Tillie's, in Millburn, NJ

(Eli Paryzer) #21

Thanks cj. Yes, Chef Wirt cooks with a lot of duck, bacon, and beef fat, instead of butter or oil, to give the food that extra umami. He says a lot of people have allergies to certain oils. So to get around it he cooks the protein in the applicable protein fat. If they are not allergic to that protein then they shouldn’t be allergic to the same fat that it is cooked in.

Also, Chef Wirt discovered the new crunchy fried chicken recipe by accident. He was trying to fix his kids chicken fingers and used matzo meal. Who knew that matzo meal would be the secret ingredient to a crunchy fried chicken :grin:

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That is awesome! I like his style.

I can’t say I’ve ever had matzo chicken before. I want to try chicken battered in cool ranch doritos. I see some cool recipes online. Looks interesting.

Ps, if Mrs P can get her hands on some smoked duck fat, that stuff can work wonders on so many dishes. If you like smoked food, this stuff is like gold!

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(Eli Paryzer) #23

That smoked duck fat sounds awesome. Mrs. P actually saved the duck fat from the duck breast that she made on Friday. She couldn’t believe all of the fat that was rendered from one breast. Last night I had asked Chef Wirt how to cook with duck fat, when he mentioned that he just replaces it any recipe that calls for oil or butter. He also showed me all of the different tubs of duck, bacon, and meat fat that he uses. He said that if you really want a lot of fat, to cook a goose. That renders a lot of fat when it cooks.

Mrs. P is looking to fry some shrimp in that duck fat during the week.

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Those shrimp sound good! I’ve never tried that. I think she should try some Brussel sprouts in duck fat for a side. :slight_smile:

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(Eli Paryzer) #25

Yes, I was thinking that duck fat would go great with Brussel sprouts as well.
She is going to stuff the shrimp into a carved out acorn squash and mix it with pureed butternut squash, and top it off with fresh shaved parmigiano reggiano cheese. It is inspired from a dish that we had at Samba Montclair.


(Roz Rappaport) #26

Eli, I use Panko bread crumbs which make incredibly crunchy fried chicken breasts. But I’m intrigued by the use of matzoh meal. Do you know if he used straight matzoh meal, or did he mix it with bread crumbs?



That sounds interesting. Is she frying the shrimp first or frying the whole thing together? I’m trying to wrap my head around this one lol


(Eli Paryzer) #28

Roz, I’m not sure if he mixed the matzoh meal with anything or used it straight. I know that Mrs. P always used panko bread crumbs when frying anything.


(Eli Paryzer) #29

She fries the shrimp separately, and then mixes it together with the pureed butternut squash, into the carved out, and cooked acorn squash. There are other ingredients as well.


(Eli Paryzer) #30

We had another fabulous dinner at Tillie’s Saturday night.
The outstanding comped dish of the night was Diver sea scallops with collard greens, ham, pickled chiles, salmon roe, and Meyer lemon.

We also split an entree of crispy and juicy fried chicken that was brined in soy and vinegar and drizzled with honey, with a side of mac and cheese. We had this as an appetizer. Mrs. P had her usual Cajun shrimp and grits as an entree. I had a fork tender braised beef brisket with mashed potatoes, green beans in a port demi glace.

For dessert we took home an excellent homemade caramel pecan tart

It all went great with a 2014 Domaine De Marcoux Chateauneuf Du Pape.


(Eli Paryzer) #31

We had another excellent dinner at Tillie’s Saturday night.
The outstanding comped dish of the night was lollipop chicken that was smoked overnight in a chili and garlic glaze. It was smoky, spicy, juicy, and very meaty. It had Johnny’s name written all over it :grinning:
We also shared an excellent duck gumbo with okra and chicken andouille. Below is a split portion. I had the fork tender beef brisket and Mrs. P had the shrimp and grits again. It all went great with an outstanding Domaine Lafond Chateauneuf Du Pape.


What's for Dinner #43 - 03/2019 - the SMarch Edition

chicken lollipop looks excellent
I had purchased duck lollipop but they were not smoker like these ones

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(Eli Paryzer) #33

Thanks ccj! They were delicious. They were smoky & spicy.



The whole meal looked so good! Can’t decide which is my favourite dish! Maybe the beef brisket! No, Mrs Shrimp looked even better! Like that lollipop chicken too!

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(Eli Paryzer) #35

Thanks naf! Everything was delicious. Mrs. P’s ‘last meal’ dish is the Cajun shrimp and grits :grinning: It is nice and spicy and different than most shrimp and grits preparations that are in a white buttery sauce. She orders it every time.

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That whole meal looks wonderful! Nicely done. Those chicken lollipops look like they were done right. I have tried to make them a few times in a Cuban version but never really nailed it. I may have to try smoking them then flash frying to get the skin crispy.

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(Eli Paryzer) #37

We had another fabulous dinner at Tillie’s. This is our favorite time of the year; soft shell crab season. Chef Wirt generously comped us with some crispy matzo flour crusted soft shell crab with black rice, pearl onions and pea greens. Mrs. P also had an entree of soft shell crabs as prepared on the menu. We also started of with the awesome smoked slab bacon. I had the crispy panko crusted chicken thighs as an entree. We took home the always excellent key lime pie for dessert (no picture). We had a 2012 Valdez red zinfandel that can probably be cellared for another 10 years and still be great.


What's for Dinner #44 - 04/2019 - the April Flowers but no Showers Edition

It’s one of Mr n’s favourite. The crabs looked big, the ones we had were smaller.

Delightful meal, as usual!

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(Eli Paryzer) #39

Thanks @naf ! Yes, the crabs were huge and very meaty. The matzo meal crust gave it a nice crunch.



I’m not sure which one looks better, the crab or bacon!