CHEF SAMBRANO Food Articles Video Recipes




Wednesday, September 20, 2017


I've gone over these terms before, but heck I'll go over them again. Butcher Slang. Just a few terms for you to understand what butchers are talking about if you ever head to your nearest meat shop.

I remember when I was growing up watching the Brady Bunch, Alice the housekeeper had a boyfriend, his name was Sam. Sam the butcher. To me, he was the man, he was the main dude. I mean Mr. Brady was an architect, fiction only right? But man, fiction or not, for me, the butcher is the dude I wanna know and shoot the bull with. I mean, we have to eat right? I'd be like, "Hey same, got any beef bones you can throw my way? I wanna make some soup or some Demi Glace." Sam, he was the man. Shit what do I know about building a skyscraper?

OK, here are some terms you might want to have at the ready in the event you are in the presence of other meat aficionados in your local butcher shop.

The "Boston Butt"- No it doesn't come from the butt of a hog/pig. It is a very popular pork cut coming from the shoulder of the animal. Slow cooking is best for this cut.
As you can see, there is a lot of tissue running every which way. And being from the shoulder of the animal it is much tougher as opposed to the loins. Imagine when this animal was alive and walking, the shoulders got some workout. 
Pic from Google

BRT- No it is not Bored, Retarded and Tired. But "Boned, Rolled, and Tied." Haha, it's sounds like a sex crime on SVU. But it's really beef, poultry, pork, lamb roast cuts that are trimmed and rolled and then tied.

To save time and money, just have your butcher do this, just have confidence when approaching the counter. "Hey Sam, I need a pork BRT, ah- 2 lbs. will do" or he may already have some pork BRT at the ready.
Pic from Google

Chitlins- Pig's small intestines. Lot of ethnic cultures use this, frying it up with chilies, herbs and spices. Some cooks will make soup with it. Sky's the limit with this.
Here is Mexican style Chitlins in broth
Pic from Google

Chuck Eye- OK I'm getting techno here, The Complexus muscle of cattle. If the ribeye is the wealthy man's prime steak, then the chuck eye is the poor man's steak. The chuck eye is cut off the 5th rib, while the ribeye or prime rib is cut from the 6th to 12th rib. 
The chuck eye steaks are generally much more affordable 
than the ribeye. Well, you can still grill these up and 
have a decent meal. It's more on the chewy side, but slice em thin
across the grain, and it's all good.
Pic from Google

Chump- Yes Chump. "Rick is a Chump!" haha. OK Chump in butcher's lingo is Lamb sirloin. That's right, so go up to Sam and tell him, "Hey Sammy, sorry your Giants lost on Sunday, but hey I'm in a hurry, gimme a few pounds of Chump."
Here is some lamb sirloin cooked in Pomegranate Molasses
Pic from Google.

Drunken Chicken/Ribs- Basically what this is is when any protein is marinated in wine or beer, or any alcoholic beverage. 
No picture needed, you should get the picture in your head.

Flat Iron- The steak cut that hails from right under the shoulder blade. Why is it called flat iron? Because it should be flat like a old cast iron skillet.
This cut of beef is really popular but there's not much yield per animal.
These are great off the grill, cooked medium sliced across the grain, or seared
in a hot pan, with some fat to cook it, and just salt and pepper.

There you have it folks. Some butcher jargon, good luck talking it up with Sam the butcher.

© 2017


The definition of science. the intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment: the world of science and technology.

Systematic study of structure and behavior of foods. Hmm, interesting. You must understand that food science has been around a long time. If you need answers to certain cooking questions, it has been tested. Because of food science, state and local governments sets standards on food safety. From handling of raw foods, to cooking it to its proper temperature to prevent food borne illness, and the proper holding temperatures as well as length of time foods should be held before it is not safe anymore. However food science, and science in general continues to move forward, with new technologies coming up, expect yesterday's standards to become obsolete, well maybe.

Food science makes today's food preparers jobs much more simple. Imagine without food science, new restaurant owners will have to figure things out for themselves. Bartenders would have to figure out why their red wines are turning rancid when it sits outside in the hot sun when the shipment comes in. Chefs would wonder why they got burned when cold water spilled in their deep fryers. Food science sets standards for the food service industry that is vital. 

How important is your health? It is very important, imagine if you went to your local steak house and went home with a bad case of food poisoning. Well, if you did have a food related illness from your favorite steak house, you would call the restaurant immediately and talk to the manager on duty. You would say something like, "Yeah I was in there eating about two hours ago, well I came home and I'm  really sick, I can't stop going to the bathroom." And the manager would say, "What did you eat?" Now he or she is asking you what you ate, from there they can do their investigation. And believe me, when a customer complains that they may have gotten food poisoning from their eatery, management will act on this very quickly. You explain you had the ribeye medium, garlic mashed potatoes, steamed veggies with drawn butter and garlic. A glass of Merlot, and you had the green salad with asian cream dressing for the starter. And a chocolate sundae with whipped cream for dessert.

Of course, there may have been more people with food poisoning that very same evening if the investigation proves what you ate caused it. What management and the chef would do is look at all of the products that you've consumed. They will go over the inventory, checking dates of all prep work, and if any waiter or waitress was sick. There have been cases when all foods were OK, but a waiter may have not washed his hands after going to the restroom. He may have been sloppy, and touched your steak, hence that could be the cause. A cook may have dropped some chemical into your salad dressing by accident. Who knows. Perhaps that one ribeye was sitting out a little too long before cooking, you ate it, it tasted good, but it may have been borderline bad, and since you had it cooked medium, it wasn't hot enough for any bacteria to be killed. You never know, anything can happen.

So yes food science is very important, it makes the job of professional food service employees easier, it makes home cooks much better in that they can understand why different ingredients react a certain way with others. Food science has nailed down why your cakes may not be rising correctly even when you followed the recipe to a T.

If you have the time, and I understand that you have a busy life, however when you get the chance, go online and look up food science, you can look up specific items such as beef. Food science of beef. You will see articles on everything you need to know on beef, making you much more well rounded as a chef or home cook. Food science can assist you in being creative. It will expand your cooking vocabulary, or more specific, you will be writing your own cookbook, without any recipes jotted down. I know a person who is well versed in food science, he can just think of creating a recipe in his head, and when he is in his test kitchen, he becomes a mad food scientist. And most of the times his creations are excellent. He always questions, "What if?" "What if I add this, or subtract that?"

OK it's time for me to go to sleep, and I just thought I'd go over food science with you guys. I mean if you're serious about cooking and improving your chops, or your skills. It is imperative you have a food science book in your kitchen. Like attorneys that have files on hand, you too should have a reference library for food and drink. 

Remember that learning is a constant, no one person is an expert on all things, especially when it comes to food. I know of some people that spent about two months in Malaysia and because of that, they'll open up a food joint serving Malay foods, and deliberately advertise that they are experts in Malay cooking. No, it takes years to become a master at anything. Two months is a long vacation watching natives cook their foods. Never call yourself an expert unless you are certified by a recognized board on the subject. Self proclaimed experts do more harm to themselves at times, especially when it comes to food. Call yourself an expert, you better watch out, because the wolves will be coming for your guts! Be a humble cook. Have an open mind. Don't be envious or jealous. Be cool man!

© 2017

Monday, September 18, 2017


Have you ever seen a great jazz band play together live? Jazz is one of the greatest forms of individual expression. Take for instance, a three piece jazz band, you have a piano player, a bass player and a drummer. There really is no set music, except for the way each player will respond to what the other is doing. It isn't easy. Because in jazz, one must really be somewhat of a master of his or her instrument. They need to play notes on time, and whatever happens is what happens, they carry on from there. Try and listen to jazz someday if you've never been into jazz. And there is many forms of jazz music, smooth jazz, acid jazz, big band and so forth, fusion rock jazz, the sky is the limit with jazz music.

So what I'm getting at is that most jazz musicians aren't reading music, none. They are playing by ear and listening intently, all the while playing their instruments to make a matching sound. Now let's get to cooking, and just improvise.  Can we do that? Sure we can and I'll explain to you.

Now let's say you are a very decent cook, you understand salty, sweet, sour, umami, all of that. You know your bitters, you know your basic herbs and spices. You are somewhat familiar with ethnic cuisine, and understand the methods used such as dry heat, wet heat and so forth. OK you are following me.

Now let's take your family, that's right those picky eaters. You have your spouse, and three kids. Your main protein is some strip loin. Beef. Your spouse wants his grilled with a teriyaki sauce. One of your kids wants the strip loin stir fried, the other wants it pan seared with butter, the other wants it made into beef tacos. Wow! That's a lot of stuff to do right?

Well, this is where some of the best line cooks in restaurants shine. This is where you will need to get your skills sharp, your mind alert like a jazz musician. Paying attention to what needs to be done. It is improvise time. You look in the fridge, and yay there's a bottle of teriyaki sauce from a couple of months ago. It's still good, that has a hard time spoiling. Hubby's taken care of or wifey, that's the Teri for the steak grilled. 

Now one of your kids wanted stir fry, OK, looks like you got ginger and garlic already in a jar minced, yay again! And there's some oyster sauce too. That's all for the stir fry, and that will do. And you got some left over veggies, perfect! Stir fry is ready.

The kid that wants the steak seared with butter, easy you look in the fridge, but there is no butter. None. And you can't go to the market, they are hungry. But, there is some cream cheese, and chives, and some mayonnaise. Sorry kid, no butter, but this is as buttery as can be. (They'll take it or starve).

Beef taco kid, hmm, you got the salt and pepper, and some hot sauce, and some tomatoes to dice, you do have some chili powder, cool. A can of beans in the cupboard. That works. But there is zero taco shells of any kind. None, What do you do? Well, you look and you have some white bread, half a loaf. OK, you tell that taco kid of yours, "well we don't have any taco shells, but I'll use bread instead." Again if they don't want this improvisational genius of yours, they can starve. Easy right? My mom used to tell me that all the time. "You don't want what I cook then starve."

That's it. What do you think? Now do you understand?

Let's take a look at the teriyaki steak spouse. What if you did not have any bottle of Teri sauce? And no soy sauce. But you got ginger, and oyster sauce. You could blend a little ginger, oyster sauce and sugar to make a oyster sweet sauce. Might work? I think so.

Just use your imagination, and you'll be fine.

Copyright 2017


Brining, some do it and some don't. Why would you want to brine anything? Like a turkey, why can't you just season it, and stick it in the oven? Why brine? Is there any laws that says you have to brine? Is there the brine police? Of course not. So let's look at why any cook would brine something.

For one thing, when brining meats such as beef, pork, chicken, and the ever-so popular Thanksgiving turkey is for one of two things or both. First what goes into a brine? Generally it is cold water with salt, and depending on what the goal of flavoring is, sometimes herbs and spices are added in. There is no right or wrong recipe really.

1. It acts as a marinade. Flavors penetrate the meat and travels through the pores, putting the flavor of the brine exactly into the product, where as dry seasonings will just dust the exterior.

2. Brine produces a tenderizing affect on the protein. One reason why lots of chefs will brine pork, and then wait and fry it crisp. The flavors are spread into the deepest part of each cut.

What is the cold water to salt, herbs and spices ratio? It depends on how much protein needs to be brined. For a 2 lb. turkey breast, 4 quarts of water and half cup of sea salt will suffice. And like I said, any herb or spice can be added.  For a large turkey, just follow that general ratio unit the bird is submerged. And that ratio will fit with any protein too.

What containers should I use to brine? Stainless steel pans, pots will do. As well as glassware, I do stay away from rubber or plastic because it can produce a funky taste from the chemicals to make the containers.

Where can I chill my brined products if I don't have room in my refrigerator? This is where Costco and stores like Walmart come in handy. Purchase a large enough cooler so you can fill it with ice. Place your brining pan or pot into the cooler, and place ice around it. If the cover of the cooler cannot shut because for some reason your brining container is tall, place a blanket over the cooler to cover, keep cooler in a cool spot in a garage or anywhere cool. It can be safe for 12 plus hours, and that is a long enough time to brine.

Once your brining is done, drain the liquid and you can still use the cooler to store the brined product, all you need is to make sure you have extra ice as needed to keep product safe from contamination.

As long as the product is ice cold, it should be safe, if you really want to make sure that it is safe, simply put a digital thermometer into the cooler to measure the temperature. If it is 41 deg. F. and below it is safe. Lots of ice will do the trick. It is also nice to have the kids home, if you live in a warm climate area, replenishing fresh ice is a must.

Then again, if you have huge refrigerator space, no worries.

If you are serious about your cooking future, be it at home or a professional, take some local cooking classes, that are run by certified chefs or culinary instructors. Food safety is very important. 

Always learn your basics, polish up your basics in cooking and you will go a long way. No basics, no fancy meals!

© 2017


We've all been there before right? I mean that is if we are cooks. Thawing out that five pound box of chicken thighs, that 1 1/2 lbs. of salmon, or that 2 pound chuck roast. If you don't need that frozen piece of meat right away, slowly thawing it out in your fridge is ideal.

However what if you need that frozen solid roast as soon as possible, your relatives decided to just stop by tonight, putting you on edge. You're not the kind of person that will send hubby to your local deli or Chinese joint to get takeout for your loved ones, no way, you love them, so you will cook for them.

First of all, you need to know the safe temperature for holding foods. OK, let's take a refresher because I need it too.

Cold storage - 41 degrees F. Hot storage + 140 degrees F.

So what this means is that if you will store cold foods for at least an hour or so without it being contaminated with bacteria, it should be held in a controlled setting at 41 degrees F and below. And for hot storage, foods should sit in a warmer at minimum 140 degrees F. for at least an hour.

OK so now you have a frozen roast, a chuck roast let's say. Frozen solid. So you will want to quick thaw this piece of meat. Simply place the frozen roast into a large ziplock bag, remove air, and seal shut tight. Turn on your faucet, hopefully you will have some fresh hot water running, usually it is about 120 degrees F. If not, in a large pot that you will use to defrost your roast, add enough water and bring temperature up to at least 130 degrees F. Once done, submerge the frozen roast in its bag. Let it sit for a few minutes. Check to see the softness of it. Continue to soak until the roast is soft. Remove from bag, and let sit on a cutting board. Using an instant read thermometer, see if the meat is around 41 degrees F. If it registers above, quickly pat dry the meat, and begin to season.

Follow your cooking directions, and make sure that your finished internal temperature taken from the thickest part of the roast will register as follows:

BEEF:  Rare 125 deg. F.  Medium Rare. 135 deg. F.  Medium 145 deg. F.  Medium Well. 150 deg. F.  Well Done 160 deg. F.

PORK: Cuts varies, to be safe thick roasts should reach close to 160 deg. F.  While chops or thinner cuts can be close to the 150 deg. F. range. 

CHICKEN:  To be safe, always try and get that piece of chicken up to 165 deg. F. Try not to touch any bone with your instant read thermometer. 

One general rule I used to make sure a piece of meat is cooking right, I watch for juices to exit the meat, once juices start to ooze out, you know that internally it is being cooked.

As for seafood, just make sure that it is heated through very well, such as crab, lobster etc. Clams must have their shells pop open when they are done cooking, you must disregard un-opened clams, there is a possibility one may suffer food illness by consuming an un-opened clam.

Once the cooked meats have dropped below the holding 140 deg. F.  you must refrigerated it covered in a controlled setting of 41 degrees F. or slightly less, or freeze it at 0 degrees F.

Quick thawing method, hot water at least 120 deg. F.
Sealed bag with frozen beef. Heat for a few minutes
and carefully inspect the softness of product. Use an instant read thermometer
to check the internal temperature. It should be around 41 deg. F.
If it is a little more, quickly remove and start your cooking process.
If it is below slightly 41 deg. F. it should be safe also. 

On QUICK THAWS, attempt to cook items as quickly as possible
do not let it sit out for too long bacteria will enter the meat product
and will it will be void of eating. Always be safe wear culinary
gloves, wash hands as well, wear a cap, keep long hair from dropping into foods.

© 2017

Sunday, September 17, 2017


Sub sandwich addict! That's me the last week or so. A sub sandwich junkie. Got to...have...a... sub... sand...wich. Help me, I Batman!

Today was no exception, I was delivering baby gear down south Maui, it was lunchtime and I was hungry. I needed an injection of a sub sandwich.

So I took the lower Kihei Road and drove along side the coastline, taking in the sights, yes the nice girls in bikinis, blonds, brunettes, it was a nice drive praise the Lord. So I'm coming up to the KAMAOLE SHOPPING CENTER and I figure the only subs I can get at this time, that's on this road, and will be pretty quick because really they are fast food, is Subway. OK I know I was praising Jersey Mike's Subs on the last few posts, but hey can't go wrong with a Subway sandwich.

I park my baby equipment van right into the stall, I get out and enter the Subway store. Only one dude in line ordering, so as soon as I enter, a young lady greets me, as she puts on her sanitary type glove that all food service people need to use. Kind of like a proctologist. Haha.

"What would you like today sir?"
"Ah I'll take a foot long COLD CUT COMBO on Italian bread." The sandwich has slices of ham, salami, and bologna, with veggies and cheese whatever you want. But the meats are all turkey based so it doesn't have a real Italian deli kick to it you know?
"OK, would you like this toasted?"
"No, cold."
"OK, what kind of cheese?"
"OK, what kind of vegetables?"
"Lettuce, onions, tomatoes."
"OK, and what kind of sauce would you like?"
"Mayo, mustard, oil and vinegar."
"OK, how about salt and pepper?"
"Oh yeah that too."
"OK, would you like to make this a meal?"
"Yes, a meal, it has to be a meal."

I was just thinking as I sat and ate my sandwich, what if they sold like stuff one normally would not eat at a sub sandwich shop. What if they sold like goat slices, or kangaroo slices, or alligator slices. Imagine that? "Can I get a foot long Kangaroo with Swiss on French toasted please." Haha.

Before I devoured this thing, the Cold Cut Combo!
Yay! With a Coke and Maui Style Chips
All Subways have that vibe, why is that? Why? I ask you 

Now for the Yay :) or Nay :( Scale.

Cleanliness of store: Yay :)
Friendliness of staff: Yay :)
Quality of bread: Yay :)
Quality of meats: Yay:)
Quality of vegetables: Yay :)
Quality of sauces.
- Mayo Yay :)
- Mustard Yay :)
- Oil Yay :)
- Vinegar Yay :)
Scenery: Nay :(
Entertainment: Nay :(
Paramedics on sight: Nay :(
Sound studio to play my drums: Nay :(

* OK I'm getting stupid now, sorry guys. But overall, for what it is, Subway is all Yay! :)

© 2017

KUSINA NI JAYBOY Lahaina Filipino Style Food Truck

KUSINA NI JAYBOY is a food truck located on Wainee Street, in Lahaina Town. Google Map MARIA LANAKILA CHURCH and it is right across of it. Or next to the office building that houses Maui Jim Sunglasses. Jefferson the chef was busy at 10am, my buddy Peter Pao (owner of Prime Sandwiches) was in town for business since he also sells culinary equipment, making him a popular products amongst the chefs and restaurateurs in Hawaii.

"Hey Ron I want to try that food truck for some crispy pork," says Peter. So after a quick bite at Lahaina Coolers Restaurant a block away, we check out Jefferson who was busy taking orders on the phone, as well as slicing food and frying it up. Slowly a line was forming, employees of businesses close by. Filipino foods are gaining popularity, I think Sheldon Simeon has a part in all this. 

"Hey Chef how you today?"
"OK braddas, OK, so you guys like the pork?"
"OK going be a few minutes I cook it fresh bradda."

Here you go, cooking it fresh- such a beautiful thing when a chef says he's cooking it fresh. Because some mother _____ ers lie! I hate liars they're evil! So after a few humid sweaty minutes in the Lahaina sun, Pete's plate was done. Sliced fried crispy pork, tomatoes, onions, and the lechon sauce, vinegar and patis. This is a Filipino move folks. To the max! Like Mexicans and salsa, the Filipinos and their vinegar and fish sauce (patis) is epic, totally traditional.

Peter's take? "It's good, and when Chef has passion, it tastes even better. He puts passion into his cooking, that's beatutiful brah! Awesome!"

Chef Jefferson is in his food truck kitchen, his domain, a place where he was born to be. In his space he can create. He's got soul for sure. Everyone I talk to, chef is liked by many! Sure anyone can open up a food truck, or a huge kitchen, and become a famous millionaire chef, and be on t.v.. But this is just in your community, in your own hometown kind of thing, very special indeed. One of these days I'll be down there trying some breakfast, some Tocino with eggs and rice, or maybe some longanisa with eggs and rice. Tell you what, if I can smell the food cooking, you know there's some flavors going on. I wish chef all the best! For real, this guy is awesome, he's got passion to the max!

Kusina NI Jayboy in action video

Peter Pao my brother from Oahu doing some business
on Maui. He teaches culinary students and pro chefs
on how to maximize their yields using the equipment
he sells. Been in the culinary world for decades Peter
knows his stuff. 

The crispy pork with onions and tomatoes
with the Lechon sauce made of vinegar and patis (fish sauce)
If you love Filipino foods, you know this action is

When you pull into the lot, there's a few other food
trucks or really trailers there. Across of the Maria
Lanakila Catholic Church on Wainee Street

Aloha from Kusina NI Jayboy as chef is in his
truck ready to rock and roll!
Good luck chef! Good luck my friend!

© 2017