As world travelers and photographers, Henderson Productions joined forces with our friends from Poggio Amorelli B&B to explore culinary France. Master Chef contestant Angela Perkins contacted chefs in five distinct regions and asked us to design and document the trip. We knew it would be a journey for our senses: to see, taste, smell and touch France. Above all else, we aimed to enjoy the adventure. We are delighted to report those goals were met and more. Along the way many chefs gave us permission to include their recipes to help you recreate some of our experiences. We invite you to appreciate the bounty of their gifts. Bon Appetit et Bon Voyage.
We had a 6:30 appointment to meet the 1-star Michelin chef Oliver Arlot at his restaurant across the street from our house and giddily arrived only to be told he was at his “other restaurant. Bistro Arlot” Hurried directions were given and now we’re jumping in the car to not miss meeting the chef. Alas, we found the Bistro and two casual kitchen workers sitting on the patio informed us that, no, the Chef is at his third restaurant! Goodness. They graciously called him to let him know we were on the way and we arrived around 7:15 for what turned out to be four hours of gorgeous indulgence.
Herewith my direct notes from the evening…
- Straight-from-the-oven béchamel cheese puffs served with a tiny spoon of white bean paste.
- Chilled celery soup with walnuts. Very subtle and light.
- Appetizer – light cheese twille (thin crackers) bottom with shredded crab then twill then a prawn mousse with thinly sliced avocado twirl and plated with an avocado puree. My favorite savory of the evening.
- Poached egg with pork cushion, spinach and garlic and a light foam.
- Duck foix gras with strawberry/raspberry/blackberries on the side and a raspberry balsamic glaze. Both the duck and the glaze were warm with the berries at room temp maintaining their texture
- Lobster lemon zest foam with mussels and fresh peas with a fish mousse medallion. It’s edible art.
- Domaine Goyer Chateaumeillant Pinot Noir 2015. “Has a hooked nose.”
- Shaved broccoli encrusted cod with a light radish sauce served with a pureed broccoli/cauliflower floret and radish slices. Light and lovely. The sauce is radish, chicken broth and butter.
- Seven courses so far. Good God. Four to go – meat, cheese, and two desserts.
- Pork loin over mixed grain and mushroom risotto with creamed corn served with a pork au jus.
- Cheese serving – we opted to share two plates for four of us. Whipped goat cheese with tiny croutons over a slice of semi-soft goat cheese. Super light cheese service.
- Lemon tart with basil sorbet and shredded, candied black olive garnish. Drizzled with a light olive oil at the table. Hands down my favorite of the evening!
- Dark chocolate mousse layered with mango gelee served with a mango sorbet.
- Green tea and chocolate macaron and almond mini cakes for completed.
Twelve courses. Three bottles of wine. Excellent evening. Insane. We wedged ourselves into the car arriving back to our town house after midnight and crashed!
Twille Crackers – These delightfully light thin pancakes look like lace and are used to adorn dishes from appetizers to sweets.
- 140 grams water
- 50 grams oil
- 20 grams flour
Mix all ingredients together. Make sure frying pan or grill is hot before pouring in small circles (like dollar pancakes). Cook until holes stop moving. It will look like lace.