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Chef Leslie Tripp Recipes - Saybrook Point Inn and Spa, Old Saybrook, CT, USA PDF Print E-mail
Written by Debra C. Argen and Edward F. Nesta   
Chef Tripp of Fresh Salt Restaurant at Saybrook Point Inn and SpaExecutive Chef Leslie Tripp of Fresh Salt restaurant at Saybrook Point Inn & Spa located in Old Saybrook, Connecticut brings his inspiration and passion to the restaurant where the focus is on fresh sea and farm-to-table cuisine. Chef Tripp graciously shares a delicious taste of the restaurant with his inspired recipes for Maple Braised Berkshire Pork with Butternut Risotto, Tomato Parmesan, Shaved Brussels Sprouts and Cider Jus, and Fresh Salt Spicy Sushi Sandwiches. Bon Appetit!

 

We had the had the opportunity to get to know Chef Leslie Tripp through his inspired cuisine while having dinner at Fresh Salt, during our stay at the luxurious Saybrook Point Inn & Spa in July 2014.

Growing up in Connecticut, Chef Leslie Tripp found his way into the world of  restaurants at the young age of 12, working 2-3 days per week at a small restaurant in New Haven, and by the time that he had entered high school he had worked his way around the kitchen from station to station honing his skills. He was also very active playing hockey in West Haven and playing drums in the school marching band, both of which he loved.

With so much on his plate though, the time had come for him to choose what he wanted to do. Although he loved playing hockey and playing drums, he knew that he would never play hockey professionally, nor would he be a famous drummer, yet cooking, that was something that he could not only do, but he could excel at.  He felt that he had a good hand dealt to him, and has proceeded to live by his mantra, "Did you learn something today? Be a sponge; learn something each and every day." Speaking with Chef Tripp, his enthusiasm for his profession high, it was clearly evident that this foodie has chosen well.

Chef Leslie Tripp of Fresh Salt at Saybrook Point Inn & Spa, Old Saybrook, CT, USA
Chef Leslie Tripp

After graduating high school, he went to Paris, France to attend the prestigious culinary school, Le Cordon Bleu, which opened in 1895, and list the notable Julia Child as one of its famous alumni. He continued to hone his culinary skills with an internship at The Ritz Hotel on Place Vendome, and later doing a stage at the legendary two Michelin star Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons located in Great Milton, Oxfordshire, England. An interesting note is that while he did not have the opportunity to work with master chef Raymond Blanc who was traveling during his time there, he did have the opportunity to work with then up-and-coming Gordon Ramsey, who was Raymond's sous chef.

After spending time in Europe he returned to the States working at restaurants including the New Haven Lawn Club where he was the Executive Chef for twenty years. It was there that he met Louis Sr. and Mary Tagliatela, the owners of the Saybrook Point Inn & Spa. They enlisted his help as a consultant in 1989 for the then-restaurant at the Inn, Terra Mar. When the Tagliatelas renovated the former Terra Mar restaurant and opened it as Fresh Salt in 2011, they convinced Chef Tripp to join them as the Executive Chef.

The restaurant's focus of fresh sea-to-table and farm-to-table is evident from the large herb garden where Chef Tripp grows a variety of herbs and salad greens, to his relationships with small, family owned local farms, to the 4-5 fishing boats that call him as they are coming in with their daily catch of swordfish, tuna, black sea bass, lobsters, clams, oysters, and mussels, to the local cheese maker who supplies their burrata.

When not working in the kitchen at Fresh Salt, he enjoys spending time with his wife of 34 years, Judy, and his two grown daughters, Maria, and Chelsea, who has followed in her father's culinary footsteps, graduating from the prestigious The Culinary Institute of America (known in the industry as The CIA), and who now works as a pastry chef in Chicago.

Although free time is limited for an Executive Chef, when time allows he likes to work outside in his home garden, do landscaping around his home, ride bikes with his wife, traveling, and running half-marathons.

Fresh Salt at Saybrook Point Inn & Spa, Old Saybrook, CT, USA
Fresh Salt Restaurant

At the moment, he is putting the finishing touches on the Saybrook Inn & Spa cookbook to celebrate the Inn's 25th anniversary in September 2014. Look for coming information on the cookbook on the Saybrook Point Inn & Spa website: www.Saybrook.com.

Chef Tripp graciously shares a delicious taste of Fresh Salt with his inspired recipes for Maple Braised Berkshire Pork with Butternut Risotto, Tomato Parmesan, Shaved Brussels Sprouts and Cider Jus, which will be in the cookbook, and Fresh Salt Spicy Sushi Sandwiches. Bon Appetit!

A Taste of Fresh Salt from Executive Chef Leslie Tripp

Maple Braised Berkshire Pork
with Butternut Risotto, Tomato Parmesan,
Shaved Brussels Sprouts and Cider Jus

Fresh Salt Spicy Tuna Sushi Sandwich

Maple Braised Berkshire Pork with Butternut Risotto, Tomato Parmesan, Shaved Brussels Sprouts and Cider Jus

Maple Brine

Ingredients:

2.5
Cups
Hot Water
0.25
Cup
Salt
0.75
Cup
Brown Sugar
1.25
Cup
Maple Syrup
2
Tablespoons
Black Peppercorns
3
Tablespoons
Dijon Mustard
1
Bunch
Thyme
2
Tablespoons
Chopped Rosemary

Method: Combine water, salt, and brown sugar in a bowl, add maple syrup, black peppercorns, Dijon mustard, and rosemary and refrigerate until it is cold.

Pork Chops

Ingredients:

4
10 - 12 ounces (284 - 380 gr) each
Double Center Pork Loin Chops

Method: Put the pork in the brine and refrigerate for 8 hours.

Method to Cook the Pork Chops: Preheat oven to 375 °F (191 °C). Remove pork chops from the brine, pat dry, season with salt and pepper.

Heat 4 tablespoons olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add pork chops and cook 3 minutes or golden on each side, put the pan in the oven and pan roast for 10 minutes until thermometer reads 140 °F (60 °C).

Let rest for 5 minutes.

Presentation: Warm the bacon and diced apple in a small skillet. Place equal portions of Butternut Risotto on four warm plates, top with pork chop and spoon sauce over the pork. Arrange Brussels sprouts halves around the plate, and top with bacon and apple mixture.

Braised Bacon

Ingredients:

8
Ounce (227 grams)
Slab Bacon, cut into 1/8 inch (2 cm) dice
0.50
Cup
Water
4
Ounces (113 grams)
Unsalted Butter
2
 
Granny Smith Apple, cut into 1/8 inch (2 cm) dice

Method: Preheat oven to 325 °F (167 °C), put the bacon in a baking dish, and add water and butter. Put it in the oven and bake for 30 minutes until bacon is rendered. Remove bacon, reserve, and save braising liquid.

Cider Sauce

Ingredients:

1
Tablespoon
Unsalted Butter
0.50
Cup
Shallots, diced
1
Clove
Garlic, minced
1
Cup
Apple Cider
3
Sprigs
Thyme
2
 
Bay Leaves
5
 
Black Peppercorns
1
Cup
Dark Chicken Stock
   
Reserved Bacon Braising Liquid

Method: Heat butter in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic and cook 5 minutes, add apple cider and simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated. Add thyme, bay leaves, black peppercorns, reserved bacon braising liquid and chicken stock. Simmer 20 minutes, when sauce is thickened, strain, and reserve.

Butternut Squash Risotto

Ingredients:

2
Tablespoons
Olive Oil
0.50
Cup
Shallots, finely minced
2
Cups
Risotto
1
Cup
White Wine
7
Cups
Chicken Stock, hot
1.5
Cups
Roasted Butternut Squash Puree
1
Cup
Butternut Squash, diced, and blanched
1
Cup
Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
   
Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper

Method: Warm a sauté pan, add olive oil and sauté shallots until soft but not brown. Season with a pinch of salt, add rice, and stir until all the risotto is coated with olive oil. Add white wine and stir over medium heat until add liquid is absorbed. Add the chicken stock in one cup increments. Stir until the stock is absorbed. Repeat this process with each addition of chicken stock. Add enough stock so that the rice is cooked al dente and is slightly creamy. Add the butternut squash puree and cooked diced butternut squash, and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in the parmigiano-reggiano. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Tomato Parmesan

Ingredients:

2
Cloves
Garlic, finely sliced
1.5
Cups
Heavy Cream
16
 
Plum Tomatoes, halved, seeds removed
1
Cup
Panko Bread Crumbs
4
Tablespoons
Parmesan Cheese
1
Tablespoon
Olive Oil
1
Teaspoon
Thyme Leaves

Method: Preheat oven to 375 °F (191 °C). Put the garlic and cream in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat and reduce by half.

Prep four 2-ounce soufflé dishes; arrange 4 tomatoes in each dish, mix bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, and thyme together in a bowl. Sprinkle one-fourth of the mixture on top of each gratin. Bake 30 minutes until browned.

To serve: Invert one tomato parmesan onto each of four warm plates. Place a pork chop on each plate, and spoon sauce around.

Brussels Sprouts

Ingredients:

2.5
Tablespoons
Unsalted Butter
1
Tablespoon
Shallots, minced
1
Pound (0.45 kg)
Brussels Sprouts, outer leaves removed, sliced very thin
0.50
Cup
Water

Method: Heat butter in a sauté pan over medium heat, add shallots and Brussels sprouts, and cook 3 - 5 minutes stirring occasionally. Add water and simmer until tender, season with salt and pepper to taste.

Spicy Tuna Sushi Sandwich - Fresh Salt at Saybrook Point Inn & Spa, Old Saybrook, CT, USA

Fresh Salt Spicy Tuna Sushi Sandwich

Chef Tripp notes, "We make this sandwich at Fresh Salt. It is a type of pressed sushi not rolled. It has two layers of cooked sushi rice that acts as the bread in the sandwich, and one layer of a spicy tuna salad made with fresh tuna. Hand pressed to form a sandwich, cut into a desired shape.

Great for hors d'oeuvres or an appetizer. Create your own dip, some think as simple as a soy sauce, or more complex like Ponzu sauce, as we use at Fresh Salt. The secret to this sandwich is to make sure you use a trustworthy fish monger to ensure that the tuna is number one quality and freshness."

Tuna Filling Ingredients:
Serves 4

10.5
Ounces (300 grams)
Sushi Grade Tuna
1
 
Scallion, chopped into small thin rounds
2
Tablespoons
Mayonnaise
1
Teaspoon
Sesame Oil
2
Teaspoons
Siracha Sauce
0.50
Teaspoon
Lemon Juice
2
 
Nori Sheets

Method: Chop the tuna into small dice, add to a bowl with the chopped scallion, and mix together. Add mayonnaise, sesame oil, siracha sauce, and lemon juice, and mix together.

Tuna Sushi Rice Ingredients:

3
Cups
Sushi Rice or Sticky Rice, uncooked
3
Cups
Water
0.5
Cup
Rice Vinegar
0.75
Cup
Sugar
1
Teaspoon
Salt

Method: Wash rice with running water for 2 minutes. Put the rice in a pot, cover with water. Cook rice on high heat, stirring every 1 - 2 minutes until water boils. Lower heat to a minimum and cover, stop stirring rice. Check water level after 7 minutes. If there is no more water, but only bigger grains of rice, the rice is ready; if not, check back every minute, make sure to not brown rice on the bottom.

When rice is done, remove from pot with a wooden spoon. Do not scrape rice that is on the bottom. Put the rice in a wooden or plastic bowl.

Mix the rice vinegar, sugar, and salt in a small pot. Put on medium heat until sugar and salt are dissolved. Pour mixture on the rice right after you take it out of the pot and stir well. Let rice cool for a few minutes until room temperature.

Equipment Needed for Assembly: Two hotel pans 9x12x2 inches deep, preferably aluminum.

Assembly Method: Line the first pan with plastic wrap, place one nori sheet on the plastic. Spread one layer of rice on the nori, and then spread one layer of tuna filling on the rice. Spread another layer of rice one-eighth inch thick on top of the tuna filling, and cover with the second nori sheet. Place a sheet of plastic wrap on top of the nori sandwich. Place the second hotel pan on top of the nori sandwich and firmly press down.

Place the pan in the refrigerator for 1 hour to firm and set the sandwiches. Remove from the refrigerator and invert the filled pan onto a cutting board and cut into your desired shape. 

Fresh Salt restaurant serves Breakfast Monday through Saturday from 7:00 am until 10:30 am, Sunday from 8:00 am until 10:00 am, and Sunday Brunch from 10:30 am until 2:15 pm. Lunch is served Monday through Saturday from 11:30 am until 4:00 pm. Dinner is served Sunday through Thursday from 5:30 pm until 9:00 pm, and Friday and Saturday from 5:30 pm until 9:30 pm. The Lounge is open Monday through Thursday from 2:15 pm until 9:30 pm, Sunday from 1:15 pm until 9:30 pm, and Friday and Saturday from 2:15 pm until 10:00 pm.

Read about our dining experience at Fresh Salt in the Restaurants section, about our experience at Saybrook Point Inn & Spa in the Hotels and Resorts section, about our experience at Sanno in the Spas section.

Saybrook Point Inn & Spa, Old Saybrook, CT, USAFresh Salt restaurant at Saybrook Point Inn & Spa
Two Bridge Street
Old Saybrook, Connecticut 06475
United States
Telephone:        +1-860-388-1111
Email:                 
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Website:            
www.Saybrook.com
Facebook:         
www.Facebook.com/SaybrookPointInn 

Follow Saybrook Point Inn on Facebook: www.Facebook.com/LuxuryExperience 

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© August 2014. Luxury Experience. www.LuxuryExperience.com  All rights reserved.

 
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