Restaurant: Cleveland-Heath, 106 N. Main St., Edwardsville, Ill. 62025
People of interest: Chef owners Jennifer Cleveland and Eric “Ed” Heath met at a Salt Lake City brew pub, then moved to Napa Valley to attend The Culinary Institute of America. “I mean, we worked 60-70 hours a week, and then 30-40 hours of school a week for 2 and one-half years. And just really, like, fell even more in love with the idea of opening a place and being in this for the rest of our lives,” Heath said. While they loved California, they landed in Edwardsville because they wanted their own place. Cleveland said the pressures of being the restaurant boss are eased by working with your partner. “It’s so comforting to go home and you know if he’s here, someone is still here and that every decision they make will be in the best interest of the restaurant or the business, which is kind of like our baby, I guess.”
What to know: Cleveland-Heath was voted best new restaurant in 2012 by the Riverfront Times. Ed Heath won Sauce Magazine’s Readers’ Choice 2014 Favorite Chef award.
Phone: (618) 307-4830
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Urbanspoon: Click here to see Cleveland-Heath on Urbanspoon
Cuisine: Modern comfort food
Specialties: Cheese burger and BLT.
Most popular dish: Brussels sprouts, burgers.
Entrée price range: $17-$32
Dress code, reservations, busiest times: The dress code is casual. Service is first-come, first-served. Reservations are not accepted.
Hours: Dining is Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Friday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-11 p.m. Bar hours are 11:45 p.m. Monday-Thursday for last call, 12:45 p.m. Friday-Saturday for last call. Closed Sunday.
Roast or poach baby beets for about an hour checking frequently at the 40-minute mark for doneness. When a sharp knife or turkey tester slides easily in and out, they are done. You can also tell if the skins peel off easily. Chill them, then peel with a clean kitchen towel.
3 parts Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 1 part lemon juice, 1/5 part salt. Whisk together for a temporary emulsion, but not too hard and don’t blend or olive oil will oxidize and become bitter.
1 cup high fat yogurt
1/2 cup Tahini paste
1 Tbsp chopped garlic
1 Tbsp lemon juice, zest from one lemon
Salt to taste
1/2 cup chopped, charred scallions
To char scallions: In a very hot skillet or a 500-degree oven, gently toss the green onions in oil, then place in skillet or oven until blackened. On the stovetop it will be brief (about 5 minutes). In the oven it will take about 30 minutes. Charring something means you do it quickly. You don't want to "burn" them. Charring means the outside turns black while maintaining the inside’s color. Burning is when it is black and bitter all the way through. When they are chilled, dice them thinly.
Mix all the charred scallion yogurt items together and set aside.
1/2 cup sesame seeds
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
Toast sesame seeds in oven and then toss all items together while seeds are still warm.
Peels, not the pith, of 5 lemons
1.5 cups sugar
6 cups water divided into thirds
Boil three pots of water separately. In the first, boil lemon peel for 2 minutes. Transfer to the next boiling pot of water 2 minutes. In the final boiling pot add sugar and bring pot back to a boil. Add lemons, boil for 4 minutes. Strain the lemon peels and chill. Mince when cool. Yields four portions.
3 cups quartered baby beets
1 cup charred scallion yogurt
3 Tbsp lemon vinaigrette
1 Tbsp spiced sesame seeds
1 cup toasted, chopped pistachios
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1/4 cup candied lemon
1/2 cup micro greens (any will work, basil is nice)
Salt to taste
Place the beets, sesame seeds, candied lemon, lemon vinaigrette, sliced green onion, and salt in a bowl. Toss. On a plate, smear the yogurt sauce, and gently place the beet mixture from the bowl on the yogurt sauce. Garnish with micro greens and serve.