This year marks the third full season of the Serenbe Southern Chef Series. Chef Linton Hopkins of Restaurant Eugene and Holeman & Finch Public House returned to my kitchen on January 15 and 16 to instruct 10 enthusiastic students in the preparation and presentation of such Southern favorites as gumbo, creamed baby greens with brown butter, the perfect roasted chicken, bananas foster, and chocolate pot de crème. Chef Linton might just be the region’s most enthusiastic chef! He and Hugh Acheson, another Serenbe Southern Chef Series participant, were just honored with the James Beard regional chef award for the Southeast region. Receiving this honor is akin to earning an Oscar. Congratulations to Linton and Hugh.
It’s great fun to have these chefs in my kitchen and to break bread with them, Serenbe residents, and visitors, who, by the end of the class, are new friends.
Chef Linton’s Chocolate Pot de Crème
2 c heavy cream
½ c half & half
5 oz dark chocolate (75% works great)
6 egg yolks
1/3 c granulated sugar
Heat oven to 325°F.
Bring cream and milk just to simmer in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Remove from heat. Add chocolate; whisk until melted and smooth.
Whisk yolks and sugar in large bowl to blend. Gradually whisk in hot chocolate mixture. Strain mixture into another bowl. Cool 10 minutes, skimming any foam from surface.
Divide custard mixture among six 3/4-cup custard cups or soufflé dishes. Cover each with foil. Place cups in large baking pan. Add enough hot water to pan to come halfway up sides of cups. Bake until custards are set but centers still move slightly when gently shaken, about 55 minutes. Remove from water. Remove foil. Chill custards until cold, about 3 hours. (Can be made 2 days ahead.) Cover and keep chilled.