Thursday, Aug. 28, at 6:30 p.m., Corbett’s: An American Place will host a 7-course dinner to celebrate the publication of “Country Ham: A Southern Tradition of Hogs, Salt & Smoke,” written by local author, Steve Coomes.
Six Kentucky chefs–Dean Corbett, Shawn Ward, Mark Stevens, Ouita Michel, Richard Lewis and Jay Denham–will collaborate on the dinner, which will, of course, feature country ham in each course.
Coomes’s book details the American South’s centuries-old country ham culture and the people who still practice the ancient art of curing hindquarters. Special guests at the dinner will be Ronnie and Beth Drennan, owners of Broadbent’s Country Hams and 2014 Kentucky State Fair Country Ham Grand Champions. Jay Denham, formerly chef at Park Place and most recently hog farmer, ham maker and master charcuterie maven, will comment on the nuances of each ham dish during the dinner.
“What we take for granted in the South as ‘just country ham,’ is regarded by chefs around the nation as a treasure, a sort-of American prosciutto,” Steve Coomes said. “While it’s often cooked here, chefs elsewhere serve it as charcuterie so diners can experience its full flavor and texture. There will be a lot of examples of both preparation styles during this dinner.”
The dinner will begin with a reception in Corbett’s courtyard, with passed hors d’oeuvres, bourbon cocktails and Prosecco.
Here is the dinner’s full menu:
Reception: Mark Stevens: Country ham fritter with corn relish; Richard Lewis: “Ham and Egg,” on toasted brioche, sliced ham, garnish of salt-cured eggs; Jay Denham: Bruschetta of grilled peaches, pickled peppers and Woodlands Pork Back Bacon; Dean Corbett: Choice of Corbett’s Bourbon Lemonade Hayride or Prosecco
Appetizer: A Discussion of Kentucky Country Hams. Platters of three famed Kentucky hams (Woodlands Pork, Broadbent’s Country Ham and Col. Bill Newsom’s Aged Kentucky Country Ham) served with pickled fruits and vegetables, Midway School Bakery beaten biscuits, paired with Old Forester Bourbon cocktail. Jay Denham will comment on the characteristics of each ham style.
Pasta: Mark Stevens: House-made ravioli stuffed with baby spinach, ricotta cheese, butternut squash served with browned butter, sage and country ham twille, paired with rosé.
Salad: Ouita Michel: Organic Woodford County Kale, wilted with sorghum vinaigrette, tossed with Happy Jack’s charred sweet corn, roasted peppers, smoked baby cherry tomatoes, Good Shepherd cheese and shaved country ham, paired with sauvignon blanc.
Intermezzo: Dean Corbett: Melon and country ham sorbet.
Entrée: Shawn Ward: Seared diver scallop with kohlrabi puree, truffled ham broth, bean salad, garnish of country ham chips, paired with chardonnay.
Dessert: Richard Lewis: Beignets tossed with country ham “dust” and powdered sugar, accompanied by red-eye ice cream, paired with Corbett’s coffee and Herradura Tequila Añejo; Ouita Michel: Mignardise of Midway School Bakery sweet-and-savory corn cookies.
The dinner will be $95, which includes wine and cocktail pairings with each course, and a signed copy of Coomes’s book. Calling Corbett’s at (502) 327-5058.