Norman Van Aken

Host, A Word On Food

Norman Van Aken has been described as legendary, visionary and a trailblazer. He is known as “the founding father of New World Cuisine,” a celebration of Latin, Caribbean, Asian, African and American flavors. He is also known internationally for introducing the concept of “Fusion” to the culinary world.

His new memoir, “No Experience Necessary” is published by Taylor Trade Publishing. The book has been praised by the likes of Thomas Keller, Mario Batali, Emeril Lagasse, Monique Truong, Alan Richman (GQ Magazine), Jeremiah Tower, Wolfgang Puck and the late, great Charlie Trotter.

He is the only Floridian inducted into the prestigious James Beard list of “Who’s Who in American Food and Beverage.” His restaurant “NORMAN’S was nominated as a finalist for the James Beard Foundation’s “Best Restaurant in America.” He has been a James Beard Foundation semi-finalist for “Best Chef in America.”

In 2006, he was honored as one of the “Founders of the New American Cuisine,” alongside Alice Waters, Paul Prudhomme, and Mark Miller at Spain’s International Summit of Gastronomy ‘Madrid Fusión’ event.

Norman Van Aken has published five cookbooks: Feast of Sunlight 1988, The Exotic Fruit Book 1995, Norman’s New World Cuisine 1997, New World Kitchen 2003 and My Key West Kitchen 2012 (with Justin Van Aken).

His radio show, “A Word on Food,” appears twice a week on NPR station WLRN.

He is the chef and founder of “NORMAN’S at the Ritz-Carlton, Grande Lakes, Orlando.” 

Ways to Connect

Hash Browns

Jan 23, 2016

HASHED BROWNS

© 2016 All Rights Reserved by Norman Van Aken

2 russet potatoes, scrubbed well, peeled if desired

1/4 Cup bacon fat or pure olive oil or Clarified Butter (or any combination of them)

1 teaspoon cayenne

1 teaspoon Spanish pimentón

1 Tablespoon of whole butter

salt and pepper to taste

Shred potatoes into a large bowl filled with cold water. Stir until water is cloudy. Now drain, and cover potatoes again with fresh cold water. Stir again to dissolve excess starch.

Buss Up Shut

Jan 16, 2016

Churros

Jan 9, 2016

CHURROS

Norman Van Aken, © 2001 Excerpted from “New World Kitchen”, HarperCollins Books

These deliciously addicting fried dough strings dusted with sugar and cinnamon, are traditional street desserts sold in many Latin American countries. They are originally from Spain, but the Spanish explorers of the 16th century brought them to the New World and the Mexicans adopted them as their popular street snack. Today, Churros are served as a dessert and they make a great pair with Cajeta or a hot cup of frothy Mexican Chocolate.

Noodle Slurping

Jan 2, 2016

THAI NOODLE DRESSING

Norman Van Aken, © 2006 Yield: 1 cup 3 Tablespoons lime juice3 Tablespoons soy sauce2 Tablespoons honey1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar1½ teaspoon mirin2 teaspoon ginger, peeled & minced1 Tablespoon sesame oil½ teaspoon chipotles en adobo½ Cup pure olive oil2 Tablespoon cilantro, chopped2 Tablespoon basil, choppedsalt & pepper Combine all ingredients except olive oil and herbs into blender.With blender running, gradually add olive oil.Add herbs, blend until smooth. Season with salt & pepper. Reserve or dress on noodlesas desired.5.6.06

Catfish

Dec 26, 2015

FRIED CATFISH

Copyright © by Norman Van Aken, 2015

Although I’m more known for Latin and Asian flavors I still have been fortunate enough to spend many years in a state that is also quite “southern” in its pedigree. One of the most serious complements I have received have been from a number of true born and bred children of the South who have murmured their appreciation for my way with catfish and collards.

Yield: Serves 4

Breaking Bread

Dec 19, 2015

The Sauce Boss

Dec 12, 2015

IRV’S BBQ SAUCE

Knife Skills

Dec 5, 2015

    

Pork Belly

Nov 21, 2015

    BRAISED PORK BELLY

Norman Van Aken, © 2002

Yield: 4 servings

2 pounds fresh pork belly, skinned and trimmed of all except ¾” layer of fat

1 Tablespoon coriander seeds, lightly toasted and coarsely ground

1 Tablespoon fennel seeds, lightly toasted and coarsely ground

½ teaspoon cumin seeds, lightly toasted and coarsely ground

Kosher salt, to taste

Black pepper, freshly ground, to taste

1 Tablespoon canola oil

½ Cup onion, diced

½ Cup celery, diced

Wok Cookery

Nov 14, 2015

Fish Head Soup

Nov 11, 2015

FISH STOCK

Norman Van Aken, © 2011

To make this into Fish Head Soup. Strain this and then cook fresh vegetables, chilies, herbs and potatoes as desired and top it with this stock. Garnish with one cooked well fish head if feeling sportyN.

Yield: 1 Gallon

5 pounds fish frames from non-oily fish (such as Snapper or Grouper)

1/2 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 ounces whole Butter

1 head of roughly chopped fennel, all parts included

3 washed and roughly chopped leeks

Croissants

Nov 7, 2015

Buttermilk

Oct 31, 2015

BUTTERMILK BLUE CHEESE DRESSING

Janet & Norman Van Aken, © 2013

Yield: 3 + Cups

1 Cup buttermilk

1 3/4 Cups Sour cream

2 Tablespoons mayonnaise

2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 Tablespoons Champagne wine vinegar

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 large garlic clove minced

1/4 teaspoon granulated sugar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

8 ounces good blue cheese, well crumbled

Whisk all the ingredients together in a bowl or blend briefly.

Fish Cheeks

Oct 24, 2015

FISH CHEEKS SATAY WITH SWEET SOY

© 2015 All Rights Reserved by Norman & Janet Van Aken

 

Kecap Manis is a type of sweet soy sauce condiment similar to American ketchupbut of course not the same exactly either. It can be used in a broad number of sauces, marinades etc. and worth having in your home pantry.

Serves 2

2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced

1 habanero chile, stemmed and seeded

1 teaspoon kosher salt

2 Tablespoons kecap manis

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