Around the Table – September 20, 2019

THE BEST SHRIMP TACOS

To quote Forest Gump (which I could for hours), “shrimpin’ is tough!” We are lucky enough to live in an area where fresh and local shrimp is just down the street. Next time you’re in Old Town, don’t be afraid to pick up a just caught, hyperlocal Carolina White at the Bluffton Oyster Factory. Now you’re one step closer to making the best shrimp tacos.
 
Think of a delicious spice loaded shrimp tucked in between layers of flavor. It’s almost hard to talk about these tacos, that’s how much I love them. But here it goes…
 
LETS GET STARTED
This is a simple recipe but it calls for some specific items:
 
  • Walkerswood Traditional Jamaican Jerk Seasoning – hot and spicy. But please, don’t let the hot and spicy scare you away! Although there is some heat, this paste is savory and will be used as a marinade base which you will then pair with other ingredients to give it the perfect balance. Okay, I’m getting carried away already.
  • Shrimp – hyperlocal Carolina Shrimp, to be exact.
  • A pack of 8 – 10” bamboo skewers (these are in your pantry, right?)

 

 

THE RECIPE

Marinating the Shrimp
  • 1Lb Fresh, large shrimp peeled and deveined
  • 1T Jerk paste
  • 1T Olive oil
  • 1T Juice of 1 lime
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Next…
  • Prepare the shrimp and the marinade and combine for 1 hour in the refrigerator
  • Thread onto 2 – 3 sturdy bamboo skewers and grill
 
The Aioli
  • 2T Dukes mayonnaise
  • 1T Jerk paste
  • 1T Sriracha
  • 1T Juice of one lime
  • Salt & pepper to taste
Next…
  • Whisk together thoroughly
  • Season & taste
  • Refrigerate for an hour

 

 

TIPS

  • Prepare your taco garnishes
  • Simmer yellow rice or vegetarian refried beans
  • Grill your shrimp skewers with a cocktail of choice 

FINAL TOUCHES

I realize taco garnishes can be very personal. Here at Colleton we subscribe to the following:
  • Thinly sliced green cabbage, splashed with a little olive oil and salt
  • Finely sliced red radish (you’re in luck – they are beautiful right now)
  • Six-inch white corn tortillas, served warm (of course).

Enjoy the cooler weather and support the local shrimper!
 
—Chef Robert

 

Kent’s Korner – Seasonal Changes

As summer comes to an end, Steve Tennant and the Colleton River Club Community Grounds team begin to plan the major flower change-out at the front entrance, clubhouses, and key beds throughout the community. The summer annuals that enjoyed the heat and humidity of the Lowcountry get replaced with cold hardy species including: Cyclamen, Delphinium, Dianthus, Cabbage, Kale, Mustard, Pansies, Snapdragons, Irish Moss, Stock, Calendula, and Foxglove. The seasonal change-out encompasses over 15,000 square feet of bed space and provides a splash of color, unique texture, and added interest against the natural background that defines Colleton River Club. For members interested in rescuing and repurposing the plants we utilize as summer annuals, the Hibiscus, Oyster Plant, Duranta, Coleus and Pentas will be available on a first come, first served basis at the Nicklaus maintenance area toward the end of October. We won’t be providing prolonged care to these plants, so act fast to keep them looking good in the garden. We hope you enjoy the interesting annual displays throughout the community this fall. 

We love receiving notes like this one from community organizations we are able to assist through Operation Colleton River!  

Kent’s Korner – Prepping the Practice Tees

Since converting the fairways, tees, and approaches on both courses to Celebration bermudagrass, Colleton River Club has long forgotten the evils associated with overseeding. Abandoning overseeding of the playing surfaces eliminates the disturbance created during fall seed establishment and the problems associated with the overseed removal and spring transition. In lieu of the rye grass overseed, we will again utilize micro-nutrients, turf pigments, and colorants to maintain the turf’s rich green color.  Under normal dry weather, we expect both golf courses to provide good playing conditions throughout the golf season and winter months. Please continue to disperse traffic and keep carts a minimum of twenty yards from the green surfaces. We will utilize ropes and stakes as necessary and will monitor the cart policy based on weather.
To help manage focused practice patterns, we will continue to overseed the range tees on both courses. The front practice tees on the Nicklaus Course and Dye Course will be overseeded on September 23rd and 24th respectively. Following two weeks of establishment, we will rotate practice to the artificial mats for one week and overseed the back tees during the normal course closures, October 7th and 8th. We fully expect to utilize the tees for the Fall Member Guest October 9th – 12th. We appreciate your understanding as we complete this necessary process.

Overseed is a necessary evil for the practice tees

Around The Table – September 12, 2019

GUIDE TO SELECTING AND STORING PRODUCE
We’ve all been there, opening the fridge to find your fruits and vegetables have spoiled is not only frustrating, it’s like tossing your food budget into the compost pile. Learning how to select and store fresh produce will help you increase shelf life, so you can enjoy them longer.
 
There are no real secret tips when selecting fresh produce. Peel back the corn husk, pick the yellowest lemon, and with a satiny yellow skin and a rosy blush, it looks like the perfect peach, but how will they taste once you get them home? Choosing fresh and flavorful produce can sometimes be your greatest challenge in the supermarket. But, maybe we can help.
 
SELECTING GUIDELINES
Sure, everyone has tips and tricks for picking the right melon or apple, but there are few general guidelines to follow to ensure you get the freshest produce possible.
 
FOLLOW THE SEASONS
Probably one of the most important tips for finding great-tasting produce is to buy in season, when possible. Here’s a guide to when certain fruits and veggies are at their peak:
  • Summer – apricots, blueberries, cherries, eggplant, fresh herbs, green beans, hot peppers, melon, okra, peaches, plums, sweet corn, sweet peppers, tomatoes, zucchini
  • Fall – apples, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, collards, grapes, kale, pears, persimmons, pumpkins, winter squash, yams
  • Winter – beets, cabbage, carrots, citrus fruits, daikon radishes, onions, rutabagas, turnips, winter squash
  • Spring – asparagus, blackberries, green onions, leeks, lettuces, new potatoes, peas, red radishes, rhubarb, spinach, strawberries, watercress

KNOW YOUR VENDOR

With modern farming, processing and delivery, many vendors can put produce out for sale within a day or two after it’s picked. Ask the produce manager or vendor for delivery days or when the food was harvested so you can get to your favorite produce before quality declines. We all have our favorite trusted stores, so there’s nothing wrong with getting to know the people who work there. Ask them produce questions after all they are trained to help! 

BE A PRODUCE SNOB

If it doesn’t look and smell great, don’t buy it. Use your senses. Contrary to some consumer practices, thumping or shaking a melon does not indicate ripeness. Instead, feel or touch a product. In general, produce that’s too soft is too ripe; if it’s too hard, it’s not ripe enough. Try the sniff test, too. With certain fruits, like peaches and melons, a strong scent means they’re ripening nicely. Don’t just take produce because it’s there. Take the time to find the BEST available produce.

BUY ONLY WHAT YOU NEED

This one is simple. When we cook, we generally prepare more than we need. The best guideline we can provide is to buy in smaller amounts. You’ll have less to cook with, but also less waste. Avoid sales for the sake of the sale. This way you’re not cooking with tired produce, or tossing out the expired.

USE IT UP

After you’ve become close acquaintances with your produce manager or vendor, you’ve touched and sniffed all the produce at the supermarket, don’t forget to cook what you bought. Eat the fresh produce when it’s fresh!

WASHING & DRYING

Okay, it’s time to eat, finally. Even if the produce seems clean, always wash under it cool running water and shake dry – especially the herbs! Always spin – rinse lettuces. Even if the package claims to be tripled rinsed, it can’t hurt to rinse again. 

STORING TIPS

You bring home fresh fruits and vegetables, stash them in the refrigerator and then wonder what happened to make them shrivel, rot or go limp a few days later. Much of the time, the culprit is the way you’re storing them.
 
There are few things I hold in higher regard than how to care and properly store produce. At work, the chefs and cooks know I’m adamant about proper storage. To me it’s the key to great taste and quality – and it protects costs.
 
  • Protect produce from the cold – use paper towels to line the plastic disposable food containers after rinsing and wrap loosely to protect foods from the refrigerator temperature. Use the produce drawers, they sometimes have humidity controls
  • Fruits & Vegetables don’t play well together and should be stored in different locations
  • Don’t clean produce until you’re ready to use it. Washing fruits or vegetables before storing them make them more likely to spoil

COLLETON RIVER PRODUCE

At Colleton we have strict purchasing specifications and when it comes time to chose the produce, we abide by every guideline. We touch, smell, squeeze, weigh, check the skin & leaves and examine the color of every single piece of produce that comes in the door.
 
In fact, produce is hand selected for Colleton River. We work with prodigious local vendors who know our preferences. We also visit the warehouse to inspect the quality of the produce. All in all, we know that choosing the right produce is important. 
 
Keep it fresh, take care and enjoy!
-Chef Robert

Kent’s Korner – August 30, 2019

Rarely, throughout the coastal southeast, are surprises that suddenly appear in late summer pleasant. Coinciding with hurricane season, in late August and throughout September, hurricane lilies, Lycoris spp., defy this conventional wisdom. These bulbs in the amaryllis family seemingly appear out of nowhere, shooting leafless flower stalks 12 to 24″ from the ground. Adorned with delicate tubular flowers, they provide a delightful presence in the late summer garden. Generally appearing following late season rains, each bulb sprouts between one and four stems that produce 8″ clusters of flowers that have a spidery appearance. Hurricane lilies don’t require fertilization or irrigation, but they prefer partial shade and benefit from rich, moist soils. In the Lowcountry it is best to amend the soil with compost prior to planting. Use caution when planting these flowers in the presence of pets and small children. All Lycoris species contain the alkaloid poison, lycorine, which makes the plant resistant to damage from deer and rodents but can be harmful if consumed. While enjoying the community this fall, keep an eye out for this delightful surprise popping up where you might least expect it.

Lycoris radiata at the Nicklaus Clubhouse Porte-cochère

Around the Table – August 29, 2019

A TOUCH OF REGIONAL RECIPE HISTORY

There is a difference of opinion as to what exactly the Lowcountry encompasses. The term is most frequently used to describe the coastal area of South Carolina to the Savannah River at the Georgia state line. But there is one belief I think we can all agree on, the Lowcountry enjoys a very diverse and rich culinary history. From the commencement of time, the Lowcountry locals had to make do with what was around them, and with over hundreds of thousands acres of wetlands, marshes, and lakes, it’s easy to understand the Lowcountry philosophy, “If you got it, you cook it.” Still to this day, the philosophy remains true.

WE ARE STUCK IN THE MIDDLE
There was, and maybe still is, a strong sense of rivalry between the cities and people of Charleston and Savannah. They rivaled for hospitability, social graces, and which city was founded first. We, the true Lowcountry, can lay claim to them both, and enjoy the resources, the lifestyles and the histories of the Holy and Hostess cities. One of the most valuable assets of being ‘caught in the middle’ is that we get the opportunity to enjoy the cuisine both cities offer. The costal locations of both Charleston and Savannah provide a soul food inspiration, with foods as rich in history and they are in flavor, and although the Holy and Hostess City have grown and evolved in recent years, classic southern Lowcountry foods like shrimp and grits and she-crab soup remain staples of the food scene.

WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT THE LOWCOUNTRY

  • Seasonality: There’s a focus on good, locally used ingredients, and luckily for the Lowcountry that means using what we already have. For centuries local cooks have turned to the water for culinary inspiration. Crab, shrimp, fish, and oysters form the basis of any traditional menu. Rice, grits and the produce of the coastal plain also play an instrumental role in the Lowcountry cooking. Cooks and chefs here have always been focused on good quality, and seasonal ingredients.
  • Condiments: Because of the climate in the Lowcountry, canning evolved as a ways to preserve the bounty of produce. It’s still true to this day, most dining venues provide some type of condiment at every table.
  • Seafood Culture: It is strong and continues to flourish with the popularity of recreational offshore fishing. For convenience, and certainly for flavor, grilling seafood is the preferred cooking method for fish in the Lowcountry.
  • Comfort Food: Like most southern cuisine, Lowcountry food is comfort food, best eaten at home and centered around large, one-pot meals.

WHAT LOWCOUNTRY CUISINE MEANS AT COLLETON RIVER

Reflecting on the history and tradition of the Lowcountry allows our team to focus on:
 
  • Variety and quality of the season’s ingredients
  • Traditional cooking methods, keeps us true to our roots as cooks
  • The world’s best seafood and the abundance we enjoy
  • Unique products found right here in our backyard (or marsh)
  • Making your dining experience in the Lowcountry memorable and fun
Everyday I consider myself fortunate to be a lifetime student of the cooking and hospitality of the Lowcountry.
 
—Chef Robert

Kent’s Korner – Sands of Time

As discussed in last week’s Agronomy newsletter, during the Nicklaus course closure, we have begun redistributing the sand in the dunes on holes fifteen through eighteen. Years of erosion have moved the sand from the peaks of the mounds and have deposited it along the base of the dunes. While the cordgrass, Spartina patens, and sea oats help reduce erosion, the exposed slopes are especially prone to run-off. Over the next few weeks, our teams will be mining the sand from the lower edges of the dunes and redistributing it to conceal the exposed subsoil on the mounds. In the event an errant shot enters an area where equipment is working, please play the area as required in Rule 16.1b, Abnormal Course Conditions -Relief in General Area, by taking complete free relief from the ground under repair. For your safety, don’t attempt to retrieve the ball. Thank you for your understanding as we complete this much needed improvement project.

Replacing sand that has eroded from the peaks of the dunes

Around the Table – August 21, 2019

What It Means to Be A Club Member

I certainly don’t have to tell you what it means to be a Club member. Some of you have been members longer than …well, let’s just agree it’s been a long time. I can, however, give perspective on what it means to be a Club Culinary Team.
 
The world of private clubs has long been associated with drinks and food. This should not be terribly surprising given the simple fact that more people eat than swing a golf club and tennis racket. Providing a popular member amenity such as club dining, we frequently discuss being a service team, or a team in service. We discuss the types of service we provide, and how we can refine it. We exchange ideas on how to make the dining experience more enjoyable for you. Lastly, we discuss how our services are different from other restaurants and dining establishments, and what makes us better.
 
YOU HAVE OPTIONS
There’s no denying that dining in the Lowcountry is a culinary excursion on its own. I, of course, have a few favorites. But, when it comes to celebrating, entertaining friends, or just enjoying a casual night with your loved ones, we want to be your first consideration when it comes time to dining.
 
As a Club Culinary Team we’re prepared for your culinary requests, and we will welcome and manage those request to the best of our abilities. This includes the understanding that your request may change as your requirements and preferences evolve.
ITS PERSONAL
Our industry is seemingly one of the most susceptible to changing trends. If you are still obsessing over Quinoa when the rest of the world has moved onto cauliflower pizza, we want to know. Tell us your preferences, as well as your likes and dislikes. Whether it’s dietary, lifestyle, or you just don’t like anchovies, the more we know about you, the better we can serve you.
ACCESS TO QUALITY
Below you will find services we provide to you as Colleton River Club members:
 
  • In-home catering opportunities
  • Catering carry-out options (order a party dish and pick up on the way!)
  • Order pre-cut steaks, meats, and fish items, cut to your specifications!
  • Last, but certainly not least, the finest quality steaks available from our Nebraska Beef Program.
Feel free to get personal with the Club Culinary Team at Colleton! We may be reached through the Nicklaus Front Desk! We’ll be expecting your call.
 
—Chef Robert

Kent’s Korner – Healthy Competition

On good teams, competition becomes a catalyst for innovation and improvement. Last week’s positive changes on the Dye Course certainly stoked the fires on the Nicklaus Course. During the Nicklaus Course closure superintendent Kevin Dugger and his team have several other improvement projects well underway. They are expanding the cart parking area at the range and halfway café, resurfacing the walk bridge on hole four, standardizing the Borland collars, refurbishing landscaping at the eleventh tee complex, and aggressively controlling weeds and redistributing sand in the dunes on holes fifteen through eighteen. While course aeration is the top priority, these additional enhancements help further our goal to continually improve while providing an unencumbered golf experience. Thank you for your patience during this process, and we look forward to completing these projects and reopening the course soon.   

Expanded parking area under construction at the Halfway Café and Range

Refurbished walk-bridge on the Nicklaus hole four with PE matting