Steak au poivre, a/k/a pepper steak, is a French classic. Normally done with beef, this method works great for any red meat, from venison to duck or goose. I use specklebelly goose breasts here.
This is a venerable dish, one of the great classics of French cuisine. Napoleon could have eaten this, as could Victor Hugo, Camus or Charles de Gaulle. Escoffier certainly ate salmis, and my recipe is based on his.
Most of us know about duck confit — where you salt duck legs, then slow cook them in duck fat until they are meltingly tender, then you crisp them up in a hot oven? Yeah, that’s confit. There’s a reason it’s all over restaurant menus, but check it: This process works great with pheasant and other upland game birds, too!
We had some epic frog gigging last week up at Lake Tahoe. Yeah, I know, not a place you’d associate with hunting bullfrogs. But that just made it more fun. And once we got ’em, I just had to cook the frog legs in the classic French method. Call me a frog, eh?
One of the cool things about salmon is that it is rich enough to make rillettes with, especially when you use belly meat and the trim from around the bones. This is a pretty classic version, with both smoked and fresh salmon or steelhead trout.
Ya gotta love ice fishing in California. First of all that it exists, second that you can fish through 2 feet of ice wearing a T-shirt, third that you can catch gorgeous rainbow trout. And when you do, you should treat them simply – with brown butter, parsley and lemon.
Salmon and sorrel sauce is a French classic, a harbinger of spring. This is my updated, albeit fancy version, done with steelhead trout from the American River. Getting the fish cooked perfectly is pretty easy with this method. It’s the sorrel sauce that’s tricky.
There is something about the combination of poultry and apples that just sings. This dish, Pheasant Normandy, is loaded with apple flavor and is larded with butter and cream. It requires no special technique or esoteric ingredients — it’s pure comfort food, and all it asks of you is a little time.