Archive for the 'kosher French cuisine' Category

26
May
14

A Night in Paris


On June 9th, the Monday after Shavuos, The Kosher Scene will present an event at Chagall Bistro (330 5th Street – on the corner of 5th Street and 5th Avenue – Brooklyn, NY Tel: 718.832.9777). The 4 course French dinner will be paired with 8 wines (see poster below) specially selected by Costas Mouzouras of (Wine Director at Gotham Wines and Liquors - 2517 Broadway; New York, NY 10025; Telephone: 212.932.0990). The all inclusive price for this sit-down food and wine pairing – a first of its kind in the kosher world – is $195 per person. Taxes and gratuities are all included! 

* * *Please, RSVP by Sunday – June 8 – at 9:00 pm* * * 

To make your reservations, please, click on the poster below or the PayPal (Buy Now) button at the bottom of this post or on the right side bar, or call us at 646.463.0803

A-night-in-Paris-for-kosherscen-site

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The food is always an experience at Chagall Bistro (330 5th Street – on the corner of 5th Street and 5th Avenue – Brooklyn, NY Tel: 718.832.9777), when you pair each individual course with great wines it becomes an unforgettable event!

Hope to see you there!

CS and SYR

05
Mar
14

Le Marais, Revisited


Earlier today, Meyer Haroch (from The New York Jewish Guide) and I were at a business lunch in Le Marais (150 46th Street, between 6th and 7th Avenue, in Manhattan; Tel:212.869.0900). When we first reviewed the restaurant on these pages we wrote:

Le Marais has been the yardstick by which all other kosher restaurants are measured.

That still is the case, the portions are generous and cooked to perfection; the flavors, the ambiance are uniquely Parisian. Meyer ordered the Lunch Special (Steak, Frites and Salade)…

kosher-scene-copyright-copy22

LesMarais1

The aroma wafted throughout the area, as it bespoke of intense flavors that would have made even the most exacting gastronomes of old, salivate in anticipation. Meyer said the steak was very juicy and indeed very flavorful… as expected.

I ordered their triple layer Hamburger

LesMarais2

Though I was warned it would take 20 minutes to prepare, when it came it was obvious the wait had been more than worthwhile. Full of flavor, filled with red beats, and just the right amount of juiciness. As delightful to the palate, as it was to the eyes, it also came with salade and frites that were just crisp enough without sacrificing taste. I washed it down with a beer from Spain, Estrella Galicia. It poured a golden yellow with a fizzy white head, moderate to high carbonation with a very faint malt aroma. Its bland taste neither overpowered, nor detracted from the scrumptious hamburger which I had trouble finishing. Rather, this beer subtly complemented and enhanced the rich flavors of the meat.

Yes, it was a delightful lunch but one expects that from Le Marais!

CS

25
Feb
14

Chagall Bistro


This past Sunday, a Belgian couple we just met at the Museum of the Jewish Heritage concert, SYR and I, went to Chagall Bistro in Brooklyn’s Park Slope section (330 5th Avenue – on the corner of 5th Street – Brooklyn, NY 11215; Tel: 718.832.9777) for dinner. Walking into Chagall immediately took us to another time, another world, from Brooklyn’s Park Slope straight to old Paris. The ambiance was truly très authentique - a nice surprise – and the first of many more the evening had in store for us.

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Chag1

We started our repast with the Duck Pastilla

Chag2

It came with crispy duck cigars with saffron, almond and date coulis. Full of flavor and seasoned just right!

We segued with Chef’s Terrines and Pâté, a rich assortment of duck rillette, chicken liver mousse, veal country pâté, cornichon jelly and basket of greens. The rich taste of these delights brought back memories of my travels through France, memories long forgotten.

But we were not done with the surprises… we followed with two orders of Chagall Duck, for the ladies, and two Specials for the men…

Chag3

The Special consisted roasted rack of lamb, grilled basil focccaccia, parsnip mousseline, artickokes, tomato confit, thyme, sauteed natural jus. The lamb was tender, juicy and full of flavor, the foccaccia still warm from the oven – full of aroma and taste – the jus was better than any I ever tasted. The ladies couldn’t stop talking about the Chagall Duck, it became obvious we would have to taste it… Frankly, duck had never been a favorite of mine, but I’ll confess the Chagall Duck just became one.

We washed it down with a delicious 2013 Rashbi Malbec, from Argentina’s Mendoza region. Artgentina, it seems, is almost incapable of producing a bad Malbec, even in the case of an inexpensive one like this bottle. With plum and black currant on the palate, a hint of smokiness it left with a long finish, this young wine proved a perfect pairing for an exceptional dinner.

Chag4

We crowned the meal with a Chocolate Mousse for my friend, two Capuccinos for the ladies, and a Crème Brûlée for me. My Belgian friend pronounced his mousse the best he ever had, my Crème Brûlée (I’m addicted to them!) certainly was the best I’ve ever had.

As the Belgian said when we were leaving, “After eating in great kosher restaurants all over France, who would have thought I’d get my best French meal in Brooklyn?” A great evening to be sure, nonetheless there was something that marred it for me… looking around the nearby tables and seeing other diners’ choices, made me wish I could have eaten more. Chef Jean Claude Teulade and his stuff have developed the art of French kosher cuisine to heretofore unparalleled levels, which leaves us with little choice but to go back again and again and again.

CS

13
Jan
12

French Country Casserole


Growing up in Uruguay, my mother used to make many a delicious dish for dinner that became favorites. This one most certainly qualified as comfort food. For a long time I tried to remember the ingredients, while my experiments usually worked well they never quite approached the flavor as I remembered it.

Recently, I came across a recipe that does full justice to my memories. Slightly adapted from MMMM… CASSEROLES (published by Parragon Books Ltd in 2010):

French Country Casserole

Serves 6

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp corn oil
  • 4lb 8oz boneless leg of lamb, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 6 leeks sliced
  • 1 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup rose wine
  • 1 1/4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh mint, plus extra sprigs to garnish
  • 1/2 cup chopped plumped dried apricots
  • 2 lb 4 oz potatoes sliced
  • 3 tbsp melted unsalted margarine
  • salt and pepper to taste

Photo from: Mmmm... CASSEROLES, page 49

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Heat the oil in a large, flameproof casserole. Add the lamb in batches and cook over medium heat, stirring, for 5-8 minutes, or until browned. Transfer to a plate.
  3. Add the leeks to the casserole and cook, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes, or until softened. Sprinkle in the flour and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Pour in the wine and stock and bring to a boil, stirring. Stir in the tomato paste, sugar, chopped mint, and apricots. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. Return the lamb to the casserole and stir. Arrange the potato slices on top and brush with the melted margarine. Cover and bake in the preheated oven for 1 1/2 hours.
  5. Increase the oven temperature to 400 F, uncover the casserole, and bake for an additional 30 minutes, or until the potato topping is golden brown. Serve immediately, garnished with mint springs.

Enjoy, gentle reader, enjoy!

CS

16
Aug
11

Boeuf Bourguignon – “One of the Most Delicious Beef Dishes…”


Originating among France’s Burgundy peasantry, this dish was elevated to the status of haute cuisine by none other than the King of Chefs and the Chef of Kings (as the French press and Kaiser Wilhelm II referred to him) – Auguste EscoffierJulia Child in her Mastering the Art of French Cooking, refers to Boeuf Bourguignon as ”certainly one of the most delicious beef dishes concocted by man.”

While looking for a kosher version that might do justice to Ms. Child’s praises, I came across this scrumptious recipe in Lévana Kirschenbaum‘s latest book, The Whole Foods Kosher Kitchen, page 164:

Detail of photo by: Meir Pliskin on page 165 of The Whole Foods Kosher Kitchen

Boeuf Bourguignon

Spend a wonderful evening with a few French classics and some wine to go with dinner! By the way, my bourguignon has been included in Joan Schwartz’s charming book, deceptively innocent, called Meat and Potatoes. My secret ingredient is crème de cassis, the wonderful black currant liqueur.

This dish reheats very well and improves with age, so go ahead and make it a day or two ahead.

  • 4 pounds beef or bison shoulder, cut into 2 inch cubes for stew
  • 6 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 cups dry wine
  • 1/4 cup crème de cassis
  • 2 large tomatoes, diced small
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 6 bay leaves, or 1 teaspoon ground
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves only(or throw in the sprigs in whole, but don’t forget to discard them at the end of cooking)
  •  2 pounds very thin long carrots, peeled (about 20)
  • 20 very small organic potatoes, scrubbed (only organic potatoes are safe with skins on)
  • 2 dozen tiny onions, peeled and left whole (frozen OK: they are already peeled)
On a stove top: Place beef, water, and oil in a heavy, wide-bottom pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce to medium and cook covered for 2 hours. Add the garlic, wine, creme de cassis, tomatoes, pepper, and bay leaves and cook for 30 more minutes. Add thyme, carrots, potatoes, and onions and cook for 30 minutes. The meat should be fork tender, Transfer meat and all vegetables on platter with a slotted spoon. If the liquid left in the pot is too thin, reduce it on a high flame until it is thickened, the consistency of maple syrup. Pour the reduced liquid over the whole dish and serve hot. Will make 8 to 10 servings.
With a Crock-Pot: Layer all the ingredients except the water (no water) in a 6-quart Crock-Pot, in the order they were given. Set the Crock-Pot on low in the morning. It will be ready for dinner (10 to 12 hours total cooking time).
Variation: Try the dish using dark stout beer instead of wine, as my daughter in law Ruthie does.
As you taste this you’ll certainly agree with Julia Child’s assessment. So… enjoy, gentle reader, enjoy!
CS
02
Nov
10

Thank You!!


Photo by: Aquafornia

How time flies! When we started (on November 2nd, 2009) we were not sure if we’d still be blogging a year later. Would we get any regular readers? Would anybody really be interested in our thoughts? Could we say something, could we sound different, from far more established bloggers and existing websites? A 171 posts and a later later, we realize our hopes are slowly materializing. Most of the exhibitors we spoke to, at last week’s Kosherfest, had heard of us; an impressive number of them had actually seen and read these pages here and abroad.

We constantly meet people who follow our musings regularly. As beginning bloggers, who wondered for how long we would be able to post once or occasionally twice a week, we suddenly find a lot of material that interests our readership. We’ve been told our writing styles are refreshing, our photography mouth watering. Even non-Jewish publications and blogs have noticed us. But I must confide in you, IF we are any good at what we do it is only because we love our subject matter… we are foodies!

During this past year, we’ve sampled some of the top kosher eateries, (from Chinese to Middle Eastern cuisine, from Japanese to French, to Italian, to American, to Fusion, we’ve tasted them) met some amazing chefs – people full of creative energy and an uncanny understanding of the nuances of flavor. We’ve learned and continue learning a lot, about food, about wine; above all, as we forge new relationships with chefs, with restaurateurs, with manufacturers of kosher products, with cookbook authors, with winemakers around the world, etc., we are often told personal stories that prove that even those who excel at their craft are just humans like the rest of us. What drives them to succeed? What fuels their drive? Simple, it is their passion for food, their passion to prove that kosher need not be a second class cuisine. Yes, cooking kosher, manufacturing kosher products, may be a bit more challenging… but, it is precisely those challenges that spur them on, that excites their creative juices. Kosher has come a long way!!!

But what SYR and I are most grateful for, gentle reader – what helped us the most – were your suggestions, your words of encouragement.

What lies ahead is exciting, we plan many a contest for this upcoming year and are at this very moment negotiating the prizes. We plan on bringing you guest posts by well known Chefs, as well as outstanding recipes from professionals and from housewives who almost daily improve, create, or adapt delicious new dishes. We will also bring you reviews of amazing new products. And, of course, we will continue to review kosher restaurants and often we will write about our revisits to favorite eateries.

Right now and until November the 18th, we are running a contest based on recipes from any of Susie Fishbein’s Kosher by Design series. Send us your best photo of any of Susie’s 900 plus recipes and you may win her latest cookbook: Kosher by Design Teens and 20 Somethings, meanwhile you can download the complete recipe index at: http://bit.ly/KBDrecipeindex. Email us your best to:

kosherscene@gmail.com

Our first year was productive and we are proud of how we grew, but there is so much more to accomplish. Thank you, gentle reader, we could never have gotten here without you.

CS




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