It’s hard for us to look at beautifully designed kitchens at work all day—especially around lunchtime—without thinking about the obvious: delicious, wholesome, artfully prepared food. Even those of us who are a bit gastronomically challenged find ourselves hoping that one day all those appliances and utensils will suddenly serve their purpose in a kitchen of our own.
For Executive Chef Rory Herrmann, of the Beverly Hills bistro Bouchon, creating unforgettable dishes is second nature. After tasting the best cuisine from both coasts—receiving his formal culinary education at New York’s prestigious French Culinary Institute—Chef Rory has returned to his roots in Southern California. And, as it turns out, we’re not the only ones who get excited about kitchen design, like this SoCal kitchen by Tia Zolda.
Here’s a little dish from the drool-worthy menu at Bouchon, just in case you’re feeling inspired, too. Thanks, Chef Rory!
Hobbs’ applewood-smoked bacon, sunny-side-up hen egg, Monterey jack cheese,
bibb lettuce & beefsteak tomatoes on toasted sourdough bread with Dijon mustard aioli
Yield: 2 open-face sandwiches
8 slices Hobbs’ applewood-smoked bacon
2 hen eggs
4 thick slices Monterey jack cheese
1 head bibb lettuce
1 thickly sliced, ripe beefsteak tomato
2 tablespoons garlic aioli
2 thick slices sourdough bread
Sea salt, to taste
Black pepper, to taste
Champagne vinegar, to taste
Extra-virgin olive oil, to taste
Dijon Mustard Aioli
6 cloves, garlic confit
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 large egg, at room temperature
2 tablespoons spicy Dijon mustard
1 dash of Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cup oil reserved from garlic confit
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
For the aioli: To make the garlic confit, cook cloves of garlic very gently in extra-virgin olive oil until completely tender. This garlic can be cooled in its oil and stored for up to a month. With the edge of a knife, mash together the garlic cloves and salt to form a paste. Transfer the paste to a bowl and add the egg, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce and lemon juice. Slowly drizzle in the oil while whisking constantly (this can also be accomplished in a food processor). Adjust seasoning with salt.
To assemble: Pre-heat the oven to 350°F. Place the bacon on a roasting rack or lined sheet tray in the oven and cook to a desired texture, from soft and chewy to crunchy and crispy—whatever is your favorite way to eat bacon. Toast the sourdough bread and slather with the Dijon mustard aioli. Generously dress your tomato and bibb lettuce with champagne vinegar, extra-virgin olive oil, sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper and place on top of the toasted sourdough. In the meantime, place four slices of bacon and two slices of Monterey jack cheese on a cookie sheet or baking tray and melt cheese in oven at 350 degrees. While cheese is melting on top of the bacon, cook your hen egg sunny-side-up. When the egg is finished and the cheese is melted, place the bacon and cheese on top of the lettuce and tomato on sourdough and finish with the sunny-side-up egg on top, creating the ultimate BLT. Season the hen egg with a bit of sea salt and some fresh, cracked black pepper, open a cold beer and make sure to have your favorite chips or home-made French fries as a side.