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Todd Gray

Executive Chef/Co-Owner, Equinox

http://www.equinoxrestaurant.com  

202-331-8118

Since opening Equinox in 1999 to universal acclaim, Todd Gray has emerged as one of the surest culinary talents in the nation's capital, as well as a tireless champion of sustainable farming and fishing practices, and a passionate promoter of local, mid-Atlantic foods. Gray practices what he preaches every day, and Equinox is widely acclaimed as an oasis of sophisticated yet unpretentious seasonal cuisine.

With an artist's vision of the beauty in both his raw ingredients and his finished plates, classical training in culinary techniques gained in DC's top French and Italian kitchens, and a down-home Virginia boy's appreciation for food that just plain tastes good, Todd Gray is the culinary mastermind of Equinox, infusing the atmosphere with his passion for the bounty of the Mid-Atlantic. Todd continues to work with local farmers developing food of all varieties, form lettuce to beef, taking personal stock in the animals and produce being raised.

Gray's cooking has earned him five nominations for the prestigious Best Chef, Mid-Atlantic award from the James Beard Foundation. He also is a four-time nominee for Chef of the Year from the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington. Equinox has consistently been rated one of the city's top restaurants by many local publications, and has appeared on numerous "best of" lists in national epicurean magazines. Equinox has achieved Wine Spectator's Award of Excellence six years in a row, and is consistantly recognized with the Award of Excellence from the Distinguished Restaurants of North America (DiRoNa). Todd has also just received a nomination for Chef of the year through the RAMW for 2008

Scallops, Corn & Peppers - Shopping for Fresh Ingredients

Chef Todd Gray demonstrates how to prepare Pan Seared Sea Scallops with sweet corn and red peppers including shopping for fresh ingredients.

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Scallops, Corn & Peppers - Shopping for Fresh Ingredients

Ingredients

4 jumbo sea scallops
2 tablespoons of canola oil
1/4 cup of minced red onion
1/2 cup of sweet corn
2 tablespoons of chopped scallions
2 tablespoons of diced red pepper
1 tablespoon of fresh chopped basil
Black pepper
Sea salt

Instructions

1. Add the canola oil, minced red onnion, sweet corn, scallions, sweet peppers and black pepper to a pan on medium heat. Saute the ragu for serveral minutes until the peppers are tender.


2. Add canola oil to a pan and add the scallops. Season with pepper and salt and cook on medium high heat.


3. Pan sear the scallops for two minutes on each side. Plate the scallops with the sweet corn and peppers and serve.

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Transcripts

Todd Gray: Hi! I am Todd Gray from Equinox Restaurant. Today we are going to be preparing Pan Seared Sea Scallops with sweet corn and red peppers. We are at the grocery store to pick up our ingredients. Remember to always shop at a quality grocery store to get the best and freshest ingredients to make your cooking as good as it can be. Let's go shopping.

We are now at the sea food department where we are going to be selecting some of our jumbo sea scallops. This is our Sea Food Manager, Mr. Reggie Stokes and Reggie is going to give me a couple of these scallops, we will take a look at them. These are these beautiful dry packed sea scallops. We can see that they are nice and dry, nice firm to touch, nice scent of the ocean. It's going to give me some nice finished product when we sear these scallops to give us a good caramelization.

We can keep these for about two or three days in the refrigerator or we can put them in the freezer for up to a month. Reggie, let's head and gather our other ingredients. We are at the produce department where I have found some beautiful, locally grown, sort of king silver variety of corn, even olive coloring, no discoloration, yellow spots, very firm husk, nice firm to the touch. We will pull some of these ears of the corn. Look at how beautiful this corn is on the interior, nice, beautiful, even gold color, all the kernels are nice and tight and nice and firm.

We don't see any discoloration or any black spots, an absolutely beautiful ear of corn. Let's take another one, let's head to get our other vegetables. We have found our red peppers here. Let's take a look at this one, nice ruby red color, nice tight firm flesh, no pot holes, they are wonderful on the grill. We are going to wrap them, roast them in the oven, slice them, put them in the salad. This pepper should keep about seven days in the crisper section of your refrigerator. I am looking for some scallions and I have found a great bunch of green onions right here, synonymous for scallions and green onions, they are the same vegetable, two different names. I am looking for some that don't have a discoloration, bottoms are nice and firm, no discoloration on the bottom. Nice onion aroma. I like to cut them thin, put them on the top of soup or toss them in the salads. It's a great bunch of scallions. Look at this beautiful basil. This is actually what they call living basil. As you can see it's on its root stems here. You can actually take this basil home, you can actually replant it, I have done it myself, I have grown some beautiful basil plants with this type of product. This is a sweet basil, there is all different kinds of varieties of basil, we have Thai basil, we have Genova basil, spicy basil. This is a nice sweet type of basil. It's going to be wonderful for our dish. Now that we have all of our ingredients, let's go home and get cooking.