Burger Bash Sneak Peek at the Ritz-Carlton South Beach
As the host chef of South Beach Wine & Food Festival's Burger Bash, Thomas Connell has a leg up on the competition. Not only are all of the 27 burgers in contention prepared on-site at his kitchen at the Ritz-Carlton South Beach, but he also helps the contestants with their culinary needs. As the executive chef of the hotel, Connell has participated in the Burger Bash since its inception four years ago. His previous entries were a tempura burger, pretzel burger and empanada burger.
|Photos by Jacquelynn D. Powers|
|Chef Thomas Connell's mise en place for the Burger Bash.|
Chefs are also asked to whip up a burger-friendly accompaniment. Connell's side dish is allumette potato salad, which combines thin French fries, frisee, grain mustard and tarragon. The resulting salad is crunchy and savory. Thomas, along with a staff of six, will plate 2,000 of these dishes next Thursday night for the carnivorous crowd at his hotel. "We are geared toward larger events, so we have a good plan to keep up," he reveals. "Our mise en place is set up before, we mix as we go and just expedite the food."
|The two-ounce burgers are 50 percent beef short rib and 50 percent beef shoulder.|
|Chef Connell preparing his potato salad.|
|Adding Gruyere cheese fondue to the burger.|
|The Ritz-Carlton South Beach's entry for next week's Burger Bash.|
1 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach