St. Louis: Team Jeg's receipe of the race

Fin's Liquid Fortune Cookie Team JEGS chef Nicky Morse -- brings his unique recipes to NHRA fans each race with a new installment of "Quarter-mile Cuisine." Morse takes readers step-by-step through many of his award-winning recipes, the...

Fin's Liquid Fortune Cookie

Team JEGS chef Nicky Morse -- brings his unique recipes to NHRA fans each race with a new installment of "Quarter-mile Cuisine." Morse takes readers step-by-step through many of his award-winning recipes, the same ones he's prepared for countless racers, movie stars, musicians, athletes, fellow celebrity chefs, and government dignitaries over his career. From the knee of his Italian grandmother, to exhaustive training at Ohio's top French restaurant, to stints as a culinary instructor at Ohio State University, Morse's knowledge of cooking is as varied as the recipes he offers.

Vegas Baby!

You may remember a story that I wrote last year introducing 2 incredible people- Keith Ball and Chef Jeff Braun (Jeff) from the Mirage. We have stayed in touch for the past year. They came to the race in Vegas on Saturday and Sunday. We had a great time. I met Keith's fiancé Renee (Congratulations). I also met the Executive Chef from the Mirage. He was a great guy too. Jeff brought a few treats to the track. He brought some tomatoes with an incredible olive oil, and hand-pulled fresh mozzarella. He also brought melon infused Vodka and homemade Limoncello. Needless to say we did a little snacking Sunday afternoon at the track.

I mentioned to Keith that I was going to take my girlfriend Mitzi to see Mystere at Treasure Island Sunday after the race. He insisted that he take care of us for dinner before the show. Jeff recommended that we eat at Fin in the Mirage, so Keith called Tony Lee (The General Manager of Fin) and let him know that we were coming.

Jeff decided to go back to work Sunday night after the race. He asked us to show up early if we would like to see the dolphin exhibit. The exhibit was closed when we arrived, but Jeff talked to the trainer and we received the royal treatment. We got a one on one with the dolphin trainer. I have always loved dolphins, so it was incredible to get to touch the dolphins.

When we were leaving the exhibit, Jeff asked us if we would like to see the tigers. There was no need to bend our arm. We got so close that it was a little scary because I really don't think that the tigers wanted us in their space.

I did not realize when I got out of bed Sunday morning that I was going to have such a diverse day- racing, dolphins, tiger, dining, Cirque du Soleil, but I was all in! We were having a great time.

When we went back inside, I asked Jeff about seeing the kitchens. Wow, what a treat for a chef to see behind the scenes of such a professional operation. You could get lost just walking through the kitchens there are so many and they are so big. It was really neat going into the room where they pulled the cheese. Believe me when I tell you that the chefs in these kitchens know what they are doing. Most kitchens do not make their own cheese. We stopped by the kitchen of Fin. Jeff wanted us to see what was fresh for the evening. They had live fish tanks with different fish, lobsters, gooey ducks (Geoducks), and a bunch of other fresh seafood. We watched the cooks on the line under the direction of Chef Choi prepare dishes I could not wait to try. You have got to realize that this style of cooking is not easy to master. The cooks in this restaurant have their own style of cooking that takes years to perfect.

We were greeted by Tony when we entered the restaurant. Jeff made some recommendations to Mitzi and I before he left us at a corner table for 2. I decided to let Tony bring what he thought that we should have. I have kind of outlined our meal served by Danny and Stephen (2 of the best waiters that I have ever had serve me food):

First: Tony started by asking us what kind of tea we would like. They have all kinds of incredible sounding teas. Some have to be picked by monkeys because of where they grow. We decided on the Lychee Tea. Needless to say- it was wonderful.

Second: Roast Duck with an Orange Sauce served with Crispy Rice

Third: Pan-Fried Goose Liver with a touch of Black Pepper Sauce (Goose liver is one of my favorite foods- This is a very expensive liver, sometimes costing over $100.00 per pound)

Fourth: Pan-Fried Pork Pot Stickers served with 2 incredible sauces

Fifth: Shark Fin Soup served with Chinese Vinegar (This is not on the menu, and usually sells for $50.00 per bowl. It takes 5 days just to prepare the shark fin for the soup)

Sixth: Stir-Fried Lobster, Scallops, and Sea Bass in Spicy XO Sauce (I am not sure exactly what is in the XO sauce, but it was one of my favorites)

Seventh: Wok-Fried Lobster with a Spicy Curry Creamy Coconut Sauce

Eighth: Beef Tenderloin with Black Pepper

Ninth: Lamb with Baby Bok Choy (WOW!)

Tenth: Fried Rice with Egg Whites and Dry Scallops

Eleventh: Sweet Pea Leaves with Garlic

Twelfth: Liquid Fortune Cookie and a Homemade Fortune Cookie

Thirteenth: Chocolate Tea Cup with Chocolate Mousse (Happy Birthday was written on the plate in chocolate for Mitzi)

To Go Box: Pineapple Cake and Jasmine Tea

You can thank Jeff for the recipe that I am sharing with you this week. I would also like to thank Keith and the whole staff for making our visit so memorable.

Fin's Liquid Fortune Cookie
(Makes One Serving)

½ Ounce Half and Half
1 Tablespoon + 1/8 Teaspoon Baileys Irish Cream
½ Teaspoon Baristella Crema di Pistachio

Mix all ingredients. Serve in a cordial glass.

-credit: team jegs

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