Sunday, October 10, 2010


yields four servings

Light cream
2 nice 600 g (1 1/3 lb.) heads of lettuce
2/3 oz. white onion
2/3 oz. leek, white part only
22/3 oz. smoked pork rind
1 bouquet garni
2 cups light chicken stock
1 clove of garlic
4 tsp. butter
1 cup crème fraîche

Smoked bacon foam
8 tsp. liquid cream
1/3 oz. finely diced smoked bacon
a pinch of curry powder, salt and pepper

Braised lettuce ribs and leaves
Use the ribs and a few leaves from the light cream ingredients
4 tsp. butter
2/3 oz. carrot, in very small dice
3/4 cup light chicken stock
a pinch of chopped parsley
a clove of garlic, peeled and a few thyme flowers
2/3 oz. smoked bacon simmered for 30 minutes with onion, clove and bouquet garni

Escargots (you may substitute chicken "oysters")
20 small snails cooked in court-bouillon
4 tsp. butter
1 shallot, finely chopped
a pinch of chopped parsley
a touch of garlic
a pinch of fine breadcrumbs
a drizzle of lemon juice
1 drop of pastis
a pinch of Madras curry powder

Fried leek
3 oz. leek (white part), julienned
4 cups grapeseed oil for frying
a blend of salt and curry powder
4 sprigs of chervil

Light cream: In a high-sided saucepan, sweat the onions, leek white, garlic, bacon rind and bouquet garni in foaming butter. Finally, add the well-washed lettuce, having set aside the ribs and tender green leaves. Add the hot chicken stock and salt lightly. Cook quickly for 15 minutes, then add the cream and cook 5 minutes longer. Finally, add a few nice green leaves to the cream and blend at high speed for 6-8 minutes to obtain a light green color. Keep hot.

Smoked bacon foam: Bring the 30 g cream to a boil with the finely diced smoked bacon, curry, salt and pepper. Cook for 6-8 minutes and blend everything to obtain a bacon and curry-flavored cream. Let rest. Once cooled, add in 10 g (1/3 oz.) whipped cream. Set aside.

Braised lettuce ribs and leaves: In a sauté pan, sauté in butter the finely diced carrot with the cooked smoked bacon, garlic and thyme flowers; add the lettuce ribs and chicken stock and cook, covered, for a few minutes. Finally, add the tender green leaves and chopped parsley. Set aside.

Escargots: In a sauté pan, sauté the well-drained snails in butter, add the chopped shallot and cook for 3-4 minutes. Deglaze with a drop of pastis and a squeeze of lemon juice. Finally, add a touch of garlic, a little chopped parsley and a sprinkling of bread crumbs, salt, pepper and Madras curry powder. Set aside.

Fried leeks: Heat the oil to 140° C (280° F). Fry the thinly sliced leeks for a few minutes, stirring constantly. Drain on paper towels. Season with salt, pepper and curry. Keep hot.

Presentation: In wide-rimmed bowls, place a 6 cm (2 1/2") metal ring. Place the braised lettuce ribs and leaves inside. On top, place the snails in a circle around the perimeter of the ring. Drizzle the cream around the outside of the ring. Top with the bacon foam. Place the fried leeks on the snails and add a few sprigs of chervil. Remove the ring and serve immediately.

bacon recipe courtesy of: Patrick Henriroux, Grand Chef Relais & Châteaux, La Pyramide, 14, boulevard Fernand Point, 38200 Vienne (Isère), France

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