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Posts tagged ‘chefs’

Chefs of Betony Come to Visit

We are always happy to have visitors at our Union, NJ office. When Chef Bryce Shuman of Betony in NYC made the trip, along with two chefs from his kitchen, he came bearing gifts.

From left to right: Alex, Pierre, Chef Bryce, Ariane, John, Chef Jack.

The first was an autographed dish for the wall of plates in our dining hall. The message reads: “Dear Ariane, Thank you for being one of our partners in greatness for many years, and for many more to come.  -Bryce and the team at Betony.”

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A dish from the team at Betony that will hang on our wall of plates in the dining hall.

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What Does Mise en Place Mean?

Mise en place (pronounced meez ahn plas) is a French cooking term that literally translates to “put in place.” Often referred to as simply “meez” by the pros.

Mise en place allows you to cook in the most efficient way, without having to stop. All necessary ingredients are chopped and ready to go, spices are measured, oil is portioned, tools are at hand.

Mise en Place Video Shoot

Ready to cook!

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Watch the Duckathlon 2014 Video

Drumroll please ….Here’s the video of our first-ever public Duckathlon!

This year our farmers came together with our chef clients and they served up games and challenges, and most importantly plenty of food and drink. Winners were declared, prizes distributed and everyone went home with a full belly and a (slightly) light head.

 

We  had a photo booth by photographer Claire Rosen and all the photos are available right here.

Claire Rosen Photo Booth Montage

For even more photos of all the action, check our Facebook page.

Duckathlon Montage

We want to thank all our sponsors, chefs and farmers … and especially YOU, the public who came and played with us at this unique event. See you next year for Duckathlon 2015!

 

The Duckathlon Redux

If you like to play with your food, the Duckathlon is the place to be.

So what is the Duckathlon exactly?

It’s a culinary obstacle course with multiple challenges – some are tough, some are funny, but all are food and wine related. Except the ones that involve Armagnac, gin and beer.

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It all began as a private event back in 2005 for our chef clients to let down their toques and test their skills in a friendly competition. Some teams wore costumes, themed t-shirts (with foie gras a favorite subject), and crazy hats.

Now for the first time, the Duckathlon is open to the public! That means you and your food-obsessed friends can take the same challenges that stymied the chefs. There are prizes and medals for those teams that score highest.

Not sure you can come as a team of four? We got your back. Purchase a single ticket and we’ll pair you up with a team on site.

And not to worry about our chef friends – they’re still coming,  but this time they will serve you tasting portions of delectable dishes they made with our products.

Our farmers will be there, too. And all proceeds go to the Action Against Hunger FoodLove initiative.

But get your tickets soon – the Duckathlon is on Saturday, June 14, 2014, from 12:00 – 5:00 pm.

You can purchase tickets here. But you cannot buy them at the door!

The team from Felix Restaurant featured a guest member: Elyse Pasqual, who blogs at foodieinternational.com

The team from Felix Restaurant featured a guest member: Elyse Pasquale, who blogs at foodieinternational.com

Want more? Watch this!

 

And the Village Voice just posted about the new Duckathlon, which they urge you to attend.

Heed the call – or in this case, the quack.

We hope to see you there!

 

 

 

Second Annual Taste of France in NYC

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The world’s largest event dedicated to France will be taking place at Bryant Park in New York City on Saturday, Sept. 28 – Sunday, Sept. 29. Of course D’Artagnan will be there serving food and working with the cadre of chefs involved.

There will be food, wine, music, fashion, chef demos, literary figures, a French bulldog contest, fun for the kids, prizes and much, much more…we hope to see you there!

Learn about Taste of France here and visit the Facebook page for details about specific events. Follow the Twitter hashtag #TasteofFrance.

Taste of France at NASDAQ

Ariane and others involved in Taste of France rang the opening bell at NASDAQ on 9/19. Click photo to watch the video.

Duckathlon VIII, The Video

Duck yeah!  Here’s all the evidence  needed to destroy any future political  careers.

Our annual Duckathlon was held on June 9 in the Meatpacking District of NYC. This year, our cameras followed the team from Annisa restaurant as they prepared for the event.  This profile of elite duckathletes gives a sense of what it takes to compete in our culinary obstacle course. With Chef Anita Lo leading her team “The Foie Freedom Fighters,” expect to see fierce competition along with the zaniness.  All for Life, Liverty, and the pursuit of Quackiness!

With many thanks to our partners, sponsors, judges, and all the teams who participated.  Looking forward to seeing you all at Duckathlon in 2014!

A Saucy Series, Part III: Sauce Chasseur

Welcome to guest blogger Deana Sidney of Lost Past Remembered, a blog dedicated to discovering, replicating and adapting historic recipes. In this saucy series she demystifies one of the cornerstones of classic French cuisine: the mother sauces.

Sauce Chasseur

When the Kennedys came into the White House the quality of the food served there went from 0 to 60.  Instead of cooks and caterers Jacqueline Kennedy hired French Chef René Verdon. As you might imagine, he played an important role in bringing French cuisine to America.

jfk & chef rene verdon

JFK and Chef Rene Verdon.

One of the most famous dinners of the administration was held in 1961. Instead of serving a state dinner at the White House, an elegant tent was erected at Mount Vernon and the meal was an enormous success.

There was avocado and crabmeat mimosa, a wonderful rice dish and raspberries with crème Chantilly.  The main course was Poulet Chasseur.

Sauce Chasseur JFK 3 mt vernon dinner

A view of Mount Vernon from the beautiful tent.

As part of my sauce series, Sauce Chasseur is made with French tomato sauce, one of the mother sauces of the 19th century that differs from Italian sauce in that it has flour and stock in the mix and is slow cooked with a ham knuckle or trotter.  This addition gives the Sauce Tomate a velvety texture that is perfect for the elegant dish.  I decided to use guinea hen instead of chicken for a deeper flavor.  If you’ve never tried it, guinea hen is a great bird… sort of a cross between chicken and pheasant.  I think when you try it you’ll see why everyone wanted a seat at the Kennedy table.  The food and the company were superb.

Escoffier Sauce Chasseur

6 medium mushrooms
2 T butter
2 T olive oil
1 t minced shallots
1 c white wine
2 oz brandy
½ c tomato sauce*
1 c demi-glace
1 T meat glaze (Boil 1/2 c stock till reduced to a thick glaze – pay attention to it – it goes from glaze to burn quickly at the end; a non-stick pan is perfect for doing this.)

Peel and mince the mushrooms, heat ½ oz butter and olive oil.  Fry mushrooms till slightly browned.  Add t of minced shallots and remove half the butter.  Pour 1 c white wine and 1 glass of brandy; reduce by half and finish with tomato sauce, 1 c demi-glace and 1 T meat glaze boil 5 minutes or until it is thickened slightly. Strain and reserve. You will have 1 cup of sauce.

*Tomato sauce

1 large can tomato puree (I used Muir Glen fire-roasted crushed tomatoes)
1 strip bacon, chopped
small piece ham knuckle or trotter with bone or piece of ham with bone – about the size of a child’s fist
3 T carrot, chopped small
3 T onion, chopped small
bouquet garni
small clove of garlic
1 T butter (the bacon will give up about 1 T of fat, add more butter to make 2 T fat)
2 T flour
1  t salt
1 t sugar
pinch pepper
1 c stock

Cook bacon in butter, sprinkle with flour, add tomatoes and veg and ham and stock.  Boil and cook over low heat for 2 – 3 hours, stirring frequently (it will scorch a little). Take out bouquet and ham and strain, pressing on the solids. Whisk till smooth.

sauce chasseur 3

Escoffier’s Guinea Hen Chasseur 

The guinea hen will serve 2 – 4, a chicken will serve 4 – 6

guinea hen or a 3-1/2 lb chicken cut into serving pieces (breasts without bone, legs, thighs and wings –reserve back and breast bone for stock) or 4 breast or 8 thigh pieces
salt and pepper
1 T butter
1T olive oil
¼ c white wine
1 T cognac
1 c chasseur sauce
8 sliced mushrooms ( I used shitakes and chanterelles)
chopped parsley (tarragon and chervil are nice too but optional)

Salt and pepper the meat and brown it well in equal quantities of butter and oil. Cook at medium heat until cooked through.  Cook the breast meat less than the rest of the meat. Place on a dish and cover.  Sauté the mushrooms in the remaining fat.

Pour out the fat. Swirl the saucepan with white wine and cognac and reduce.  Put the chicken back in the pan and toss with mushrooms, pour chasseur sauce over the meat and sprinkle with herbs.

Couronne de Riz Clamart

Based on recipe from Kennedy’s social secretary Letitia Baldrige, 6 servings

2 tsp butter
1/2 cup each finely chopped red and green pepper
 (I used 1 poblano pepper)
3 cups cooked long grain white (or brown) rice
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
 (I think 1/2 c is better)
1 cup chicken stock
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1 plum tomato, peeled, seeded and finely chopped (I used about 8 un-peeled cherry tomatoes since they have flavor at this time of year)
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
1 cup baby peas

In skillet, melt half the butter over medium-high heat. Add peppers, cook, stirring often, for about 5 minutes or until lightly browned. Reserve.

In bowl, gently stir together rice, eggs, Parmesan cheese, chicken stock and parsley.

Stir in peppers, tomato, salt and pepper.

Spoon rice mixture into generously buttered 1 quart round tube mold or Bundt pan, packing down gently with spoon (I used a copper mold and put ramkins in the center since I wanted a taller shape!)

Bake in 350 degree oven for 25 to 35 minutes or until lightly browned.  Remove from oven and let stand for 2 minutes.

Invert over serving platter over top of mold and turn out rice mixture.

Toss peas with remaining butter, spoon into center of rice ring.

Join in the Fun at Le Taste of France

Le Taste of France is a national celebration of French culture that culminates with a big weekend event (Le Show) in NYC on September 29 & 30. D’Artagnan is proud to participate as a sponsor, and will be serving savory treats at Le Show. We invite you to come out, meet and mingle, sample dishes from some great chefs, sip French wines, buy French wares, learn to play pétanque and join in the general joie de vivre.

But never fear, if you are not in NYC and want a taste of France, many of our restaurant clients around the country will be playing along.  They will offer a special D’Artagnan duck dish on the menu from September 20-30, and will show their French spirit in unique ways. So put on your beret and find a restaurant near you to join in the fun. Check our map for participating restaurants. And please take photos of the duck dishes and share them on our Facebook page. We’ll be doing the same!

D’Artagnan Thanksgiving Survival Guide: Day 4

It’s Day 4 of our Turkey Day guide! And the home-stretch of Turkey Roasting 101. S0 – the bird is now perfectly roasted and ready to come out of the oven. You have already cleared a safe place for it, with surfaces protected if necessary from the intense heat of the roasting pan. Your cutting board with juice trough, sheet pan or warmed platter are situated close by………. uh… now what?!

Turkey Roasting Basics, Part 4

Give the Bird a Breather… Finally, it is time for a good rest. Unfortunately, that rest is for the bird, not for you. After the turkey is through cooking, remove it from the oven, and transfer it to the waiting board, pan or warmed platter. Then place it in a warm place (out of the way of any drafts) to allow it to ‘rest’ with the dressing still inside. Do not just place it on a flat cutting board. If that is Read more

D’Artagnan Thanksgiving Survival Guide: Day 3

Welcome to Day 3 of our Thanksgiving Survival Guide! By now, you’ve learned some turkey roasting basics, so you chose a technique to initially protect the turkey from the dry heat; it is in the oven roasting beautifully, and you are basting away diligently – this is great! Now comes the second step towards a moist, juicy bird – don’t overcook it!

 

Turkey Roasting Basics, Part 3

First, use each basting as an opportunity to keep an eye on the browning. If the skin becomes too brown – too soon before the bird has cooked through, you can prevent over browning or burning, simply by shielding the skin. You do this with a piece of aluminum foil, shiny side up, that you crease from side-to-side across the center to form a tent shape. Place this tent very loosely over the top of the turkey. Be sure to leave at least 2 to 3 inches open between the bottom of the foil and the top of the roasting pan, to avoid trapping moisture or steam under the tent (remember, dry heat). If at this point the bird is already as brown as you would like, use the foil shield through the remainder of the cooking, and continue to baste as usual.

Otherwise, take the foil off at the beginning of the last hour of your cooking range to allow the bird to continue browning and the skin to ‘crisp’ again. If after that, the skin has browned to your liking, and the bird has still not finished cooking; just put a tent back over the turkey and leave it until the bird does finish cooking. In either case, it is very important to continue basting as usual.

Are we there yet?
Even when equipped with a guideline and good intuitive timing, a quick read or instant read meat thermometer is an indispensable little tool for determining when your bird has finished roasting. These are not the same meat thermometers that protrude out of the breast throughout roasting. Quick read thermometers have a slender sensor that you push into the meat to take the temperature

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