Days 67-70: Charcuterie Buffet

7 Oct

Today was the big day – Day 10 of Level 4, which means our big charcuterie buffet. We made several different items from the pig we butchered, a salmon we cold smoked and several different condiments and breads to accompany the foregoing. Pictured at top is one of our featured charcuterie platters. Starting from the left is a country pate, salami, chicken gallantine with roasted macademia nuts and golden raisins, and a duck terrine with cherries and pistachios on the far right. Rachelle and I made the chicken gallantine. At first, we were suppose to make a rabbit terrine, but the rabbit smelled funky, so it was composted.

So, what is a chicken gallantine? Well ours was essentially making a mousse out of the dark meat, adding in chives, nuts and dried fruit, wrapping that around seared chicken breasts cut into 1 inch wide strips, and stuffing and rolling that all into chicken skin. Then, we poached it in chicken stock for about 1/2 hour until it reached 140 degrees F, then we cooled it overnight and seared the outside to get a crispy skin before slicing it into rounds. The mousse is really simple: the ratio of cream to meat was essentially 1 cup of heavy cream to 1 lb. of meat. Then, we put it in a food processor with some salt and blended it until it was almost a paste. Then we added in the fruit and nuts for texture.

Chef Ryan walked me through removing the skin from a whole chicken and making sure it remained 1 whole piece. It was not as hard as I thought it would be. Here are two pictures in the gallantine process: 1) skin in one piece (used for rolling the mousse inside and then searing the skin roll), and 2) the rolled up bundle in cheesecloth before it was poached.

Our buffet turned out fantastic! Below are more pics:

Bobby’s pretzel rolls stuffed with garlic sausage and grape-dijon mustard (yep, EVERYTHING was homemade):

Our cold smoked salmon (this was the bomb with pickled red onions!) and salmon mousse in gourges (puff pastry profiteroles):

Starting from the front right, Rachelle and my “blt” which was our maple cured bacon which we cured and then smoked, tomato gelee with sesame seeds in it (great addition Tomas!) on a piece of romaine,

Moving to the back right, Anne’s Foi Gras on homemade brioche with apple chutney. Back left: Ham on biscuits with onion marmalade. Front left: Bobbi’s Head Cheese (yes, head cheese is made from the head of the pig).

We made our own sauerkraut and the key to this was keeping the cabbage fully submerged in the brine and waiting until it came under the right PH to know that it was “done”. It was delicious with the different hams and bratwurst we made.

We did have some fruits and vegetables: radishes with piped butter and grey sea salt; green beans with an herb-creme fraiche-lemon dressing and oven dried tomatoes; and a gorgeous fruit platter and cute watermelon carved by David and Victor. We also had some desserts courtesy the pastry chefs and some awesome pickles (chard stems, cucumber, okra) and sauces (mustards, cumberland sauce) that I forgot to photograph. Again, everything was homemade – from the pickles to ALL the meat to the breads and sauces. It was fabulous! I’m still full.

I said to Chef Ryan that after I graduate I need to go back to being a vegetarian for awhile. My system is on animal fat overload (not to mention my caloric and salt intake is outrageous on a daily basis).

Although I’m not going to type out any recipes, I’ll post pictures of 2 bread recipes that were a hit this week: 1) a “naan” recipe (no, we don’t have tandoori ovens at school, but this was simply done over a grill, so any open flame will work), and 2) the pretzel roll recipe we made today for the sausage roll. The naan recipe is very simple and can be done easily at home. The pretzel recipe was also pretty easy, but you’ll have to decipher the written instructions. Credit for the naan recipe is given in the picture. Credit for the pretzel roll recipe goes to one of the FCI pastry chefs.

Tomorrow is pizza making day! I’m very excited. Then, tomorrow night, I’m off to Siana Lowrey’s apartment to meet Sean (her husband), Shannon & Fred, Busaba and Carnet for a cocktail and “heavy pupu” party Shannon and I are cooking for. Some of the pates and terrines are coming with me to the party. I can’t wait to hear what the other party-goers think of the FCI goodies.

2 Responses to “Days 67-70: Charcuterie Buffet”

  1. Lucinda Byers October 7, 2011 at 5:02 am #

    Spectacular! I am in awe.

  2. carnet October 8, 2011 at 5:41 pm #

    I ate so much funky meat stuffs last night my ass is never going to be the same again.

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