Executive Chef Christian Alejandro – Oaken Bistro + Bar

Oaken Bistro + Bar

200 N Field Dr., Lake Forest, IL 60045


Check Out:

  • New Year Skinny Menu to keep healthy and ahead of New Year’s resolutions
  • Valentine’s Day Dinner: Celebrate Valentine’s Day with a romantic 4-course dinner for 2.
  • Spouse’s Day offerings: Enjoy a complimentary glass of red, white, or sparkling wine when you take your spouse or loved one to dinner for National Spouse’s Day. (1/26/23)


Langoustine Mac N Cheese

For the Creamy Langoustine Broth:

Canola oil 2 TBSP

4 langoustine carcasses, rinsed, cut into 1-inch pieces

1-pound tomatoes, chopped

9 oz  carrots, chopped

2 sprigs tarragon

1 cup 2oz heavy cream

For the Butter-Poached Langoustine Macaroni and Cheese:

2 cups creamy lobster broth

¼ cup orzo

Kosher salt

4 langoustines, meat

3 oz mascarpone

8 each chive, minced

Maldon sea salt

Parmesan tuiles

For the Parmesan Tuiles:

Parmesan cheese

For the Creamy Langoustine Broth:

Heat the pot over medium-high heat. Add in a very thin coat of oil. When the oil starts to shimmer, add the pieces of lobster carcass. Stir the pieces a few times to heat through, add the tomatoes, carrots, and tarragon, and heavy cream. Bring the cream to a simmer for 10 min. Blend everything together using blender.

Strain solids through a China cap with a wooden spoon to extract all the liquid. Pour the strained cream through a chinois, swirling the cream in the chinois as needed, into a medium saucepot.

For the langoustine Macaroni and Cheese:

Reheat and further reduce the creamy langoustine broth. Place the creamy langoustine broth in a small saucepot and bring it to a simmer over medium heat. Whisk vigorously as it reheats. Reduce the broth to 1¼ cups, to a sauce consistency. Set the broth in the saucepot aside.

Make the orzo. In a medium saucepot, partially cook the orzo a third of the way through in lightly salted boiling water. Drain the cooked pasta in a strainer and rinse it under cold water. Shake the strainer to remove excess water and set the orzo aside.

Meanwhile, bring the creamy langoustine broth to a simmer over medium heat. Stir in the partially cooked orzo, then the mascarpone. Simmer until the orzo is cooked and the mixture reaches a consistency slightly creamier than risotto, about 3 minutes. Add your langoustine meat and cook for 2 more minutes then set aside.

Just before plating, stir the chives into the orzo and taste for seasoning. Divide the orzo between two dishes.

For the Parmesan Tuile:

Just before making the Parmesan tuiles, finely grate the Parmesan on a rasp grater. It is important to use freshly grated Parmesan to make sure the cheese knits together.

Heat a large nonstick fry pan over medium heat. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese in an even layer, covering the bottom of the pan by about 1/8 inch. Cook the Parmesan until it forms a lacy pattern and becomes golden brown. Use a small offset spatula knife to remove the tuile from the pan and place it on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Allow the tuile to cool. Once cooled, break the tuile into the desired size and shape. The tuiles may be made up to 1 hour ahead of time and stored in a dry area.