From the Kitchen of Inox!

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Executive Chefs and Co-Owners Jonathan Krinn and Jon Mathieson have incorporated a unique formula at the brand new Inox in Tyson’s Corner.  The duo present an energetic and comfortably chic dining room with an inviting lounge and a menu of creative and approachable American cuisine.  Mathieson and Krinn began work together in September 2005 when the pair took over as Chef de Cuisine and Executive Chef (respectively) of 2941 Restaurant in Falls Church, Virginia. Their unique synergy in the kitchen amounted to award-winning cuisine that won acclaim from media and diners alike.  If you’ve been missing them, check out Inox where they have truly found their element (steel, as the name Inox suggests)!

What is your favorite kitchen gadget?
JM: I use my Vita Prep blender in a wide range of preparations.  It is  very versatile tool and is great for everything from smoothies to fine purees.
JK: I am a big fan of the Combi Oven.  One of my favorite dishes is a whole roasted chicken straight from the Combi Oven.

What is the most overrated food/technique in restaurants today?
JM:  Foams. I believe they detract from truly displaying the qualities of an ingredient.
JK:  I have been gravitating away from Duck. In the past several years, Duck has been everywhere and with so many wonderful birds and game meats to out there to taste – it’s time to move on to another bird.

If you were to open a restaurant with a different type of cuisine than what you are cooking now, what would it be?
JM: A small French bistro.  When Jonathan and I decided to open a restaurant together, the first plans were for a small, 40 seat French bistro. As our excitement grew, so did the restaurant size. Inox is a 126 seat restaurant.
JK: I would open a wine and cheese bar. There is so much versatility in wine and cheese and I would love a venue that showcased that versatility excellently.

What is your favorite local product or purveyor to work with?
JM: I am a big fan of the Capital Meat Co. At Inox, we get most of our meats from them, and continue to be impressed by the exceptional quality.
JK: I love the birds from Virginia Quail. They provide small birds with a huge amount of flavor.

What is your biggest customer pet peeve?
JM: It is always a challenge when guests get up from the table right as the food is coming off the line and about to be brought to the restaurant. We will put so much time into crafting  a dish and sometimes right as it is going out to the table, a guest will get up from the table briefly. We don’t hold dishes, and have to recreate it.
JK: It is very challenging for the dining room when guests are late for reservation times. Reservation times are coordinated to ensure an exceptional service experience and sometimes arriving late for a reservation can throw the team off-balance.

What do you drink/eat after work?
JM: When we close a dinner service, I am usually anxious to get back to my family and quickly down a banana and protein drink.
JK: After the dinner service I usually snack on some fresh-baked bread and Natura water.

What is your favorite thing to cook at home? Will you share the recipe with us?
JM: Braised lamb Shoulder with Lentils. It makes the entire house smell fantastic!
JK: Fresh pasta and meatballs. It makes everyone in the house happy. I love the pasta, the kids love the meatballs.

Slow-Cooked Beef Cheeks with Maitake
Mushroom-Bacon Ragout and Pink Lentil Puree

Beef Cheeks
6 pcs approximately 1# Beef Cheeks
1 liter veal stock
8 ounces of red wine
3 sprigs of thyme

Mirepoix
1 carrot large dice
1 small onion large dice
Celery root or stalk large dice

Topping
4 strips of bacon into lardons ¼ inch
8 oz pearl onions cut in ¼
8 oz maitake mushrooms thumbnail pieces
8 oz pink lentils 1/3 reserve to fry

4 oz butter
4 oz cream
1 bay leaf small
2 tbs of canola oil

Beef Cheeks
In a sauté pan sear seasoned beef cheeks in oil until brown on all sides. Remove from pan and add    mirepoix and cook at medium heat until caramelized.  Add herbs and deglaze with red wine. Reduce until almost dry and then add the cheeks back in. Cover with stock and simmer at 250 degrees covered in the oven until fork tender.  Remove cheeks from pot. Remove all excess oil off the stock. Reduce the stock by ¾ until nape.  Season with salt and pepper add butter.

Topping
Fried lentils
Blanch lentils in water for 1 minute, strain and dry.  Cook in whole butter until crispy about 3-4 minutes. Drain lentils and place on paper towel to remove excess butter.

Bacon Lardons
Take the bacon and cut in ¼ inch strips across the width of the slice.  Place in sauce pot with 1 oz of water and render out the fat until the bacon cooks to a golden brown and crispy. Strain excess fat and place pieces on paper towel.
Blanch peeled pearl onions until tender in boiling water chill and cut into quarters.
Maitake mushrooms cut into thumb nail size pieces and sauté in butter until crispy finish with picked thyme.  Season with salt and pepper.

Lentil puree
Cook lentils in water until soft and tender. Remove and place in blender with a little of the cooking liquid.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add boiled cream to the lentils to achieve the puree consistency. Be careful to add a little cream at a time. Finish with a nut of butter

Plating
Place a dallop of lentil puree in the center of the plate. Place glazed beef cheek on top of puree. Finish with topping on top of cheek, bacon, fried lentils, mushrooms and pearl onions. Sauce around the outside of the cheek and serve.

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