Classic Salmis of Duck

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.

Pheasant Confit

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!

French Fried Frog Legs

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?

Salmon Rillettes

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.

Pan Fried Trout with Peas

Butterflied, pan fried trout with the youngest, freshest peas. What could be more springtime than that? Here's how to make crispy fried trout with either fillets or a butterflied fish.

Pheasant with Apples

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.

Crawfish Bisque

Nothing says luxury like a smooth, creamy lobster bisque. Sadly, I live 3,000 miles from Maine lobsters, but I do live near some of the best crayfish spots in America. And lemme tell ya, this crayfish bisque is every bit as good as one made with their big brothers.

Foraging for Meadow Mushrooms, Agaricus campestris

The common meadow mushroom has not been so common for me; I'd searched in vain for years to find them. Until last week, when Holly came home with a bushel of the mushrooms we call "pinks." I cooked them up using a classic Escoffier recipe, and lemme tell ya: It was worth the wait.

Braised Venison Shanks with Garlic

Anyone who knows me will not be surprised at all to learn that the first thing I cooked from the yearling antelope I shot in Wyoming was the shanks. I love me some shank. Since the meat was so light and tender, I cooked the shanks "forty garlic clove" style, like the famous chicken dish.

Skate or Ray Wing with Brown Butter

If there is a fish in California waters more hated than a bat ray, I don't what it is. "Everyone" says the lowly bat ray is inedible, but I know better. After all, a ray is merely a narrow-tailed skate. And skate sells for $20 a pound -- when you can find it.

Ventreche, French Bacon

I first learned about ventreche, a French bacon, from my friend Kate Hill. It is a very simple thing: just pork belly, salt, pepper and smoke. But that is the source of its beauty.

Sorrel Soup, French Style

I've grown sorrel in my backyard for years. How is it I never made sorrel soup? Time to rectify that.