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288 grams Meadowcreek Dairy Grayson Cheese
330 grams D'Anjou Pear
30 grams sunflower seeds toasted
100 sunflower shoots
1 recipe Sunchoke Puree
1 recipe Sunchoke Chips
1 recipe Sunchoke in Honey
1 recipe Sunflower Powder
1 recipe Sunflower Heart
1 recipe Sunflower Seed Butter
For the Sunchoke Puree
700 grams sunchokes peeled and stored in cold water
700 grams cold water
20 grams extra virgin sunflower oil
8 grams Salt
10 grams Ultratex 3
For the Sunchoke Chips
185 grams sunchokes
oil for frying
For the Sunchoke in Honey
750 grams sunchokes
1 lemon
60 grams honey
15 grams Salt
35 grams extra virgin sunflower oil
4 branches Thyme
For the Sunflower Powder
100 grams extra virgin sunflower oil
65 grams tapioca maltodextrine
7 grams Salt
For the Sunflower Heart
4 hearts of sunflower
36 grams honey
8 grams extra virgin sunflower oil
4 grams Salt
For the Sunflower Seed Butter
220 grams sunflower seeds
15 grams clove garlic
18 grams honey
5 grams Salt
200 grams extra virgin sunflower oil
  • Medium


  • For the Sunchoke Puree

  • For the Sunchoke Chips

  • For the Sunchoke in Honey

  • For the Sunflower Powder

  • For the Sunflower Heart

  • For the Sunflower Seed Butter



Sunchoke Puree

  1. Once peeled, cut the sunchokes into medium sized pieces and place in a non-reactive sauté pan with the cold water, oil, and salt.
  2. Cook over high heat until all of the water has evaporated, transfer to a Vita-Prep blender, and process over high speed while continuously plunging.
  3. Add the Ultratex 3 and pass through a fine meshed sieve. Yields 375 grams.

Sunchoke Chips

  1. Heat the oil to 285 degree F.
  2. Slice the sunchokes 1/8″ thickness on a Japanese mandolin.
  3. Add to the oil and cook and increase heat.
  4. Once golden brown and crispy, remove the chips to a pan lined with paper toweling.
  5. Season with salt and reserve at room temperature.

Sunchoke in Honey

  1. Preheat a water bath fitted with a thermal circulator to 85 degrees C.
  2. Peel the sunchokes and place them in cold water with the juice of the lemon.
  3. Slice to 1/8″ thickness on a Japanese mandolin and and immediately return to the acidulated water.
  4. When finished slicing, remove from the water and pat dry with toweling.
  5. Place in a mixing bowl and add remaining ingredients.
  6. Toss well and place in a sous vide bag.
  7. Vacuum pack under high pressure and cook in the water bath for 50 minutes.
  8. Shock in an ice bath and store refrigerated until needed.

Sunflower Powder

  1. Place the sunflower oil in a mixing bowl and add tapioca maltodextrine.
  2. Incorporate with a whisk and season with the salt.
  3. If the mixture is not like a powder, add more tapioca maltodextrine as needed.

Sunflower Heart

  1. Preheat a water bath fitted with a thermal circulator to 85 degrees C.
  2. Remove all outside petals of the sunflower and expose the heart.
  3. Using a knife, remove all of the stamen from the heart and store in acidulated water.
  4. Depending on the size of the heart, cut each heart into 6 wedges and return to the water.
  5. Remove from the water, pat dry with paper toweling, and toss well in a mixing bowl with the remaining ingredients.
  6. Place in a sous vide bag and vacuum under high pressure.
  7. Cook in the water bath for 40 minutes, shock in ice water, and store in the refrigerator until needed.

Sunflower Seed Butter

  1. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F and toast the sunflower seeds on a sheet pan for 7 minutes.
  2. Transfer to a Vita-Prep blender and add honey and the salt.
  3. On medium speed, slowly drizzle in the oil to create an emulsion.
  4. Increase speed to high once the oil has been incorporated.
  5. Store at room temperature until needed.
  6. Yields 325 grams.

Phillip Foss

Phillip Foss, Chef and Owner of EL ideas, turns preconceived notions of elite dining upside down with his restaurant hidden on a dead-end street and next to a train yard in Chicago’s Douglas Park neighborhood. The twenty-six seat dining room opens to the kitchen, and guests are invited and encouraged to visit and interact with the chefs preparing their dinner.  The relaxed atmosphere beguiles the precision and attention given to each course, where classical cooking techniques are combined with innovative ideas. EL ideas received its first Michelin-star in 2013, received three stars from the Chicago Tribune, and was also named a Chicago Magazine “Best New Restaurant” and Chicago Reader’s “Best Restaurant of 2011.” Foss began his career in his hometown of Milwaukee, Wisconsin as a short order cook. After graduating from the Culinary Institute of America in 1991, he moved to New York City and honed his skills in New York Times four-star restaurants such as Lafayette in the Drake Swiss Hotel, The Quilted Giraffe, and most notably, Le Cirque Restaurant. The only culinary holdover in the move from the original Le Cirque to the second incarnation, Chef Foss had the honor of being able to cook for several presidents, countless dignitaries and celebrities, and Pope John Paul II. Upon departing Le Cirque, Foss began what could best be described as a nomadic culinary existence. His first stop was in Vence, France where he fulfilled his dream of staging in a European kitchen, and did so under the wings of Michelin two star chef, Jacques Maximin. Foss returned to America as the chef of Bistrot Margot in Chicago, where he spent the next two years. From there, Foss spent the better part of a year in Brazil, and the next two years on the island of Maui at the Four Seasons, Wailea. From here, Foss jumped the globe and spent the next two years in Israel as the chef of the fine dining La Regence in the King David Hotel. A quick stop at the 5 diamond Newport Room in Bermuda, brought Chef Foss back to Chicago, where he landed at the yet to open Lockwood Restaurant in The Palmer House. Since parting ways with the corporate structure, Foss went on to pioneer the burgeoning Chicago food truck scene with his Meatyballs Mobile. Less than a year after launching the food truck, he opened the one-of-a-kind, EL ideas in the very kitchen he was using for the food truck.

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