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Posts from the ‘Featured Recipes’ Category

The Glorious Twelfth

Every August 12th grouse hunting season begins in Scotland – the day is called the Glorious Twelfth. In the United Kingdom, the start of the red grouse season is much anticipated, and since the Game Act passed in 1831, it has been diligently celebrated with much shooting and chasing of grouse (the season ends December 10). This is the earliest of the hunts in the season, so it was determined by law that no grouse would be had before August 12th.

It’s always a competition among chefs to be the first to serve grouse. This has been taken too far, as in London at the end of the 19th century, when the famous chef, Louis Eustach Ude, was hauled into court for serving grouse at Crockford’s Club before August 12th and was fined and reprimanded. The Scottish lord who had tattled on him came back to the Club to make sure grouse was no longer on the menu. Satisfied it was not, he ordered salmi de fruit defendu (salmi of forbidden fruit). The forbidden fruit was, of course, GROUSE!

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The red grouse is endemic to the British Isles, developing, as most island species in complete isolation. The red grouse is sometimes called “moorbird” in Scotland, since it lives in the moors amidst the heather. Grouse eat the shoots, seed, and flowers of the heather, will eat berries and insects, and have been known to cruise newly mown oat fields to pick up leftovers and fatten themselves for winter.

The male grouse is larger than the female, for whom the males will perform rather extravagant courtship dances that have been translated to folk dances imitating the male bird’s moves in both the Alps, and on the American prairies (winters must be very long for this to have become a tradition).

Many grouse habitats in the UK are managed by gamekeepers who burn small patches of heather in late winter to create new shoots for the grouse and manage predators to give the birds a chance of survival before hunting season begins. The hunt begins with dozens of “grouse beaters” crashing in the brush to frighten the birds into taking flight so they can be shot by sportsmen. Dining on pheasant, quail and grouse served from giant silver-domed dishes from sideboards the size of airplane runways has come to represent a certain country lifestyle of the British ruling class that is fading in the 21st century.

Grouse

Red grouse average 10 to 12 ounces dressed weight, and might be considered an acquired taste. The meat is dark, reddish and quite unlike its relative the chicken. There’s no other way to say it: grouse is gamey. Although grouse is popular in Europe and the UK, it is a taste shared primarily by the hunting community in the U.S., but is not common on America’s supper tables. That should be changed. The problem is, it’s illegal in the U.S. to sell shot game, and grouse don’t respond well to farming so they are not as available as they might be.

But never fear! D’Artagnan imports red grouse from Scotland during the hunting season. The birds are hunted on controlled preserves, where the balance of the moors and the grouse population are carefully managed. Wild, heather-eating and delicious, the little birds are remarkable when prepared well. Care must be taken when eating wild grouse, as there will be actual shot in the meat—not good for the teeth.

Although grouse is usually roasted and served whole, Queen Victoria’s beloved Prince Albert was fond of famous chef Alexis Soyer’s Grouse Salad. This was made with hard boiled eggs, anchovies and pickled vegetables (beets and gherkins), tarragon chervil, shallots, chili vinegar and sugar in a cream enhanced mayonnaise and roasted grouse (either the cut up whole bird or just the breast) on a bed of lettuce. The chef warned the shallots might be too much for the ladies and that this was a salad better for the gentlemen.

Grouse may be for the adventurous palate, but if you are game to try, Deana Sidney, who recreates and interprets historic recipes on her blog Lost Past Remembered, has a recipe for grouse using an aged Madeira. And Hank Shaw at Hunter, Angler, Gardener, Cook has many grouse recipes, and he actually hunts his own in California.

Deana Sidney Grouse Recipe

A short art film by Zachary Heinzerling called “Hugh the Hunter,” is about the grouse hunt on Scotland, and on this particular Glorious Twelfth, will be screened at Postmasters Gallery in New York City. In fact, it’s dinner and a movie; we provided quail and Ghetto Gastro is cooking them for a game repast.

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Fiery Goa Pork Vindaloo

Cherie Scott 2Welcome guest blogger Cherie Scott, who made the improbable journey from her birth place in India to a small town in Maine (with stops in Vancouver and New York City), where she now writes her aptly-named blog Mumbai to Maine. There she reconnects with her Indian-Portuguese roots through family recipes and nostalgic anecdotes – it’s a culinary journey across cultures and the Atlantic.

I was only 6 when I tried my first pork vindaloo. I will never forget that first bite: the tart but tender pork made my mouth pucker as my eyes widened in pleasant surprise. It was truly the first culinary roller coaster ride in my mouth. I had to have more!

As a little girl, I thought of vindaloo as a grown-up dish. The flavors were intense. I never questioned what went in it to make it so delicious. I just ate multiple helpings of it as my mother recalls. But over the years, I’ve developed a curiosity about its origins and what gave this signature Indo-Portuguese dish a special spot in my mother’s culinary repertoire.

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D’Artagnan Chorizo and Maine Little Neck Clams in a Spicy Seafood Broth

 

Welcome guest blogger Cherie Scott, who made the improbable journey from her birth place in India to a small town in Maine (with stops in Vancouver and New York City), where she now writes her aptly-named blog Mumbai to Maine. There she reconnects with her Indian-Portuguese roots through family recipes and nostalgic anecdotes – it’s a culinary journey across cultures and the Atlantic.

Cherie Scott 2

I came up with this tasty dish as I was driving my daughter to school one morning. As a full-time working mom I always struggle with having to make quick but delicious meals for my husband and daughter. We are all starving when we get home from work and after-school activities. I feel the pressure to deliver dinner with flare and flavor. Over the years, I’ve learned that a well-stocked pantry and fridge are truly my best friends in the kitchen! And, it’s comforting to know that I can come home to them and they always make me feel like a fabulous gourmet chef.

I had a package of D’Artagnan chorizo in my fridge and I knew it would pair well with seafood – my Portuguese roots always re-surface when I’m on the spot!

On my way back to work after dropping off my daughter I noticed a sign on the road: Little Neck Clams $3.99/lb. What goes better with chorizo then fresh clams? I could almost picture myself opening up the package of the chorizo, bursting with fresh garlic, paprika and perfectly seasoned pork waiting to rub shoulders with those fresh briny clams.Clams & chorizo 4

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Bonus Burgers for Memorial Day

Our celebration of National Burger Month brings us to our final burger: the Breakfast Burger. Now, we all know that the burger is a perfect meal. It may contain all the food groups depending on how you dress it. So why not eat it for breakfast or brunch?

A buffalo burger is topped with cheddar cheese, hickory smoked bacon, and a soft-cooked egg before being sandwiched in a toasted English muffin that’s dressed with Bloody Mary mayo.

And our friends at Brooklyn Brewery have paired this burger with one of their fine beers. After all, what’s better than a burger and a beer?  A light Pilsner fits the bill for this burger, whether you enjoy it for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

7 Breakfast-Burger

But wait, there’s more. With Memorial Day coming and burgers on the brain, here are some bonus burgers and beer pairings for your holiday weekend.

Buffalo-Bleu-Cheese-Burger

Our classic Buffalo Bleu Cheese Burger with bacon is a crowd-pleaser. And with a bottle of Brooklyn Brewery Brown Ale (or two) it’s bound to be a hit at the backyard party.

Ultimate-Wagyu-Burger

Our upscale burger – the Ultimate Wagyu, Foie Gras and Truffle Burger – easily goes from white tablecloth to picnic table. Keep it classy with a big bottle of Brooklyn Brewery’s Local 1, which is a Belgian-style strong golden ale.

Mushroom-Buffalo-Burger

If you love mushrooms, this burger is for you. There are layers of flavor in the Ultimate Wild Mushroom Buffalo Burger, which starts with seasoning the patty generously with porcini powder. If that’s not enough umami for you, the truffle butter and wild mushrooms will bring the rest. Pop the cork on a bottle of Brooklyn Brewery’s Local 2, a Belgian-inspired dark abbey ale.

 

 

Burger Week No. 6: The Hot & Spicy Burger

In honor of National Burger Month, we’ve been sharing a burger recipe every day.

Today it’s the Hot & Spicy Burger, made with spice-crusted Wagyu beef, pepperjack cheese, chipotle aioli, crispy fried jalapenos and a cheesy kaiser roll. You like it hot? Try this one on for size!

Brooklyn Brewery shared their picks for beer pairings, and their IPA is the perfect beer to refresh the palate between every spicy bite.

6 Hot-&-Spicy-Burger

You can save $10 off any order of $100 or more at dartagnan.com this week. That means more burger for your buck.

Offer valid until 11:59pm EST, Sunday, May 17th, 2015 only. No promo code needed.

Burger Week No. 5: The Philly Burger

It’s National Burger Month, so we are posting a week of burger recipes,  one per day.

Today’s burger is a salute to the Philly cheese steak sandwich. Our Philly Burger consists of seasoned Wagyu beef patties, pan-seared with a bit of butter for a tasty crust, and topped with sweet sautéed peppers and onions, melted provolone cheese, then served in a classic hoagie roll. Be sure to have extra napkins ready because this two-handed burger is super juicy.

Our friends at Brooklyn Brewery have paired each of our burgers with one of their fine beers. The Philly Burger is paired with Ama Bionda, a big bottle of beer, which you can think of as a wine. Designed by Brewmaster Garrett Oliver, and made in Italy with three types of hops, orange blossom honey and water from an ancient Roman spring, this beer is the result of a special collaboration.

5-Philly-Burger

You can save $10 off any order of $100 or more at dartagnan.com this week. That means more burger for your buck.

Offer valid until 11:59pm EST, Sunday, May 17th, 2015 only. No promo code needed.

Burger Week No. 4: Maui Burger

To celebrate National Burger Month this May, we are posting a week of burger recipes,  one per day.

The Maui Burger will give your backyard barbecue some island style. Our wagyu beef burgers are marinated in teriyaki sauce before being cooked over flame, then topped with duck bacon (why not?), grilled pineapple and extra-creamy Japanese mayo.

And because nothing is better than a burger with a beer, our friends at Brooklyn Brewery have paired each of our burgers with one of their fine beers. This one required something extraordinary and K is for Kriek fit the bill.  This dry, tart, fruity and dark beer has a lot going on (including a 10.1% ABV). Learn more about the process of making this complex beer right here.

4 Maui-Burger

You can save $10 off any order of $100 or more at dartagnan.com this week. That means more burger for your buck.

Offer valid until 11:59pm EST, Sunday, May 17th, 2015 only. No promo code needed.

Burger Week No. 3: The Caprese Burger

May is National Burger Month and we’re celebrating with a week of fresh burger recipes,  like this Caprese Burger. The mini patty is made with wagyu beef and ground veal then topped with burrata cheese, tomato and fresh basil. These are technically sliders, which means you can eat a few.

To make things more interesting, our friends at Brooklyn Brewery have paired each of our burgers with one of their fine beers. The Caprese Burger’s Italian nature is paired with Ama Bionda, a big bottle of beer.  Designed by Brewmaster Garrett Oliver, and made in Italy with three types of hops, orange blossom honey and water from an ancient Roman spring, this beer is the result of a special collaboration.

3-Caprese-Burger

You can save $10 off any order of $100 or more at dartagnan.com this week. That means more burger for your buck.

Offer valid until 11:59pm EST, Sunday, May 17th, 2015 only. No promo code needed.

 

Burger Week! No. 2: The Upstate Burger

Since May is National Burger Month, we’re celebrating with a new burger recipe every day for a week.

And to make things more fun, our friends at Brooklyn Brewery have paired each burger with one of their fine beers.  The Upstate Burger strikes the perfect balance between salty and sweet, crunchy and soft. There’s candied bacon and caramelized onions, but it’s the unexpected addition of thin slices of Granny Smith apples that bring it over the top.  It’s as though it was made for Brooklyn Brewery’s Greenmarket Wheat beer, which contains wheat, malt and hops from Upstate New York.

2 Upstate-Burger

You can save $10 off any order of $100 or more at dartagnan.com this week. That means more burger for your buck.

Offer valid until 11:59pm EST, Sunday, May 17th, 2015 only. No promo code needed.

Burger Week No. 1: So-Cal Burger

May is National Burger Month and we’re celebrating with a week of fresh burger recipes.

Our first is the So-Cal Burger, with our pasture-raised beef that is seasoned with herb salt then crowned with Jack cheese, creamy avocado, tender baby lettuces, and a generous swath of sun-dried tomato mayo.

And our friends at Brooklyn Brewery have paired each of these burgers with one of their fine beers. After all, what’s better than a burger and a beer? Their Weisse-style Greenmarket Wheat beer is the perfect pick for the So-Cal Burger.

1-So-Cal-Burger

You can save $10 off any order of $100 or more at dartagnan.com this week. That means more burger for your buck.

Offer valid until 11:59pm EST, Sunday, May 17th, 2015 only. No promo code needed.