This is about as classic French as you get. Salmis (sal-mee) of snipe: Salmis is where you roast a bird, make a quick sauce from the bones, and serve it with mushrooms and maybe some toast. This is a fantastic snipe recipe.
Verjus, or verjuice, is the juice of unripe grapes – wild or cultivated. It is a classic French alternative to vinegar, and it is pretty easy to make. Here’s how.
If you’ve never braised pheasant thighs, you’re missing out. Unlike the drumsticks, which can be fiddly, the thighs on pheasants (and wild turkeys) are sublime when slow cooked. This recipe is based on a French one and uses lots of mushrooms.
If Porcini are the kings of the mushroom world, chanterelles are its queen. There are several varieties of chanterelle, ranging from the white to the cinnabar to the various yellow ones. Golden chanterelles are the most common variety of chanterelle here in the West, and those in the Pacific Northwest can start getting them in July. Here
Sorrel sauce. It’s so basic, yet so profoundly useful… and awesome. Sorrel tastes like lemonade in a leaf, and both wild and cultivated varieties grow like weeds in any garden. This rich, tart sauce is perfect with pasta, poached fish or poultry, or any other lightly cooked meat.
Fromage de tete. Coppa di testa. Presskopf. Brawn. Anything but “head cheese.” Only that’s what this is. This is the head of a wild boar I shot, cooked and pressed into a terrine pan. It’s actually damn good. No, really.
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.