Recipe Book

Using recipes from this site

Although this is technically speaking a food blog, this is NOT a food blog. I despise “food blogs”. That is not saying that traditional food blogs don’t have their place, they obviously do and have tremendous followings. They are just not for me. If you’ve taken the time to come to my site, I’m assuming you want to find a recipe, are interested in an event I’m participating in, or have other food/cooking related needs. So my job here is to give you a recipe to get you started. You don’t care what I was eating or doing while I came up with the recipe, or who I had in town visiting that weekend, or about what my latest blog was about. You’re here for the food. If you want simple, bold, and delicious recipes, you’ve come to the right place.

This site contains adaptations of recipes I have created and served in one of the restaurants I’ve spent time in.

I say adaptations because they are not the same recipes for a variety of reasons. One, we cook food differently in a restaurant then you do at home. Two, I am sometimes limited as to what ingredients I can obtain, or the ingredients are simply not cost effective. So I might have to use cream cheese instead of mascarpone. Three, the equipment I have readily available might not be common in home kitchens. So when I adapt restaurant recipes for this site, I have to make certain changes. I write them as if I was making them at home (if I actually cooked at home!)

I typically am cooking for 20, 40 or a hundred people. Since most of you won’t be cooking for that many it doesn’t make any sense to have a recipe for a gallon of salad dressing. So I scale my recipe from a gallon to a couple cups worth. With most recipes there isn’t an issue, sometimes there might be. Sometimes I have to guess. Before I started this project my “recipes” would be a list of ingredients and I would add, taste and adjust until it was perfect for my needs. I unfortunately don’t have time to test every recipe I post to make sure the scaled down versions are as good as the larger batch. I wish I did have the time and to stage and take pictures of every step along the way, but I don’t…and never will.

I don’t follow recipes, not even my own. There’s no fun in that.

Cooking is above all supposed to be fun. So please, make these recipes your own. Many of these recipes are components for larger dishes so they might not work as well on their own. For example, the fried garbanzo beans, I seasoned them with smoked paprika because they were going on a salad with lots of other flavors. If you’re making them to stand alone add whatever seasonings you enjoy.

As always, I would love to hear from you if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions on any of the recipes you’ve made.

Chef Michael Ellison Dotzy's Restaurant

Welcome to my new website!

I would like to welcome you all to my new site. This has been a labor of love to develop this site as it is now. I am hoping that you will find something here that will make your time in your family’s kitchen more enjoyable. I began this process while I was the executive chef in a high-volume Minneapolis restaurant. I was working 80-100 hours a week and was bored. “Bored? Are you crazy?” I can already hear you asking. Short answer, yes I am! I had very little creative outlet and not feeling satisfied with what I was accomplishing. It’s a rather complex story that I won’t get into, but none-the-less, I was bored. I needed something more, something I could take pride in.

That is when ChefMichaelEllison.com was born.

Some who know me and have worked with me might think this site was created to inflate my ego. Do I have an ego? Of course, all restaurant chefs do. We have to be the best in the kitchen, we have to have all the answers, we have to keep our calm as the tickets print…and print…and print. Life in a kitchen is often an organized chaos that anyone unfamiliar with kitchen life won’t understand. Part of the thrill of being a restaurant chef is being in charge of that chaos and making sure everything runs smooth from our guest’s perspective. Chefs also have to be humble. We have compassion for our staff and our guests. We have respect for those that came before us and those following in our footsteps. This site is not about my ego but about my humility. It is about pushing myself to be better. When people choose to come into the restaurant for a family meal, for a first date, for a celebration, or for whatever reason, they are inviting me into their lives for that moment. Even though I am just cooking food, it is an awesome responsibility, and one I take very seriously.

This site is a way for me to be invited into your lives, into your homes, and at your dinner tables. I take that responsibility just as seriously as I would if you came into my restaurant to eat. Use this site how ever you wish, as I made it for you. I would love to hear from anyone who has any stories, comments, suggestions or just to say hello.

…Let’s see what happens together!!!

Whatever this site may or may not be, it is and always will be about food first.

I did not start this site to fuel my ego, it’s more about being humble. It is a motivation for me to be better, to continue to learn, and to share my passion for food and cooking.

I have always had a creative mind but lacked any creative abilities. I love music, but can’t play an instrument. I love to draw, but am absolutely horrible at it. Taking a pile of raw simple ingredients and creating something delicious is one of the few things I am truly good at. I take great pride in every dish I send to the dining room from the pass, and get pleasure from the joy my food creates for my guests.