Why does Gordon Ramsay eat crab cakes first when determining a restaurants quality? Is there something specific about their taste or texture that is an indicator for him?

Burger patty recipe Gordon Ramsay

Its not actually about crab cakes in itself that he is interested in but the care and attention that went in to making it.

Quality is the culmination of the choices you make in ingredients and method, the attention to detail and care you apply to execution.

,Crab cakes are a fairly simple recipe but every step of the way in the preparation will tell you something about the kitchen and the chefs.

So lets walk through the steps in the creation of a crab cake and see what we can learn from the choices that we make.

,The RecipeCrab cakes is simple, heres a basic recipe:,2 slices firm white sandwich bread,1/2 pound jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over,2 tablespoon mayonnaise,1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce,1 large egg, beaten,2 tablespoon unsalted butter,Now there is nothing wrong with a simple recipe.

As a chef you can inject your flair in to a recipe by bringing in various other ingredients for flavour, texture, colour and aroma.

If the balance of all of these ingredients results in something that satisfies the senses then why not.

But an overly complicated recipe which does not result in anything memorable is probably an indication of a chef who doesnt really understand their ingredients.

,The IngredientsWait, what? Isnt the recipe the ingredients? Well yes it is but then no it isnt.

,White sandwhich bread, the first ingredient on the list.

Do you use factory made sliced bread or do you use farmhouse bread baked this morning? Do you include the crust or not? Do you crumb the bread in to fine flakes or coarse even flakes? Or do you save yourself the trouble and use panko? These choices affects the texture and flavour of the crab cake.

There is no right choice but they do impact on how much of the other liquid ingredients you need to get the cake to hold together.

Too much liquid will result in stodgy texture.

Too little will cause it to fall apart.

,The crab meat, the purpose of all this recipe.

So again choices, what type of crab? Canned, frozen, fresh? Again each has its place but each has to be treated differently.

Canned will have excess liquid.

Frozen sometimes results in weird texture.

Fresh has to be prepared well and do you only use the white meat or include brown as well? And dont forget that last clause picked over.

This essentially means you need to pick out any left over cartilage and other hard bits from the meat.

,So similar choices will have to be made with the other ingredients.

Each choice accumulating in to the over all result.

,The PreparationSo youve chosen the ingredients youve started on the prep work.

This is where experience and attention to detail really comes in to play.

,You need to mix all these ingredients together to make the raw patty.

An unthinking chef will dump it all together and stir vigorously.

This will likely end up in either a lumpy texture or a pureed texture from over stirring.

,The order you mix things matters.

The attention to how much or how little you stir things matters.

And when youre making crab cakes every day, following the same procedure each time means the result is predictable and the experience of customers consistent.

,If say the chef had decided to add for example onions or bell peppers/capsicums in to the mix, what size they chopped these will affect the texture and how much flavour and aroma they infuse in to the cake.

Overly large chunks will make it hard for the cake to hold its shape with bits hanging out.

Furthermore, each bite will probably result in one flavour dominating and another flavour in the next bite.

Too small chunks will again affect the texture and possibly negatively affect the look of the inside.

,In certain cases you may have to pre-cook the ingredients, caramelise onions or roast peppers as the speed at which they cook is much slower than the main ingredients.

So mixing them straight in to the mix will result them being under cooked when the whole things is cooked.

,Finally, are the patties the same size, shape and thickness? Asides from just the presentation of misshapen crab cakes, theres the issue of even cooking when each patty needs to be cooked for differing times because of varying sizes.

,So poor attention to detail here, no matter how special the ingredients , will result in a poor experience for the customer.

,The CookingWell youve got everything ready with due care and attention, then you fry these things like they were burgers at some fast food joint.

,Looking at the ingredients list nothing needs any prolonged or high heat cooking.

So match the cooking style to that of the ingredients.

You want to give the outside of the crab cake a nice colour but not over cook the insides which hardly needs any major heat to cook.

So a medium initial heat to colour the outside and then reduced heat to cook the inside of the cake without burning everything.

Over cooking will result in grainy crab meat texture and worst case dried out texture.

,The PresentationSo finally its time to serve the crab cake.

So will they be served plain, with some freshly made or bottled sauces.

Any accompaniments? Will you garnish the plate and with what? People eat with their eyes and nose first, get that right and the actual eating will happen quickly.

,Crab cakes are simple and complicated at the same time.

You can tell a lot about the people who made the crab cakes from the end result if you understand the process.

You can then make a decision on their quality.

,Gordon Ramsay has chosen crab cakes.

Other chefs have their own litmus test dishes from as simple as an omelette to far more complicated dishes.

,My mothers litmus test dish was anything she knew the recipe of and would usually end in her retorting I can make this better at home! Why are we paying for this?!

Simple burger recipe

The simple answer would be no.

The impossible burger took a lot of research and development to design and uses equipment not found in home kitchens to make.

There are lots of vegan burger recipes some of which are pretty good, the internet is full of them

Gourmet beef patty recipe

In the play, Macbeth has an amazing recipe for gender rolls that he is famous for all over Scotland.

Given how terrible Scottish cooking is at that period, his gender rolls seem like a gift from God Almighty.

There is just one problem.

Only women are supposed to cook.

Macbeth, as a male, should be scornful of such duties as cooking.

But he is notu2014and in fact he is well on the way to pioneering a flattened beef patty restaurant chain, in which his gender rolls play a prominent part, turning the pedestrian ground beef patty into a gourmet delight.

,But because he is male, no one takes him seriously.

The rolls become the fundament upon which the entire play hinges.

Jamie Oliver hamburger recipe

Jamie Oliver in particular has long tried to improve the nutrition value of the food that people eat who otherwise turn to fast food, frozen entru00e9es, or noodle-in-a-cup stuff.

And he starts with kids whose taste buds are developed by wretched school lunches.

Because of his work, many, many schools incorporate a garden in the elementary school curriculum, and children dont automatically assume that food is obtained via a drive-through window instead of the earth.

,By demonstrating simple home-cooked recipes, hes enticing people to try making tempting, easy-to-prepare dishes.

If cooking is intimidating to a person, s(he) certainly wont attempt a complicated recipe with scores of ingredients.

,Though hes capable of making complex dishes, Jamie knows the worth of reminding people or introducing them to the simple joys of well-cooked foods.

People who eat a lot of junk food arent thinking: Gee, if I didnt have this bag of Doritos right now, I could really go for a nice Beef Wellington.

But a piece of crisp-skin roast chicken with creamy mashed potatoes and little side of veg? Id venture to guess that a Doritos-munching person would look longingly at the video of Jamie whipping up that meal.

Or how about the ubiquitous chicken nuggets and fries:,,No good cook didnt start with the desire to re-create the dishes that (s)he loves, whether childhood favorites or restaurant standbys: fluffy scrambled eggs, perfectly juicy hamburgers, grandmas spaghetti sauce.

Nor do good cooks turn away from these foods as their skills get better.

,By focusing much of his public work on educating diners to the wonders of making delicious food that beats all-to-hell the sorry mess that comes out of factories, Jamie is doing a great service to an underserved (pun intended) population.