Chef Matt serves up a taste of Sedona
Although Chef Matthew Lehfeldt (pronounced lay-felt), was born in Washington, D.C., he was raised in Iran.
“My father was in the Foreign Service,” he said. “We had a Sri Lankan cook who amazed me. He had a passion for cooking that infected me. When we returned to D.C. in 1978, I went to college to study design and drafting, but throughout high school and college I always cooked,” he added.
Matt eventually moved to Colorado, where he lived for 20 years. He then attended and graduated from San Francisco’s California Culinary Academy in 1996. He cheffed in top-quality restaurants and eventually opened his own sushi restaurant — Saketumi; he sold his share in the restaurant in 2007.
Matt is a multi-talented guy. He took a hiatus from cheffing and turned to snowmaking in Colorado.
“In 2010, I was voted Snow Maker of the Year for Colorado; only five nominees were in the running,” he said. After that, he opened another restaurant — Red Onion.
This past November, Matt returned to this area to take care of his parents, who live in D.C., and he also took on the role of chef at Sedona in Bethany Beach.
“It’s a small world,” he said. “My former partner knew Marian Parrott [owner of Sedona] and we connected. I live here now but drive back and forth to D.C. to help my parents.”
Being a chef doesn’t leave much time for play. To keep the balance, Matt has switched from Colorado mountain climbing to sport-fishing and soon hopes to try sea kayaking.
“I’m always on the run,” he said, “so keeping the balance isn’t easy.”
He does like to entertain and serves sushi to guests.
“The price is right, and everyone has a great time,” he added.
Sedona restaurant, now open seven days a week from 5:30 p.m. until closing, is located at 26 Pennsylvania Avenue in Bethany Beach. A contemporary American menu is served with a fusion of all backgrounds.
“We stay on top of what’s happening,” Chef Matt said.
A full bar is available. For reservations, call (302) 539-1200; reservations are recommended. Some restaurants do not take reservations for two people, but Sedona does. In fact, I’ve made reservations for two to celebrate my husband’s birthday. (If you want to know how old he is, you’ll have to ask him.)
Jim and I enjoy ordering from Sedona’s tapas menu. As I write this column, 21 items are on the tapas menu. For those unfamiliar with tapas, the story goes that these “small plates,” originated in Spain over a century ago, most likely in Andalusia, but their popularity has now spread to many countries – including the United States — with non-Spanish themes.
My husband likes to order from the tapas menu, because he believes that if he chooses smaller portions, he deserves dessert — his favorite part of the meal. At Sedona, you can order three Tapas for $23. One of my favorites is scallops with butternut squash ravioli.
For 20 years, Sedona’s menu has consistently evolved, using the very best ingredients in creative ways to present top-notch meals for satisfied customers. The duck entrée featured in today’s photo is just such a dish. Not every at-home cook will get swept up in duplicating this recipe, but I was one lucky woman to have Chef Matt prepare it for me while I watched and waited.
When I visited Sedona, I thought I’d just be taking a photo of the chef. Little did I know that he’d be preparing a Sedona signature dish for me — pan-seared duck breast served atop succulent risotto atop fresh baby spinach sautéed in a little garlic, shallot and butter. The entrée was surrounded by a veal stock demi-glaze — simple, yet elegant.
I’ll tell you up front that if you plan to replicate this dish, I applaud you. As for me, when my taste buds scream, “Aflac,” (oops, I mean, “Duck breast!”) I’ll call Sedona for reservations. For those who want to purchase quality duck breast, Marian Parrott suggests ordering online from MapleLeafFarms.com.
For this recipe, the duck breast is seasoned, scored, seared to a golden crust, baked to desired temperature and thinly sliced (mine was served perfectly medium). Marian also suggests that when you make the risotto, “Be sure to add a little chopped onion.”
Let’s have a show of hands. If you plan to spend hours making homemade veal stock, raise that hand. Both of my hands are in my pockets. According to Marian, Harris Teeter grocery stores carry Demi-Gold, a top-quality veal demi-glaze product.
“You just add water, and the result is surprisingly good,” she said. “It’s not cheap, but compared to the time and money involved in making homemade veal stock, I think you’ll be quite pleased.”
Many of Sedona’s patrons rave over the house vinaigrette dressing. Some restaurants (owners and chefs) won’t divulge signature recipes, but Marian is happy to say thank you to her valued customers — and, hopefully, new customers — for their patronage by sharing this delicious dressing recipe (as well as the rest of today’s recipes, which are all on Sedona’s menu).
edona House Salad Dressing
? 1 cup honey
? 1 cup apple cider vinegar
? 2 tablespoons whole-grain Dijon mustard
? 2 tablespoons minced shallots
? 2 tablespoons minced garlic
? Salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil/vegetable blended oil (You be the judge of quantity, but I’d start with emulsifying 2 tablespoons of blended oil before adding more.)
Method for Sedona House Salad Dressing:
Except for olive oil/vegetable blended oil, place all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor. Slowly add the blended oil through the feeder tube while processing to emulsify. Lightly toss field greens with vinaigrette and top with your choice of additions. Yield: About 2 cups of dressing.
One of the ingredients in Sedona’s Asian Slaw dressing recipe is sriracha. For those of you unfamiliar with this product, it’s a spirited combination of red jalapeño chili peppers, vinegar, garlic, sugar and salt. When I was a kid, I topped everything with ketchup, including mashed potatoes and scrambled eggs. My ketchup of choice these days is sriracha; I love the sweet, salty, garlicky heat. Sriracha is also known as “rooster sauce,” because the best brand on market shelves has a rooster on the bottle. I don’t know why, but if you do, please enlighten us.
At Sedona, this dressing is tossed with shredded cabbage.
“We recommend a combination of Napa and red cabbage mixed with julienned carrots,” Marian said. “This is a great summer side dish for fish or crabcakes.”
While I do plan to serve this slaw with fish and crabcakes, on Father’s Day I made Paul Rix’s Indoor Ribs (a recipe from my previous column) and Sedona’s Asian Slaw. Both new recipes turned out great and are now permanent additions to Marie’s Favorite’s Notebook(s). I didn’t have Napa cabbage, but I did have a bag of Dole Coleslaw Mix (green cabbage and julienned carrots) and a bag of Dole Red Cabbage. I used the full bag (14 ounces) of the coleslaw mix and 1/2 bag of the red cabbage (about 5 ounces) and it was the perfect amount for the dressing, and the color combo was appealing.
Don’t be fooled by the small amount of dressing and the large volume of cabbage; remember that when cabbage sits in a dressing, it gives off its own liquid, so please trust me on these measurements. One of the ingredients is “blended oil.” If you Google “blended oil,” you’ll come up with all kinds of combinations. I just used one tablespoon each of my two favorite oils – grapeseed oil (grapeseeds are high in antioxidants and vitamin E and grapeseed oil has a very high smoke point) and extra-virgin olive oil. I made my salad about four hours before dinner and the flavor and consistency were perfect, although my husband accused me of adding more than one dash of Sriracha. OK, OK — guilty as charged, but will I do it again? You bet!
Sedona’s Asian Slaw
? 1 bag (14 ounces) Dole Coleslaw
? 1/2 of a bag (5 ounces) Dole Red Cabbage.
? 2 tablespoons sesame oil
? 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
? 2 tablespoons soy sauce
? 2 to 3 green onions, finely chopped (I didn’t do that. See below.)
? 2 to 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped (I didn’t do that. See below.)
? Dash of black pepper
? Dash of Sriracha
? Olive oil/vegetable blended oil
Method for Sedona’s Asian Slaw:
Except for the blended oil and cabbage mixture, in the bowl of a food processor, combine all other ingredients. I didn’t finely chop the green onions and garlic, because the food processor did that for me. While the ingredients are processing, add the blended oil to emulsify. Mix dressing and cabbages and refrigerate until serving time. Yield: 4 to 6 salad servings.
Longtime readers of “Marie’s Kitchen” know that my recipe and cookbook collection includes recipes from women now smiling at me from heaven. When they knew their times were drawing nigh, many of my elderly friends entrusted their handwritten recipe collections to me. These collections are more precious to me than gold.
Sedona also pays homage to recipes from history – be it a great Manhattan cocktail or a dish from a celebrated restaurant. According to Marian, “One of Sedona’s signature dishes, Crab Remick, was created in 1920 at the Plaza Hotel in New York City by Chef Albert Leopold Lattard in honor of William H. Remick, then president of the New York Stock Exchange. We offer Crab Remick on our tapas menu with no changes to the original recipe.”
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
? 1 cup chili sauce
? 1 cup mayonnaise
? 1/2 ounce dry mustard
? 1 teaspoon paprika
? 1 teaspoon celery salt
? 1/2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
? 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
? 1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat
? Parmesan cheese
Method for Crab Remick:
Except for crabmeat and Parmesan cheese, mix all ingredients. Blend one-half of this mixture with 1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat. Spoon the crabmeat mixture into four bake-proof oval ramekins or clam shell dishes. Pour the remainder of the sauce on top of each dish; top with Parmesan cheese and set in 350-degree oven until sauce bubbles. Yield: 4 servings as an entrée.
Chocolate mousse is one of my favorite desserts. I was delighted that we’re privy to Sedona’s Chocolate Mousse recipe. It’s a great finale to any meal. A little extra gym time will be needed with the one cup of heavy cream!
Sedona’s Chocolate Mousse
? 7 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
? 2 large eggs and 2 extra egg yokes
? 1/2 cup granulated sugar
? 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
? 2 tablespoons Amaretto liqueur
? 1 cup heavy cream
Method for Sedona’s Chocolate Mousse:
Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water (or use a double boiler); set aside for 3 minutes.
In a bowl, beat the eggs, egg yolks and sugar for a few minutes until the mixture is pale and thick. Add the melted chocolate and beat constantly for about 3 minutes; stir in vanilla and Amaretto.
In a separate bowl, whip the heavy cream until it forms light peaks. Gently fold the cream into the chocolate mixture; pour into serving dishes. Refrigerate until serving time. This can be served topped with whipped cream or fresh fruit, or both. For a summer-twist treat, place the mousse batter into an 8-inch loaf pan and freeze. Cut slices of frozen mousse and top with fresh raspberries. Yield: 6 small custard cups or one 8-inch loaf pan, if freezing.
(Editor’s note: If you have recipes to share, or recipes you want, contact Marie Cook, Coastal Point, P.O. Box 1324, Ocean View, DE 19970; or by email at ChefMarieCook@gmail.com. Please include your phone number. Recipes in this column are not tested by the Coastal Point.)