As Friday came, so did a fair amount of anxiety! It was the day of our staff party, many orders needed to be filled, trucks sent out… and a lot of cooking needed to be done! Below are some snapshots of that hurried afternoon. Enjoy!
Duck bones roasting, destined to be consoumme.
Furious seasoning, and some rather sub-par marjoram picking.
Herb crusted venison shortloins, going for hot pan ride.
Venison shoulder bourgignon, nearly done!
Gorgeous and colourful beet & chevre salads… as far as the eye can see!
Amid the whirlwind of holiday season, there is very little time to relax and unwind, which makes our annual holiday dinner all the more important. We draw straws and each prepare a course… It is a fantastic way for food lovers like us to show our passion for what we do. The only issue is finding the time to prepare!
Pearl onions always seem like a good idea…. until you have to peel them.
I thought a venison Bourguignon would be a delightful way to end a dinner on a cold winters eve, especially given the amount of time everyone at LFBR spends in refrigerated spaces… And it went something like this:
Beautiful Ontario Venison side ribs, ready to roast.
So what, you ask, is the best way to unwind after spending day after day in a refrigerated warehouse, packing delicious meats and cheeses for hundreds of customers??? Well, I would highly recommend that you dim the lights, grab a glass of wine, and get your braise on!
All the moving parts of a venison Bourguignon starting to come together…
Given the limited time frame and with hindsight being 20/20, perhaps a dish that required many, many hours of making stock making, dicing, peeling, slicing, sauteeing, and braising may not have been the best choice… However, I did pull the main course straw, so I wanted to make it memorable for my fellow LFBR’ers.
An explosion of venison flavour…. AND some Duff Gordon brandy.
So, after a rather long night at my stove with the angry ghost of Julia Child pointing out all the corners I was cutting, I do believe I managed to pull off a rather delicious and successful venison Bourguignon for our holiday party… Just don`t ask anyone at La Ferme about “the puff pastry incident”…. Seriously, don’t. My shame will never die.
Up next: A course by course picture show of the staff party you wish you were at… OURS!!!!
Vacherin Mont D’Or is a famous seasonal cheese, produced in small quantities between August 15th & March 15th only. It is traditionally eaten during the winter months in the Jura region of France & Switzerland. The various Vacherin cheeses are distinguished based upon the specific origin of the milk used in production. The Vacherin Mont D’Or is crafted carefully, hand ladled then drained through canvas. Once the small round has drained and salted, it is encircled by a strip of spruce bark which helps the cheese to keep its shape during its 2-week maturation period as well as impart a wide range of tastes and aromas found in very few other cheeses.
The Vacherin Mont D’Or is a rich & creamy, soft & decadent cheese. The grayish-cream-coloured rind is marked by the indents of its mould and thinly protects the prized cheese, don’t worry if the rind has cracked; that just means it is very ripe and ready to enjoy! Aromas from the Vacherin Mont D’Or are primal; very much of mushrooms and freshly turned earth. The ring of spruce bark which surrounds the cheese also adds incredible aromas of a dense, alpine forest. The paste is cream-coloured and looks like shiny, melting butter and oozes at prime ripeness, to the point that is can be eaten using a spoon!
Try Vacherin Mont D’or accompanied by potatoes and most certainly with bacon! You can also use a spoon to ladle the room temperature cheese into a heel of bread. It is ideal to pair Vacherin with a crisp, dry white wine from Savoie, such as a Chignin-Bergeron.