How to Make a Parmesan Basket for the Caesar Salad

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 32,919
    Chef Hector Playuk demonstrates how to make a parmesan basket for the Caesar Salad.

    Hector Playuk

    Hector Playuk is the newly appointed executive chef of Jack’s Restaurant & Bar located in the heart of Dupont Circle at 1527 17th Street, NW. His extensive culinary experience includes being the executive chef for the National Academy of Sciences in-house catering provider Sodexho, which is the leading provider of food and facilities management in the United States. Chef Playuk has also worked as executive chef in other notable Washington kitchens including 14K in the Hamilton Crowne Plaza Hotel; the Hilton Arlington Hotel; The Ritz Carlton Tysons Corner, as well as Café Milano. He began his culinary career in Buenos Aires; apprenticed under renowned Chef Gato Dumas at the Dumas Culinary School of Argentina, and graduated in 1992 from the esteemed Le Cordon Blue in Paris, France.

    Hi, my name is Hector Playuk, the Executive Chef for Jacks Bar & Restaurant, in Washington DC. I will show you how to make parmesan basket for a Caesar salad. Very important, the key ingredients for this is nonstick pan and shredded parmesan cheese. Now, were going to place in the high flame for couple of minutes. Then next thing always remember I always use a kitchen towel for holding hot stuff, remember this is the tips, you dont want to burn yourself especially if youre along with kids. Were going to place about 7 to 8 ounces. We spread the cheese, nonstick pan and you can see right away, theyre going to start melting and the reason we use shredded parmesan cheese is because the parmesan cheese it gets sticky together very nicely, compared to the pecorino cheese grilled parmesan is not the same. You want it to make a nice basket with shredded parmesan cheese, put back to the flame. If you look see -- you are going to get a brown color all around, it is almost done, What I use -- get this from the supermarket or any other store you can use a glass also, this is a bottle.

    What I use this as upside down and this is very important it depend on the how big you want your basket, you can use a bottle or you can use a glass, doesnt matter it is different shape, thats just to give it a shape. I like a big open, so you can see to place the cheese inside the basket which is very important. So, you get all the nice color youre going to get it brown a little bit, you want to see the nice color so you dont break. What I to use is a tong to hold it since we dealing here with very high flame, you dont want to burn your hand, you can use a safety gloves while cooking, the gloves that we use in the kitchen. You can do one by one if you have got a family, if you have a guest at home take your time to do this so you do correctly. I put it off from the flame, I place the bottle near to the saut pan, so it is very easy to field off, get from the tops to the bottom. This a trick, you take a couple of seconds to do it, place correctly and wait. Move it out, this is how you make a parmesan basket. Wait couple of seconds and then it cool off very quickly, take it off, this is how you to make a parmesan basket for your Caesar salad.