Rillettes of Pork is one of my favorite types of pâté. It also happens to be one of my favorite memories of a mid- day meal while we were in Paris. I ordered it in several different bistros (along with a carafe of white wine) in different areas around the city so I could taste the differences in each chefs preparation. It was satisfying every time.
Rillettes can be made from rabbit, duck, fish, and many other meats, but pork is my favorite (with duck close behind). It must be my southern heritage. Rillettes are made by braising fresh pork (I used shoulder) with mire poix, and aromatics until the meat begins to fall apart; much like pulled pork in the south. The meat is blended up along with some of the reduced stock and some of its rendered fat until it shreds apart and begins to turn into a spreadable paste. I do this in my Kitchen Aide with the paddle attachment. It is then placed in jars and then more fat is poured over the top to seal and protect the meat. It is served cold and spread over bread or crackers and often with flavorful condiments. I really enjoy the sweet and tangy flavor of my caramelized onion jam (there is red wine vinegar in it) as well as gherkins with their sweetness and hint of spice. This is a perfect lunch with a side of fresh greens and herbs tossed in Champagne vinaigrette or in this case a nice glass of crisp white Bordeaux or Proseco sparkling wine at our cozy wine bar.
Today I prepared one of the dishes that I have been preparing each fall/winter season since we opened back in 2006. I love the comfort food aspect of it and the fact that it incorporates so many ingredients that can still be found locally/regionally like NY state apples and cider, pork, brussel sprouts, butternut squash, onions, sage from our garden and bread from our local bakery. This dish is Cider Glazed Apple and Sage Stuffed Pork Tenderloin with spiced butternut squash puree and house made bacon sauteed brussel sprouts.
Bon Appetite! Chef Brian
This evenings feature is Grilled Faroe Island Salmon on a bed of wilted Birdsfoot Farm organic kale, with crispy rosemary smashed potato and a sun dried tomato-fresh basil aioli.
This dish utilizes local potatoes, kale, and herbs as well as regional salmon. It is dairy and gluten free; in case you are one of our regular guests with food sensitivities.
For this evenings featured entree (Saturday, November 13th), Chef Arthur crusted an ahi tuna filet with a mélange of fresh ground pepper corns (red, green, white, and black). It is seared to rare, sliced thin and served on a creamy Birdsfoot Farm kale risotto and complemented with honey roasted parsnips and truffle infused brandy sauce. Bon Appetite!
Autumn is our favorite time of year here at 1844 House. It is when there is an abundance of fresh local ingredients at the local farmers markets that allow us to create dishes that nourish both the body and soul.
One of my favorite cooking methods in the fall months; as the weather begins to turn cold, is braising. Braising is a combination cooking method that is a blend of roasting and stewing. It is a great way to prepare those cuts of meat that are not necessarily palatable by sauteéing, frying, poaching, grilling. This would include (but not limited to) ribs, short ribs, chuck, brisket, etc. There is something satisfying about seasoning and searing meat to give it a great crust, then braising it in a stock made from its own bones with fresh vegetables from the local farms. The resulting dish has such a deep flavor that really showcases the characteristics of the type of meat you are cooking. We puree the vegetables (mire poix) right into the finished stock to produce a very flavorful liquid that we then blend right into the meat after we “pull it” to keep it moist and intensify the flavor. Not only will you end up with a wonderful meal, but your kitchen and home will be filled with wonderful aromas. A perfect example of this is our Featured Entree of the evening.
Braised Boneless Beef Short Ribs with a truffle infused brandy-pepper corn sauce, porcini mushroom “beggars purses”, and crisp buttermilk fried onion rings.
I hope you are able to take the time this fall season to wander your local farmers market and bring home the ingredients to create your own food memory.