Got to Be NC Competition Dining Series

Got to be NC Competition Dining Series

Saturday morning, WBTV was joined by Chef Tom Dyrness from Mama Ricotta's Restaurant.

Tom is participating in the 'Got to Be NC Competition Dining Series,' which is a single-elimination tournament highlighting the best of the state's food, agriculture and culinary talent.

The competition puts 24 highly competitive chefs against each other in its dual-bracket regional tournament. To find out how you can get tickets, click here.

On the show Saturday, Tom made Asparagus Cappuccino.

Here is the recipe:

* 3 bunches local asparagus

* ½ of a medium yellow onion, medium diced

* 4 stalks of celery, medium diced

* ¼ lb. peel diced Yukon gold potato

* 2 sprigs of fresh thyme

* ¼ cup dry white wine

* 1 lemon cut in half

* 1 cup fresh spinach

* 4 cups vegetable stock

* T.T. Kosher salt

* T.T. White pepper

* T.T. Texas Pete

* ¼ + ¼ cup heavy cream

* 3 T butter

* 2 T thinly sliced mint

Equipment needed:

* Fine mesh strainer

* High speed blender

* Small bowl and whisk


Begin with a stainless steel pot roughly 4 qt capacity. Place the butter in the pot and turn onto medium heat. Melt the butter then add the onion, thyme and celery and cook until soft. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Add the wine and cook until almost dry. Next you will add the potato and vegetable stock. Slowly bring to a boil and simmer slowly until potatoes are done, about 20 minutes

Meanwhile, prepare the asparagus. Grab one piece of asparagus and bend it till it breaks. It should break 1 ½ to 2 inches from the bottom. Discard the smaller of the pieces at the end which tends to be very tough and fibrous. Cut the tips off at roughly 1 ½ inch. Reserve 8 tips. Continue cutting the asparagus from the top at roughly the same length. Reserve.

Add ¾ of the cut asparagus to the pot when the potatoes are half cooked, 10 minutes. Continue to simmer until the potatoes are cooked and tender. Season with salt and white pepper. Remove from the heat and let stand 20 minutes to cool.

You will need to blend the soup in batches. Place half of the spinach in the blender, then put the cooked asparagus mixture on top. The solid portion of the mixture should be to the ¾ level of the blender. The stock portion should be to 1/3 of the container. Pulse the blender to get the mixture inside moving then pour 2 ounces of the heavy cream in. Mixture should be smooth and have a soup-like consistency. Turn off blender and strain the soup through a fine mesh strainer. Repeat with rest of ingredients until all is blended. Reserve.

For the Mint Crema:

In a small mixing bowl whisk the heavy cream with a touch of salt and pepper to soft peaks. Fold in mint. Let stand for 10 minutes.

To Finish:

Serve the soup in a cappuccino cup and spoon mint crema on top and put asparagus tips to garnish.