Sunday, June 12, 2011

Tribute to Fathers: Chef Jeff Tunks

We caught up with Chef and Partner Jeff Tunks – Passion Food Hospitality to find out what he likes to make on Father's Day.  Jeff and I had a blast judging the Food and Fun Festival in Iceland.  Happy Early Father's Day Jeff!

Fathers Day doesn’t seem to get the same attention and dining enthusiasm that Mothers Day does, but lucky for me, that means I can take the day off from work to hang out with my kids! And even better, since Father’s Day falls in early summer, my favorite foods are just coming to the peak of freshness. To make the most of it, we usually head to the beach and take full advantage of the climate and all of the good food that comes with any beach trip—Steamed Crabs, Boiled Shrimp, Corn on the Cob, Fresh-Caught Fish, Tomatoes, Key Lime Pie, and Margaritas – not for the kids, you understand. After all, I only get to take off so many days a year!

Father’s Day Recipes
Chef Jeff Tunks
Executive Chef of Passion Food Hospitality Restaurant Group

Boiled Shrimp

Serves 4-6


6 quarts            Water
1 each                Lemon, sliced
4 each                Bay Leaves
1/2 cup                Kosher Salt
1 tablespoon            Whole Black Peppercorns
2 tablespoons            White Vinegar
1 tablespoon            Red Chili Flakes
1/2 bottle            Zatarain’s Shrimp/Crab Boil
4 pounds            Fresh North Carolina Shrimp, 21-25 count, unpeeled
1 cup                Spicy Cocktail Sauce


Place the water into a large pot and bring to a rapid boil for 5 minutes.  Once boiling, add all ingredients except for the shrimp and cocktail sauce into the boiling water.  Wait about 4-5 minutes, then add the shrimp.  Once added, cover the pot and turn off the heat.  Let the shrimp cook in the cooling water with the spices for 15 minutes.  Drain the pot of the water and place the shrimp in a large bowl.  Peel the shrimp and serve with a spicy cocktail sauce.  

Tomato Bruschetta


3 each    Ripe Tomatoes, slightly warmed (let sit on outside table until warm)
3 cloves            Garlic, minced
1/2 bunch            Fresh Basil, chopped
1/2 cup                Extra Virgin Olive Oil, separated
To taste            Kosher Salt
To taste            Cracked Black Pepper
1 each                Baguette
1/4 cup                Parmesan Cheese, freshly grated


Remove the core from the tomatoes and dice the tomatoes into very small squares, making sure the retain all of the juice from the tomatoes.  In a medium non-reactive mixing bowl add the minced garlic, chopped basil, 7 tablespoons of the olive oil (only one tablespoon should remain), salt, and pepper.  Stir slightly, then let the ingredients sit in the bowl for 30 minutes to develop the flavor.  

While the tomatoes are sitting, slice the baguette into half-inch to one-inch thick slices (thickness according to preference).  Brush the baguette slices the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and place onto a heated grill.  Heat the slices on both sides until the bread has turned into a golden brown color.

Top the grilled baguettes with the tomatoes.  Add the grated parmesan cheese and serve.

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