On April 14, I arrived at Kiawha Island Golf Resort (and Spa). Chef de Cuisine,Nathan Thurston CEC, of The Ocean Room, Kiawha’s Prime Steakhouse shared a recipe he prepared last night, April 15, 2010 at the James Beard House. For U.S. chefs, this is one of the highest honors they can achieve.






Nathan has been at the Sanctuary since it opened in 2004. A graduate of Johnson & Wales, he worked at many fine establishments before his move to Kiawha.



Spring Pork & Shelling Beans

Soft-Cooked Farm Fresh Egg, Wild Ramp Chow Chow, Pork Butter

Serves: 6

Pork Belly

Pork Belly3 pounds

Carrots (medium dice)2 ea

Celery (medium dice)–1/2 head

Yellow Onion2 ea

Chicken or Veal Stock as needed


Square off your pork belly and trim any unnecessary fat.

Ideally your belly would be between two to three inches thick.

Score your belly on the topside then warm a little bit of oil in a rondeau or dutch oven.

Season and then brown your belly on all sides then remove your belly from the pot. Brown your carrots, celery, and onion in the rendered pork fat and then remove from pan.

Reserve the pork fat for another use. Next, return your vegetables to the pot and then top with your belly.

Add veal stock until the belly is covered 75% by the stock.

Cover with plastic wrap and then foil.

Braise at 350*F for 4 hours or until the belly is fork tender.

Let cool overnight to yield a very juicy product.

Cut into two inch squares then sear on all sides then finish in the oven for a couple minutes.

Serve immediately to ensure a crisp texture.

Soft-Cooked Egg

Farm Fresh Eggs 6


Boil the eggs for five to five and a half minutes to result in a soft-boiled egg.

Immediately shock in an ice bath and peel. Reserve until needed.

To serve- heat some water to 130*F and let the eggs rest for at least one minute in the warm water.

Remove with a slotted spoon and serve immediately. Garnish with some sea salt flakes.

Wild Ramp Chow Chow

Red Pepper1

Green Pepper1

Yellow Pepper1

Yellow Onion1

Wild Ramps–1 pound

Red Wine Vinegar4 oz

Sugar2 Tablespoons

Sea Salt as needed


Thoroughly clean your ramps ensuring you remove all dirt and debris.

Next, cut all your vegetables into a small dice then sweat in a small amount of olive oil until tender.

Add your vinegar and sugar and continue cooking on low for another fifteen minutes.

Adjust seasoning with sea salt and chill until needed.

Serve as a cold condiment for the pork belly.

Pork Butter

(Optional, but great to have around for a snack!)

Pork Butt2 pounds


Celery2 stalks


Chicken or Veal Stock as needed

Room Temperature Butter1/3 pound


Dice the butt into 1″ pieces, season, and brown on all sides.

Remove from pan and brown your vegetables in the rendered fat.

Reserve fat for another use and return the vegetables to your pan, then the pork, and finally enough stock to cover the butt by 75%.

Cover with plastic wrap and foil and braise for three hours or until the meat is very tender.

Let the meat cool slightly then transfer to a mixing bowl (with paddle attachment) and mix on low until the meat breaks into pieces.

Meat should be the consistency of a thick paste. If it needs more moisture add some of the fat from the braising pan.

Cool onto a cookie sheet in the fridge.

almost chilled fold in 1/3 pound of your room temperature butter.

Reserve until needed. Great on toasted bread!

Spring Shelling Beans

Fresh Fava Beans

Fresh English Peas

Fresh Garbanzo Beans

Fresh Butter Beans

Reserved Braising Liquid


Shell all of your beans/peas and blanch in salted boiling water until al dente.

Immediately shock in an ice bath then drain in a colander.

Warm a little bit of oil in a skillet and begin to saute the beans. Immediately add braising liquid until the beans/peas are 50% covered.

Simmer until the beans/peas are tender.

Adjust seasoning with sea salt. Using a slotted spoon, serve into a bowl.

To assemble: Arrange the beans/peas in a bowl then top with the crispy pork belly. Next, top the belly with a soft-cooked egg and some chow-chow. Finally, smear some pork butter on some toasted bread and enjoy!

Chef Nathan Thurston and team specialize in the preparation of local, grass-fed beef from
Mibek Farms in Barnwell, South Carolina. Sourcing the finest meats obtainable from artisan and local cattle ranches, The Ocean Room is the only steakhouse in the US to earn both Forbes 4 Star and AAA 4 Diamond ratings.

The Ocean Room showcases the qualities and characteristics of the world’s finest varietals,
regions, growers, and producers. South Carolina has many wonderful growers and I’m sure they are pleased to be featured at their best in The Ocean Room at the Sanctuary.

The Sanctuary Hotel has many other skilled chefs. Since 2005, Executive Chef Robert Wysong, CEC, heads up the team. He says, “I cook in the Southeast, where my family heritage lies.” This background and the many fine establishments where he has been a culinarian spans several decades. Wysong draws upon the region’s climate and resources. He inspires simple, and at the same time, distinguished cooking style.

Here is more information on The Sanctuary Chefs.

We will be featuring another recipe from The Sanctuary Hotel on April 21, 2010. We’ll have a spa article later and will let you know when it is published.

Meanwhile if you want to see what is happening, check the Spring Activity Guide.

The Ocean Room
The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort
Serving Dinner Only in the Lounge & Restaurant
Tuesday – Saturday, 6pm – 10pm

Jackets Preferred but not required.
Reservations Recommended.

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