As if four appetizer courses weren`t enough… It was time to have the mains:
Spaghetti with wild mushroom ragout & parmiggiano reggiano.
Our Sales Team leader Shai put together a hearty winter ragout of wild mushrooms and fortified chicken broth; tossed with spaghetti and topped generously with crunchy Parmiggiano Reggiano.
We learned two things about the pasta from the 2012 LFBR staff dinner; first, that the pasta should be served closer to the end, and in relatively small amounts. Second, gnocchi & braised rabbit has a bigger knock-out punch than a granddaddy dose of NyQuil.
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!!!!
Many options are avail for your shelves and tables next week. Quail, partridge, Guinea fowl, and pheasants are an eclectic choice for small gatherings, while Cornish hen & capons can an easy & delicious substitute for a crowd tired of turkey.
Right at home in a pan.
Contact our head office at 647-352-8077 or your sales representative before Monday at 11am to get these beautiful birds in your hands before the holiday!
As our anxiously awaited guests began to arrive, so the Meat & Greet began truly began.
Ready, set, eat!
Once guests were able to tear themselves away from Foie Gras torchon graciously provided and expertly served by Thomas from Palmex Rougie, the fine gentlemen from Paganelli Salumi were sampling a wide variety of handcrafted cured meats.
This created the first real bottleneck of the event, with many guests as eager for charcuterie knowledge as they were for tasty samples. Below, Paul from Paganelli’s has rapt listeners learning about the salumi creating process; from meat selection through curing and drying.
Perennial favourite Bleu d’Elisabeth, in all of it raw milked and organically certified glory, was prominent featured and heavy sampled at PG’s spread. Also being sampled from Fromagerie du Presbytere was Louis D’Or, an award winning alpine style cheese with a nutty bouquet and full flavours to match. Selections Fromageries La Station de Compton, Medard, & Les Fromagiers de la Table Ronde such as Chemin Hatley, 14 Arpents, & Menestral, as well as trusty ol’ Riopelle de l’Isle rounded out the cheeses presented by Lise.
Rassembleu & Bleu d’Elisabeth; a distinct society… of blue cheese.
In order to draw our guests in further, we deviously placed Alex & Loic from Fermes St-Canut at something of a ‘point of no return’, where everyone knew they would have to keep tasting, sampling & eating in order to forge on… Where they were going was not a place for folks with small appetites.
Alex from St-Canut raising the porcine bar, and blowing a few minds in the process.
With delicate white ham, creamy rillette de porc, and something around four different preparations of pork loin; Fermes St-Canut delighted everyone with their delicious and versatile milk-fed piglets.