Chef's Kitchen: The Polite Pig brisket, watermelon salad

By Allison Walker Torres, Entertainment Reporter/Anchor
Last Updated: Wednesday, October 25, 2017, 2:39 PM EDT

We got to link up with one of Central Florida’s best-known chefs, whose recipes are now in the theme parks.

“We are the only locally-owned business in Disney Springs," said Chef James Petrakis, referring to The Polite Pig restaurant.

He says it's his version of "modern BBQ."

“We kinda bring our “chef-y” rubs," he said, while prepping his brisket. "We have a salt and 6-pepper rub that we let sit (on the brisket) for 24 hours.”

Then, the next day — yep, another 24 hours — the meat sits with another rub that's "60 percent coffee, 40 percent other items, like sugar, salt.” The whole point of doing this is to pull the moisture out.

"So usually a steak is 20-25 percent moisture, which has no flavor," he said. "So if you pull all of that out, all you’re going to taste is the meat.”

His favorite side pairing with the brisket is watermelon salad.

“The acid from this and kind of the freshness, really cuts through the meat and some of the BBQ," Petrakis said.

Let's cook!

The Polite Pig brisket recipe

Ingredients:

1 whole brisket
Salt and pepper
The Polite Pig Coffee Rub

Method:

• Rub brisket fully with salt and pepper, then let sit unwrapped in fridge for 24-36 hours.
• Rub with coffee rub (coffee, brown sugar, salt, fennel seed)
• Smoke brisket at 225 degrees until internal temp reaches 180 (about 10-12 hours)
• Lightly wrap in butter paper to still allow steam to escape, cut after at least 2 hours of resting

Tomato Watermelon salad

Ingredients:

1 cup - cherry tomatoes
1 cup - watermelon, large dice
1/4 cup - red onion, pickled
1/8 cup - feta, crumbled
1/8 cup - fresh mint
1/8 cup - basil
1 cup - simple syrup (sugar dissolved in water)
1/2 cup - olive oil
2 Tablespoons - red wine vinegar

Method:

• In a zip-close bag, marinate tomatoes and watermelon in simple syrup and mint for 24 hours
• Toss watermelon, tomatoes and red onion in a red wine vinaigrette and top with crumbled feta and fresh basil