fois gras

The Sausage and Beer Festival With the Accidental Locavore

by Anne Maxfield on October 25, 2010

Accidental Locavore Sausages

October is really such a stereotypical month. Suddenly all the restaurants are doing some version of Oktoberfest, even if they have no culinary ties to anything German. It’s like all the farms in Dutchess County suddenly having hay rides and pick-your-own pumpkins. A friend from California and I were at Artisanal the other night and shared an charcuterie plate that was part of an Oktoberfest special. Then my husband and I were invited to a sausage and beer festival kick-off sponsored by the Tour de France restaurants. It was fun to be able to taste all kinds of different, mostly homemade, sausages, and I guess if you like beer, to have the beer pairings that went with them. There were seven different types of sausages, ranging from seafood to duck and fois gras. My favorite was the venison sausage from Nice Martin and Marseilles, over polenta with a currant sauce. The tartness of the currants, against the smoothness of the polenta, and the slight gaminess of the venison was great. Now we have to go to Nice Martin for lunch, Andy D’Amico is serving mussels with chorizo and pepper-dews, sounds pretty good to me.

There was also a very nice seafood sausage from Cafe D’Alsace, and my second favorite, the lamb sausage from L’Express with white beans. A traditional garlic sausage served over a warm lentil salad, a chicken boudin, and a delicious apple and blood sausage chausson (turnover to most people). Surprisingly, the most disappointing one was the one I thought would be the best, the duck and fois gras. Never got a sense of either the duck or the fois gras. Too bad.

And picking up the sausage banner, this week’s New York Times Magazine with an interesting recipe for chorizo. Hmmm, maybe it’s time to buy some casings, and get the Kitchen Aid out with the sausage making equipment. What do you think?

Don’t forget to check out this week’s Blogging Boomers Carnival. Lots of interesting ideas this week.



Accidental Locavore Asparagus

This week the Accidental Locvore’s  farmbasket had two bunches of asparagus, a box of peas, radishes, mesclun, and some sprigs of sage that have already begun to flower (way ahead of mine).
However, there was also a note from Paul, saying that he thought it was the last week for asparagus. Too bad! I’ve barely begun to get into them. Still haven’t grilled them tossed in mayo and grilled, or shaved into a pizza or salad. And, not to be too fussy about them, but they were never very thick. Pencil thin asparagus are fine, but I really like mine a little beefy. The ultimate beefy asparagus were always at L’Ami Louis in Paris. They cost as much as the fois gras, but they were magnificent. We were there one night a long time ago, and a very pregnant woman was truly enjoying a plate of them. Her friends kept asking her to share them, but she was having no part of that. My husband, and every other man in the room, was trying not to stare…

I digress, this was supposed to be about peas and  radishes. The peas are a little problematic, because they were so delicious, I ate most of them raw on the way home. So let’s hope there are more of them on the way. As for the radishes, I always feel really guilty cutting off the tops and tossing them. At the Taste of the Hudson Valley demonstration on Saturday at the Culinary Institute (affectionately known in theses parts as the CIA), Chef Robert told me I could use them as salad greens, so the next salad gets a big handful of radish greens. Have any of you used radish greens?


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