At The Gander, chef Jesse Schenker’s recently-opened restaurant in the Flatiron District, the acclaimed chef showcases his inventive and imaginative take on new-American cuisine.
Growing up in a Jewish household, Schenker started cooking with his great-grandmother and grandmother from a very young age. His earliest childhood memories include standing on a step stool, peeling and chopping vegetables for his grandmother to make her famous matzoh ball soup, split pea soup and more. The recipes have been passed down from his great-grandmother, to his grandmother, to his mother, and now Schenker re-creates several of the recipes, including Split Pea and Flanken Soup, for the Jewish holidays with his own unique twist.
SPLIT PEA AND FLANKEN SOUP
serves 6-8 as an appetizer
-2 Spanish onions, chopped into 1” sized piece
-1 head of celery, chopped into 1” sized pieces
-2 pounds carrots, chopped into 1” sized pieces
-5 cloves garlic, smashed
-2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
-2 pounds flanken or short ribs
-2 pounds marrow bones
-1 cup red wine
-2 tablespoons tomato paste
-1 sachet (1 tablespoon black peppercorns, 2 bay leaves, 1 bunch thyme – tied in cheesecloth)
-1 pound green split peas
-1/2 pound barley
-3 tablespoons dill, chopped
-2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
1. Pre-heat oven to 450F. In a large heavy bottom stockpot or dutch oven, place 1T grapeseed oil and marrow bones. Roast in oven for 30-45 minutes.
2. Carefully remove pan from oven and place on stovetop. Remove marrow bones and set aside.
3. Turn the heat on high and add 1T grapeseed. Season the flanken or shortribs with salt, and sear on all sides. Remove and set aside.
4. Reduce heat to medium, add the vegetables and cook for 5-7 minutes until onions are translucent. Add tomato paste and cook for another 1-2 minutes.
5. Return the marrow bones and flanken to the pan. Add the red wine to deglaze, scraping the bottom to release all of the browned bits. Add the sachet, green peas, barley and enough water or beef stock to cover and bring the pot to a boil.
6. Turn the heat down to low, cover the pot and simmer for around 2 hours or until the meat is tender and falls off the bone. Remove all bones and the sachet. Season with salt to taste. Before serving, add the fresh dill and parsley.