prepared meals to Greenwood Village, Denver Tech Center, Southglenn, East Lowry, East Littleton, Sheridan and Bow Mar neighborhoods and offices. 

          There's a demand for high quality, convenient meal options everywhere. So, we've taken on the challenge of delivering freshly prepared meals to you. Relieving you of last minute trips to the grocery store or frustrating discussions on whether to order Chinese or Pizza for delivery. The Denver Metro area has a new and better option - SupperBell. Whether you're working late at the office, juggling kids between school and soccer practice, or not well in bed but hungry for something nourishing, we can help you with that tiresome question, "what's for dinner?"

          And because we know summertime is all about being outdoors and enjoying the warm sunshine, not fussing over what to cook for lunch and dinner, we're constantly creating and adding new light, summer-inspired dishes to our rotating menu. With Frank Bonanno and Chef Cristino Griego's culinary expertise we're dishing up bright meals so you can take advantage of a portable, delivered meal while you enjoy all the Denver lifestyle has to offer. Order in so you can meet up for that quick tennis match or plan ahead for delivery so having a picnic at the park is that much more carefree. 

           

          Keep an eye out for dishes like Grilled Ono with Farmers' Market Stir Fry, Grilled Summer Steak Salad (pictured below), and Grilled Grateful Polenta with a garden veggie ragu. We can't wait to deliver happiness!

           

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          Feast & Fireworks. Oh my! Posted on 30 Jun 21:14 , 0 comments
          Sparklers, dirty paper plates, frothy beer, sunshine, and a yard strewn with various lawn chairs are a few of my favorite things this time of year. Traces of barbecue sauce and red, white, and blue streamers are evidence of a Fourth of July well done. Explosives and a keg of delicious, cold beer are important details but not the only details that matter. Food is key. Good ole' comfort food. I'm talking BBQ slathered ribs to pick off the bone, crispy coleslaw, pasta salad, and roasted chicken. 
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