Mosaico and Salero | Miami, FL
Most chefs consider themselves fortunate to have an opportunity,
no matter how brief, to cook with one of Spain's innovative
chefs. Jordi Vall鑣 has worked with three leaders of the culinary
revolution there, including Pedro Subijana, Juan Mari Arzak,
and Ferr醤 Adri? Born and raised in Barcelona, Jordi is an
ambassador for the new style of Spanish cuisine in the US.
His embassy is based at Mosaico and Salero restaurants in
Miami. Vall鑣 continually seeks inspiration for his art by
exploring the diverse cultures around him, using quality and
freshness to link the classic with the avant-garde.
Lobster Esqueixada with Tomato Consommé and Olive Powder
Chef Jordi Vallès of Mosaico and Salero
Restaurants – Miami, FL
Adapted by StarChefs
Yield: 4 Servings
- 16 ounces blood red tomatoes
- 5 gelatin leaves
- 10 black olives
- 1 (2 ?pound) live Maine lobster
- 2 ounces diced green pepper
- 2 ounces diced red pepper
- 1?ounces diced yellow onion
- 1 teaspoon limejuice Salt and freshly ground back pepper
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons basil oil
For tomato consommé:
Chop tomatoes and strain through a chinois with a cheesecloth,
reserving the liquid from the tomatoes in a bowl. Hydrate gelatin
leaves in warm water and then add to tomato water. Season mixture
with salt, and allow to cool. The texture of the consommé
should be slightly thick – not too runny, and not a solid
For olive powder:
Drain ten olives and chop. Spread chopped olives over a hotel
pan and place in a low-temperature oven until dry. Once olives
are dry, repeat the chopping process, until olives are finely
ground into a powder.
For lobster esqueixada:
Put 1 inch of salted water in the bottom of a large pot. Bring
water to a rolling boil over high heat. Put in the live lobster,
cover the pot, and steam for approximately 7 minutes. Do not
cook lobster completely. Rinse in cold water to cool. Remove
and clean the meat from the shells by hand (which is what
the term “esqueixar” means in Catalan). Break
the tail and claw meat into bite-size pieces.
Mix the lobster meat, diced pepper, onion, limejuice, salt
and black pepper in a bowl and marinate for two minutes.
Using two Tablespoons, shape a small amount of the marinated
lobster into a quenelle and place on a serving plate. Spoon
tomato consommé around lobster and sprinkle with olive
powder. Garnish the plate with a drizzle of olive oil and
AT: Are there any secret
ingredients that you especially like? Why?
JV: Rabbit. It’s
difficult to get rabbit in Miami, so it’s not so common.
I also love to use hake fish cheeks- “kokotxas”
(pronounced co-co-chas). I have a special vendor from Spain
who provides me with fresh sardines, sea cucumber, goby fish,
AT: What is your most
indispensable kitchen tool? Why?
JV: Aside from my staff,
the thermomix blender – it’s made by Volwark.
It can mix and heat at the same time. So, for example, for
Hollandaise sauce, you program the weight, temperature, and
level of blend. It’s an amazing tool.
AT: Is there a culinary
technique that you have either created or use in an unusual
JV: There’s a soup
I created in Barcelona – a chilled green apple soup
with gratin of lobster. It’s made with nougat of pine
nuts and peanuts, and I grind the nougat over the lobster,
then place it in the salamander to caramelize. It’s
influenced by a dish in Akelarre, but the nougat is influenced
by El Bulli.
AT: What is your favorite
question to ask during an interview for a potential new line
JV: What will you offer
to our cuisine with your experience? It’s a way to see
if a person will be involved, whether they are passionate
AT: What tips would
you offer young chefs just getting started?
JV: Read, read, and read.
Even in the restroom sitting. Never enough.
AT: What are your favorite
JV: Ferrán Adrià’s
first cookbook - not El Bulli, Escoffier’s Ma Cuisine,
Gagniere’s Reflections of Culinary Artistry,
all of the books by Michel
AT: What cities do you
like for culinary travel?
JV: London, NY, Vegas,
Paris. A lot of good restaurants are outside of the major
cities in the country, beside Spain.
AT: What are your favorite
restaurants in Miami
JV: Matsuri- it’s
a small Japanese restaurant in Miami.
AT: Where do you see
yourself in 5 years? In 10 years?
JV: That’s actually
a question I like to ask potential chefs, too! But in five
years I see myself in Asia and writing a lot. In ten years
probably opening up my own place, but I don’t know where.
It will be in a place where I can get good produce and ingredients.
And my restaurant will be a tiny one where the food cost is