Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Tests for Santa Barbara

In a few days Flynn, my mom, and I are heading to Santa Barbara for a little while to visit her friend. While we are up there, Flynn is going to be cooking an elegant, totally vegetarian 8 course meal for them. I got stuck being the waitress, so I won't be getting any food, but it will give me plenty of opportunity to document the night. He also decided that I was worthy enough to help him in the kitchen because I'm "okay" at plating, and he desperately needs someone. So I can give you my first hand, chaotic experience of being Flynn's sous chef.  
Before Flynn cooks a dinner, he always sets aside a few days where he can test out new recipies that he wants to use for the night. Here are some of the dishes he will most likely be serving for the dinner.
Flynn working out the dishes with his dad

carrot and ginger soup
caramelized eggplant
tomato saffron sauce
blanched swiss chard
fried wontons
left to right: caramelized eggplant puree, bean sprouts, fried wontons, bananas, segmented limes, shredded carrots.
Thai peanut sauce going on fancy ass plate for Thai spring rolls
Thai spring roll fillings and rice paper with edible flowers and herbs
assembling Thai spring rolls
Flynn immensely enjoying his own creation
English pea and goat cheese ravioli with wilted romaine, mushrooms, and parmesan
plating tomato dish
heirloom tomatoes with olive oil powder and a balsamic infused mozzarella
plating squash dish
Flynn putting tomato saffron sauce on the plate
summer squash with zucchini, eggplant puree, and tomato saffron sauce

Monday, July 25, 2011


Hello, my name is Paris and I'd like to introduce you to my brother Flynn McGarry. My brother is a 12-year-old high class, fancy pants chef. He has been cooking for three years and is completely obsessed. Over the course of those three years, he has managed to turn his room into a kitchen. He has everything a professional chef might need. Burners, a refrigerator, a fryer, the sous vide supreme, a television, and a bed for naps. 

Every month, my mom orchestrates a dinner party with all her friends, so that my brother can cook. These dinner parties alternate between a themed dinner and a regular one. Such themes have included, Paris 1906 (a theme based off of Grant Achatz’s restaurant, Next, who you will be hearing a lot about throughout this blog), vegetarian, and a saucy Christmas.
Guests eating special dessert course inspired by Grant Achatz(I told you)
Tasting Menu
Paris 1906

He then prepares an up to 18-course meal for the guests including dessert. He usually does this by himself with the help of our dad, his friends Emma and Cole, or me (if he will let me in the kitchen). 
Cole, Flynn, and Emma

Almost every week Flynn works at a local restaurant called Sweet Butter. He interns with the pastry chef Nan and the head chef Mia. He works on the line and makes food to put in their refrigerated areas. Keep in mind he is only 12-years-old. When I was 12, I was too busy playing with my Bratz dolls to become a prodigy of anything.  

Flynn’s style of cooking would be called “Progressive American.” Frankly I have no idea what that means, but that’s what he calls it. He tried to explain it to me as “it basically means I can cook whatever I want but I am using modern techniques.” So he cooks everything and uses crazy shit like the Sous Vide Supreme to cook it and puts crazy chemicals like xanthan gum in it. 

His big inspirations include Grant Achatz (again), Thomas Keller, and Ferran Adria. He tries recipes from them but makes them his own because he can!
Flynn with Thomas Keller

Flynn keeps his stations incredibly organized and cleans after he finishes each dish, but he only seems to apply this neatness to his cooking since he messes up the rest of the house on a daily basis. Flynn also loves to plate. It’s like an art form to him. When my mom asks him to make something simple for our grandparents such as coldcuts, he turns it into something that looks like it belongs in a 5 star restaurant. 

Grandpa's cold cuts

While I'm writing this blog I will explain to you how crazy and talented my little brother is and how  obsessed I am with him because I'm the sister of a culinary prodigy.