To commemorate JBF's 25th anniversary, we asked each of the gala reception chefs to create a dish inspired by one of Beard's recipes. Here are a few of Jim's original dishes that were so artfully tweaked on Monday night:
Blini with Caviar
Gary Danko's crisp blini topped with smoked salmon and Pacific Plaza caviar was a riff on this classic Beard recipe.
Chicken with Tarragon
"I believe that if ever I had to practice cannibalism, I might manage if there were enough tarragon around," Beard once famously declared. Though the Awards were a cannibalism-free zone, Beard's version of Poulet à l'Estragon was the inspiration for Tre Wilcox's gala reception dish: seared shrimp served with tarragon–Parmesan grits.
Jim Beard's Shortcake
This recipe, which originally came from Beard's mother, has inspired several imitators: Larry Forgione used to make a version of it at An American Place, and Sarabeth Levine served it with strawberries and Let's Sugar Cookies (see below) at the Awards reception.
Let's Sugar Cookies
One of James Beard's greatest culinary influences was Jue Let, the Beard family's Chinese cook, who taught him how to make these simple cookies.