Travis Waynick, a Michigan native, says his culinary education “was hands-on and self-taught.” Now 37, he has been in kitchens since he was 15. He offered this dish as an appetizer one day at the Rochester Tap Room where he is executive chef/partner. He calls it “light and summery with bold flavors” — and good for sharing. — Molly Abraham
Angus flatbread with maytag, roasted tomato, pickled onion, and chimichurri (serves 3)
1 pound salt-aged New York strip loin
1 pint grape tomatoes
Salt and pepper
3 7-ounce flatbreads
1 cup crumbled Maytag blue cheese
½ cup pickled red onion
¼ cup chimichurri or pesto
Pan sear strip loin on all sides, then roast until medium rare (about 5 minutes at 350 F). Chill in the refrigerator then slice thin. Lightly coat tomatoes with oil, salt, and pepper. Roast at 350 F until the skin starts to split. Stretch flatbread (recipe below) into thin oval dough. Par bake for 3-5 minutes at 400 F until dough starts to form a crust on the bottom.
Sprinkle flatbread with blue cheese crumbles. Fan strip slices to cover dough, leaving a slight crust. Place 8 tomatoes on meat and finish baking. When fully cooked, arrange pickled onions and drizzle with chimichurri or pesto. Slice and serve.
1 quart water (110 degrees)
¾ teaspoon dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
2¼ ounces olive oil
3 pounds plus 9 ounces all-purpose flour
2¼ ounces iodized salt
Combine water, yeast, and sugar in mixing bowl and let sit for 5 minutes. Add oil and mix on slow with a hook. Add flour and salt and mix until dough holds together and pulls away from sides. Portion dough balls and let rise for 30 minutes. Stretch dough using a small amount of flour to prevent sticking.